This field day style operation for CQWW-CW was from the south-west England contest location that has been used by G3TXF and G3WVG for a number of years.
As ever the CQWW CW contest was great fun. Single Band is quite do-able and competitive with simple antennas, and you really get to understand propagation when you stick with one band for 48 hours. From the sunset picture above it's obvious that the take-off towards USA and VE was excellent, accounting for over 25% of my QSO total. The QSO break-down table above shows that with 546 W and 41 VE QSOs, it's a good location for working North America.
Conditions on 80m were OK, but not brilliant. I didn't quite make my target of 100 DXCC Mults .... nevertheless as the Claimed Score Table below shows, that with 96 DXCC, I came close.
I heard several more DXCC Mults but couldn't always crack the horrendous RBN driven pile-ups. It's disappointing to hear the number of callers that come on frequency repeatedly sending their callsign before actually listening to find out if they can really hear the DX.
The antenna was a simple vertical erected (using an 18m Spiderpole) on an exposed field high above the Atlantic Ocean. An exposed site potentially means strong winds and so the vertical needs substantial guys. These need sturdy stakes which in turn needs my trusty sledge hammer to drive them home. See the photo above!
A vertical is no good without a decent radial system. I laid out over 1.5km of radial wire making around 60 radials. These were in turn connected to an existing underground system of 32 top band radials. I think that was sufficient!
I was in the chair for around 36 hours. The toughest session on Single Band LF is from before sunset on Saturday until long after dawn on Sunday. That's around 18 hours of listening to weak signals through a wall of QRM and QRN. Thank goodness for chocolate, coffee and energy drinks.
CQWW-CW remains the best contest of the year and for me is unmissable.
Operating M5B on 80m SOSB Assisted High-Power
|M5B Claimed Score Summary||M5B worked 30 of the 40 Zones on 80m CW|
|WinTest logging at M5B||80m vertical : you can never have too many radials !|
|The activity graph from Win-Test shows that Ian G3WVG made maximum use of the available time to operate on 80m. Started at the 0000z beginning, working through to well past sunrise on Saturday, then recommencing in mid-afternoon on Saturday followed by operating through all the long hours of darkness up to Sunday morning. The final session was from Sunday afternoon through to the end of the CQWW-Contest at 2400z. In total the operating time at M5B was about 36 hours.|
|M5B : healthy catering in CQWW CW||80m vertical into the midday sun||Blue is the best colour for radials !|
The pie-chart shows that of the 2,351 QSOs made by M5B on 80m, 25.6% were with North America (W/VE).