eHam Logo

 Home Home
 Articles & Stories
 Contesting Wiki
 My Profile

 This Week's Contests
 Classified Ads
 Contest Links
 Product Reviews

Contest Lists

Other Lists

 Mailing List FAQs

Site Information
 About This Site Team

Contesting Online Forums : Tips : "CQ Contest" vs. "CQ" Forums Help

1-2 of 2 messages

  Page 1 of 1  

"CQ Contest" vs. "CQ" Reply
by kg4oij on July 28, 2002 Mail this to a friend!
As a reasonably new operator to HF, what is the difference between calling "CQ" and calling "CQ contest?"
RE: "CQ Contest" vs. "CQ" Reply
by ve3syb on July 28, 2002 Mail this to a friend!
An operator calling "CQ" is indicating they are available to be called by any other station any where in the world. The operator calling "CQ" will be open to a nice long chat with someone. If the station calling "CQ" doesn't speak the same language as you (ie. you normally speak English and the other station normally speaks Greek), the chat may be brief as you may only be able to exchange basic information such as name, location, signal report, and type of radio/antenna(s).

Any operator calling "CQ Contest" (or "CQ test" on CW) is involved in one of the many radio contests which are usually (but not always) run on weekends. The station calling "CQ Contest" is only looking for a brief contact. The operator will only be interested in calls from other operators which will help him get more points for the contest in which they are competing. The contacts will be brief and some specific information must be exchanged for the contact to be valid for points in the contest.

In order to know whether your contact with the contest station would give them more points you can check the list of contests which are running that day in either the QST or TCA (or your local) amateur radio magazine, or check on the on-line contest listings (such as the one on Also, listen to see if the operator is stating the name of the contest in the "CQ". Operators often will indicate the contest name (although sometimes only every few CQ's) especially when there is more than one contest running at the same time on a given weekend.

The contest details will give you an idea of who the contest operator is looking for and what information they want from other stations that call them. The contest details will indicate let you know whether you would be a valid contact for the other stations and what information they will need from you.
Alternatively, give your call sign. When the operator acknowledges you, you can ask what contest they are participating in and what information they need from you. If you aren't acknowledged the operator isn't hearing you or may be ignoring you if you wouldn't give them any extra points.
An exception to my comment about contest contacts being brief is for the type of contest known as a "QSO Party". These are good events to start with if you want to try your hand at contesting.

A QSO party tends to be more relaxed than the most of the other contests. You may find you will be able to have brief chats with some of the other contest stations to ask things like how the bands are doing, how busy they have been, have they heard anyone from a particular muliplier, or just to say "hi, I've heard you in other/previous contests".

One final comment about Field Day held the third weekend in June. It is NOT a contest. You may hear other people tell you differently and you will hear many (most?) of the people on air calling "CQ Contest" during field day but IT IS NOT A CONTEST. It even states this fact in the rules for Field Day. Many people treat it as a contest, however. When I was starting out in ham radio it was the exception to hear someone say "CQ Contest" instead of "CQ Field Day". Now it seems to be the other way around.Whether you get on the air to chat with other people or want to try your hand at some contesting, just remember to have enjoy your on air time and have fun.

73 de Kevin, VE3SYB

  Page 1 of 1  

Next Topic:   Kenwood SSB Filters
Previous Topic:   plastic surgery
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this topic.

My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

Search Tips:

Check our help page for help using Forums, or send questions, comments, or suggestions to the Forums Manager.