Is it Worth Building a SMALL Contest/DX Station?

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by M1MRB, Jan 5, 2020.

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  1. M1MRB

    M1MRB Ham Member QRZ Page

    ICQ Podcast Episode 315

    In this episode, Martin M1MRB is joined by Ruth Willet KM4LAO, Edmund Spicer M0MNG, and Leslie Butterfield G0CIB to discuss the latest Amateur / Ham Radio news. Colin M6BOY rounds up the news in brief and this episode’s feature is - Is it worth building a SMALL contest/DX station?


    We would like to thank our monthly and annual subscription donors for keeping the podcast advert free. To donate, please visit -

    News stories include: -

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    • Radio Amateurs Aid in Rescue in Remote NZ park
    • RSGB Earthing and the Radio Amateur Leaflet Updated
    • Radio Theory Handbook - 2nd Edition
    • GB7PY Repeater Stolen
    • New Irish Beacon on 60 MHz Now on the Air
    • VO2AC - Canadian Lighthouse Operation
    The ICQPodcast can be downloaded from

    VK2JI, KG4BFR, K4FMH and 1 other person like this.
  2. K3FHP

    K3FHP XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    The most important part of a small....or any....contest station is the operator.
    N2RRA, W2BJN, AD6FR and 4 others like this.
  3. SE3X

    SE3X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Then antennas ..
    N2RRA and AD6FR like this.
  4. W5TTW

    W5TTW XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Is a special station required for a weekend of repeating "Again, again?...You're 5/9, number XXX...QRZ?"
    NH7RO and KR3DX like this.
  5. W4PG

    W4PG Super Moderator Lifetime Member 279 Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    What is a "small" DX /Contest station?? A small antenna rather than a large one?? A small radio?? I don't get it . . . .
    NH7RO, AD6FR, KR3DX and 2 others like this.
  6. K2MIJ

    K2MIJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Instead of making a silly comment, just to stir the pot, maybe you should listen to the podcast to see if it contains an answer to your questions....Just a thought.
    N2RRA, NW6V, N4HFO and 3 others like this.
  7. N7WR

    N7WR Subscriber QRZ Page

    My answer is yes. I have had and operated from big gun stations for much of my 61 years as a ham. Now in retirement with a downsized station, and without the stamina to give any contest a hard effort, I still have fun with just 100 watts into less than optimum antennas. In terms of DX, every recent DX-pedition has been worked from this station. Takes more time and effort--no first call contacts--but they still get in the log.
    KN0A, N2RRA, KF1P and 4 others like this.
  8. W4PG

    W4PG Super Moderator Lifetime Member 279 Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    At an hour and 35 minutes, I probably will not watch it. Maybe someone can compress it down and provide some insight into a "'small" DX/Contest station. Does that mean SO2R only?? No multiple operators?? The title of this thread just makes no sense to me. I'm one person operating my ham station. Is it a small station?? I have no idea.

    But I get where you're coming from but watching 1.5 hours of a podcast isn't going to happen. Thanks.

    SE3X, NH7RO, W9DBI and 5 others like this.
  9. K2MIJ

    K2MIJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Bob...I didn't listen to the entire podcast to find out....If you would have even looked a the link you would have seen that the feature presentation was located at the end of the show...I just skipped to the very end segment to listen to the part I wanted to hear...Kind of like a magazine, Most don't read the entire magazine to get to the story that they are interested in...
    K4FMH and VK2JI like this.
  10. WG7X

    WG7X Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Any station can be a contest station. Just like it can be a ragchew station, a digital station, a phone or CW station. What you make of it is what it will be.

    But of course we already knew that. The real question, unasked, is can a station that does not have all the best stuff, in a prime location, still be fun or competitive?

    The answer there is of course you can have fun and be competitive, its all in how you decide to place yourself. Anecdotal evidence: My station consists of a wire antenna in the tree close to my house with a run-of-the-mill transceiver and an amp. 2004 ten meter contest. Condition were pretty crummy that year. I only made about 34 or so contacts, but I still put in a score. More for the other fellows than myself. A couple of months later I got a nice certificate from ARRL telling me that I had won the western Washington section for that contest. Was I a big gun? Hardly. But I tried and had fun doing it and got a bit of recognition for my effort.

    Does anyone beside myself care? NO. But what the heck... Just goes to show: pick your category carefully and you too, might get a bit of positive feed back from time to time, no matter what you end up doing. Remember: the only one that you have to please is yourself!
    KF1P, NH7RO, KC2PMM and 6 others like this.

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