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                    ARRL DX Contest, SSB

Call: YN2NB
Operator(s): N1SNB
Station: YN2NB

Class: SOAB HP
Operating Time (hrs): 

 Band  QSOs  Mults
  160:  100    19
   80:  624    54
   40:  837    55
   20: 2003    60
   15: 1798    57
   10:  418    36
Total: 5747   281  Total Score = 4,810,982

Club: Worldwide Young Contesters


What a great contest! First, I want to thank Octavio, YN2N and his wife Martha
for hosting me-  and host they did - bringing meals, drinks and snacks into the
radio room throughout the event.

This trip was all radio business and I want to thank Eric, K9GY and Hank, K8DD
for sharing their time and expertise with me about operating from YN2N in the
last few months. YN2N, himself, did a great deal of legwork to make the nuts
and bolts of this happen on 3 weeks notice.

Octavio and I configured the station to be one FT-950 for the majority of the
work with a FT-897 listening just on ten. The shack is bright, colorful and
airy - the antithesis of most I have operated. It makes a difference when
you're trying to stay in the chair.

When Friday night approached, I was all business.  My goal was to stay on 20m
as long as possible and not retreat to the 40 SSB freak show.  My first hour
was dynamite - 306 stations in the log which I'm sure was a personal best for
me.  20m was awesome all three evenings with great signals coast to coast. 

One general theme was that I was shocked at how many calls I worked that I
never worked before, and how many of those were relatively newer hams.  Also,
for many many callers I was just there first or second contact - a fact I'm
sure PJ2, PJ4, P40 are all used to when they run this contest but The droves of
KB1, KC2, KI4, KJ4, KI6, made me feel happy for the future of the hobby. 

In general, I continue to be amazed by the guys that put in 40+ hrs in the
chair.  I operated for exactly 40 and don't think I could do another minute:)
It's tough being in more or less isolation during the contest operating SO. I
looked at my all my Facebook friends photo albums while CQing on 40! The
isolation makes me pine for the camaraderie of a good multi op - you know
hitting the kitchen and telling war stories together.

Band by Band:

10m on Saturday was pretty disappointing - the band was open around 2200z, as I
heard a big multi-op in PA, a Californian, a Texan and a Floridian all with the
same ten minutes but alas I could only muster up 20 or so Q's. Where was
everybody?  The band would open on Sunday at the same time - and when AA1K
called in on 15m to tell me the band was open, I was doubtful (stupid, huh?) -
but I got there in time to pull 408 more QSOs. I felt very lound (fact or
fiction?) and the QSOs poured - with droves of /m's and roger beeps calling in
:) as well.

15 meters (tribander @ 50ft w/500w):

Here I experienced lots of weird propagation.  For about 45 minutes on 15m on
Saturday only VE7, W1 and Florida were answering my calls.  Pretty neat.
Overall, I felt very loud coast to coast. I heard no EU at all which made
frequency selection challenging. I thought 2500 QSOs would be possible but it
wasn't meant to be! I closed with 1798 in the log - not too shabby -  but it
was a great motivator for myself to try to push for 2000+ on the band. 15m will
always be favorite band.

20 meters (tribander w/500w):

The evenings were dynamite and again I felt very loud most of the time.  I
tried to avoid the band when it was cooking to Europe. At the closing bell I
was suprised to see 2003 total QSOs and 60 mults - my best band totals.

40 meters (dipole w/500w):

I hate 40 meter SSB and I grinded my way through 804 QSOs, 700 of which were
incredibly painful.  One positive highlight was discussing the lack of VE5
stations on the air with VE3BK in the middle of the night.  Following this
extended chatter, Ve8 called in and practically apologized for not being VE5!
Hi, Hi!

80 meters (dipole w/500w):

The band seemed ok - but I didn't feel terribly strong amongst many giant
signals. US activity seemed more confined than normal. I was very pleased with
54 mults here.

160 meters.

This was tough, but with 100 qsos - I was satisfied.

Overall, I'm really pleased with the results.  I will write a more in-depth
report about this later - in the meantime please share your contest story as I
love reading them all. Thanks again to YN2N!

73 jeff n1snb/yn2nb