Entered my first RTTY contest this weekend. I really had a blast. My overall score hit a new personal record number of QSO’s (416) over just 13 hours. My previous best have been in the 300 range and that over a full 48 hour CW contest weekend.

One thing I really enjoyed about the mode was the instant identification of the station that’s running. This versus what often happens in CW contests where the running station identifies themselves about every 10 to 20 QSO’s. With RTTY there is no waiting for the ID. Plus, the logging software readily identifies the stations you’ve already worked by turning their call sign red. Then it’s time to quickly move on to the next station.

ARRL RTTY RU 2013The Elecraft K3/100 worked very well. Plus the P3 panadapter worked exceptional in identifying the next station and providing a quick assessment of signal level and whether it was worth calling or not. I did try running for a bit — ran about 20 minutes on 15 meters and captured 4 QSO’s for my effort. The search and pounce really worked well in this mode. My hunch is that 100 watts into a vertical is not the best approach to running.

I used RUMped by DL2RUM for my logging software and Cocoa Modem by W7AY for the demodulator. Both worked together very well with seamless translation of the QSO and easy ability to move the call signs into the log window. At some point I would like to bring the second receiver into play with SO2V. Cocoa Modem does this very nicely and will log the QSO’s as well. But it won’t integrate into RUMped. If I get serious about this mode, I’ll need to move to a Windows environment and use N1MM or WriteLog with MMTTY.

That’s another fun ham radio adventure. 73, Jim, K5ND

What do you think?