The excitement builds after meeting and talking to John, W6JZH on Friday at his QTH in Pittsburg (about 10 minutes from my house). After looking over John’s list of “guest operators” I am hoping to add my call sign to that list starting in May with CQWW WPX CW. The 2010 WPX CW was one of my best efforts to date and a contest I prepared diligently for. Of a possible 36 hours I logged nearly 25 hours of “BIC” time. Looking back at my 2010 WPX Goals, it’s easy to see where I failed to meet my goals, but in the end I will still pleased with my final score.
Other possible guest op opportunities for me also include the 7QP in May, as well as RAC Canada Day in July. But more importantly it will be the NAQP that start the second week in July with RTTY, followed in August by CW and SSB. Those are quick and enjoyable contests that I can participate in. September brings CQWW DX RTTY Contest and then October is CQP.
Learning the ins and outs of the station as well as software is an area I will need to put some time into. The software that is current in use at W6JZH is TR4W and N1MM, neither of which I have used. Both are freeware and easily downloaded and installed. I currently favor Win-Test since it was the first and only software I have used since starting contesting at N6RO back in 2008. I have downloaded and installed N1MM and I know many operators really like this software.
I just got done reading some of the documentation for TR4W and using the limited version of SH5. I might actually give this software a test spin for the JIDX CW next week. Looks like a very simple and effective (but powerful) program that provides some great statistics (with the use of SH5 log anaylsis).
The problem usually associated with introducing a new logging program in a contest is the learning curve. It took quite a few contests for me to learn Win-Test, even now I am not using it to its full potential, but I like what the software offers and it’s ease of use. TR4W, like every other program carries it’s own learning curve.