Different Strokes

There are many aspects of this hobby to enjoy. Some are more enjoyable to one group, ones more enjoyable too another. No right or wrong either way.

I prefer DX’ing and Contesting over what is known as Rag Chewing. aka Round-table and Net operations.

DX’ing and Contesting share several operating techniques, and have several differences. IMO, DX’ing and Contesting requires one to know how to operate their gear to it’s fullest potential. DX’ing and Contesting also require greater attention of listening.

When DX’ing I meet new people on the air each day, have a brief conversation getting to know them a little, log it (with comments for future contact) then move on, looking for someone new too meet.

Contesting is more of a ‘hit and run’ operating technique requiring one to learn how to stand out from the rest, so to be quickly heard.

Rag Chewing (my least favorite) is usually the same crowd each day/evening, at the same time, on the same frequency, discussing the same thing as the day before. While appealing to some, not very appealing to me.

Do I participate in Rag Chews? Yes, but not very often. I’d much rather be looking for that faint signal, from some little remote island in one of the oceans!

Your enjoyment will vary…..

The Jerry Springer Show on 75 meters

One of the “Jerry Springer” groups on 75 meters finally admitted why they prefer ICOM over Yaesu, and sometimes Kenwood transceivers. ICOMS are much easier to understand and operate! Especially for this crowd.

As listened further, it became quite clear that many in this “Jerry Springer” crowd, really didn’t have a grasp on how to even operate the “easier” ICOM gear that they owned! From what I gathered, only maybe one or two in that “Jerry Springer” crowd had ever opened, or simply glanced over the owners manual for their ICOM. It’s not that Yaesu or Kenwood are more difficult operate, it’s the “Jerry Springer” crowd is too lazy too read, or maybe can’t comprehend the operators manual of the other two brands mentioned, so they revert to talking shit about the other brands. Either way, now the truth has been told. But it doesn’t conclude here…..

Once they have finished the “Jerry Springer” skit that crowd will begin adjusting their transceiver EQ settings. Or the simpleton BASS and TREBLE of the mic settings for ICOM’s. Maybe ICOM’s magically change those setting each day, so they must constantly be adjusted. I’m just not sure. The circle jerk then begins discussing how each of them sound. They sound just like any others that do not know how to properly adjust those settings. Average. Not great. Just average.

Phone or CW

Which do you prefer?

I prefer and operate phone 100% of the time. I never have been, nor ever will be a fan of CW. Nor am I a fan of the ‘digital modes’. And here is why.

I love hearing the human voice. I love hearing different accents, from all over the world, and from the US as far as that goes. I love hearing the emotion contained in the human voice. I can usually draw a much better mental image of the person I’m speaking with, from hearing their voice.

None of which can be done by listening to dit’s, dah’s, beeps, clicks, and buzzes.

Am I glad the FCC did away with the ‘code test’? Absolutely.

Some will say by eliminating the ‘code test’, the FCC opened the flood gate for an inrush of poor operators. There may be (is) some truth to this. However the majority of issues on amateur radio are being caused by those who took the ‘code test’.

With this being said, I do feel the FCC should have beefed up the written test quite a bit, and go back to the 5 classes of license. Maybe even a 1 year probation period of operating as a Novice/Tech, with additional allocated frequencies in the HF bands, so to gain some operating experience.