Party at the CARC Shack! 4/18/2015 – noon to midnight!

2015 Michigan QSO Party !

The 2015 Michigan QSO Party is
Saturday, April 18, 2015.

The CARC will be operating from the shack in the basement of the Salvation Army building at 1239 Barlow street in Traverse City.

Any and all are welcomed to come down, check things out, and operate!

Come on down and help the CARC achieve another 1st place for 2015!

 

Several members of the CARC Board and Membership have signed up to be present in the CARC room and act as a control operator for anyone who would like to experience the MiQP.

We will be keeping the room open for the entire 12 hours of the contest – from noon to midnight!

If you’re new to HF, this is a great opportunity!

If you’re new to contesting, this is a great opportunity!

If you’re seasoned and would like to control op or help some of the newer-to-the-hobby folks, this is a great opportunity!

Chances are, we’ll have coffee, and lots of it, so if you just want to chill in the shack, listen to people make contests and drink free coffee, Hey, this is a great opportunity!

 


 

More details on the Michigan QSO Party can be found at the official MiQP Home page at http://www.miqp.org

 

 


 

2015 Michigan QSO Party Rules
Changes from 2014 are noted in red

1) Object: For amateurs outside the state of Michigan to make contact with as many Michigan stations as possible. Non-Michigan stations may work only Michigan stations, while Michigan stations may contact anyone.

2) Contest Period: The Michigan QSO Party (MiQP) occurs on the Saturday of the third full weekend in April. For 2015, the contest will start on Saturday, April 18, 2014. The contest period runs from 1200 EDST to 2400 EDST (16Z Saturday until 04Z Sunday UTC). All stations may operate the full twelve hours.

3) Frequency Bands and Modes: CW and SSB on 80, 40, 20, 15 and 10 meters. Stations may be worked once per band and mode; i.e., K8CC may be worked on both 40 CW and 40 SSB for QSO points credit.

4) Entry Categories:

(a) Single Operator – Entries where one person performs all operating and logging functions. Use of spotting nets (operator arrangements involving assistance through DX-alerting nets, PacketCluster or Internet) is not permitted. Single operators who receive any form of assistance such as spotting nets are classified as multi-operator. Only one (1) transmitted signal on the air at any time. Single operator entries will be categorized by output power: QRP (5W output or less), low power (100W output or less) or high power (greater than 100W output).

(b) Multi Operator – Entries where more than one operator performs the operating and logging functions.  Multi-operator entries are categorized in two ways:

Single-Transmitter – Entries with only one transmitted signal on the air at any time.

Multi-Transmitter – Entries with multiple transmitted signals on the air at any time.

Multi-operator entries must operate under a single callsign.  Multi-operator entries are not categorized by power.

(c) Mobile – Entries which are self-contained (radio, antenna, and power source) and capable of motion while in operation. Motion is not required. Mobile entries are categorized in two ways:

Solo Operator – One person performs all operating, logging, driving and navigating functions.  It is permissible for other people to be in the vehicle during operation as long as they don’t participate in the operation of the vehicle or radio.

Multi-Operator – Where more than one person performs the operating, logging, driving and navigating functions.

All mobile entries are limited to a single transmitter of 100W output or less. Mobile entries may submit separate logs for each geographic entity activated, or a single overall log. The county operated from must be shown clearly for each QSO in a mobile log.

(d) Emergency Operations Center (EOC) Station – Michigan entries located at an established EOC site, activated by an individual or group. An EOC category entry may utilize permanently installed equipment and antennas, or equipment/antennas temporarily installed at the EOC for the event.”  EOC entries are not categorized by the number of transmitters, the power used, or the number of operators.

5) Contest Exchange:

(a) Michigan stations send a sequential serial number beginning with 001, and their Michigan county. All Michigan stations are encouraged to use the official MiQP county abbreviation in their exchange on CW.

(b) Non-Michigan W/VE stations (including KH6/KL7) send a sequential serial number beginning with 001, and their state or province.

(c) Stations outside of the U.S.A. or Canada send a sequential serial number beginning with 001, and “DX”.

(d) Mobile stations are allowed to maintain a continuous sequence of serial numbers for all contacts, or may begin with serial number 001 for each separate geographic area activated. The only requirement is that no serial number be repeated within one geographic area.

6) Scoring:

(a) QSO Points – Each complete non-duplicate SSB contact is worth one point. Each complete non-duplicate CW contact is worth two points. Duplicate contacts are worth zero points.

(b) Multipliers – Multipliers are counted once per mode. Working the same multiplier on both CW and SSB counts as two multipliers.

1. For Michigan stations, multipliers are the 83 Michigan counties, 49 American states (excluding Michigan), and 13 Canadian provinces (NL, NB, NS, PE, QC, ON, MB, SK, AB, BC, NT, YT, NU), and “DX” (a non-W/VE station).

2. For all other stations, multipliers are the 83 Michigan counties.

(c) Final Score – For non-mobile stations, multiply total QSO points by the total number of multipliers. For mobile stations, multiply the total QSO points from all counties activated by the total number of unique multipliers worked from all counties activated.

(d) Club Competition – Scores attributed to any amateur radio club will be credited towards that club. All clubs with at two or more credited scores will be included in an overall ranking of those scores with a certificate awarded to the club with the highest score. It is not necessary for the club to submit a roster or list of claimed entrants.  Michigan and non-Michigan clubs will be ranked separately.

As the sponsoring club of the MiQP, the Mad River Radio Club is excluded from this competition, although its members may attribute their scores for other clubs to which they belong.

7) Suggested Frequencies:

CW – 3.545, 7.045, 14.045, 21.045 and 28.045. SSB – 3.800, 7.200, 14.250, 21.300 and 28.450. Fixed stations are urged to call CQ away from these frequencies to keep them clear for mobile stations. Look for 28 MHz activity during the even-numbered daylight hours, and 21 MHz activity during the odd-numbered daylight hours. Look for SSB activity on the hour and CW on the half hour.

8) Miscellaneous:

(a) Callsigns and exchanged information must be received and confirmed by both stations for a complete QSO.

(b) No cross-mode contacts.  Both stations must be using the same mode of transmission.  Also, CW contacts must be made in the CW portions of the band.

(c) A station (fixed or mobile) used to make one or more MiQP QSOs may not be subsequently used under any other callsign to make MiQP QSOs.   The one exception to this are family stations where more than one call is assigned.  No individual shall make MiQP QSOs utilizing more than one callsign from a single station.

(d) Operators of a multi-operator station may not make MiQP QSOs with that station from another location (fixed or mobile) regardless of the location the QSOs are made from or the callsign used for the QSOs.

(e) Portable stations are categorized the same as fixed stations. All contacts for a given portable entry must be made from a single county, state or province. A portable station may change locations during the contest (subject to rule 8.f below) and operate from multiple counties, states or provinces, each of which is a separate entry.

(f) Mobile or portable stations that change the geographic entity they’re operating from (counties for Michigan stations, state or province for others) are considered to be a new station and may be contacted again for QSO points and multiplier credit. No station may claim simultaneous operation in more than one county, state, or province. A mobile or portable station must move a minimum of 500 feet before claiming to be in a new county, state or province.

9) Reporting:

(a) A minimum MiQP entry consists of a log of all contacts made and an entry summary.  For electronic entries, the entry summary and contact log may be in a single, common file.

Logs must clearly indicate band, mode, date and time, the callsign of the station worked, with both sent and received exchanges for all QSOs. All entries are encouraged to use the official MiQP county abbreviation for logging the received exchange from Michigan stations.

The entry summary must at a minimum show the entrant’s callsign, operating location (county, state or province), entry category and mailing address. Entries may attribute their score to an amateur radio club which they are a member of for the purpose of the MiQP Club Competition (section 6.d) by indicating the club’s name in their entry summary.

All logs will be re-scored by the MiQP Contest Committee so scoring the log and reporting a claimed score is optional.

(b) All entries are encouraged to submit their entry in computer-readable format. MiQP is supported by the NA, TRLog and SD contest logging programs, as well as many others. Electronic entries must be submitted as a Cabrillo file uploaded to the MiQP Log Submittal Page on the MiQP web site at the following address:

http://www.miqp.org/submitLogFileMiQP.html

(c) All entries (hardcopy or electronic) must be postmarked no later than 30 days after the end of the contest. Late entries may be accepted at the discretion of the MiQP log checking team, provided that the results of the contest can still be published in a timely manner.

(d) Entry forms (rules, summary sheet, log sheet and county abbreviations) are available for downloading in MS-Word and Adobe formats from the MiQP web site at http://www.miqp.org.

(e) Final results of the contest will be posted on the MiQP web site. A hard copy of the final results can be obtained by including a business size SASE with your entry

(f) Paper logs or diskettes are to be sent to:

Mad River Radio Club
c/o Dave Pruett
2727 Harris Road
Ypsilanti, MI 48198


 

MiQP For First-Timers

By Dave Pruett, K8CC k8cc@comcast.net

The Michigan QSO Party (MiQP) is an operating event held annually with Michigan as the center of attention. This paper is a quick overview for those new to MiQP, to explain what it is and to offer encouragement to jump in and participate.

First of all, what is a “QSO party”? Over the years, this term has come to define an on-the- air operating event focusing on a particular geographic area. Amateurs inside the target area (in this case Michigan) earn points towards their QSO party score for making contacts with other amateurs located anywhere, while amateurs outside of the target area get QSO party points only for contacting amateurs inside the target area.

Perhaps the next question is: “Is the MiQP a contest?” Yes it is – the entrants are participating against one other and plaques/certificates are awarded after it is over. But don’t let that scare you off – the MiQP is a lot less intense than other contests you might be familiar with, such as Sweepstakes, DX contests, or even Field Day. The bands are not as crowded as during those other events, and the operating style is a lot more relaxed. It’s a great venue for a first-timer to get started.

Why might you want to participate in the MiQP? First of all, it’s a great opportunity to hone your HF operating skills or work the bugs out of your HF station. MiQP can provide a concentrated dose of operating that will crack the rust off your CW ability or brush up on your phone operating techniques, skills that you can use in other on-the-air activities.

The fun thing about MiQP for Michigan amateurs is that we are the center of attention. When a Michigan station calls “CQ MIQP” there will usually be several replies. Many MiQP participants make several hundred contacts during the event, even with modest stations such as barefoot transceivers and dipoles. For many, there is a tangible feeling of camaraderie as

you work fellow Michiganders, some located in sparsely populated counties with exotic names like Chippewa, Missaukee, or Presque Isle.

What does it take to participate in the MiQP? All it takes is to get on the air during the MiQP period and make contacts with other participants. When it’s over, mail in your log if you like so that it can be checked and your score included in the results; you may even win a certificate or plaque. If you include your radio club’s name in your entry, then your score will be tabulated along with other member’s scores in a separate sub-competition to determine the top club in the MiQP that year.

When does MiQP happen? MiQP occurs on the Saturday of the third full weekend in April every year. For 2015, the starting date for MiQP is Saturday, April 18th. The contest period begins at noon local time here in Michigan (1200 EDST or 1600Z) and runs for twelve hours to local midnight the same day (2400 EDST, or 0400Z on April 19th). The contest period was deliberately chosen to be easy to fit into your weekend schedule – you can get up Saturday morning, get some chores or family activities done, and sit down for an afternoon or evening of operating and still have Sunday free.

Making MiQP QSOs is easy. You operate on any of the “traditional” HF bands (i.e., no WARC bands) from 80 thru 10 meters. The exchange is your QSO number for that contact – i.e., the first is 001, the second 002, etc., plus your Michigan county. On CW, just about everyone uses the official county abbreviations from the list on the MiQP web site. Stations outside of Michigan will send their QSO number and state or province abbreviation.

Barring some sort of major propagation disturbance, you will find MiQP activity on 40M CW & SSB for the entire twelve hour contest period. This is a good band to get a mix of in-state and out-state coverage, plus it’s popular with the mobile MiQP entries that move from county to county during the event. (Mobile stations can be worked again when they change counties.). During the day there is usually good activity on 20M, and lesser amounts on 15M and 10M, depending on the solar cycle. There is usually MiQP activity on 80M during the entire event (even daylight hours).

Here’s how your MiQP score is calculated. Each CW QSO is worth two QSO points while a phone QSO is worth one point. Your final score is equal to the total QSO points you’ve accumulated multiplied by the number of multipliers (Michigan counties, non-Michigan states and Canadian provinces, and one “DX” mult for a non-W/VE station) you work. Multipliers are counted separately on both CW and phone. For example, if you work Washtenaw County (WASH) on CW and again on phone, that counts as two multipliers.

As you start out in MiQP you might just want to make QSOs and have fun, but here are some suggestions to keep in mind which should increase your score. A station may be worked once on both CW and phone on each band, so try all five bands (and both CW and phone) to look for MiQP QSOs. The lower bands (80M & 40M) are usually better for in-state QSOs, and out-state QSOs out to 500 miles or so, but try the high bands (particularly 20M) to bolster your score with US states and Canadian provinces as multipliers from out west. Also, while most people probably have a preferred mode they like to operate, in MiQP it’s worth the effort to spend some time on the “other” mode to build up the multiplier count (since multipliers are counted separately by mode) to increase your score.

When MiQP is over, you have thirty days to submit your entry in order for it to count in the final results. (Note: If you make MiQP QSOs, you don’t have to send in a log if you don’t want to. The people you worked in MiQP will still get credit for the QSOs you made with them.) Paper logs can be sent to: Mad River Radio Club, c/o Dave Pruett, 2727 Harris Road, Ypsilanti, MI 48198. Electronic log files in Cabrillo format can be conveniently submitted via the MiQP Log Submittal Page: http://www.miqp.org/submitLogFileMiQP.html .

What can you win for participating in MiQP? The winner in each major category plus the top Michigan club receives a beautiful 10” x 13” plaque like the one shown at left. The top single-operator score in each Michigan county making at least 50 QSOs wins a handsome certificate.

To learn more about MiQP, check out the Michigan QSO Party web site at http://www.miqp.org. There you will find a wealth of information including complete rules, contest forms (summary, log, and multiplier count sheets), a list of county abbreviations, results from MiQPs of past years, operating tips and links to free logging software.

 

 

 

 

Streaming Audio from the Club Repeaters – Online Now!

Broadcastify - W8TCMIf you’re like me, sometimes your schedule is so busy that you just can’t get to the radio to check into the MESH Net, or maybe you are stuck in a basement or at work and wish you could listen to the repeater. Well – dread no more, I have a solution to your woes!

I was wondering what to do with some extra hardware that I was playing with after a repeater interfacing mock-up I was working on a couple of months ago. Without going into a lot of technical detail, I was able to reconfigure some older systems, repurpose a couple of scanning receivers that my wife will no longer allow me to set up in main rooms in our house, and configured it to stream audio from both repeaters live to the internet!

That’s right – if you have internet access, you can listen to the W8TCM Repeaters Live! Thanks to the folks at RadioReference.com (in partnership with broadcastify) you can listen for free, and I can stream it to their servers for free. You can search for “W8TCM” right from the main page and find it, or you can use this link: http://www.broadcastify.com/listen/feed/17816

IOS app

IOS app

At the time of writing, from the webpage you are able to stream into Windows Media Player, RealPlayer, iTunes, or Winamp. There is also a Java player and a web-based player. There is an app called “Scanner Radio” in both the Android Google Play and IOS Apple App Stores

– for free!

So – enjoy the repeater audio, whether you’re stuck in a basement or miles away!

– 73 Joe N8CN