Contest Question - Mobile and Indicators

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KK5JY, Nov 8, 2018.

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  1. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Generally speaking, when contest rules do not state specifically, what are your thoughts on the following, with respect to operating a contest while mobile.
    1. If you call CQ or answer a CQ with an "indicator" on your callsign (e.g., /M for mobile), does/should that indicator be considered part of the "call" field for the purposes of logging the communication? That is, are KK5JY and KK5JY/M equivalent? If not, can you give an example of an applicable rule?

    2. The only location restrictions I can find in most contests is a "circle" in which the transmitters and receivers must be collocated, and the further restriction that antennas outside the circle must be connected to the radio(s) via RF feedlines, and not operated remotely via internet, phones, etc.

      Are you aware of any general rules for major contests that restrict whether the "circle" can move, as is easily done while mobile? That is, is there anything preventing the mobile from station parking somewhere, operating for a few hours, then moving, parking, and operating more from a different location? If not, can you give an example of a rule restricting such operation?
    I have looked at both ARRL and CQ contest rules for an answer to these questions, and I'm not finding anything definitive in either set of rules, or on either point.
  2. K9STH

    K9STH Ham Member QRZ Page

    In a VHF / UHF contest, if you are operating mobile you are considered a "rover" and should add "R" to your call. Then, you can log the same station, time after time, as you move to another grid square.

    Glen, K9STH
    K4AGO likes this.
  3. W7UUU

    W7UUU Principal Moderator Lifetime Member 133 Administrator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    When I've done contests mobile, I just sign W7UUU and dispense with the /M designation. I think it keeps it easier for the other guy, especially on a CW contest.

    Hope I'm not breaking any rules...

    K4AGO likes this.
  4. KS2G

    KS2G Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    What Glen said for VHF/UHF "rovers".

    But for HF contests, ---unless the rules include "rovers" (as do some state QSO parties)-- there's no reason to indicate mobile, portable or anything else along with your call sign for U.S. stations operating in the Lower 48.

    Your call sign doesn't have to indicate your location.

    If it's other than what it "appears" to be (based on the number in your call) and that's important (e.g. multipliers) that will be part of the contest exchange (state, ITU/CQ zone, etc.).

    As a courtesy "alert" to other operators, if your call sign doesn't indicate it, portable should be indicated by stations operating in Alaska, Hawaii, U.S. Pacific Islands, Puerto Rico and U.S. Caribbean Islands.

    (Conversely, holders of call signs specific to those areas who are located in the Lower 48 sometimes will --but not always-- indicate portable in whichever call district they're in.)

    And, of course, U.S. licensees operating in other countries must so indicate in their call signs.
  5. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    In CQWW, rule IV.C.2, maritime mobile stations count only for the zone multiplier, NOT any separate DXCC entity.

    The ARRL 10 meter also has a special status for /MM using ITU Region as the multiplier designation.

    Does that mean sitting in a boat in a marina or a local lake too? It's has always been an intriguing idea to operate the 10m event /MM with that potential advantage of being a bit more "rare" then any surrounding state.
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
  6. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

    That's a good point -- I should have been more clear. I don't have a boat, so this would be motor vehicle mobile, not maritime mobile. :)
  7. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    /MM indicates on the "high seas," in international waters.

    If you're within 12 nautical miles of the coast, you're just "mobile" (not maritime mobile) and of course that includes all lakes.
    K4AGO likes this.
  8. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I think if you enter a contest and wish to submit two separate logs, one for home station (fixed) operation and another one for mobile operation as a /M that's actually acceptable for some (perhaps many) contests. But the scores would not be aggregated, they'd be two separate scores.

    That goes for /R rover stations as well: They can operate /R and also spend time operating from home and enter two separate logs and entries, as far as I know.
  9. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    Maybe always missed it, but I have never found anything in FCC Part 97, other FCC regs, or amateur radio contest rules, that denotes when /MM is designated as "high seas". FCC Part 80 maritime users are designated as such even in port. Although OFCOM designates /M for inland waters, even it indicates /MM to be used in coastal tidal waters.
    Last edited: Nov 8, 2018
  10. W0PV

    W0PV Ham Member QRZ Page

    I think you'd generally be within rules even as a non-rover, if, of course, the operational mobile QTH did not cross into a different contest multiplier area, ie, DXCC, state line, ITU / CQ zone, ARRL section, 4 place grid square, etc.

    However, another consideration is the geographic "circle" used to designate valid entries as a CLUB. That would be a different story. You might be ok as an individual entry, yet violate a rule if your score is combined with and becomes part of a club entry.

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