Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Some things to avoid and include in contests

Things to avoid

Never update your contesting software the day of the contest....... "Software surprise" is not needed during a contest.

Never assume your contest station is running great just because it was last time.  ..........Give the station a workout a few days before the contest.

Never update the rigs firmware just before a contest.......firmware glitches will throw your contesting off.

Never forget about the family during a contest weekend.......an hour away here or there can be a refreshing break.

Never get upset and frustrated......it's a contest have fun, know from the outset there is going to be poor op's out there.

Never think you are NOT going to get board at times.....there will be slow times have other things planned.

Never forget about non-contesters and respect mode allocations on the bands.......it's not intentional most times we just get carried away. 

Things to include

Always make sure the YL's "honey do" list has no outstanding promised items for that weekend.

Always understand that things never go as planned.

Always have some exercise, break times and eating times planned, a crock pot menu is a great way to have good dinners with very little work.

Always use headphones (especially CW contests) it may sound like sweet music to you but to the rest of the family (pets included) it's NOISE!!

Always have some goals for the contest.....and understand they can change.

Always make sure you are comfortable....cool in summer, warm in the winter, good chair and operating position just to mention a few things.

Always investigate if other major contests are going on the same weekend.......it can get frustrating when two stations from separate contests are giving exchanges neither can understand. 

Always read and understand contest rules before the contest..........self explanatory.

Contest on!!!
P.S.....please leave your comments with more includes or avoids


pa0o said...

Always use headphones (especially CW contests) it may sound like sweet music to you but to the rest of the family (pets included) it's NOISE!!

I remember once a parrot of neighbour ham whistled my call-sign in CW al the time after he left the receiver on one afternoon when away... that bird was traumatised

VE9KK said...

It's amazing what those birds will pickup and repeat. Maybe I should had added a spot in the post for ear muffs for the parrots.

John AE5X said...

Train the parrot to send the exchange and no need for a keyer...

VE9KK said...

Just feed and clean cage.

PE4BAS, Bas said...

Wise words Mike, not always easy to remember! But after all contesting is just a game. 73, Bas

Paul Stam PAØK said...

Hi Mike, things to remember. I do recognize a lot of them. 73 Paul

Dick said...

Good commandments; a few more and there will be ten. Well thought out.

VE9KK said...

Its true Bas it is a game but like in most games there are some that get carried away.

VE9KK said...

Good morning Paul, I just tried to sit down for a short time and come up with some of the "lessons learned" over this way regarding contesting.

VE9KK said...

Good morning Dick, it was a nice review as I came up with the list.

Unknown said...

I am mot much of on contests now but in my earlier days I use to do some. That was before home or ham computers (early 1960s). You give some very good advice for any who are new to contesting.


VE9KK said...

Good morning Bill, thanks for stopping by and taking the time to comment. You should try out contesting once again and see how it goes. By the way I checked out Hamslife and it's a nice site. Nice of you to mention the ham that helped out with the airline issue. I had heard about it on someones blog.