E51AMF

If you’re seeing this, you’re almost certainly here because you followed a link from QRZ to my blog. If it’s around the end of December 2016 or early in 2017, you’re probably here because you’re interested in the North Cooks DXPedtion.  Welcome!  Go ahead and subscribe to the RSS feed in your favorite reader (I like Feedly) or bookmark this page… then head on over the DXPedition site.

I’ll keep this blog updated with the more personal side of the trip and the DXPedition site with the specifics of the equipment, QSO rates, etc.

About E51AMF:

This DXPedition commemorates the launch of the Amateur Foundation, a non-profit supporting charitable works of amateurs on DXPeditions. The Amateur Foundation aims to increase the accessibility to information and funds for amateurs doing good things while travelling abroad.

Kids on PSK

I was wrapping up some stuff on the computer, yesterday, and poked at 20m PSK (14.070). Conditions weren’t great, but I watched broadband decode for a minute and asked Eva (my younger daughter) if she wanted to talk to a 7th grade girl… she timidly took over the keyboard. After a few minutes, she was really enjoying it.


>> N4SMS DE K7ADD K7ADD K7ADD

<< K7ADD DE N4SMS
<< Report : 599 599
<< Name : SCHOFIELD MIDDLE SCHOOL RADIO CLUB, AIKEN SC. RADIO ICOM 71ØØ, 2ØW WIRE DIPOLE
<< How copy? BTU OM, K7ADD DE N4SMS K

>> N4SMS de K7ADD PSE standby for third party traffic from Eva, Age 12 (6th Grade).
>> .... hello my name is Eva and im visiting my dad near seattle pleased to meet you. N4SMS de K7ADD k

<< K7ADD DE N4SMS MY NAME IS ELLA IM IN 7 TH GRADE MY FAVORITE SUBJECT IS SCIENCE I JUST GOT MY LICENCE ON MY BIRTHDAY JANUARY 14
<< BTU K7ADD DE N4SMS K

>> N4SMS de K7ADD Mine is too! I live in Wichita KS but visiting my dad who is a ham. My birthday was Marcch 5th and i turned 12. I plan on getting my license soon. Was it hard? N4SMS de K7ADD k

<< K7ADD DE N4SMS NO NOT REALLY IF YOU STUDY HARD!
<< K7ADD DE N4SMS K

>> N4SMS de K7ADD I have to go get my nails done but it was nice talking to you. Are you on often? We can try a sked tommorow. Would you like a card? N4SMS de K7ADD

<< K7ADD DE N4SMS WE ARE OUT OF SCHOOL TOMORROW I AM BUYING A NEW DRESS! K7ADD de N4SMS k

>> N4SMS de K7ADD It's my Spring break i go back to Kansas on Sat. Happy St. Patrick's Day! Nice to talk to you Ella! 73 N4SMS de K7ADD

<< K7AAD DE N4SMS 73 and thanks for PSK31 QSO Ø on 2Øm K7ADD de N4SMS

Upgrade – I didn’t move to Seattle!

A couple weeks back, I decided to start studying for the Amateur Extra test and a couple days later, I was hitting mid-90’s on the practice tests. I decided to I was best of testing “soon” instead of waiting to gain complete mastery of the material. Since, I’ve actually gone back and re-read and studied some of the topics that were particularly interesting. I found a VE session in Capitol Hill and made my way down to Ada’s Technical Books, that Monday night. The exam was administered by a super friendly Laurel VE team. Test jitters got the better of me and I powered through, completing it around the 5 minute mark (50 questions). I missed a few, but walked out with a shiny CSCE!

Fast forward to this week. I received a QSL card addressed to me in “Seattle, WA” All other details were correct, including the zipcode, so I’m unsurprised that it reached me. One of my friends pointed out that my QRZ address was listed that way. I checked ULS and sure enough, they’d entered my address wrong with my upgrade! While it’s rectified now, it’s still amusing.

The 10m WAS Challenge

We had a nice opening on 10m, today (20:00-23:00z or so) and I managed to work a little bit of phone and a fair amount of JT65, including a little trans-equatorial DX (a CA3, an LU, and a couple PYs).  I was really hoping to work the last few states I need on 10m for WAS.  I’m missing WY and MT and only have a card for OR (no LoTW).  If I close those, 5BWAS is within reach, but I suspect I’ll struggle closing the gap.  Here’s why:

Right over the to.

Right over the top.

See how I’m skipping right over the “close in” states?  Back-scatter is super unpredictable, so I’ll just have to keep at it.

Current WAS Mixed counts, as they sit (including cards in confirm totals):

Status     160M   80M   40M   30M   20M   17M   15M   12M   10M
Worked        4    43    50    23    50    50    50    41    48
Confirmed     2    41    50    21    50    50    50    40    48

In other news, I moved to WSJT-X from JT65-HF-HB9HQX.  I’ve had some pretty significant stability issues with the “HB9HQX Edition,” of late.  Beat is an awesome guy and we’ve swapped several emails about debugging it, but just can’t keep it running for more than a few hours at a time.  I’ve had corrupted config.sqlite and it’s refused to start and a few other really irritating occurrences. -X is going to take some getting used to. The UI is really different and I’m using JTAlertX as a massive crutch. Added bonus is that JT9 WAS is a new challenge!

[Update: 23:52z – Just started looking at where I’ll need to concentrate, if I want to land the 5BWAS]
JT65 Confirmations (again, including cards):

Status     160M   80M   40M   30M   20M   17M   15M   12M   10M
Worked        2    43    50    21    50    49    50    35    48
Confirmed     1    39    50    20    50    48    50    34    48