LZ DX Contest 2010

Not much radio time lately. Very busy with all sort of things, including checking the UBA Contest logs. SSB was done last month and I’m half way through the CW logs. That one is 200 000 QSO combined over 870 logs. Next year things should speed up since the programming has been done. Too bad the current system doesn’t allow for automatic distribution of UBN reports. That’s an item on the list with things to improve and implement for 2011.

I also re-worked the elevated radial system and fixed some minor esthetical issues. And I reworked the 10/15/20 vertical for SO2R. It is now on a 6m high pole and has 2 sets of resonant elevated radials. So I guess I’m ready to go for next week. This weekend I did the ‘warm up session’ that is the LZ DX Contest. My target was 1000 QSO and I made about 1160. It’s been quite a while since I managed to reach my own target. I wasn’t even bothered by the WX, not before nor during the contest  đŸ˜®

The contest started pretty fast but the rate dropped in the evening. It seemed to me conditions were only so-so, especially on 15m. Ten remained dead on Saturday. And when EU went to bed, so did I. I tried sunrise but there was no DX on 80. So I just switched between the bands that were open. Too bad that I have no idea now wether the 160/80m antenna works or not. I got called by a handful of nice DX on the upper bands but the biggest surprise was being called by TA1/OZ1AA. Thomas is cycling the globe and it seems he currently is in Turkey. I also listened for ZL8X but I want to stay away from the usual mess. Maybe this week, during office hours, when most EU jokers aren’t in the shack.

I did practice my SO2R skills intensively. Over 16% of the QSO total was made with the second radio. That translates to 189 out of 1166 contacts. That in turn means without SO2R, I wouldn’t have reached the 1k QSO target. I plan to hit ‘m hard next week, hence the SO2R. The vertical plays well for what it is. I can only use the yagi for the second radio when I’m on 40m (or lower).  So when I’m running one of the upper bands, I need to use the vertical for the second radio. I worked into USA easily on the vertical with 100W. Only one amp too, so it’s a poor man’s SO2R setup. Still: better than nothing. And I worked everything I heard on it.

Now counting down to The Big One…

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