Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Operating QRP in the UKEICC 80m SSB Contest...1st Feb 2017

The SSB leg of the UKEICC 80m contest was held on Wednesday the 1st of February 2017 between 8pm and 9pm. As a test of a Yaesu FT-817 rig and as an experiment, I took part in it with just 5 watts into my 80m diplole.

I only managed to work 8 stations but I also didn't actually hear that many more anyway with my S7 noise level on the band.

All the stations I worked were within 500kms with the exception of GM3X who was about 750kms.


Both EI5KF and F1FPL were quite strong but they couldn't hear my 5 watts. I could hear stations in Hungary, Slovenia, Germany and Sweden but it was pointless calling them as they were relatively weak at my end.

The whole contest seemed to be a tale of two halves. Conditions seemed reasonable in the first 30 minutes but the band seemed to collapse in the second half hour. It was almost as if something happened up in the ionosphere. The geomagnetic conditions are at a storm level at present so that might explain it (K index = 5).

Looking at the results and the comments, it seems as if everyone found the conditions to be awful. Still though, it was interesting to get 8 contacts with 5 watts.

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