ARRL VHF Sweepstakes, Saturday, 1/23 1900 UTC - Monday, 1/25 0359 UTC
Warm Up with the ARRL January VHF Sweepstakes!
VHF weak-signal operators will be on the bands in force the weekend of January 23-25 as the ARRL January VHF Sweepstakes http://www.arrl.org/contests/rules/2010/jan-vhf-ss.html hits the airwaves. This contest gives the VHFer in all of us a chance to do some contesting during the winter months.
ARRL Contest Branch Manager Sean Kutzko, KX9X said that January may not seem like the ideal time to hold a VHF+ contest: "After all, sporadic-E propagation is most commonly associated with summer months; however, the propagation gods like to surprise and confound, and there have been plenty of QSOs made via sporadic-E in the colder months through the years. Plenty of other chances for enhancement exist as well, thanks to tropospheric ducting and auroral propagation. Thanks to the advent of WSJT software, making QSOs via meteor scatter in the wee hours of the morning on 6 and 2 meters has never been easier. You have plenty of opportunities to make long-haul QSOs on the VHF+ bands in January!"
Kutzko said that getting on the VHF bands is easy. Technician class licensees have permission to use all amateur bands above 50 MHZ, and the antennas for VHF frequencies are comparatively smaller than their HF counterparts. A dipole for 6 meters is less than 10 feet long and most modern transceivers come with 50 MHz built-in. So, string up a dipole for 6 meters and see what you can work!
"While most contest QSOs will be made using SSB and CW," Kutzko said, "don't forget about FM simplex. There are numerous stations that enjoy 2 meter FM simplex QSOs, especially if you live near a large population center. Just be sure to keep the national 2 meter calling frequency of 146.52 MHz clear of contest activity. Don't neglect the higher bands, either -- 222 MHz, 432 MHz and 1.2 GHz and up will see activity this weekend, too."
The 2010 ARRL January VHF Sweepstakes runs from 1900 UTC Saturday, January 23 through 0359 UTC Monday, January 25. Participants can submit their Cabrillo-formatted logs via e-mail. Paper logs may be sent to ARRL January VHF Sweepstakes, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111. All logs must be postmarked no later than 0359 UTC Thursday, February 25, 2010.
2010 ARRL January VHF Sweepstakes
- Object: To work as many amateur stations in as many different 2 degrees x 1 degree grid squares as possible using authorized frequencies above 50 MHz. Foreign stations work W/VE amateurs only.
- Date and Contest Period: The date will be announced annually by the ARRL but will generally be the third or fourth weekend in January. Begins 1900 UTC Saturday, ends 0359 UTC Monday (January 23-25, 2010).
- Entry Categories:
- 3.1. Single Operator.
- 3.1.1. Low Power
- 3.1.2. High Power
- 3.2. Single Operator Portable
- 3.3. Rover.
- 3.3.1. Rover
- 3.3.2.. Limited Rover
- 3.3.3. Unlimited Rover
- 3.4. Multioperator.
- 3.5. Limited Multioperator.
See “General Rules for All ARRL Contests Above 50 MHz” for detailed category definitions.
- 3.1. Single Operator.
- Exchange: Grid-square locator (see April 1994 QST, p 86).
- 4.1. Exchange of signal report is optional.
- 5.1. QSO points:
- 5.1.1. Count one point for each complete 50- or 144-MHz QSO.
- 5.1.2. Count two points for each 222- or 432-MHz QSO.
- 5.1.3. Count four points for each 902- or 1296-MHz QSO.
- 5.1.4. Count eight points for each 2.3 GHz (or higher) QSO.
- 5.2. Multiplier: The total number of different grid squares worked per band. Each 2 degrees x 1 degree grid square counts as one multiplier on each band it is worked.
- 5.3. Final score: Multiply the total number of QSO points from all bands operated by the total number of multipliers for final score.
- 5.4. Rovers only: The final score consists of the total number of QSO points from all bands times the sum of unique multipliers (grid squares) worked per band (regardless of which grid square they were made in) plus one additional multiplier for every grid square from which they successfully completed a contact.
- 5.4.1. Rovers are listed in the contest score listings under the Division from which the most QSOs were made.
- 5.1. QSO points:
- 6.1. Electronic submissions may be emailed to JanuaryVHF@... and hand-written paper logs or diskettes mailed to January VHF, ARRL, 225 Main St, Newington, CT 06111.
- 6.2. Entries that have been electronically generated must submit their log file in the Cabrillo file format. Paper printouts of electronic files are not acceptable substitutes.
- 6.3. Entries must be emailed or postmarked no later than 0359 UTC Thursday, February 25, 2010.
- 6.4. Entries may be submitted using the web applet at www.b4h.net/cabforms
- 6.5. Rovers who submit scores for the club competition must submit a second summary sheet indicating QSOs and score if they make any contacts from outside of the club territory. Indicate clearly on the summary sheet and in log if the log is the total entry or that portion to be counted for the club score.
- 7.1. Stations may be worked for credit only once per band from any given grid square, regardless of mode. This does not prohibit working a station from more than one grid square with the same call sign (such as a Rover).
- 7.2. Only one signal per band (6, 2, 11/4, etc) at any given time is permitted, regardless of mode.
- 7.3. Multi-operator stations may not include QSOs with their own operators except on frequencies higher than 2.3 GHz. Even then, a complete, different station (transmitter, receiver and antenna) must exist for each QSO made under these conditions.
- Awards: Certificates will be awarded in the following categories:
- 8.1. Single operator.
- 8.1.1. Top Single Operator in each ARRL/RAC Section for high and low power.
- 8.1.2. Top Single Operator on each band (50, 144, 222, 432, 902, 1296 and 2304-and-up categories) in each ARRL/RAC Section where significant effort or competition is evident. (Note: Since the highest score per band will be the award winner for that band, an entrant may win a certificate with additional single-band endorsements.) For example, if KA1RWY has the highest single-operator all-band score in the CT Section and her 50- and 222-MHz scores are higher than any other CT single operator’s, she will earn a certificate for being the single-operator Section leader and endorsements for 50 and 222 MHz.
- 8.2. Top Single-Operator Portable in each ARRL/RAC Section where significant effort or competition is evident. (Single operator portable entries are not eligible for single-band awards.)
- 8.3. Top Rover, Limited Rover and Unlimited Rover in each ARRL Division and Canada where significant effort or competition is evident. (Rover entries are not eligible for single-band awards.)
- 8.4. Top Multioperator score in each ARRL/RAC Section where significant effort or competition is evident. (Multioperator entries are not eligible for single-band awards.)
- 8.5. Top Limited Multioperator in each ARRL/RAC Section where significant effort or competition is evident. (Limited Multioperator entries are not eligible for single-band awards.)
- 8.6. Top DX stations where significant effort or competition is evident.
- 8.1. Single operator.