Last weekend I entered the ARRL 10m CW/SSB contest. My 10m vertical (Antron A99) was still up on the roof since the last 10m contest. I did climb up the roof the reinstall the Buddipole. Not so successful this time due to a firm wind which blew it down again and again. Despite the support ropes.
The band starts opening up around 8:00 – 8:30 am. I switched back and forward between CW and USB. Actually the vertical was quite successful this time.
Around 7:00 pm the band was pretty much closed. Sunday I could only work until around 2:00 pm due to family duties.
After all a good contest, interesting to do a combined CW/SSB-contest. I think I need a good strategy for these combined contests next time. There were probably more Q’s to make then I did now.
Considering this the last contest for this years division league, I’ll take a rest now. I’ll rearrange the shack, clean out the place etc. Get everything up and running for the new contest year of 2014!

This weekend there where multiple contests to choose from. To optimize my score I picked out the Melee Tara RTTY contest on Saturday and the ARRL RTTY 10 Meter contest on Sunday.

I started off with a well prepped N1MM. Loaded with call history file and a fresh master.dta and country file. FSK was working (plenty of practice on Saturday). But since 10 meters doesn’t open up until sunrise I did have breakfast with the family first. Then I climb up the roof to put some extra’s on for 10 meter. My Fritzel FD-3 can do 10 meter of course, but it’s not ideal. I put up my Buddipole and trimmed it for 10 meter. I found an old Solarcon Antron 99A vertical in the shed which (if I remember correctly) can be used for 10 meter too. Everything is functioning and a cup of hot coffee I went in the shack.
The Buddipole did a great job in the early morning hours! In the afternoon the vertical seemed to work better then the dipole. Q’s where running low, but that’s only logical for a single 10 meter band contest. I did manage to squeeze out 100 Q’s.
It was already dark when I put down the Buddipole. The vertical I left up for now. Maybe it’s handy for coming contests?

SkywireloopThis week I visiting my parents in Hautes Alpes, France (JN24XM) again. Last sunday evening we arrived and the next morning I did check the wire antenna’s on the roof. They were all broken due to heavy snow slidings.
After fixing the open dipole for 20 and the long wire for the other bands on the roof, I put up my famous full wave 40 meter horizontal loop behind the house.
All antenna’s are up and running again and work great.

This morning I did see some 10 meter spots on the cluster so I tuned 10 meter on my long wire. After listening for a few minutes there was a great clear and crisp signal from Henk, PA0RKS. He was CQing. I gave him a call back and as a total surprise Henk did hear me! My first QSO on the 10 meter band had happened! It must have been some sporadic E-reflection. Thanks Henk!