Speak Out: Lighten up guys!
A reader asks, "What was the biggest or funniest mistake you made on the air in a contest? How about off the air?"
37 opinions on this subject.
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WO1N on 2002-01-22
When we were getting started in Multi contesting back in the early 90's we operated alot from K1TWF's who had the only FT1000 amongst us. Late in the ARRL DX CW contest WB1ELA (now W1IA) are myself are sweeping 40M and grabbing any spot that comes in. We must have grabbed a spot that had a bogus split frequency as unknown to us the 2nd VFO got set to 20M and xmit. We come across a very loud G on the bottom of 40 and procede to call him. We are all over this guy figuring we could get in and out fast! But, he's not hearing us. This goes on for basically forever until we shout for Mike. K1TWF walks into the shack, takes one look at the radio and says "Why are you guys working split?" Aaarggh. We sheepishly listen to the frequency we were stomping on on 20M and find one of the big gun N3 boys there. I'm sure they were pissed at us! We still have a laugh about this to this day. You're working SPLEEET Old Man!
WB2WIK on 2002-01-22
Back in the days of manual logging umpteen years ago, I was the "op" and a well-known DXer (who shall remain nameless) was the "logger" on CW at one of the larger multiop contest stations. My logger seemed sleepy, so to wake him up I turned the TX power down to zero and worked myself, using the callsign 4Q2PAL. I poked him to make sure he logged the contact okay, which he dutifully did as I almost fell over laughing...
N2MG on 2002-01-22
Surely anyone who has operated 40 or 80 meter phone (split) has called on the wrong VFO.
I once called and then worked a DX under a huge pileup. After we exchanged reports the DX asked me if I knew what frequency we were on - turned out we were operating outside the US phone sub-band. All this in front of what seemed to be about a hundred other guys!
OK, so they're lame. Just trying to put something on the page!
n9rv on 2002-01-22
OK, here are two very embarassing stories:
Operating from W9RE, in the last ten minutes of the contest I come across Jose at P40E on 20m. I frantically ask him to go to 15m. He says OK.
The only problem was that he was a DUPE on 15. 20m was the band I needed the mult! (Fortunately, he moved again).
Operating from Michigan in the early 80's, the ARRL SSB starts out with super conditions to Asia. But I have a ground loop on my microphone that causes the VOX operation to be erratic. I've got a roaring pileup of JA's on me, but all of a sudden I can't transmit.
In a fit of frustration, I grab the boom microphone (a D-104 on a goose neck, remember those?) and give it a firm shove. It swings around 360 degrees and comes back around and smacks me in the mouth! Hello ...
IK2XSL on 2002-01-22
A few years ago I prepared an Rtty contest, I don't remember which one.
I get up early in the morning and I started cqing on 20. No activity, no answer, just a JA came in after a few minutes, giving me name and qth.
I check antenna switch: correct position.
I check swr: ok. I check power:ok. No split inserted, no attenuator. Still hear no signals. I say myself: "strange... everyone seems to be on 40 or 80".
Than, another JA said "the contest is postponed".
Since I was still a student, I turn off everything, open a book and start study. What a bad morning!
After a few hours a friend of mine called me, and said: "do you know that the contest has been postponed?"
N2AA on 2002-01-21
I am surprised at the lack of entries here. It's as if everyone is trying to pretend that he/she is perfect. I have so many that I could fill a file cabinet.
One of my favorites is: On a half asleep patrol of 20 meters one really..really early morning from K2GL a snootfull of years ago; I heard someone say "4U1UN AR". I very
aggressively called that station for a
time. When N1EE called in and asked if
I needed to take a short rest I realized that I had been calling the beacon. It is still worth a chuckle.
HA5PP on 2002-01-21
Long time ago (20 years) I made a QSO with a rare DX. I don't know why but I switched on the clarifier on my FT757 radio (same with VFO button). After the QSO I turned my VFO to find a clear frequency for a good run to USA. I didn't know that I turned my clarifier 'only' but my transmiting freq was on the rare DX freq. I asked: is this frequency in use? Nobody answered, so I called CQ CQ de HG19HB. Nobody. CQ CQ DX HG19HB. After a few minutes I saw my clarifier on. My face became full red. I transmitted on rare DX freq. I switched off my clarifier and I heard: 99, QSY, lid, f..k...etc. I apologized to everyone.
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