Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by WH2HAO, Feb 18, 2013.

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  1. WH2HAO

    WH2HAO QRZ Moderator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page


    As a relative newbie, ( less than 10 years lic. and born after 1968 ) I am perplexed by all the SWL cards I receive. I think it's great, as they seem to have the nicest cards I have received.... but I honestly don't understand the concept. Can someone explain it to me as a simpleton. . I get so many SWL cards that say something like " I witnessed or observed the QSO between you, ( WH2HAO ) and ...... ( whoever) on psk 31. Very nice QSO.. etc... " . So what am I supposed to do, send them a card back and say it was very nice of you to listen in to the QSO, TU 73 sk... or what.?? I mean why does anyone want to listen in to digital Macros conversations, its beyond me. I don't even like to listen to my own QSO's on digital, so what is the point from the SWLer point of view, because I am really missing it..
  2. N0AZZ

    N0AZZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    You just reply confirming the QSO with the party at that time and freq for him. They have many awards for SWL's also and it is a quite popular hobby. Many having much more invested in their stations than we do lots of them in EU. On my QSL cards where it says PSE QSL, TNX QSL I also have a SWL box box to check you can add a small one on the bottom of your card by hand as well.

    All of my SWL cards that I confirm as about everyone does is to use the outgoing buro, you are an ARRL member aren't you? That way it's cheap and I wait till I get a stack of cards till I send, goes by amount or total weight 1/2# up of cards the more the cheaper. I usually send my buro cards 2-3 times a year I also respond to other QSL buro cards I receive via the buro. Just another great benefit of being an ARRL member
  3. KB4BLU

    KB4BLU Ham Member QRZ Page

    As an old SWL I always reply to a card from a SWL. As was said before there are a lot of people who just like to listen. I still treasure some of the cards I had received from various stations. Some of which no longer exist. :(
  4. K0BG

    K0BG Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Over the years, SWL cards seemingly come in spurts. You'll go several years without a single one, and then suddenly a whole batch show up. I too confirm them knowing (hopefully) that some of them might become amateurs.
  5. N8CPA

    N8CPA Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm sure you'd make his day if he got a card from you, especially if he lives in the continental interior. Guam is somewhat rare to hear on any mode from flyover country.
  6. KA0HCP

    KA0HCP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    SWL'ing goes back to the 1920's when intercontinental radio contacts hardly existed. Both commercial and ham stations appreciated listener reports as proof of their stations' power and as clues to the mysteries of propagation. Commercial stations also used listener reports as aids to convince businesses to advertise and to justify the ad rates!

    Historically (30+ years ago and prior) Short Wave Listener's were the breeding ground of hams, including myself. Any encouragement you give them will be equally appreciated as a ham QSO, maybe more so. If responding with QSL cards becomes too burdensome from cost or time perspective, that is understandable.
  7. K9STH

    K9STH Platinum Subscriber Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    For decades, especially in eastern European countries, a person had to acquire a certain number of QSL cards from SWL activities before they could apply for an amateur radio operator's license. This was doubly true in the old Soviet Union. I have quite a number of such SWL cards from the Soviet Union each of which has a specific SWL call sign.

    Glen, K9STH
  8. N0AZZ

    N0AZZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Glen that was something i forgot to mention the call signs. I have a separate binder for my SWL cards I counted them just a few mins ago not a lot but have a 157 of them in 6 years. I have 11 cards from a single op in the Ukraine different bands and 2 modes.
  9. WH2HAO

    WH2HAO QRZ Moderator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Thanks everyone. I am now educated, very nice explanations. I will return the cards as suggested. I just received some SWL's from Iran, Vietnam and Bhutan. Now if I could only make QSO contacts with those countries that would be cool..
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