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Contest Writeups - KI1G
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This page contains an account of operating in the ARRL DX CW Contest of 2001, by KI1G.
ARRL DX CW Contest of 2001 - SO/AB/HP

Equipment and Antennas

Rigs: (2) FT-1000D's SO2R
Amplifiers: Ameritron AL-1200, Amp Supply LK-780

Antennas: 3 towers(15M tall, 38M tall and 21M tall)
160M: Sloping 1/4 wave vertical with elevated radials pointed NE
80M: 1/4 Sloper on 21 Meter tall tower with 70 1/4 wave radials at base pointed NE
80M: N/S Inverted Vee Apex @ 30Meters
40M: Cushcraft 40-2CD @ 34Meters
20M: 4/4 stacked hygain 20-4BA, top antenna @ 36 Meters and fully rotatable, lower antenna @ 16 Meters fixed to Europe
20M: 4 element monobander on 32' boom @ 21 Meters up, fully rotatable
15M: 4/4 stacked Cushcraft 15-4CD, top antenna @ 26 Meters on W9IIX sidemount( can be turned 320 degrees), lower antenna @ 13 Meters fixed toward Europe.
10M: 4 ele Cushcraft 10-4CD @ 15Meters fully rotatable.
10M: 4 ele Cushcraft 10-4CD @ 20 Meters fixed toward Europe.

RX Antennas:
187 Meter long beverage pointed to Europe
187 Meter long beverage pointed South
Pennant antennas pointed SE and West

The Contest

Conditions for the 2001 ARRL DX CW contest were the best that I have ever heard during a contest in my 20+ years of contesting. Yes, there have been years when the high bands were better, but the low bands suffered, and years when the low bands were great but the high bands suffered. This contest gave the best of everything.....

Before the contest started, I had 2 goals in mind for the weekend. #1 was to try to increase my QSO totals by not letting packet spots drag me into drawn out pile up fights, and #2 was to operate the entire 48 hours.

I started the contest on 40 running Europe, at 00:28 with 64 Q's in the 40 meter log, I made my first second radio Q, J38A on 20. In between running on 40, I worked 5 more second radio Q's on 20 and 3 on 10 including KH6/W6PH and KH0/JQ1NGT. I finished up the first hour with 140 Q's in the log.

I stayed on 40 until around 01:30 while continuing to work second radio mults on 15 including Brett VR2BG, T32RD, KL7RA, KH6/W6PH and a few JA's. I made a quick stop by 160 and picked up YO2LDC, OK1TN, IK2DED, RW2F AND RU1A. Then made a quick escape to 80 meters. Europe was pounding in so I set up shop and began running EU. Toward the end of the 01 hour, 9K9C and A92ZE called in, nice grabs for 80. I ended the second hour with a total of 245 Q's in the log, not a bad start I thought, but what will the rest of the night bring ?

I continued running on 80 while grabbing more second radio Q's on 15 and then back to 160. 160 was sounding good with big signals from Europe and they were even hearing pretty good as well. Worked 14 Q's for 13 Mults on 160 during this hour. 80 was slowing down so I decided to try 20. It wasn't long before E21EIC and VU2TS called in, then a bunch of Scandanavians with UA9's and JA's mixed in. At 03Z I had 334 Q's and 119 Mults in the log.

I stayed on 20 working FR5FD, VR2BG, TF3GB and a few more Europeans then went back to 80. The 03 hour brought in 67 more Q's on 80 and 10 second radio Q's on 160 and 40. At 04Z I had 421 Q's in the log, not bad I thought, at least I'm keeping 100/hr so far..

The 04 hour brought another 52 Q's on 80, 11 more on 160 and 11 on 40 mostly all Europe.

At 05Z I decided to go back to 40 and try to run Europe. I added 84 Q's to 40 this hour as well as 9 more second radio Q's on 160 and 7 more second radio Q's on 80. At the end of the 05 hour, I had 595 Q's and 189 mults in the log.

At 06Z I decided to have a quick listen to 20, knowing that we usually get a European opening on 20 at their sunrise that lasts an hour or so. The first signal I tuned across was W1WEF and Jack was already running Europeans. I set up shop on 20 and there I stayed for the next 2 and a half hours adding almost 400 Q's.

At 08:45 I went back to 40 where my European run picked right back up where it left off when I went to 20. I am always amazed at 40 meters, I stayed there until 09:45Z working Europe, mostly Western Europe but a bunch of Eastern Europe mixed in. It must be at leat 4 or 5 hours past their sunrise for some of the eastern stations.

At 09:45 I went back to 20, it was still cranking to Europe. As of 10Z I had 1068 Q's and 254 mults in the log. I thought to myself, WOW, this is the best start I have ever had...

The 10Z hour brought 130 Q's on 20 and ZL6QH, VK2AYD and a couple other second radio Q's on 40. I started listening to 15 meters around 10:30 and signals were there, but still weak.

At 11Z it was time to go up to 15 meters. This is when the fun usually begins, but up till this point, fun was already happening !... This hour brought 175 Q's mostly Europe with a couple UA9's mixed in on 15 and JT1CO on 40 meters on the second radio. As of 12Z I had logged 1376 Q's and 297 mults.

I started the 12Z hour on 15 running Europe, worked JA2ZJW on 80 meters on the second radio. At 12:15 I decided it was time to go up to 10. The next 45 minutes gave me 130 Q's on 10, and a couple second radio mults on 20, XX9TDX and C6AKP.

The 13Z hour I spent on 10 runnning, while tuning 15 and 20 when getting no answers on 10. 10 gave me another 158 Q's this hour, mostly Europe, while on the second radio I worked HC8N, GJ2A, TI4G, YB0ECT, and FM5GU on 20 for Mults.

The 14Z hour brought more of the same, another 127 Q's including VQ9IO calling in on 10 and UP6P, MD/DL5AXX, and D68C on the second radio on 15. A quick look to the south on 10 scooped a bunch of easy mults, 8P5A, VP5GA, LU1DZ, V26G, WP2Z, HR6/N4MO, V47KP and WP3A. The hour closed with A45XR and EC6TK calling in. At the end of the 14Z hour, I had 1836 Q's and 382 mults.

I can remember entire contests with smaller numbers than these. I could only begin to wonder how many Q's the unassisted guys had at this point.

The 15Z hour was spent on 10, mostly running Europe, a quick sweep of the band with the antenna beaming south yielded V47X, HC8N, PJ2T, FM5GU, FS/ND5S and P40R.

I started the 16Z hour on 10 with TZ6DX and T77C calling in, and at 16:45 I decided it was time to switch to 15. The rates were slowing on 10, I had nearly 600 Q's on 10 and only 200 on 15. As soon as I got to 15, the rates started again. 44 Q's in the last 15 minutes of the hour including VU2TS calling in again.

I spent the 17Z hour running on 15, 9M6V called in long path, 8Q7LH called in, not too strong but quite persistent. Thanks for calling !! ZS6EZ called in QRP, nice signal. I also grabbed VQ9IO on 20 meters and several other mults on 10 using the second rig.

18Z things were slowing down, only 90 Q's on 15 meters this hour, caught 9M6V on 20 on the second rig and a couple other mults on 10. At the end of the 18Z hour, I had 2319Q's and 421 Mults.

I started the 19Z hour on 15 meters, signals were starting to fade, I grabbed SU9ZZ on 20 meters on the second rig and heard enough signals that I decided to try 20 for a while. I finished up the hour with 93 more Q's on 20, and picked up VK4EMM on 10 for a mult.

I spent the 20Z hour on 20meters, 8Q7LH called in again, better signal on 20 than he had on 15. MU0FAL called in for the fourth band already. Meanwhile I picked up V73ZZ, J38A and PJ2T on 15 meters with the second rig.

I started the 21Z hour on 20 while picking up ZL1CMY, FO0CLA and a couple others on 10 with the second rig. At 21:30 I decided it was time to try 40 meters. It didn't take long and there was a rip roaring pile up of Europe calling. 76 Q's in the last half hour on 40 meters brought my totals up to 2671Q's 436 Mults at 22Z.

At 22:11 JA6BZI came pounding in over the top of Europe on 40 so I decided to point the beam SSE and see what else may be calling from Asia. Several more JA's and YB9BON called in shortly followed by D68C for band #5 already, then came VQ9IO. I picked up a couple pacific mults on 10 with the second rig, V73ZZ and AC4G/KH9, and a couple South American mults on 15.

I started the 23Z hour on 40, OY1CT called in, at 23:17 I went on the prowl. I jumped to 10 meters and quickly logged 20 JA's and a couple UA0's. A quick stop by 15 netted a few JA's and XX9TDX. Then I was off to 80 meters...as had been the case all weekend so far, it didn't take long for a pile up of Europe to begin. 40 more Q's on 80 in the last 20 minutes of the hour brought us to HALF TIME.

There was no break at half time like in the football games, but now that the contest is over and I have had a chance to mull through some of the stats I still have to say WOW. After 24 hours, I had 2870 Q's and 453 mults in the log. In chatting with K3WW since the contest I found out that he was at 2856 Q's and 446 mults at the same point in time. That seems pretty even to me ! During first 24 hours K3WW and I both had 17 hours with rates over 100/hr, 3 hours over 150/hr for each of us, and to look at our .brk files, we were NOT always on the same bands at the same time. This certainly goes to show how dynamic contesting is and how there are many ways to get to the finish line.

I was 600Q's ahead of the best start the I have ever had. My best start was last years ARRL DX CW contest and I had 2250Q's at the end of 24 hours. I kept saying to myself I bet some of the unassisted guys are over 3000 Q's so far. Back to the game...

I spent the first 15 minutes of the 00 Z hour on 80 meters, then quickly ran up to 10 and worked a bunch of JA's. They all seemed to be calling CQ, the 5 watt stations were S-7, but I could not get a run going. I worked VR2BG and FO5RA and by 00:50 I moved to 15 meters where I picked up 3W2LWS , YC8TXW, WH0ABA and BX4AF.

I started the 01 Hour on 15, quickly moved to 20 and worked a handful of stations, jumped to 80 and logged OH0PM, tried running on 40 with no luck, the band had already gone long, then settled back down on 80. Signals were good, but rates were slow. I made Q's on 5 different bands during this hour including EI7M, OH0PM and GI3OQR on 160 as well as VK4UC on 15.

The 0200 hour rates were slow but steady so I stayed put on 80 for a while. Had a bunch of UA9's call in at their sunrise on 80. Jumped to 15 and worked HL5UOG, AC4G/KH9 and HS0/G3NOM then quickly jumped to 40 and S&P'd across the band.

03Z-07Z were slow but steady mostly S&P on 160 thru 20. Then the Saturday night fatigue set in...by 07:30 I realized that I had a problem, there was a pile of Europeans calling me on 40 and I couldn't sort out the mush that was going through my head. I quickly decided that my plan of operating the entire 48 hours needed amending and quickly or else there would be real trouble when daytime returned with bigger pileups.

MY best tactical decision of the contest was to scrap the idea of staying on for all 48 hours and to sleep from 07:45 until 08:30 Z. I sat back down in front of the radio at 08:50 on 40 meters, and there was the pile up just as I had left it.... I was quite dazed at this point, pillow to pile up in less than 3 minutes, but I could copy call signs now, but wasn't sure how to log them.... By 0900 I was becoming more alert and was back in the race.

As of 09Z I had 3297Q's in the log and had my eyes on 4500 for a possible total. It was around this point that I thought that someone was going to break 5000Q's if the conditions were the same on Sunday as they were on Saturday.

At 09Z I moved up to 20 meters and we were off to the races, 115 Q's this hour , all Europe except 9K9C calling in and CT3DL being worked on the second rig on 40 meters.

The 10Z hour was much the same, 20 Meters and Europe. This hour was 93 with no mults.

11Z was back to 15 Meters, 144 this hour with mostly Europe, A92ZE called in, and I picked up SU9ZZ on 10 with the second rig.

12Z started on 15 meters with SV9BAI and 4Z5FW calling in for new ones, at 12:10 I decided it was time to move up to 10 meters, and there I stayed until 16:15 Z adding another 450 10 meter Q's with occasional second radio contacts on 15 and 20.

At 16:15 I moved back to 15 meters, signals were weak, but present. E21EIC, HS0/JR3XMG and OY1CT called in. At 18:30 3W2LWS called in, but was a dupe. However he was more than willing to move to 20 where I worked him and OY1CT on the second radio for new mults. I stayed on 15 until 19:15Z, I had added another 250 Q's to the 15 meter count. At 19Z my totals stood at 4426 Q's & 530 Mults.

I moved to 20 at 19:15, 20 was painful. No rates to be had, signals were quite weak. I kept the CQ machine going on 20 while doing S&P for Q's on 15 and 10 until 21Z.

At 21Z I decided to try 40, and to my surprise it was alive and well 4Z5LU, HB0/DL1RWB, EX7F, JY9NX,E21EIC were worked for new 40 meter mults. By 23:30 the rates had slowed and I figured that I could do better by S&Ping on all the bands than CQing on 40. Working GJ2A on 80 as my last mult, then JH6OPP as my last Q on 10 at 23:59.



       Call: KI1G              Country:  United States
       Mode: CW              Category: Single Assisted

       160       69      207   3.0       47
        80      399     1197   3.0       74
        40      897     2688   3.0       97
        20     1223     3669   3.0      108
        15     1032     3096   3.0      112
        10     1168     3504   3.0      102

      Totals   4788    14361   3.0      540  =   7,754,940

Continent Statistics

             160     80     40     20     15     10      ALL     %

N. America    13     16     17     20     20     22      108    2.2
S. America     3      6      9     12     17     11       58    1.2
Europe        53    359    840   1119    911   1009     4291   88.0
Asia           1     16     34     89     72    117      329    6.7
Africa         1      4     10     11     13     11       50    1.0
Oceania        0      2      7      9     11     11       40    0.8

Thanks to the 24 stations that worked my on all 6 bands and the 107 who made it on 5 bands, and to everyone else who worked me in the contest.

I believe that my QSO total is the highest QSO total by a US Single Op in ANY contest, and is about 2 Meg larger than the record set last year. All I can say is WOW, probably will never see this again.


Editors Note: When the final results were published, Rick won first place in the W/VE Single Operator Assisted Category, with a final checked score of 7,646,040 - 4755 - 536

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