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Re: FM 2 Meter Simplex Contest Feb 7 & 10

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  • NA8M
    All: The first hour of the contest has just wrapped up. Wow! The time flew by. A few observations: Everyone needs to pay attention to the mobile stations.
    Message 1 of 5 , Feb 7, 2010
      All:

      The first hour of the contest has just wrapped up. Wow! The time flew by.

      A few observations:

      Everyone needs to pay attention to the mobile stations. They are moving around and giving you various townships or cities.

      While the mobiles are moving the fixed stations and hand held stations need to work each other. They can only work each other once in the contest, regardless of the frequency or time.

      The activity seemed to be centered on a single frequency. That means that the frequency is busy. It's best if the mobile calls a quick CQ and works everyone quickly. Then the mobile can move and do it all over again.

      The mobiles opined that having someone just to handle logging would have been nice. I was so busy driving, listening to the frequency, parking, and operating. The time flew by quickly.

      My mobile went down a road separating two townships (Maple Island Road). I could park on one side and operate from the one on the west, then move down the road a bit, cross over the center line, and operate from the other one. Quick.

      We will enjoy having W8ZHO in the log as well. I think the guys who were to be out there got their times or dates mixed up. We'll fix that on Wednesday.

      Remember that there's another hour of this sprint on Wednesday. And, to put a wrinkle in there, the new hams will be in the contest, as well. Watch for those new call signs. And be patient.

      Wasn't this a gas? I'd be bragging if I said it, but we need to do this again, and soon.

      Bill, NA8M
      MAARC guy
    • Todd Sprinkmann
      Hi Bill, How did the Wed. night edition of the 2m FM simplex contest go? Do you think the whole effort was worthwhile, overall? Any other observations or
      Message 2 of 5 , Feb 16, 2010
        Hi Bill,

        How did the Wed. night edition of the 2m FM simplex
        contest go?
        Do you think the whole effort was worthwhile, overall?
        Any other observations or questions?

        I had good intentions of getting on, but life got in the
        way. I did put the word out over here, via my website,
        but no idea if any other WI stations listened in.

        I was going to send this to you privately, but I guess it
        wouldn't hurt to send it to the W MI Hams Yahoo group.
        Perhaps it will generate some discussion.

        I can say that it's very hard to get newer hams (i.e. those
        who are very used to the repeater) to get away from a single
        frequency. But spreading out a little is exactly what one
        should do. No reason you can't operate some on 146.550,
        then on 146.580, and keep using your VFO, tuning for activity
        on the various frequencies. It's actually to your advantage
        (and other stations) to spread out. Spreading out helps
        everyone make more contacts more smoothly.

        The anaology I like to use is this: You wouldn't stand in
        a grocery store line that's 10 deep when other check-out lines
        have nobody in them, would you? Same deal with spreading
        out and calling CQ on your own frequency.

        I liked your method of going mobile (or rover) down a road
        separating two townships. Very efficient.
        73,
        Todd KC9BQA EN63ao 40 N of Milwaukee
        http://www.kc9bqa.com For Frequent VHF/UHF Updates

        ----- Original Message -----
        From: "NA8M" <bill_fries@...>
        To: <WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com>
        Sent: Sunday, February 07, 2010 3:08 PM
        Subject: [WestMichiganHams] Re: FM 2 Meter Simplex Contest Feb 7 & 10


        All:

        The first hour of the contest has just wrapped up. Wow! The time flew
        by.

        A few observations:

        Everyone needs to pay attention to the mobile stations. They are moving
        around and giving you various townships or cities.

        While the mobiles are moving the fixed stations and hand held stations
        need to work each other. They can only work each other once in the
        contest, regardless of the frequency or time.

        The activity seemed to be centered on a single frequency. That means
        that the frequency is busy. It's best if the mobile calls a quick CQ
        and works everyone quickly. Then the mobile can move and do it all over
        again.

        The mobiles opined that having someone just to handle logging would have
        been nice. I was so busy driving, listening to the frequency, parking,
        and operating. The time flew by quickly.

        My mobile went down a road separating two townships (Maple Island Road).
        I could park on one side and operate from the one on the west, then move
        down the road a bit, cross over the center line, and operate from the
        other one. Quick.

        We will enjoy having W8ZHO in the log as well. I think the guys who
        were to be out there got their times or dates mixed up. We'll fix that
        on Wednesday.

        Remember that there's another hour of this sprint on Wednesday. And, to
        put a wrinkle in there, the new hams will be in the contest, as well.
        Watch for those new call signs. And be patient.

        Wasn't this a gas? I'd be bragging if I said it, but we need to do this
        again, and soon.

        Bill, NA8M
        MAARC guy




        --------------------------------------------------------------------------------



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      • NA8M
        Todd: Yes, I welcome the opportunity to say a few things about our version of the FM Contest on VHF. This was the initial running of this event. We had
        Message 3 of 5 , Feb 17, 2010
          Todd:

          Yes, I welcome the opportunity to say a few things about our version of the FM Contest on VHF.

          This was the initial running of this event. We had limited participation. Those pitching in really made this a fun contest for everyone.

          I believe I plagiarized, extensively, rules you had written. One participant thought that the obverse was the case. Flattery and all. This whole thing goes back to a recent issue of QST.

          The Wisconsin version of the FM Simplex 2 Meter Contest uses grid squares. I wanted to simplify this a bit and make it easier for a new ham to declare his "grid square" for the contest. I think the calculation can be made using on-line assets like qrz.com. This requires a sophisticated mobile as well as preplanning by the home stations.

          This type of contest encourages mobiles. And the mobiles need to talk to each other and coordinate their movements. For example, the mobiles talked on Sunday. On Wednesday they went wildly differing directions that did not allow them to talk with each other. In the end the mobiles handed out the majority of contacts enjoyed by the other two classes, being home station and HT. More mobiles would keep the frequencies hopping.

          Wednesday I was mobile and managed to find a corner for four townships. This meant I could move a little, fast, and offer four jurisdictions. Then I moved into a town separated by a river. Two more that quickly.

          In a sprint the mobiles must plan their route with care. This probably applies to other contests like those soliciting counties. In the sprint the whole thing just flies by so quickly.

          In the end the most often asked question, hands down, was, "When can we do this again?" Maybe this could be the next twist on Fox Hunting?

          73

          Bill, NA8M
        • Todd Sprinkmann
          Hi Bill, Thanks for the extended thoughts. I agree with you that getting adequate participation is the biggest challenge with any event like this. That s
          Message 4 of 5 , Feb 17, 2010
            Hi Bill,

            Thanks for the extended thoughts. I agree with you that
            getting adequate participation is the biggest challenge with
            any event like this. That's why I promote so heavily; to try
            and improve participation with weekly nets, with ARRL
            VHF/UHF contests, and the like.

            I do want to clear up something. I have nothing to do
            with the rules and running of the MRAC FM Simplex Contest.
            I simply help them promote it. I like more activity in contests,
            so I help spread the word. But I wasn't even on the air when
            MRAC (www.w9rh.org) came up with their contest, so I
            can't take any credit there.
            The issue of QST you mentioned was the January one,
            on Page 79 -- This Month in Contesting.

            For those who are interested, the MRAC FM Simplex
            Contest is this Sunday, the 21st. I know some of us are
            capable of cross-lake QSO's, if we have decent antennas,
            turn the squelch down, and listen carefully. I can work
            decent stations up to 100 or so miles with my vertical up
            90' and 100 watts.
            Of course, if someone doesn't like their QTH, they can
            they go rover (or mobile) to a high location and try their
            luck from there. Many do this in the ARRL VHF/UHF
            contests, and that's where the real action is, on the SSB
            side of things. In a typical ARRL contest, I will make
            200, 300 or more contacts over 20-30 hours, using
            bands like 6m, 2m, 1.25m and 70cm. Almost all of that
            is on SSB mode, with horizontally polarized antennas.
            *Anyone* reading this with an interest in doing more
            VHF/UHF Contesting should know by now that I will
            help. Just contact me or do further study on my website.

            Before I run any further off track, here's the rules and
            times for the MRAC FM Simplex Contest this Sunday.
            http://www.w9rh.org/fm_simplex_contest.htm Again, I'm
            just the messenger. I think as many hams as possible should
            at least know about some different ways we enjoy the hobby.

            73,
            Todd KC9BQA EN63ao 40 N of Milwaukee
            http://www.kc9bqa.com For Frequent VHF/UHF Updates

            ----- Original Message -----
            From: "NA8M" <bill_fries@...>
            To: <WestMichiganHams@yahoogroups.com>
            Sent: Wednesday, February 17, 2010 6:55 AM
            Subject: [WestMichiganHams] Re: FM 2 Meter Simplex Contest Feb 7 & 10


            Todd:

            Yes, I welcome the opportunity to say a few things about our version of
            the FM Contest on VHF.

            This was the initial running of this event. We had limited
            participation. Those pitching in really made this a fun contest for
            everyone.

            I believe I plagiarized, extensively, rules you had written. One
            participant thought that the obverse was the case. Flattery and all.
            This whole thing goes back to a recent issue of QST.

            The Wisconsin version of the FM Simplex 2 Meter Contest uses grid
            squares. I wanted to simplify this a bit and make it easier for a new
            ham to declare his "grid square" for the contest. I think the
            calculation can be made using on-line assets like qrz.com. This
            requires a sophisticated mobile as well as preplanning by the home
            stations.

            This type of contest encourages mobiles. And the mobiles need to talk
            to each other and coordinate their movements. For example, the mobiles
            talked on Sunday. On Wednesday they went wildly differing directions
            that did not allow them to talk with each other. In the end the mobiles
            handed out the majority of contacts enjoyed by the other two classes,
            being home station and HT. More mobiles would keep the frequencies
            hopping.

            Wednesday I was mobile and managed to find a corner for four townships.
            This meant I could move a little, fast, and offer four jurisdictions.
            Then I moved into a town separated by a river. Two more that quickly.

            In a sprint the mobiles must plan their route with care. This probably
            applies to other contests like those soliciting counties. In the sprint
            the whole thing just flies by so quickly.

            In the end the most often asked question, hands down, was, "When can we
            do this again?" Maybe this could be the next twist on Fox Hunting?

            73

            Bill, NA8M




            --------------------------------------------------------------------------------



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            Version: 8.5.435 / Virus Database: 271.1.1/2691 - Release Date: 02/16/10
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