By Rick, K6VVA [images at end]
My long-standing efforts and Fourth attempt to activate NA-050 paid off with a good solar condx window to EU for the first 3 days. Total QSOs were 3,446 with 2,919 Unique callsigns and 2,153 EU QSOs in the log. All but 140 Q’s were on CW. There were many S9+ EU signals, but I also worked a lot of very weak “Little Pistol” EU stations which would NOT have been possible on SSB.
I also made some Q’s in the NAQP CW Contest on Saturday as KL8C, but condx were going downhill. By Sunday, the Auroral Oval and K=5 closed things down earlier than planned. I was calling CQ-CQ-CQ to dead bands on Sunday, and was also hit with some kind of nasty flu bug which left me quite ill running a fever. When I left NA-050 on Monday morning, it was a lonnnnnng, very miserable 24 hours of travel to finally get home, and I am still under-the-weather.
During my Expeditions, in my spiral notebook next to the keyboard I now have 3 sections:
1. BULLY LIDS
There are many good EU operators, but there is still a major problem with some EU operators who repeatedly call out of turn (Pileup “BULLY LIDS”). Several expeditions ago, I started keep a separate log of these callsigns which were also encountered again on NA-050. I now make .mp3 recordings of ALL expedition operating, and will start publishing audio clips of “BULLY LID” operators in the future. THIRTY ONE PERCENT of all “BULLY LIDS” are from one EU Country ;-(
These are mostly LOUD EU stations who are either using Code Readers, have hearing aid problems, or simply CCC (Can’t Copy Crap). The ones who cause the most delays are usually LOUD stations, and some send at 35WPM or 38WPM, but can NOT copy me at 29WPM which is my usual IOTA Expedition speed (often QRS to 26WPM if heavy QSB). Several of these operators sound exactly alike, but use different callsigns. My suspicions are one station and one operator are making IOTA QSOs for their friends which is NOT the way things are to be done. SEVENTY-FIVE PERCENT of the “ALLIGATORS” are from the same EU Country as the THIRTY ONE PERCENT of the “BULLY LIDS”.
3. DUPERS (Attempts)
When I say “NO DUPES”, that means: “Do NOT call me again on the same band, same mode when we have already had a QSO on that band and mode !!!” The attempted Dupers are also usually LOUD stations, where there has been a previous solid QSO. I understand there are some times of QRM, but when the same station Callsigns (primarily from the same EU Country as the “BULLY LIDS” and “ALLIGATORS”) show up during each Expedition attempting to “Dupe” me (again and again on more than one band), this is not an isolated QRM problem, it is a “LID” problem ;-( Each same band, same mode “Dupe” means some other station will NOT be able to make a needed QSO. I do not spend a lot of money, time and effort to go on expeditions to work same band, same mode “Dupes”. I go to work as many “Unique” (different) stations as possible. I have a very high accuracy in logging, and can review .mp3 files to review any possible logging typo or errors of any kind which are very minimal (1 or 2 per Thousand QSOs).
The above three issues have been previously discussed many times with other experienced Expeditioner friends, and we are all fed up with the pileup operating behaviors that prevent us from working as many “Unique” callsigns/stations as possible during our Expeditions.
People need to READ, UNDERSTAND, and FOLLOW the DX CODE of CONDUCT.
FYI, the K6VVA/KL7 IOTA NA-050 log has now been added at: http://www.k6vva.com/iota/logsearch