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ARRL DX Phone Win

Craig K9CT
Craig K9CT Member ✭✭
First M/2 using Flex 6500/6700 and Maestro



  • Jim Jerzycke
    Jim Jerzycke Member
    edited July 2016
  • Jd Dupuy
    Jd Dupuy Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Congrats Craig..de N0IRS!
  • KY6LA_Howard
    KY6LA_Howard La Jolla, CA. Paris and Sablet FranceMember ✭✭✭
    edited January 2017
    Already rubbing your win into N6KI....
  • Mike NA5U/K5D/K1N
    edited July 2016
    Thanks for the intro to Flex and CONGRATS!
  • km9r.mike
    km9r.mike Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
  • Javi LU5FF
    Javi LU5FF Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Congrats Craig and group Fb new, Javi LU5FF
  • Kari Gustafsson SM0HRP
    Kari Gustafsson SM0HRP Member ✭✭
    edited January 2019
    Impressive. Something to share when coming to the land of vikings beginning September !! Good weekend.
  • Steve K9ZW
    Steve K9ZW Member ✭✭✭
    edited March 2017

    Fantastic Craig!  Congratulations!


    Steve K9ZW

  • Mike_N1MD
    Mike_N1MD Member ✭✭
    edited April 2020
    Well done!

    Mike N1MD (YCCC)
  • Koji Oyama
    Koji Oyama Member
    edited July 2016
    Great ! Congrats !!

    -- Koji Oyama, JP1HUJ & AI7HU

  • k0eoo
    k0eoo Member ✭✭
    edited March 2017
    Congratulations Craig, I know Flex and all of us are very excited the word is getting out....  Can you say a few words about how FLEX made the difference, assuming it did....
  • W9OY
    W9OY Alpha Team Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016

    Great comments.  How many Flex/Maestros are you running at your station?

    73  W9OY
  • Ken - NM9P
    Ken - NM9P Member ✭✭
    edited June 2020
    Nicely done, Craig, et. Al.!
  • Craig K9CT
    Craig K9CT Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    There are two 6500 and two 6700 each with their own Maestro for M/2. I have one other 6500 and Maestro on VHF. The station looks like the Flex advertisement in CQ and QST.

    Ultimately, I will have two Maestros per radio when we get multi-client. Then I will move two radios to other positions. 
  • Ron Rosson
    Ron Rosson Member ✭✭
    edited July 2016
    Great Job by you and your team!!!

  • k0eoo
    k0eoo Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Thanks Craig for the for the detailed explanation.  Impressive that the non-FRS operators came up to speed so fast, winning #1 out of the gate, with more to come in the future...  
  • Ken W9IE
    Ken W9IE Member ✭✭
    edited December 2016
    Another GOOD Job Craig....   
    You and others are sure helping to advance the hobby along with the Flex Equipment.

    One thing to remember as you have mention'd  before.

    THE FLEX 6000 Series and Maestro are not just a Winning combination but a

    Ken   W9IE
  • W5XZ - dan
    W5XZ - dan Member ✭✭
    edited June 2019
    great job, Craig and team.  speaks well of your antenna farm, and operator talent also.

    73, w5xz, dan

  • ctate243
    ctate243 Amateur radio contester Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    Craig, congratulations and thanks for sharing your win with the community!  All I can say is to reinforce your statements about the future and with Flex radio supporting the contesting community along with everyone else.  We are a fickle bunch to be sure.  There is some great stuff in the works!
  • John - AF3K
    John - AF3K Member ✭✭
    edited August 2016
    Craig, Thank you for that detailed and very interesting explanation. Congrats on the great results. I'm sure many of us are looking forward to hearing more about "multi-client"! from Flex! John AF3K
  • Varistor
    Varistor Member ✭✭
    edited July 2017

    In 2015 your score was 7,697,088 compared to 6,871,476 this year. This is over a 10% decline. For comparison on propagation, the usual suspects K3LR and W3LPL did more or less the same (2-5% improvement compared to 2015). Where do you see Flex being a better radio compared to your previous setup? What contributed to a decline in your score?

    Further, K9CT had twice as many ops as the #2 station K1CC, yet there is only a 200K difference in scores. How did the number of ops play into the final score and what was the Flex's impact?
  • Craig K9CT
    Craig K9CT Member ✭✭
    edited April 2017
    There is a general decline in scores because of propagation over last year and especially the year before. Our line to EU is through the AU oval and any higher K or A index effects us more than anyone east of us. The east coast enjoys propagation that we will never get. They have sunlight at least 60 to 90 minutes longer per day of the contest and a path to EU. If you are running at 200 to 300 per hour on two radios, that is a lot of QSOs to make up! 

    Our only possible way to win is to use four radios as much as possible. We also have to make sure we work every possible multiplier. You should note that we quite often rank very high in that category. So being able to use two radios at a time on the same band is extremely important. TX phase noise and antenna separation are key to success in this regard. The 6500 and 6700 are excellent in TX and were better than the K3. However, the new synth board on the K3 has improved their performance to about equal. Note that other radios are generally not as good. This is information that you must look for. 

    The Flex radios make using two radios on the same band very easy. There is built in TX interlock...no special interfacing necessary. The future path of multi-client will reduce the radio requirement by half! Not only that we will be able to hear our partner's audio while we are operating to improve interleaving our QSOs. When you are doing partner same band, one is calling cq and running contacts while the other operator is working S&P. So when the run op is working a station, the S&P op can drop his call and work another station during a run qso! We do this all the time and make many more qsos than a single run station can make. 

    The optimum number of operators with a four radio setup is six for us. Sometimes we have more or less because someone may have to leave early or can only operate part-time. Two guys are running all the time and you have partners on the same band interleaving qsos or working multipliers. Two operators are resting waiting for their turn. Sometimes we have a newbie and he/she is getting some experience. I am sure that the stations that have less operators have either fewer radios or antennas or could not get enough ops to man the radios. This happens all the time. I plan way ahead and get commitments as early as possible. Take a look at the calendar and you can see lots of holiday conflicts. 

    The reason that there are few M/M stations is because of the hardship of finding operators. Good operators..... M/2 is a more difficult technical setup and requires some strategy such as band changes...however needs less operators. 

    The biggest impact of Flex radios will be still to come. Multi-client, partner audio and shared amplifier (Power Genius) will half the cost of Multi-operator setups. I can see where scores will increase with more Maestros on the same radio using the available slices and increasing the qso rate. 

    Now if Flex could write some software to better the propagation......look for declining scores in the next few years. It will be much more difficult for the US midwest stations to compete because of the short openings (or no opening) on the higher bands
  • ctate243
    ctate243 Amateur radio contester Member ✭✭
    edited August 2016
    Having better tools during the solar minimum will be key in squeezing things out.. and seeing when otherwise dead bands spring to life and being the first one there to take advantage!

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