Sunday, December 1, 2013

Officially in the ARRL Record Books for QRP-DXCC

I officially joined the ranks of roughly 533 QRP-DXCC Holders - in the following  link:

Among the ranks listed is John Sweeney W3NP which was one of the few familiar calls - I had worked him 6 times during NAQCC sprints.  He has beaten me every time.  The other is Rick Lloyd AA4W, the Awards Coordinator at NAQCC.  The earliest inductee was from 2002.  The average number of inductees per year is about 45.  It appears to be updated once per year.  It is interesting to compare the numbers on the list with that of the DXCC Honor Roll.  There are close to 3600 names on the Honor Roll - Mixed Category.  I did not actually count them.  There are 200 call signs per page and 18 pages - so it works out to about 3600 names.  The CW list is fewer - only about 1200 call signs.  The digital list is even shorter  - just a single page.  Considering how much "easier" to reach contacts with CW over phone, I am quite surprised it is not the other way around.  QRP DXCC ops are primarily CW operators.  I then have to conclude that there are more SSB ops in the honor roll, operating multi-element beams and running power.

I am sure glad that I achieved QRP-DXCC first before getting an amplifier.  Power can be addicting and it is very difficult to turn that dial down 13.5 dB from 100 watts or even worse turning it down  25 dB from legal limit power.  Turning that dial down 25 dB is equivalent to turning signal strength down by 4 S units.  QRP DXCC hunting well past 100 DXCC is hard work and takes patience on both ends to make the QSO happen.  When propagation is good getting a contact in a heavy pile up is possible.  Otherwise, it is an exercise in futility.  Being a good op is knowing when to quit or search for a more viable contact.  My next goal is perhaps 5 Band DXCC and 5 Band WAS.  I am quite sure honor roll will take some time.

To those that wish to pursue QRP-DXCC after getting the taste of power - good luck and may the odds (propagation) be ever in your favor.

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