I entered the Oceania DX CW contest again this year. I tried to look up my results for 2010 but couldn’t find much. Since I was running QRP, I bet the results were pretty disappointing. This year, with my new 100 watt amp installed in the K3, I did a bit better. You can see the results nearby — 41 QSOs for 3,937 points. Not sure all the Q’s will make it as I did have trouble copying all the serial numbers.

This contest is such a long distance from Texas. You can only work stations that are in Oceania. I rose at 3 AM to begin work on 40 meters. Within about 30 minutes I’d worked all the stations that I could hear. Tried 80 meters and nobody was home. Packed things up at dawn and waited until the propagation was reasonable on 20 meters and above. However, since 20 meters only scores 1 point per QSO, nobody was operating there. Instead, they were all on 15 meters and 10 meters. I had the 15 meter Moxon two-element beam in action and that gave just a little bit better performance on 15 meters through the afternoon and into the early evening. Even so, 10 meters was nearly as good — using that great Cushcraft MA6V at 20 feet, on the top of two ten foot sections of TV mast. That antenna has really ramped up my results and I’m quite confident that’s the reason I was able to work DXCC with QRP power levels.

At the moment I’m at 158 countries worked and 147 countries confirmed. Hopefully, I’ll get to the 150 mark soon and can apply for DXCC credit and CQ DX at 150. That will be a nice achievement, due primarily to the vastly improved propagation and moving from 5 watts output to 100 watts — big difference in contests. Next up is the ARRL Sweepstakes in early November. Unfortunately, I will not be able to complete the entire contest due to a training session that I need to check into on that Sunday afternoon. None the less, I should be able to better my previous best primarily because I’ll be running 100 watts.


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Freelance writer and active Scouting volunteer. Retired publishing and communication executive who writes for fun and to finance his hobby, amateur radio.

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