A couple firsts for me!

I am excit­ed by a cou­ple of firsts today:

1. Had my first WSPR QSO with VE1RG on 14.076.5 this morn­ing. 5 watts is overkill using this mode…it and JT65A rep­re­sent the state-of-the art QRP modes in my opin­ion. Love this stuff! I will tell you, this ter­res­tri­al use on HF of WSJT sure gives me encour­ange­ment for VHF/​UHF moonbounce…A long-time aspi­ra­tion of mine! Thanks Dr. Joe Tay­lor W1JT for dream­ing up this ulti­mate weak-sig­nal mode!

2. Had my first 160M QSO today. Actu­al­ly I had 40 of them, in 24 states! I had no inten­tion of work­ing the North Amer­i­can CW QSO par­ty today, as should have been work­ing instead. All work, no play, makes WF7T a dull boy! So hook­ie instead, and start­ing play­ing a cou­ple hours late in the 12-hour domes­tic CW con­test. Not bad con­di­tions (not great either), and as usu­al 20M was my neme­sis. I burned through 80M and decid­ed to “lis­ten” on 160. Then I thought, “I bet if I send a quick sig­nal through the lil’ G5RV one of the locals was bound to hear me.” So I did! Then I decid­ed, what the heck, try anoth­er. And that worked too! So I spent the last hour and a quar­ter on the band. This rep­re­sent­ed my best QSO rates as well, aver­ag­ing 32/​hr.

At the end of the con­test I actu­al­ly test­ed the SWR of the G5RV…it was 3:1 (could’ve been worse I s’pose). I am sure hard­ly any RF was actu­al­ly at the anten­na, but it worked ok for the short con­tacts I was mak­ing. My poor radio, I just abuse the heck out of it. I promise, lit­tle radio, I will make you a real 160M anten­na in the next cou­ple months.


Also, a quick thought. I played a lit­tle in a PSK con­test today (PSKFEST). I pur­pose­ly held my pow­er to 5W to see how I could do. Basi­cal­ly, OK, but the pass­band was being slaugh­tered by loud sig­nals. Man alive, peo­ple were run­ning WAY too much pow­er on PSK today with real­ly bad overmodulation.

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