Sunday, March 8, 2015

Updating TQSL, SKCC WES And My First Digital Reception From CN92

Since my shack computer issues continue, I took a backup copy of my TQSL certificates and installed them on another computer. When I attempted to add a location and certificate for my call and QTH, I continued getting an error. I decided to use an older software version to request my new certificate and it appears I was successful. I've uploaded the request to the ARRL, so now I just need to wait until it's been issued. With the number of certificates that I have (or had, since many I let expire) it requires some manual intervention.

Older and Successful
I'm an avid user of Logbook Of The World (LOTW) and I prefer confirmation via this method. And since I was on a QSL kick today, I decided to order a few old fashioned QSL cards in case I receive any future requests. I still have several bureau requests I need to catch up on dating back to my Alaska operation. I will try to work on those as time allows. That's the beauty of electronic. A few clicks and you're done. I prefer not to print out labels and stick them to my QSL cards. I still hand complete each and everyone. In my early days, I did print a few labels (mostly for contests) but I decided it was more personal to actually hand write them. 

AK7DD Straight Key'n It
The Straight Key Century Club had their monthly Weekend Sprintathon (WES) this weekend and my goal was to make some contacts! I kept my 20 meter indoor wire up for the occasion. My only available time was a few hours on Sunday. We had some errands to do on Sunday, which took a bit longer than expected. So, as it was, I only made one contact. I worked Ed, W7GVE in Arizona. Ed normally sounds great here and he once again had a great signal and was easy to work. Since I'm running QRP with my indoor antenna, I called a few others but no successful QSO was achieved. And by the time I got back on during the last few minutes of the contest, the band appeared in much better shape but strong stations beat me out on those I called. 

JT65 Monitor Results
I decided to start playing around with digital again. I relocated my interface cable and I chose to listen for some signals on 20 meters. I can honestly say, much better results here than I had in the shadow of the lake! I think this will be a more digital and QRP friendly location, which I'm thankful for! I will probably study my propagation paths here at the house for the various bands, beginning with 20 meters of course. Using WSPR and JT65 or JT9, signals will help me realize where I'm hearing and how well. Once I study my propagation paths a bit, I will have to make some QSO's and get started filling the new logbook with contacts. The digital modes will allow me to achieve QRP contacts with states and countries that might not be possible even with the key. I've chased awards for so long, I don't think I have much chasing left in me anymore. It's all about having fun and working what I can, when I can. 

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