[AMRadio] Heavy Metal AM Rally

Steve WA1QIX wa1qix at piesky.com
Sun Dec 27 16:41:40 EST 2015

The quoted statement below does not necessarily reflect what actually happened:

>The only thing
>close to any issue he may have had with it was the constant tinkering with
>the rules anytime someone whined about not qualifying because they had a
>Class E transmitter, a plastic Yaecomwood transceiver with a linear, or
>anything else that wasn't real Heavy Metal. He thought at times people were
>seeing it too much like a contest and not enough as a get together on the
>air to celebrate AM and big, heavy, high powered tube transmitters of

What actually happened is that the event originally defined Heavy 
Metal as any AM transmitter running at least 250 watts and/or 
weighing at least 250 pounds.  It was easy, and there was LOTS of 
participation for years.

This worked fine until WA1HUZ won the event with a modified multimode 
transmitter into a liner amplifier.  Clearly heavy metal, and he won 
fair and square.  That is when the rule "tinkering" and rule 
ambiguities started to happen.  The definition of "heavy metal" 
became unclear - being arbitrarily up to the organizers to determine 
what is and is not heavy metal.  This sort of thing usually does not 
go over very well, and it didn't.

Then when the class E transmitters appeared on the scene - fully 
qualifying as heavy metal - the rules were changed again to exclude 
these types of rigs from being able to "win".

Events need a critical mass to be successful.  By excluding large 
numbers of people, the critical mass was lost, and the event has been 
languishing ever since.

At the time, I suggested to the organizers that they allow anyone 
running 250 watts or using rigs weighing more than 250 pounds to 
"win", and simply make a "special" award for the operator using what 
is best defined as "Classic Heavy Metal" - plate modulated tube rigs 
or similar that qualify for either weight or power.  By doing this, 
there would be plenty of participation by the general AM community, 
and of course the classic Heavy Metal would be highlighted - and use 
of such rigs encouraged due to the special award.

I offered to streamline the logging by creating logging software and 
a central logging server.  Never heard ANYTHING from anyone about 
this.  I ended up writing the software anyway, and using the logging 
software for another event.

This event could be what it once was - a pretty big event - by going 
back to the original rules, and having a special award for Class 
Heavy Metal.  In this way, the participation will go WAY up because 
everyone has a fair shot at the "contest" aspect.  This will 
encourage MORE PARTICIPATION - like a snowball - and it will just 
keep going.  There will be more chatter about it on the air and in 
postings, and more people will dig out their big old rigs which, is 
what the event was trying to do in the first place.

As much as the ideal of an "operating only" event may be appealing, 
most human beings need a goal or an incentive.  It's just the way it is.

Let the tomatoes fly :-)  I'm sure they will !!

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