My Most Recent QSO's

Friday, December 28, 2012

My 2012 Log Book

Another year has passed with continued enthusiasm for my favorite hobby. As we approach the new year, I always take a few minutes to survey my log book to see where I've been and where I may be going in the upcoming year.

I made more contacts this year than the previous one. This year I made 467 contacts with a variety of different stations. I can almost count on my fingers and toes the number of stations I've worked on SSB; the vast majority were CW (99.9%) contacts.

I continue to be motivated by Morse Code and worked 111 DX Stations this year. I know that's not a lot of contacts "across the pond" for many radio operators but I'm happy with my little station; despite its challenging location. Looking back at the"total log book" since retirement; I see a total of 1,697 contacts with 376 being contacts with other QRP operators.Considering my indoor antennas; I have no complaints.

 I've changed my station a bit since last year and added a random wire and a new key. I'm using an external tuner and now use an old laptop computer for DX spotting on the cluster. I've spent a LOT of time chasing DX this year; but still like a long "chat" above all else.

The entire station sits on a small "aluminum camping table" in front of the bedroom window. 

I still cherish the idea of simplicity and strive to keep my station VERY basic. I have NO plans to operate with anything but CW in the upcoming year, although I've been know to jump to SSB for a "special event station". I can still take the entire station down and be in the field in a matter of minutes.

I love this hobby which encourages me to view other parts of the world, and the lives of the radio operators who live in distant lands. I still think it's the best hobby in the world!


KL8DX said...

Might be a small station but I see big accomplishments! Great job and I love the Vibroplex. I use one myself almost daily.

Challenging yes, but it speaks plenty about the operator behind your radio. Congratulations for an outstanding job and I hope 2013 brings you many more DX contacts. Your blog has sure shown me, if there is a will, there is a way. Happy New Year, John!

Jspiker said...

Hello Phil,

Thank you for the encouragement and also a Happy New Year to you.

I've been hearing a lot more this year. I'm hearing Alaska and Hawaii occasionally, heard Antarctica, Israel, and even Japan once this year; but still too weak to work.

Although there's definitely obstacles to overcome here in the city with an indoor antenna and QRP power; I get a tremendous satisfaction of working some of those long distance stations.

It's just a real "hoot" if you know what I mean....

Thanks again for your comment!

PE4BAS, Bas said...

Hello John, I like your "shack". Although it is a simple setup the contacts you made last year are nice DX. Considering you're working QRP with indoor antennas it's amazing you made so many DX actually. I can imagine the satisfaction you get from a difficult DX contact, you really have to work hard for it. Wish you nice DX in 2013. 73, Bas

Jspiker said...

Hello Bas,

I've had fun with it, and actually, enjoy it's simplicity. I like the 703 with the long wire. I use it for SWL also. I love the broad band coverage.

Perhaps someday I can "borrow" and good beam and work the last few countries for my DXCC award? My other option is finding the right band conditions and getting into the field and away from all this electrical noise. I'll keep trying....

VE9KK said...

Good morning John, very nice job on the year to date contact's not over yet 2013 is not hear you pull in some more DXCC's!! I am like you in that the majority of my contacts are CW as well. SSB from this location in not an option as it seems the surrounding homes seem to pick up my SSB signal on their home electronics.
Happy New Year

Jspiker said...

Hello Mike,

Although I've never had a complaint; I worry about interference also. To be on the safe side, I NEVER operate 10 meter SSB during an important sports game...just common sense. hihi

We seem to be on the same page with's my favorite mode. This morning on 17 meters, I worked LX1NO (CW) in Luxembourg. As usual, it was a quick handshake, but then again, had a really nice QSO with another QRP op in Maryland on 30 meters. I enjoyed the QRP QSO the most. hihi

Bert, PA1B said...

Hello John, you are doing an excellent job. It's amazing to see the achievements with the indoor antenna's. I very much like your Blog. Happy New Year. 73, Bert

Jspiker said...

Hello Bert,

Thanks for your comments. You do an excellent job yourself. Unfortunately, I'm beginning to feel like I'm running out of new DX countries ....a few more in South America, the Caribbean, and Africa would be nice. I think I have about 65 now but I can't seem to work any further than Bulgaria.

On the good side, I HAVE come to the realization that I can work DX just about every day I'm on the air. I would have never dreamed that a few years ago. It's been fun!