Sunday, February 11, 2024

PACC contest 2024 review


Event: PACC 2024

Section: QRP mixed

Logger: N1MM+ 

Station: Icom IC-7300 at 5% (5W)

Antenna 1: Experimental multiband halo

Antenna 2: 10m LFA @14m

Antenna 3: 2x20m inverted-V doublet

This years goal was to beat the score from last year. Beside that I wanted to do more CW and try to headcopy instead doing it all with CWskimmer. Well, I can tell decoding with my own brain is hard. Yes, some easy calls are no problem like SN5O or K1ZZ but others are really really hard like II5I and others, I got really confused sometimes. So if any of those CW callers are reading this I'm sorry if I left the frequency without working you all. The amount of stations calling on my CW CQ was most times overwhelming. 4-5 stations together at the same time gives one long beeeeep. And most stations keep on repeating while I struggled to decode and find the correct keys on my keyboard. In the end I think it is just a matter of rehearsal :-).

So here they are, the statistics:

Green dots = SSB  --  Red dots = CW

Yes, I ended early. I had enough when I reached 425 contacts. It is 50 more as last year. I see that I worked 2 dupes. I worked more in CW mode compared to SSB, that was one of my goals. The 10m band disappointed me on SSB. Just a few Russian stations and worked one JA. The money band was 40m SSB. 40m Propagation inside Europe and especially inside the Netherlands was excellent this year. I even managed to have a few (tiny) pile-ups on that band which isn't easy with only 5W. 

DXCC worked

Congratulations to K1ZZ who worked me on 5 bands CW. Last year he did it on 4 bands, so this is a new record! Another remarkable contact was with PA0Q/OE3JRC Hans who is one of the organisation members of this contest. Hans is living in Austria near Vienna and I worked him on 80m when he worked remote from the Noord Brabant province on Saturday. I know that Hans is working with a magnetic loop from his home and would be QRV on Sunday on 20m. It was a surprise if I could hear him and the other way around. But we managed to make a good CW QSO, signal was really good actually.

Well after all it was an interesting contest with good propagation as expected. I had the feeling propagation was better on Sunday. For next year I hope to improve my CW because it is the only way to improve the score in the QRP section.


VE9KK said...

Good morning Bas, great CW effort and very well done for your first time running in a busy contest without assistance. I can relate to hard and easy calls (like 5ESE), having what seemed like everyone calling you at once. That does get better with practice but one step at a time. This type of live practice is the best. I was the same as you a few years ago just wanting to pull the plug after unruly pile ups.
I saw you spotted on the RBN and heard the pile ups coming back to you but I could never hear your QRP signal. I tried on 10,15 and 20m. I did notice you on 40m but seeing your RBN spots you were only being heard in the EU. Next weekend if you have time is the ARRL DX CW contest again that that be good practice for you and to also try to run again for some North American station contacts.
Excellent score and a great contest of learning and growing. Keep it up.

PE4BAS, Bas said...

Tnx Mike, it's a pity you didn't hear me. But that can be expected with 5W only. However I worked one Canadian station. I might try next weekend and keep the CWskimmer decoder off. It might be a nice challenge to see how many I can work? 73, Bas

VE9KK said...

Good morning Bas, that is how I ended up running was turning off all decoders...well I did leave one on and put it is the task bar for the crazy call signs or the ones who would not slow down no matter what callers.