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NA Sprint RTTY Contest   2011   March   Comment Summary

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Click on a call below to see the score rumor detail. Click on the [email] link to send an e-mail to the contester who posted the comment.

K6ST   Single Op LP   8402011-03-12 20:03:31
50 WATTS Antenna: Ham Sticks
KC4HW   Single Op LP   3,1902011-03-12 20:03:53
Got a late start. Missed the 20m activity. 80m was very noisey! Nevertheless
that to all for the Qs.

AA8IA   Single Op LP   2,4362011-03-12 20:04:15
First RTTY Sprint for me. Pretty fun. I know at least one occasion where I
failed to QSY at least 1 khz. Not sure what happens there, but I know it isn't
good. Of course i left it in the log.

Things started going south for me at the tail end. For some reason the AFC
just kept pulling away from the signal and up the band, even though the filters
were tight and everything appeared to be nice and quiet except for the sig I was
trying to copy. Was using the AA6YQ FIR512 profile in MMTTY. Went to switch
back to Standard RTTY filter and it was totally useless, copying absolutely
nothing (including not copying noise). SO went back to AA6YQ and kept trying
to use AFC when I was CQing and it just kept moving away from the sig. So,
with 15 minutes left I threw in the towel.

Fun time. Thanks for the Qs, fellas.
N4JIK   Single Op LP   1,4262011-03-12 20:04:25
FT-950 - First real digi contest I have worked with the new radio all I can say
is wow the difference it makes being able to swap VFO's real quick, made this
all the more fun, just wish I wouldn't have had to do some stuff during the
contest and lost that operating time would have been much higher in the Q's and
Points. But none the less great fun!

W7WHY   Single Op HP   4,1232011-03-12 20:05:02
Whew, is that last hour long!! First goes by pretty fast, but boy, that last

Thanks for the Q's. Fun to work all the Thursday night crew on RTTY. 73

Neatest Q was with AD4EB. I was working him on 20 and while he was sending his
exchange, I was calling CQ on 40. He answered my CQ on 40 just as he finished
his exchange. Gave me a good grin. Always fun when that happens. 73
KE5OG   Single Op LP   3,9372011-03-12 20:05:11
Seems to me like there was a lot of activity but the bands were not
friendly. I struggled with quality decoding all night. I had notice earlier
the A and the k were up. Maybe that was it.
Thanks for all the Qs. I'm still a big fan of the sprints.
K6LL   Single Op HP   8,6102011-03-12 20:06:16
Fun! Way better than the SSB Sprint.

Thanks for the Q's.

Dave Hachadorian, K6LL
Yuma, AZ

W1UJ   Single Op HP   6,3722011-03-12 20:06:34
Thanks for the QSOs.

AA4YL(@W4HOD)   Single Op HP   2,3502011-03-12 20:11:40
Thanks for the contacts.
W5AP   Single Op HP   5,3462011-03-12 20:12:10
WW4LL   Single Op HP   5,1802011-03-12 20:13:21
Participation did not seem that good to me. Pleasant surprise was having Rich,
KL7RA call me. When I grow up, I want to be just like W0YK :) See ya'll in

Tnx & 73'.....Fred, WW4LL
AD4EB   Single Op HP   7,9562011-03-12 20:13:45
One of the best RTTY Sprints yet, thanks in large part to all the new RTTY
contesters who decided to join the fun.

73 - Jim - AD4EB
K6MM   Single Op HP   4,8002011-03-12 20:13:47
Felt like I was invited to the party, but not a lot of folks showed up. 20M
folded early, and that last hour on 80M was S-L-O-W. Always an enjoyable 4
hour foot race. Thanks for the Qs. 73, John, K6MM
NO3M   Single Op HP   7,3082011-03-12 20:15:08
Wasn't sure I'd make this one, as the software hadn't been working since our
move and started playing with it Friday evening, finally getting everything in
order by this morning.

Conditions on 20 were great. 80M was a slow start. West coast steadily
getting better up to the end.

Thanks for the Qs; still have to get used to RTTY SO2R. Fumbled around a few
times in the beginning and lost out on at least 2 QSOs. The wireless keyboard
batteries also decided to die half-way through -- joy.

73 - eric no3m
KØAD   Single Op LP   3,6302011-03-12 20:16:24
With Radio #2 in the shop, this was a low power single radio effort. I got beat
out a lot. I probably heard at least 5 other mults that I was not able to work.

It suprised me how many stations did not stick around to work the second half
of a couplet. Even if they did not hear me, I would have expected them to at
least call one CQ before leaving.

It seemed like activity was up a little bit from October. 20 meters was in
better shape. The hardest thing in Minnesota, of course, is to know what
direction to turn your beam on 20. Speaking of Minnesota, I worked my first
and only MN station 4 minutes before the end of the sprint on 80 meters.


Al, K0AD
WØYK   Single Op HP   9,7992011-03-12 20:19:16
Thanks for the QSOs! Seemed like pretty good participation, but I still spent a
lot time CQing. All three bands had good propagation all over NA. My mults are
way down. Only ones I missed that I heard were KY and PR.

Wasn't sure I would be able to operate this one. In the past two weeks all of
my low-band antennas failed in one way or another. The winter winds took their
toll. One loading coil on the 80m dipole was damaged with all the insulated
spacers destroyed and turns shorting out. Fortunately, the weather today was
beautiful with light wind so I was able to gingerly space the windings in a
temporary fashion in lieu of making a new coil later. The 40m Yagi was much
worse with a loading wire broken and shorting out on the element. It is 12'
out from the tower and I didn't have time to tram off the other Yagis so it
could be taken down and repaired. So, I pushed a 12' piece of PVC under the
wire to hold it off the element and then taped the PVC to the second driven
element on the 20m Yagi for the evening. What a Rube Goldberg solution! But,
it got me through the contest with an antenna tuner keeping the amp happy on

Enjoyed half a bottle of our Rose of Pinot Noir while working you all. ;>)
There were two full teams (the "regulars": SWACC and NCCC) plus four partial
teams registered. Remember logs are due in seven days and preliminary results
will be ont he NCJ website 14 days from now. Final results in the May-June

Ed - W0YK
N6WM(@N6RO)   Single Op HP   6,6602011-03-12 20:19:49
oooh.. wow I am a bit rusty after some time from being in the chair. Congrats
to fellow team members N6DE And W0YK for super qso numbers. I kind of got a
slow start that killed my score a bit, but picked up sprinting steam as I went

Activity seems to be improved somewhat since previous RTTY sprints I have
participated in.

Thanks to all for the Q's, and great just to work some of my good friends after
being away from full time contesting for a few months.

73 and seeya next time
KB4KBS   Single Op LP   6842011-03-12 20:21:45
I puttered around the radio most of the day in anticipation of this contest... I
knew that I had to go to dinner with the extended family to celebrate my
father-in-law's 82nd birthday, and that I'd be late getting started.
Everything was all set when we left and so when I got back at 01:15z, I was on
it very quickly. I real enjoy RTTY, but I struggle with the SPRINT format, so
I hoped to leverage the one against the other. I stll am not totally clear on
when you can stay on a frequency... I answer a CQ, I call CQ, then I move...
but sometimes I would see the same call hanging around and "going to the end of
the line". I guess I need to bone up on the subtle points of the rules.

I used N1MM and the dual VFOs of my Kenwood TS-450SAT to pick places at the
opposite ends of the RTTY sub-section of each band and bounced from VFO A to
VFO B, trying to keep the required spacing from my previous QSO.

Still lots to learn!

Thanks to all who gave me a contact,


Scott - KB4KBS
KL7RA   Single Op HP   1,8402011-03-12 20:22:30
Seldom got an answer to my CQ but did have some luck calling others if no one
else was and then occasionally getting an answer after inheriting that freq.
Pretty sure I made the last sprint QSO on 20. I stayed on 40 hoping to work a
new mult or two dumping the dozen W6 QSO's on 80 as we are in daylight.

I'm not sure but I think I was correcting the log when I hit Enter using ESM
which sent MMTTY into full blast dittle on and no way to stop it except put the
radio into USB and reload. I would say it cost me a lot of Q's but running 25 an
hour doesn't make much of an impact when your radio is melting down and you
can't think of anything to do quickly to abort. Hand waving did nothing.
Shouting at the PC even less.

Still fun as it is a Sprint, see everyone in the fall and we will try this once


73 Rich KL7RA
NN7SS(K6UFO)   Single Op QRP   4,3052011-03-12 20:33:33
Another foolish QRP outing!

The A and K indicies were pretty high, so I had hoped
to do well on 20m and 40m to make up for the expected
flutter on 80m.

20m was good, and I spent 90 minutes and made 5 more
QSOs than before. I love 20m RTTY!

40m was my downfall. Sunset was 0210z, so I was on
40m way before sunset, and with only QRP, it showed!
I could hardly raise anyone, and calling CQ'ers just
got another CQ in my face! I hung in there, and
finally was only 17 QSOs short of before.

80m was surprisingly good in the last half hour, with
everything on the west coast worked, and 6 more QSOs
than before.

So overall, coming close, but not topping my previous
QRP record, falling short by 6 QSOs and 3 Mults...
need more people and time on 20m, or an earlier
darkness for 40m and 80m.

NN7SS Burt WA (K6UFO op)

20m: C-31XR at 71ft and C-3 at 53ft
40m: Force 12 Delta 240 at 78ft and 40-2CD at 48 ft
80m: Half-slopers from 60ft and 47 ft
Two Yaesu FT-1000MPs turned down to 5 watts
Writelog software and W5XD SO2R box
MMTTY software

QSO by hour and band.
80M 40M 20M Total Cumm

00Z ---+- ---+- 40 40 40
01Z - 13 14 27 67
02Z - 24 - 24 91
03Z 20 12 - 32 123
Total: 20 49 54
W6SX   Single Op HP   5,5112011-03-12 20:35:56
My most discombobulated contest since my first Sweepstakes fifty-four years ago.
Never found a groove. Seems as if I was QLF more often than not. Nevertheless,
best score since dupes went away.

K3, ACOM 2000A, wire antenna at 46 feet with Matchboxes, MMTTY, N1MM
WØBH   Single Op HP   3,2102011-03-12 20:53:18
We had company over earlier this evening, so a nice dinner and conversation took
a big chunk out of the middle for me. Because of that, action was good the
entire time I was on. I've been starting to work on an SO2R setup for RTTY, so
hope that will be operational soon.

Enjoyed it! Thanks for the Qs.

73, Bob, w0bh
K2PO/7   Single Op LP   3,8402011-03-12 21:02:23
My first RTTY Sprint. I tripped up several times, but had a good time. Tnx to

Rig: TS-850, and dipoles @ 40'
WDØT(@KDØS)   Single Op HP   5,3102011-03-12 21:03:50
My FIRST RTTY Sprint!! Sure got off to a very slow start on 20m, and it never
did come alive.. got beat out a LOT there, and when I did win a jump ball, then
I couldn't get answers to my CQ's very easily. Was A LOT more fun on 40m and
80m from here in Central SD, just seemed so much easier to work stations and to
win the jump balls. 40m as usual was most productive in terms of time spent.

Fun to work Nebraska late in the contest, and Nevada also, didn't think I would
get those stations. Seems I heard a couple more mults but didnt' work them.

Congrats to W0YK, and others who have this down, boy amazing job and numbers.
Its a great contest.

Thanks to Jim KD0S for the use of his station, and great to work many of the NS
Thursday nite gang, NO3M, W7WHY, N4DW, K1GU, W0YK, N6WM(at N6RO I believe),
NN7SS(I think QRP, GREAT signal)K0AD, W1UJ, W0BH, WI2E,W6SX, NG7Z. Also many of
the regular sprint guys such as K5ZD and others.. great surprise to work Alaska
on 2 bands, thanks KL7RA and AL9A.

Pleasure working the contest with you all, thanks, God Bless, Todd WD0T
NA2U   Single Op HP   1,2592011-03-12 21:18:30
My first Sprint ever. Kind of interesting once I (think I) got the hang of it.

Pro III, AL-80B, multi-band dipole at 56".

NM6E   Single Op HP   1,2982011-03-12 21:18:57
First ever Sprint, started late and slowly got the hang of things.. Sorry to a
couple of stations that I screwed up the exchange etc.
K9OM   Single Op HP   5,3382011-03-12 21:22:31
Really enjoyed my first NA RTTY SPRINT. You could tell I was new at it by some
of the sending problems I had. Hopefully, I'll be better at it next time!

Dick- K9OM
K3FIV   Single Op LP   1,8632011-03-12 21:42:17
My first Sprint format contest, so the goal was simply to learn. The first few
minutes I just listened to the frenzy. Couldn't copy anyone long enough before
they moved!

I also discovered that I need a new PC. My old one does a good job at running
the Flex radio software, and it even runs N1MM and MMTTY which I've used in
other contests. But I discovered that Sprint doesn't tolerate delays. RTTY
decoding was lagging sometimes 2+ seconds behind the signal, which made waiting
for the name/state info to appear was painful - sometimes the other guy would
repeat when I didn't reply fast enough because my PC was still thinking about
his text. I turned off one of the N1MM/MMTTY setups (was running SO2V to try
that out) and dropping back to one decoder helped a bit.

Murphy visited in the form of a power outage right in the middle of the
contest. Came back a few minutes later but it took a while to get all the
software running again.

I like the Sprint format and was pretty comfortable with it by the end. But
how do you keep track of how far away you are from the "forbidden zone"? In
other contests I usually keep a 30KHz or so chunk of the band on the display,
so I can see where the other stations are and go hunting. But it's hard to
remember where I made the last Q. With my LP/wire setup I don't win jump
balls, so I move around a lot. So I would try to look at the frequency in the
log and do the mental arithmetic before calling CQ or Pouncing. Not sure if I
got it right or not. Maybe there's some trick with N1MM to use the Bandmap?

Bands seemed OK but a little noisy. At the end it was hard to find new
stations, especially since when I found one, they'd move! Reminds me of our
cats chasing small critters out in the garden. Makes the contest more

Rig: Flex-3000, 100W, N1MM, MMTTY
Ant: OCF Carolina Windom dipole at 35 feet

K5AM   Single Op HP   6,2302011-03-12 22:04:37
Two-element tribander at 50 ft, and wires.
Homebrew radio
Homebrew amp
AA6GZ   Single Op LP   4482011-03-12 22:06:27
I see I'm not very good at this but will only get better in time.
KØYQ   Single Op LP   4,5122011-03-13 03:36:09
Tough to have my heart much into it with all the problems in JA. Was surprised
how many stations didn't stick around on their inherited frequency for a
follow-up QSO. Thanks all.
W6ONV   Single Op LP   2,3242011-03-13 04:23:30
First Sprint of any sort for me tonight and fortunately I was able to go nearly
all 4 hours, but I am not sure my totals really reflect the effort. Then again,
never "sprinting" before I had nothing to compare it to. Thanks to Dean, N6DE
for providing the macros, those helped.

I never got comfortable with the format as I could not develop any sort of
rhythm to calling CQ and answering. Thanks to all those who answered my call
and my apologies to those who I could not hear or copy. Still not sure I worked
Bob, W0BH in KS.

I got started about 15 mins late on 20M, but wish I would of had those 15
minutes back since I struggled on 40M and had a real challenge on 80M with the
SteppIR BigIR and a few broken radials. More details will be post at

VE3RCN   Single Op LP   802011-03-13 07:17:43
Sat on my glasses. I couldnt see the screen too well. Had to give up.
N4ZZ   Single Op HP   5,3552011-03-13 07:34:14
Great conditions! Best RTTY sprint I have operated in! Only bad thing I had to
take four unplanned emergency breaks to the bath room. Thanks for all the

NS6T   Single Op LP   6662011-03-13 07:34:45
This was my first sprint, and it was challenging. I got better with practice as
the event went on.
K9YC   Single Op HP   4,7942011-03-13 10:40:51
This was a struggle for me. Never really could get in sync, kept getting
beat when I called someone, found it difficult to get stations tuned in,
lots of stations didn't print very well, and I needed lots fills. By the
last hour, I was only calling CQ, QSYing from one VFO to the other,
letting others make the doublets. If I hadn't been on a team, I would
have bagged it by 5 pm.

One problem, of course, is practice. I haven't worked a RTTY Sprint for at
least a year, maybe longer, and I've been booked for other things
when practices have been scheduled. And we all know that keeping #1
happy is very important. :)

As to the contest itself, three very important things bothered me a lot.

1) Many stations do not acknowledge the Q with TU or QSL If it were a CW or
SSB Sprint, we would not log that QSO. Why should we log it in a RTTY Sprint?

2) Many stations don't wait for that TU or QSL before calling. Many high
profile contesters are guilty of this practice, some of them otherwise very
good operators. If it were a CW or SSB Sprint, we'd quickly send AS (or say
QRX) and get the acknowledgment or request for a fill, but that's a lot harder
to do with RTTY contesting software.

3) My rule in RTTY contesting is that I don't log anything I haven't seen
twice, yet most "big gun" Sprinters only send the exchange once. Especially
with the short time allowed for tuning in the other station, I often didn't
print parts of the exchange sent only once, so that caused me to need a lot of

I also ran into several stations who didn't read the Sprint rules. Less
important, but a PITA, were a few guys who sent their entire exchange when

73, Jim K9YC
W6YX(N6DE)   Single Op HP   9,8282011-03-13 11:26:30
Thanks to all of you for being active! This was a fun contest.

I thought 20m conditions were much better than I was expecting, 40m on par, and
80m worse. 20m was open solidly well after everyone moved to 40m. 80m must
have been terribly noisy for stations east of the Rockies. I called a lot of
stations on 80m, but they couldn't hear me, and I had trouble getting stations
to answer my CQs.

I tried SO2R and it went OK. I used one computer with the MkV and another with
my K3. I made sure that I never had any QSY violations, but I did get mixed up
sometimes by sending the wrong exchange key on the wrong computer!

A VE1 called me, and I got his name and state, but I couldn't copy his QSO
number, so I couldn't log the contact. I saw a KP4 calling CQ DX before the
contest, but never heard him in the contest. And I think I saw someone give
their state as CT. Those were three mults I heard at some point that I never
heard again.

See you next time!

-Dean - N6DE
K1GU   Single Op LP   4,9642011-03-13 12:01:05
Participation seemed down. Lots of CQing going unanswered.
W6PK   Single Op HP   3,3602011-03-13 22:24:41
Thanks for the Q's!
W6PK (ex-W6TQG)
VE3JI   Single Op LP   3,3902011-03-18 06:43:58
Best way to spend 4 hours