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Saturday, April 27, 2013

WPX Awards arrived ... Neckar Diplom and SP DX Contest 2012 Awards as well !!

It`s been a while since I had applied for WPX award, aiming to gather all prerequisites in order to apply later for the WPX Award of Excellence. So, N8BJQ was kind enough to confirm and send me over the respective WPX Mixed, WPX SSB and WPX CW awards. Here they are:

Also, Neckar Diplom has arrived, which had been applied for through DARC`s DCL system, very easily, no paper cards, no other hams`signatures, no GCRs, etc. Here that is:

And last, but not the least, here is the nice paper contest award received for my last year`s participation in SP DX Contest in the SOTB Mixed category:

Thursday, April 25, 2013

1st Balkan HST Championship - Technical Specifications

After Official Bulletin Nr.2, concerning the 1st Balkan HST Championship was issued by BFRA, I got some technical questions, which were promptly answered by LZ1US, Panayot Danev of BFRA.

So, below are the answers to my technical questions:

1) All headphones to be used throughout the 1st Balkan HST Championship will be Sony productions high quality headphones.

2) All keyboards to be used throughout the 1st Balkan HST Championship will be of the QWERTY layout.

3) Official rules, as mentioned in the Official Bulletin Nr.2, are those found on the following link:  ,with particular attention to the Annexes.

4) In Transmission Test, it is mentioned that the text messages will consist of mixed characters. I asked Panayot about the quotation marks that may be present in those texts, and I got the answer that only   "/"   ,   "="   and   "?" will be present.

If you happen to have any similar or other technical questions, please e-mail Panayot at the following e-mail address:

1st Balkan HST Championship - Bulletin No.2

BFRA has issued the 2nd official bulletin, concerning the 1st Balkan HST Championship, to be held in Lovech, Bulgaria between 31/05/2013-02/06/2013.

Here is the full text of the related bulletin:

Bulgarian Federation of Radio Amateurs

First Balkan High Speed Telegraphy Championship  

31 May 2 June 2013

Lovech, Bulgaria

Bulletin No 2

(29 April 2013)

I. Format of the Championship:

All official male and female categories (A to I) are welcome and will be awarded separately. Each country is allowed to participate with unlimited number competitors in each category.

The format of the competition is relaxed and includes 3 tests only, as follows:

-          Callsigns Receiving Test (RUFZ) – according to the official rules. There will be two attempts; better result will be taken in consideration for the classification. The winner will get 100 points, the rest – proportionally less.

-          Morse Runner Test – according to the official rules. There will be two attempts; better result will be taken in consideration for the classification. The winner will get 100 points, the rest – proportionally less.

-          Transmission Test – mixed text only, 5 characters in a group, composed of Amateur Radio callsigns, Amateur Radio abbreviations, Q-codes, popular names, popular QTHs, etc. There will be two attempts (two different texts); better result will be taken in consideration for the classification. Competitors will be allowed to stay 9 minutes in the transmitting room in which to send the two messages provided. The winner will get 100 points, the rest – proportionally less.

The classification will be individual only; rankings will be in total sum of points earned by the three tests (maximum 300).

II. Time schedule:

31 May (Friday):

Till 18:00 Arrival and accommodation;

18:00 Official opening;

19:00 Dinner;

20:30 Team leaders meeting.

1 June (Saturday):

08:00 Breakfast;

09:00 Competition;

13:00 Lunch;

14:30 Competition,

19:30 Hamfest (including dinner).

2 June (Sunday):
08:00 Breakfast;
09:00 Competition;
13:00 Lunch;
14:30 Awarding ceremony;
15:30 Departure.

III. Awards:

First, second and third places in each category will be awarded medals. Each participant will receive certificate.

IV. Entry fees:

Accommodation for two nights, two days full board and hamfest cost 65 EUR per person in double or triple room, 80 EUR per person in single room. Entry fees will be paid upon arrival.

V. How to arrive by car at Lovech, the venue of the event:

From Sofia follow direction to Varna. After driving approximately 125 km, turn left following signs Lovech (Ловеч).

From Ruse follow direction to Sofia. After driving approximately 105 km, turn left following signs to Levski (Левски) and Lovech (Ловеч).

If you travel to Sofia by plane/train/bus, BFRA will organize upon request your transportation to Lovech and back. Please, let us know.

VI. How to reach the place of the Championship:

The Championship will be held in Hotel Varosha, Lovech, Todor Kirkov Square 36 (Хотел Вароша, Ловеч, площад Тодор Кирков 36).

For GPS navigation enter: 36 Ploshtad Todor Kirkov, 5503 Lovech, Bulgaria.  

There are two small free parkings around the hotel and a larger paid parking.

Telephone of the hotel +359 68 603377.

Telephone of the organizers: +359 898 312372.

Attention, please! There is another hotel near by with similar name Varosha 2003. Our hotel in situated on a square and there is a monument in front.

VII. Need of information:

We need to receive till 29 May at latest names, call sign and category of each competitor. We need the names of the visitors, too. Please send that information to: or

If you have any question, do not hesitate to ask. Use the same e-mail addresses.

We are looking forward to meeting you in Lovech!
I will be there and compete with the best Balkan HSTers, representing Greece.

73s from Rhodes Island
Stathis, SV5DKL


Monday, April 22, 2013

Contest Audio Database growing ...

As promised in my previous post ( on my CQ WPX SSB 2013 participation, the respective audio files have been edited properly and uploaded into my Online Searchable Contest Audio Database.

As my participation was limited to 80m, significant less work was required to on the audio files. For all those that have sent me e-mails asking several technical questions on this matter, here is my solution in synopsis:
  • All recording sessions are done via Writelog for Windows with the Lame MP3 codec.
  • Echo microphone when transmit is always enabled.
  • MONI function on my rigs is always on.
  • Post contest editing is done with Sony's Sound Forge v9.0 and in particular, I am using the Wave Hammer plugin and after that the Envelope function, in order to normalize my audio to 6db level.
  • The final audio files are about 14,6 MB / 1 hour of recorded audio. So for a full 48-hour participation total audio size would be somewhat 700,8 MB ... that is a single CD-ROM !!
  • The source code of my Online Searchable Contest Audio Database is courtesy of and it runs on a PHP 5.0 server.
  • Few interventions made in the source code are my courtesy and were required in order to make this whole thing feasible.
I had to change the initial web site, in order to include more contests. It is now ready and will be very easily expanded in the future with no fuss at all.

Whether we had a QSO or not during the contests, you may visit my Online Searchable Contest Audio Database clicking the following link and even get a downloadable clip of our contact:

Enjoy !!
73s from Rhodes
Stathis, SV5DKL

Thursday, April 18, 2013

New IRCs coming out ... the Doha model

A reminder for every one who uses IRCs for QSL cards direct exchange, that in coming July 1st, the new IRC model will be available. It is called the Doha model and it will be valid up to Dec. 31st, 2017.
Below is a photo of a specimen of the new IRC:

Some historical info on IRCs can be found at the following URL:

and more specific info on the new IRC model can be found at the following web site of ARRL:
Of course, you may as well visit your local Post Office for more information on how to obtain the new IRCs.
The current IRC which is valid until Dec. 31st, 2013 is the so-called Nairobi model and looks like the below photo:

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

ZK3N and ZS8Z in the log ... 2 all-time new ones at the same day !!


That was a good radio day.
You know, chasing DXpeditions from rare entities of the planet, sometimes makes you forget about other, more common entities, yet with the same interest level.
This is when one realizes that from the rare entities one still misses for Honor Roll, etc., some of them are not so rare, after all ...

I had worked ZK3 in the past with my old callsign SV1DKL from Athens, yet it was an all-time new one for my currently active callsign SV5DKL.  Yesterday evening local, ZK3N was filling my DXCluster spots and I just had to make the QSO with them. Shortly after having seen them spotted on 20m RTTY, I was there and they already had formed quite a huge pileup. Calling more than 5 KHz up I managed to get through in my 3rd or 4th call.
Thanks for a new one, guys! I hope to work you on other bands, too.

Before settling down from my effort with ZK3N, just less than an hour after, ZS8Z was spotted on 14155 QSX 5 up. Like a reflex, I was already turning my A3S to South, while at the same time searching in DX-World for more info. In the past, I had worked a ZS9, a ZS0 but they were just plain old South Africa.
That was it! ZS8Z was on the base of Prince Edward & Marion Island (AF-021). I copied him with a very good and clear signal, so it was a matter of seconds, as it was !! Many thanks also to you David, for a second new one at the same day !! Btw, ZS8 was an all-time new DXCC entity for every one of my issued callsigns. Enjoy your stay on the Base, David. We will have QSOs on other bands, also.


Saturday, April 6, 2013

SV5DKL Contest Log Statistics Analysis Web Page

Since today, we have a new webpage online, where you may freely check on my Contest Log Statistics Analysis.

Just visit and feel free to browse through my various statistics files.

For the implementation of the said webpage, a powerful software tool was used, SH5 v2.36 by Dmitriy Gulyaev, UA4WLI, that makes everything look too easy !!

I have already uploaded quite a few statistics analysis files for several contests I have participated in, but there are more to be processed and uploaded, so keep in touch !!

Of course, the list will be expanding progressively as I will be participating in several contests.

Enjoy !!

73s de Stathis, SV5DKL

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

International Naval Contest 2012 Results are out !!

Just a couple of hours before the start of CQ WPX SSB 2013, and while warming up my setup, I received an e-mail from Gerhard, OE1GTU with the results of International Naval Contest 2012.
I have been taking part in this event for quite a few years, but never was struggling too hard for a top place.
Also, in my class of participation (Class F - Non Naval), there was always a good amount of participants, many of them being ex Radio Officers, now having plenty of time for radio ;-) ,so only if I devoted myself fully to the contest would I have reached the top rankings.
That is what I did for INC-2012 and it paid off. Finished in 2nd place, behind RF9C, who was ahead by about 75% score, while YL2TB ended up 3rd with a very marginal 2226 points difference !!

You may find the results of all categories by clicking the following link:

and the results of category Class-F (Non Naval stations) by clicking here:

And here is the certificate for my performance, Gerhard kindly sent me via e-mail:
I am now looking forward to receiving the respective engraved plaque awarded to rankings 1st-3rd of each category.

Did well !!

CQ WPX SSB 2013 is over ...

It was the first time I ever entered a contest running SB on 80m, but I enjoyed every bit of it.
80m is a very interesting band, from the aspect of participation. It is not as easy as 20m or 10m, nor does it have similar traffic, but putting a serious effort on 80m pays off.
I entered the Assisted Low Power category, with my FT-2000 pushing out merely 91 watts into my 27,5m Inverted-L, which in its current final position hears well and ... proved to go out well, too.
Starting the contest, there was quite some traffic around, so it was not time to call CQ. Until 0430z I gathered mults. I held on calling some CQ until an hour after my sunrise. Second night was quite busy, with rates going up to 80 Qs/hr. Multipliers kept on coming and score was rising rapidly.
Last night wasn't as busy, but almost 3 out of 4 QSOs were still giving me significant multiplier margin points.
Ended up the contest at 2359z with 722 QSOs in the log, 473 total multipliers and my final score read 836737 points. Not too bad for an 80m rookie @ 100w.

Best 3 highlights of my participation were:
  • Working 2 new ones on 80m, T48K and 4M5W !!
  • Being able to keep up a running frequency at 3795 for almost 2 hours with 91w output and in between being called by 2 very strong JAs !!
  • It was the first time I ever worked so many North Americans on 80m at once !!
For the time being, 3830 score rumours give me a 1st place WW, but we'll have to wait longer till it is stabilized ;-)
Congratulations to 3Z8T, 9A3B, 9A5Y and DR1D for their great scores in the respective High Power category.

A BIG THANKS must go to all my fellow Greek hams that gave me a call during the contest. Those were:


All contest audio has been recorded and will be available at my online searchable contest audio database ( quite shortly. Stay tuned...

73s to all and CU in the CW leg in May.