2016 CQ WPX RTTY

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  • Updated 3 years ago
As usual, the 6500 was a fantastic RTTY rig!
I love the new RTTY mode, which makes it simple to pounce on signals, and the panadapter gives a great view of the "road!"

Unfortunately, I didn't have much time to work the contest... only some on Friday night and Sunday afternoon, so my score is nothing spectacular.  But I had some fun.

A total of about 12 1/2 hours.

This was my first time for the CQ WPX RTTY.   
(I did the CQ WW RTTY last year and scored pretty well for a first timer.)

Scores are below.  Not bad for the time I was able to put in.
I enjoyed adding up the mults with almost every contact for a while....  
I even had a couple of strings running a frequency, but I mostly was S&P again.  
My schedule didn't allow operating during the times when I might have been able to hold a frequency for a run.  And at 100 Watts, not much chance anyway against the big guns.




I am really beginning to enjoy RTTY contests.  They are much easier on the voice, back, and ears.
Much more relaxed.  I needed that opportunity.  It has been hectic at work and home this past month or three!  ha!

Hope everyone else had good luck!

Ken - NM9P

Flex-6500  @ about 80 Watts on RTTY
SmartSDR v.1.6.21
T-11 Log Periodic at 38 ft. / 40 Meter elevated Vertical. / 160 inverted 'L' on 80/160
MMTTY software.

(Buffoon alert.....I began the contest on time on Friday...but was having no luck attracting calls to my run frequency, or breaking through to all of the west coast stations I was calling on 15 meters as S&P.  I began to think that they were ignoring me in favor of the wall of JA's they were working for higher scores.  My Display panadaptor showed an excellent RTTY signal, as usual.  Then I noticed my power output....zero!  On No!  searching frantically for a solution, I finally realized that I had briefly turned the TX output to TRANSVERTER in order to do some audio checking for my signal two minutes before the contest, and because of a call on another rig I had gotten sidetracked and forgotten to change it back.   I WASTED 22 MINUTES of the beginning of the contest....by the time I figured it out, 15 meters was dying and I had to change to 20, having missed a good number of contacts!   Such a novice mistake!  I bet noone else has ever done anything like that!  HA!)
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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  • pleased. (but a little embarrassed at one point)

Posted 3 years ago

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Duane, AC5AA

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I agree, Ken. I only played for around 4 hours total this weekend, but the 6500 did terrific along with WriteLog. I only netted a total of 155 Q's on 80m-10m, 119 prefixes for a total of around 37.5K points. Did find and work V55V (Namibia) on two bands for new band/modes on that one. Yay! I swear my 15m signal (from my 40m vertical) goes straight up in the middle of the day. Any other time it works fine, but not from around noon to 3:30 PM or so! Tis a puzzlement.
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Eduardo Carvalho - KC8R

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Ken,

You said you ran 80 watts. I have always read that we should run about 1/3 of the rig's powder on Digital modes, so I always run no more than 30 watts.

Can the flex handle more power out on the high duty cycle modes?

Any others have suggestions?

Thank you,

Eduardo, KC8R
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Duane, AC5AA

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I run full bore - always have regardless of what rig I have used in the past - then again, they were built for 100% duty factor, or close to it. Besides, I don't tend to do long key-down monologues, and contest exchanges are pretty short anyway. I've never heard the fans increase speed in my 6500 - if I did, then I might moderate the power a little rather than the usual 85W +/-. Now I'm speaking about RTTY. It is considerate practice on PSK31, for example, to run lower power levels - in the 20-30W range - so as not to clobber the AGC's on receivers trying to have QSO's on each side of you. And, some rigs are not built for long key-down 100% power usage over sustained periods. So, it pays to know your rig's ratings, and what behavior is expected for the mode you are using. OK, now I've told you more than I know!
(Edited)
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N4TTY

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Would love to have a RTTY contact with each of you once I get my real heavy metal TTY connected to my Flex.  Getting real close to having that task completed.  Then you guys can have a contact with a real TTY!  Don't plan on using it in any contests since most heavy contesters wouldn't put up with the slowness of the turnaround using a real operator on the other end versus the macros available in the glass TTY programs.  Hope to catch you on the air soon!
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k0eoo

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There was one guy in the contest running a mechanical RTTY setup at 100pwm.  I was surprised N1MM+ MMVARI copied him just fine....
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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I am sure that I worked a couple of them during the contest...I could tell the op was hand-typing.  Unfortunately one of them had a machine that didn't always shift to the NUMBERS properly and I had to get a few repeats.  But no problem.  I had a lot more repeats due to fading, flutter, crowding, and overdriven transmitters!

I actually bought an old TTY unit when in grad school in Dallas.  I don't remember the number....  It was beige, and had a tape cutter on the side.  You should have seen me and the other guy carrying it up the stairs to my 2nd floor one-room "efficiency" apartment!  I kept it for about two or three years and sold it because I never got it running...didn't have the time to figure out the current loop driver and all that stuff.  Decided instead to program my VIC-20 as a simple Terminal Unit to run with an MFJ interface.  done!  I was glad to see the old thing go when I sold it, but not as glad as my wife was!

It would have been interesting to have friends come over and see & hear that old TTY unit clicking away!  

Ken - NM9P
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k0eoo

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Last year I got my feet wet in the CQWW RTTY contest.  First time on RTTY and first time in a contest after 55 years of hamming....  I only scored 100 contacts after about 6 hours because I didn't have a contest logging program working so logging was time consuming...  Even with the handicap I had a great time.

This year I got N1MM+ running in SO2V on my 6500 and more than doubled my score in the same amount of time as last year....  6500, 500w, 2ele 40m@90' and 3ele SteppIR@80' with DDUtil....  I only ran S&P and wish I had tried 10m earlier....  40m was like shooting fish in a barrel in the evenings....  Lots of fun.



I had two slices and two instances of MMVARI up so I could jump between any two bands to pick up multipliers.... The linkage between N1MM and Flex worked flawlessly with the two radios copying RTTY simultaneously, very impressive.

Also I liked MMVARI better than MMTTY as it locked on to the signal  faster and I had less issues with garbled text than I have had in the past with MMTTY....
(Edited)
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Ken - NM9P, Elmer

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Hey!  Doubling your score from contest to the next is always good!  
Your score was a lot higher than mine with not a lot more contacts.  I guess I needed to move to 40 meters earlier!  More points!  

I haven't tried MMVARI before.  I will play with it when I get a chance.
I spent some time switching between detectors in MMTTY to test them and found one of them that seemed to decode more reliable than all the others.  I don't remember which one it was.  (IIR?)  I recognize it when I switch by can never remember all of them when away from the computer.

Next time I will try the dual band tricks.  I have gotten proficient enough that I think I could handle that, especially now with the auto-switching of the Slices in the new CAT.

Ken - NM9P