My contesting began as so many of my journeys begin – a simple entry with a great deal of discovery and learning along the way. Then, as with most of my efforts, I start thinking about changes that eventually become relentless efforts to improve from one contest to the next.
Now this is easy to do with anything in amateur radio. You can always get better and improve your station and your operating techniques. However, with contesting you actually have a report card on your efforts – your score for every contest you enter. Plus, you have a ranking against your fellow competitors.
It’s a short trip from seeing your ranking to start thinking about what’s needed to win, or at least to improve. That then leads to an examination of what contest category best fits you and your station, or at least ramps up the possibility of actually winning.
I started out, quite some time ago, with HF contesting. What began as an effort to find more DXCC countries to add to my log moved pretty quickly into an improvement journey driven by scores and rankings. After all, it’s pretty nice to see your call sign in the listing of entries. Then you start thinking about getting better and finishing higher.
With me, it started out with CW contests and low power (100 watts) using a vertical antenna. The early improvements were to antennas and to spending more time in the chair, as well as using DX spotting assistance…..READ FULL ARTICLE
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