Finally! DXCC 15 Meters

Finally received the last needed eQSL on LoTW for DXCC on 15 Meters. The ARRL processed it right away and I received the certificate in the mail about a week later. LoTW really makes it easy and a lot less expensive to earn operating awards.

So now I move on to the 20 meter band and also DXCC on CW only. I am about 12 QSLs away from the awards for both CW and just the 20 meter band.

Simple 100 watt transceiver and a vertical antenna is all I use.

BTW, I got a QSL for South Sudan the other day with this modest set-up.

Just one more country!!!!

Worked some new countries this weekend on CW. Concentrated on 15M so I could maybe get DXCC 15 Meters. Well as of this morning, I got four new countries verified on LoTW which brings my total to 99! Ahhh, come on, just one more!

CQ Magazine Replacement - RadCom

As I wait for the refund I requested on October 2, 2014 (which I am sure I will never receive from CQ Magazine), I did decide to go ahead and subscribe to RadCom and also become a member of the RSGB. My packet of information arrived today. Gosh, they send you a pin, key-chain, pen, coaster, membership certificate, catalog, welcome letter and a copy of the February edition of RadCom. Officially my membership and subscription starts March 1, so I guess I got the February issue as a bonus. Nice magazine, great it's a good replacement for CQ Magazine and a nice supplement to QST. While the membership is pricey compared to QST/ARRL and even CQ magazine, at least it will arrive on-time just like QST and not like CQ Magazine which is such a waste of money at this point. Give Radcom/RSGB at try if you are looking for a CQ Magazine replacement.

New Digital Application - EXChat

There is a new FREE digital application out and hams will find it to be useful and fun. It’s called EXChat and uses DominoEX and the digital method of transmission.

What makes this different from other digital mode applications is that it mimics how many of us use texting and chat programs over the Internet and on our cell phones. So this application will be particularly interesting to kids as we try to attract new blood into amateur radio.

If you want to get to it and give it a try now, go to:

There is no install, just unzip the files into a directory (C:\EXChat for example) on your C: drive and start it up. All you then need to do is enter your call, select the sound card for outgoing and incoming audio and the comm port to use for PTT. Takes a few minutes to set up. You can very the baud rate to match conditions, but the application defaults to 11baud.

Rod, WI0T, and I have been using it to chat away on 40 meters each using 25 watts and vertical antennas. Rod is in St. Louis area and I am in the Cincinnati area. We have used 22 baud with great success which equals about 140 words per minute.

How EXChat differs is that it creates a chat environment by sending sentences and acts just like a chat or texting program. You type out a sentence, hit return and away the message goes. You can chat with a group on just one-to-one.

Give it a try with a friend or group of friends. I think you like it.


Wow, been a while since I posted - CQ Magazine again

I cannot believe it has been more than six months since I posted anything. Well had some family issues to deal with, but hopefully that is settling down a bit.

The CQ Magazine saga continues. The delivery of the magazine (paper edition) did not improve at all last year. When October came around, I'd had enough. I sent CQ an email asking to cancel my subscription and refund the balance of my subscription.

They replied that they would extend my subscription three months. I said no thanks, extending a magazine which is always late was not compensation, that I really just wanted my money back.

Since that last email, no replies, no refund and no magazines.

Yes, they did cancel my subscription. I have not received an issue since September. But I have not received a refund and all emails asking them to respond and send a refund are just ignored. You cannot have it both ways CQ, either send the magazines on-time, or send my money back.

I still have an on-line subscription which I did to get the CQ Plus digital only content, but that expires this summer. But CQ also just cancelled the CQ Plus offering so now I will not get that either. Things are pretty hosed up at CQ.

So if you have money to risk and enjoy companies who abuse you as a customer, by all means, renew or sign up for a new subscription. But it you want value for your money and get what you paid for, then you might want to reconsider giving CQ Magazine any of your money.