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ARRL DX Contest, SSB   2017   Mar 4   Claimed Score

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Call: VP2MMF
Operator(s): K1XX
Station: VP2MMF

Class: SOAB LP
QTH: Montserrat
Operating Time (hrs): 43
Location: Other North America

Summary:   Compare Scores
Total:5719305Total Score5,227,395


Club: [none]

Comments:     [email]     2017-03-08 09:39:09
This contest had a lot of good stuff and a lot of not so good stuff! Good Finally got the phased inverted Vs for 40 working correctly and the QSO total (almost 2:1 over last year) shows why. With the demise of 10, I needed to do better both on the low bands and on 20. For the second year in a row, 160 worked great. An inverted L, with a K2AV folded counterpoise, seems to do the trick. 15 was a bottomless pit for me, even as a low power guy. To address 80, I put up a sloping 3/8 wave vertical, also using another FCP. The jury's still out on this one, but I don't feel that I moved backwards. As people say, Location, Location, Location. The rental property I use is located on the peak of a ridge line that points toward toward the US. Within the space of 1/2 mile, the land slopes down about 500 feet to the sea. Just a great shot to US/VE. The many positive comments about signal strength, when using only 100 watts, really helped to keep the moral up. I got a couple good hours from 10 on Saturday, but not so much on Sunday. Not So Good We were robbed the second night there. Apparently a local thief has decided the rental property is a good soft target, using the crank up tower for access to the upper floors. Fortunately, he only takes cash while leaving credit cards & passports. I hope he is stupid enough to attempt to exchange the Cuban 3 peso note I kept as a souvenir from my trip during the past CQWW SSB. The note can not be exchanged outside Cuba. Thursday night before the contest, I was feeling so good after completing the antenna work early, that my wife and I decided to try one of the higher-class restaurants on the island. They had a visiting Spanish chef for the evening. Though the food was tasty, the next morning I awoke to a terrible case of food poisoning. Guess they must have snuck some squid (known allergy) into the paella. Really laid me low for the remainder of the day and it took 6-8 hours into the contest to recover. Last year I installed a single K9AY loop for low band receiving. It worked really well. This year I put up the same loop. The year-to-year results are identical, but I didn't think I heard as well. Maybe it was just the crappy conditions overall. Had some never-before-experienced RFI problems with the laptop I use each year. On occasion the touch-pad mouse would freeze and not be accessible. Fortunately, Wintest is not mouse intensive, but I had to reboot the laptop a few times. I even went so far as to look for the cure-all ferrite core to wrap around my laptop. Just couldn't find anything that big! So what's a low power guy to do with the low-end lurkers hogging that end of the band while the high-end hyenas camp out at the top. Sorry, nothing personal. LOL! Yeah, I talked about the fabulous location on that ridge line. Unfortunately, I spend too much time walking up and down, up and down. up and down. As I get closer to 70, the up and down takes its toll earlier each year. Generally takes me 3 days to get everything set up and less that a day to tear it all down and pack up for next year. Though my Good list is shorter than the Not So Good, overall this was a very successful year. Sure, mults were down; no surprise there with conditions. But this year, I actually made about 4% more QSOs than last. And this year's score is only 2% short of last. Maybe one year I will haul down an amp and hope not to get my butt kicked too bad by the big boy single ops. Thanks to everyone for the QSOs, words of encouragement, and the good time. KB, OJ 73 charlie, k1xx/vp2mmf Setup: Elecraft K3 10,15,20 - TH-6 at 45 feet plus a great location advantage 40 - pair of phased inverted Vs at 40 feet 80 - sloping 3/8 wave vertical with K2AV FCP 160 - inverted L with K2AV FCP