[AMRadio] Hallicrafter S-42

Ellen Rugowski ellenjoanne2003 at sbcglobal.net
Sat Sep 29 18:58:24 EDT 2007

----- Original Message ----- 
From: <W4AWM at aol.com>
To: <amradio at mailman.qth.net>
Sent: Saturday, September 29, 2007 5:18 PM
Subject: Fwd: [AMRadio] Hallicrafter S-42


> Contesting is no fun and requires no skill any more since many rigs, when
> hooked to a computer, will call CQ, keep the log, and probably even turn
on the
> coffee pot with the proper interface.
> John,  W4AWM


John, just my 2 cents worth.  I am also a contester.  What you said is true
of the "I have to win at all costs" type who seem to be taking all of the
fun out of it.  But not all contesters are like that.  I like mine much more
organic.  I do NOT use my computer to do the endless "F1 - Call CQ, F3 -
give the exchange" macros.  Nor do I use it to directly log the QSO.  I use
a contest logging program (it sure beats the paper logging I did until 2005)
to log my contest QSOs, which I TYPE in.  Also, I DON'T use a computer for
CW sending or receiving.  Since I got my Extra back in '94, I figure that
since I easily did the 20 WPM, I DON'T need a computer, CW decoding crutch.
For CW sending - until the mid 902s, I used a Bug.  I use an electronic
keyer nowadays, because it's easier to change sending speeds to match the
other operator's sending speed with a keyer, than a bug.  Because years of
bug use have screwed me up for using double lever keyer paddles, I use a
single lever paddle, bug-style.

You say contesters have no skill huh?  Have you dug out signals that are so
weak, they're just about at ESP levels?  I have. Oh, and this is often the
rule in VHF/UHF contests.  I don't have acres of antennas (I live in a
apartment, and I make do with what I have).  Oh, and I do the vast majority
of my contesting QRP (both phone & CW), which oftentimes requires me using
every trick I know, to get the QSO completed.  I won't lie, the latest 5 or
10 kilobuck whizbang contesting machine doesn't turn me on.  But as cool as
tubes are, it can be a real pain contesting multiband with a tube rig.  I've
been forced to use my Kenwood TS-820 lately, because a money crunch forced
me to sell my Yaesu FT-897D (in spite of its limits for contesting).  I skip
from band to band checking out activity & conditions.  What a pain it is to
retune umpteen times an hour for band changes.  As for the comment about
good operators cutting their teeth on marginal receivers - hey, I've been
there.  My first rig was an HW-16.  I used to use an FT-101B in college in
the 80s.  In each case, on CW, I had to deal with listening to multiple
signals, along with the one I was trying to copy.  Phone wasn't much better.
It gets to be a real pain after while hearing umpteen signals at once.  I
didn't own a receiver with filters, until the late 80s.  Nowadays, I always
have filters available for use, if I need them.  I'm not a masochist.  If I
had the money, I'd be happy to even have a no-tune rig from the 80s.

John, you're probably pretty cool guy.  I'm usually pretty easygoing.  But,
your comments on contesters were an unfair generalization.

Ellen - AF9J

I don

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