Thursday, 18 July 2013

IARU HF Championships 2013

As last year, I took part in the IARU HF Championships last weekend. Here is the blog from IARU HF 2012. I competed in the same class also: 100W/CW. I have about the same wire antennas as last year, plus the new 160m inverted dipole. Still I don't have any beam...
Nice QSO speeds at times :)
When the contest started on saturday I did not hear much on 10m, so I started on 15m. The band did not seem to be very open, but since I heard EU stations, I started answering CQs. However, I was stunned: no-one heard me at all there! Obviously the conditions are really bad, I thought. After 20 minutes I had to move on to 20m. I felt uneasy with this situation: after a wile I lagged 100 QSOs behind my last years performance. My goal had been to improve my last year's score.

Later in the night I was able to take my new 160m antenna into real use. It was a relief to see that I could easily work at least EU stations with that antenna. At 1 AM GMT I decided to take a 4h 30min sleep. By that time I didn't have any single QSO on 10m and 15m and I was hoping for pileups on these bands next day. On sunday morning at about 7 AM GMT I started calling CQ on the 15m band, and yes, now it was at least something: Obviously I could try to compete with my last year score, even though I did not have high hopes.
2013 Final claimed score.
To compare: 2012 Final claimed score.
(N1MM software used by then)
After the contest I talked to OH2BAH about the situation on 15m on Saturday. I saw from this log that he had worked a lot of Asian stations that day! Important to note is that he competed in the full power class and have a yagi up 40 meters...Still I was depressed: obviously I had missed the DX window, and the non-answering EU stations obviously had their beams to east when I tried to call them with my measly equipment.

Anyway, at the end of the contest I had almost the same amount of QSOs as last year: 912 versus 950. This year I achieved more (claimed) points, though, mostly because of the new 160m band multiplikators.

In general, the conditions were quite poor this year. To compare: last year's contest was visited by an almost complete radio blackout. I wrote about it in the blog.

My final positions last year in my class: 
  • 55th of 815 in the world 
  • 36th of 445 in EU
  • 1st of 4 in Finland
Let's see if I improved this year...I fear the worst :)

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