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CQ 160-Meter Contest, CW   2018   Jan 26   Claimed Score

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Call: OM7RU
Operator(s): OM7RU
Station: OM7RU

Class: Single Op HP
QTH: Dolna Micina
Operating Time (hrs): 29:48
Location: Northern Europe

Summary:   Compare Scores
Total:QSOs1101State/Prov22Countries70Total Score539,856


Club: OM0M Dozen Dashes Contest Club

Comments:     [email]     2018-01-29 16:55:01
This year 160m contest I should compare with Apollo 13. Problem after problem, one improvisation after another. Just one mysterious Mr. Murphy masterpiece show... I erected pole supported K9AY RX loops again to have at least any RX antenna. I'm using Microham Station Master as primary switching box for all antenna switches, including K9AY box. It allows to use one equipment to maintain all my antenna switching with high user comfort, including hot switch protections, or precise relay switching timing. I decided to use new software - DXLog, due to some more or less serious problems with WinTest. I studied and setup new SW few days before the contestto not be surprised with something serious during the contest. Phase 1 - 21:55 UTC: There was just 5 minutes to go, when I make last PA tune, which stopped after few seconds with high SWR alarm. All protections works, but something else was the primary reason. After few minutes was clear, that: - PA off due to high SWR, - base TCVR with high SWR, - Station Master in the dark, - band quiet, antennas missing. I had to find any real reason, possible solutions, more or less complicated way to be in the air and back in the contest. Started to reconnect whole setup to Micro Keyer only, reconnections of coaxial feeders, temporary control lines and connectors reconnections... OK, I had vertical connected, K9AY so-so usable, MK reconnected, all softwares reconfigured. Phase 2 - 23:00 UTC: OK, let's go, lost just 1 hour. TCVR doesn't send any output power. I made a lot of attempts to solve it, including base configuration - TCVR + footswitch + manual key, no success. I thought about reconnecting all cabling to spare TCVR IC-706, but last attempts worked - few minutes "all OFF from the 240 V" and it started to run correctly. Phase 3 - 23:22 UTC: Antennas connected, TCVR + PA are OK. Starting CQ, making first QSO. Pileup had started. But another surprise: DXLog doesn't log QSO after pressing ENTER... I tried to do all those things - restarts, finding those magic checkbox in bad state, studying documentation, discussion groups... I solve it my own way by making very strange combinations of macro commands into CW messages... Phase 4 - 23:55 UTC: Contest (fortunately) started. After almost 2 high stressed hours... Adrenaline instead of coffein, hi. First night of quite good conditions, with high nuber of NA stations and its S/P mults. Second night without JA or interesting east mults. I completely missed Caribean mults this year. Also CONDX was much worsen compared to first night, only few NA stations. Nice east mults I made on Sunday evening (7Z, JT, VU), but not JA. Fortunately, I hadn't spend a lot of time in furious and neverending EU pileups. I tried to start and hold my frequency inside JA window and use second RX to S/P over the band. But it realy was hard work due to intruders. One of them was realy deaf - nothing special, but this one was one the well known EU HAM celebrity. No way to ask for QSY. Is well known callsign realy wildcard for catching frequency? I don't think so. Result is, surprisingly, my personal "the best" in all cases (except of QSO points). Thanks to all TOP banders who took part! Used equipments: Yaesu FT-1000MP MarkV Field ACOM 2000A MicroHAM microKeyer DXLog Antennas: 160m: Vertical (35m tower + 2 elevated radials) RX: K9AY 73! Riki, OM7RU