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Topic Author Posted On
FM operation for ARRL VHF June Contest KX1W 3 weeks, 5 days ago
No need to get snarky with Ron, Gerald. Contest rules are not part of the Extra class question pool, nor should they be, as contesting is an entirely optional activity within amateur radio. If and when a ham decides to participate in a contest, then yes, it certainly behooves him/her to become acquainted with the rules for that contest.

Mark AI4BJ
RS/RST in contests KB9YOJ 3 weeks, 6 days ago
Zach is correct, Matt. The static 59 (or 599) simply functions as a "sync symbol" that helps to identify the actual exchange information. I find it particularly useful in CW contests, when the exchanges are sent at a much higher speed than I would ever be comfortable with in a normal ragchew. My brain easily locks in on the sound of "5NN" (nines are usually truncated to N's for brevity) and is then fully prepared to receive the actual exchange information.

A true signal report is entirely unnecessary in a contest, since the QSO is already over before either operator would have time to adjust Tx power level. There is a time and a place for an honest signal report, and a contest just isn't one of those times, unless (and this happens rarely) you are requested to provide one by the other operator.

Mark AI4BJ
Do I have to post a Check Log? KM4FOS on 14/6/15
I left a more detailed reply under a different thread, but the short answer is no, you do not need to submit any kind of log for the stations that you work to receive credit for your contest QSOs.

LOTW is not used for any contests, by the way, though you may still wish to submit your contest QSLs there if you wish to receive DXCC credit for them.

Mark AI4BJ
LOTW and QSL cards KX1W on 14/6/15
They don't have to be postmarked, but yes, you do need to present a physical QSL card for QSOs that are not in LOTW. You can either mail the cards to the ARRL to be checked, or you can have them checked by an official card-checker at many hamfests.

Mark AI4BJ
General contesting question N8WNG on 14/6/15
Most contests operate on the honor system. However, in some of the big contests (e.g. CQ WW), the sponsors do closely examine the logs of the top finishers to check for irregularities. For instance, if one contestant has a statistically large number of unique calls in their log, this would certainly raise suspicions. But let's say you casually work half a dozen stations during a contest and do not submit a log. Your call will show up in (probably) several logs, so you wouldn't be causing any problems.

Big contests are now routinely recorded using SDRs, so trying to log bogus QSOs is pretty risky business.

Bottom line: Don't feel guilty about not submitting a log. The stations you work are happy to have you in *their* log.

Mark AI4BJ

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