News items for tag dx - Koos van den Hout

2023-05-29 I participated in the CQ WPX CW Contest
Mapped contacts PE4KH in the CQ WPX CW contest 2023
Mapped contacts PE4KH in the CQ WPX CW Contest 2023
Last weekend was the CQ World Wide WPX Contest CW organized by CQ Amateur Radio magazine. The term 'WPX' stands for 'Worked All Prefixes'. The objective of this contest is to get contacts and exchange information with as many different other radio amateurs using morse code. Points are awarded for each contact, based on which amateur band and whether they are in the same or different continents. Multipliers are calculated from the number of different prefixes contacted. The prefix of my callsign PE4KH is PE4.

The score in this contest is calculated from the points per contact multiplied by the number of unique prefixes. This makes a station with a rare prefix popular so radio amateurs get special calls or go to special places to be that rare prefix.

This is also one of the big contests with a lot of participation from all around the world. In the days before the contest there were already a number of stations set up in special places busy on the air making contacts, testing their equipment and their setup to get the maximum score in the contest.

This testing in the days before the contest already allowed me to get a number of new countries in morse in my log: Azerbaijan, Antigua, Argentina, Madagascar and Hong Kong.

In the contest I made 171 contacts: 33 on the 10 meter band and 138 on the 20 meter band. With 215 qso points, 138 multiplier my claimed score is 29670 points at the moment. I had fun in the contest and all the practice with callsigns and serial numbers in morse has helped!

During the contest I added Australia, Qatar and Kaliningrad as new countries in morse in the log. I have now had morse contacts with 101 countries in the world, and now I'm waiting for confirmations via Logbook Of the World.


I received a very fast confirmation for Australia already from VJ3A Steve. That was a 16490 kilometer contact with morse!


In preparing for this contest I considered adding an antenna to get access to the 15 meter band. Now looking back I think I might get different contacts (more countries maybe) on 15 meters, but it would not have added a lot of contacts.

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2023-05-21 I participated in the King of Spain CW Contest
CW contest filling the bands on a websdr This weekend was the His Majesty The King of Spain CW Contest and I participated. There wasn't a lot of time due to other things in the weekend, I was making contacts in the contest for less than four hours on Saturday evening and less than two hours Sunday.

I made 77 contacts, 7 on the 10 meter band, 55 on the 20 meter band and 15 on the 40 meter band. Propagation wasn't cooperating very well although there were some interesting openings. One opening on the 10 meter band resulted in a contact with Nepal on the 10 meter band, a completely new country in amateur radio for me.


And the contact with 9N7AA Robert in Nepal is already confirmed! Thank you!

Update 2023-05-26

I had a contact with HZ1TT Ali in this contest and that contact is now confirmed, adding country number 85 to the list of confirmed countries in Morse.

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2023-05-12 A good evening for morse contacts
Yesterday evening I turned on the radio and looked for some interesting morse contacts. With some help from the Reverse Beacon Network I searched for interesting stations.

I had contacts with a few special event stations. There are extra special event stations active from the United Kingdom to celebrate the coronation. And two new countries in morse for me.

One was Saudi Arabia where HZ1TT Ali was calling and I managed to get through this time. I've tried contacting him in morse but failed earlier. The other one was DL5CW Andreas active as MJ/DL5CW from the island of Jersey, and Jersey counts as a separate DXCC entity.

I also had a short chat in morse with a station in Ukraine. This was much more of a personal contact than the short contacts with special event stations or rare countries.
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2023-05-07 New entity in the log: San Andres & Providencia island
I saw a DX Cluster spot today for a country/entity I hadn't had a contact with before, or not even heard of at all: Archipelago of San Andrés, Providencia and Santa Catalina which consists of two island groups in the Carribean and it's a part of the country of Columbia. But a separate entity in amateur radio terms.

This is again a bit of geography I was never told during my education, but amateur radio has a lot of these geographical surprises.

Brazilian radio amateur PY8WW Renato is active there this weekend and as the qrz page shows he likes going on DXpeditions.

This brings the number of entities in amateur radio I have had contacts with up to 170, half of the current total of 340. I can probably add that I'm now starting with the difficult half!
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2023-03-29 New country in my log: Rwanda
Last Sunday I spent nearly 3 hours trying to get the 9X5RU Dxpedition to Rwanda in my log in CW (Morse) but that didn't happen.

This morning I got them in my log on my first try. On the 17 meter band.

The technical differences weren't that big. Ok, I was using the Kenwood radio remote today and propagation seemed to work better. But the main difference was that on Sunday it was very busy with amateurs from all over Europe and today I was one of the few callers. I guess the work week has a strong influence here!

DX never sleeps

I guess this turning 'easy' because I tried on a workday and not in the weekend was one of the results of 'DX never sleeps', a different time can help get the contact. The DXpeditions want the highest number of possible contacts so finding a time they are less busy can help in getting the contact. In the first few days/hours all the 'big gun' stations with huge antennas and amplifiers want that contact, after that the simpler stations with some patience also have a good chance.

So far with 9X5RU

Later in the morning I also got the contact on 12m CW. This was harder than 17 meters, I had to give my call 8 times before it was logged completely. After the contact was complete I looked at the signal meter and saw that it barely moved so it was a weak path. Earlier I made contacts with 9X5RU on 17 and 20 meter FT8. But I want to work on my list of countries contacted in morse, so I wanted to make the contact in morse too.

Update.. no success in the afternoon

After 17 and 12 meter band CW I also tried to make the contact on the 10 meter band, where 9X5RU was active in the afternoon. But by that time the US has woken up and has good propagation to Rwanda because of the daylight. I couldn't get through and I heard a lot of US amateur radio callsigns being confirmed.

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2023-02-17 More new countries/entities in my log
My search for new countries/entities continues and some interesting ones show up.

The big DXpedition for Januari was going to be the 3Y0J DXpedition to Bouvet Island. I hoped to get an opportunity to make that contact. In the end between the first rush of the high power stations and the early end of the expedition I have received signals from them for about 20 minutes before they stopped for dinner that day.

The day my new Yaesu FT-991A radio arrived I got Reunion Island in the log in FT8.

In the last weekend of the WRTC 2023 award I was trying to get those stations on the 15 meter band and when I had those in the log I looked for other interesting stations on that band. Which showed me an active station on French Guiana for that weekend only, busy in the R-E-F contest in morse. So I submitted my log for that contest with 1 entry.

In February I got Pakistan, Uzbekistan and Martinique as new countries in the log.

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2023-01-29 Having fun with the WRTC 2023 award
Last year a World Radiosport Team Championship was planned again, this time in Italy: the World Radiosport Team Championship 2022 Italy but due to well-known reasons international travel from all corners of the world to Italy wasn't a good idea, so the news was: WRTC 2022 postponed to 2023 ! - WRTC 2022 Italy.

In the first half of 2022 they had an award to promote the event among radio amateurs: WRTC 2022 Award - WRTC 2022 Italy and I participated during those months and got digital awards. Contacts were in different modes (SSB, CW, FT8, RTTY) on a lot of HF bands with special event stations in regions of Italy.

In January 2023 they are doing it again, this time only in CW and SSB and only on bands that are also active in the WRTC contest in July, this time with stations in multiple countries: WRTC 2023 AWARD : January 2023…headset on! - WRTC 2022 Italy. So I'm trying to get different stations in the log on different bands. It's working out fine so far, I even got a new country in CW (Indonesia). I also used the clubstation to get these special event stations on the 80 meter band.

This is fun and a good promotion for the upcoming WRTC.


In the end I made 122 contacts with WRTC special event stations in January 2022.

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2022-12-25 Chasing DX with well-organized DXpeditions
In Oktober 2022 the Sigi Presch - DL7DF and Crew DXpeditions team was active from Guadeloupe, a set of islands in the Carribian that is an overseas department and region of France.

I already had a digital contact with Guadeloupe confirmed, but I really wanted to get more countries in morse so I worked on getting a contact with this dxpedition. I worked them on the 17 meter band in morse on 15 October of this year.

With all the costs of such a DXpedition I can imagine they like a donation. And I like to get a real QSL card, so these two came together and there is a card on the way. And I already received a digital confirmation via Logbook Of The World. All contacts will be digitally confirmed eventually, more DXpeditions do an announcement that they will upload all the logs after a while (usually half a year). I think this is a positive development: if you want a physical card or a speedy confirmation you help with the costs of the DXpedition and otherwise you get a confirmation anyway eventually.

I will keep an eye on DXpedition announcements from Sigi Presch DL7DF and team!

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2022-12-21 Having a "When 10 meter is open, it's really open" day
When I started with HF in amateur radio (below 30 MHz) in August 2014 making PSK31 contacts on the 10 meter band the number of sunspots was falling, the maximum frequency for ionospheric propagation was falling and therefore the possibilities of making contacts on the 10 meter band were dropping.

In 2022 we are in the rise of the number of sunspots as part of solar cycle 25. And this year there are clearly moments where I can get interesting contacts on the 10 meter band.

Today I had some time to play radio in the morning and I got contacts with China, India, UK bases on Cyprus, Macedonia and Hong Kong. The contacts were in FT8 mode.

It is nice to see this. Radio amateurs who have been active for years will tell you about the good times when you can make contacts on the 10 meter band during the day with minimal means. Now I am enjoying this myself and having fun all over the world.

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2022-11-28 I participated in the CQ World-Wide DX Contest CW
CW contest filling the bands on a websdr Last weekend was the CQ World-Wide DX Contest CW and I participated in that contest on parts of Saturday and Sunday. I ended with 189 contacts. Daytime I worked on the 10 and 15 meter bands and when those started to dry out I switched to the 20 meter and 40 meter amateur bands.

Most of the time I chased stations in search+pounce mode but I also called CQ on the 15 meter band on Sunday afternoon. I will need to practise more with calling CQ: stations came to me at higher speeds than I was used to with running PA900UTR and if I didn't decode the callsign and reacted immediately some give up fast.

But my morse is improving, even at contest speeds and I got a nice number of countries in the log. Even countries I didn't have in morse before: PJ2 Curacao, PJ4 Bonaire, CX Uruguay, 3B8 Mauritius, CN Morroco, SV9 Crete. Of those Mauritius is a completely new country in amateur radio for me.

I put in some extra effort to get those new countries in the log, with other stations that I know are confirmed countries I give up after a few tries and try to get another call in the log. Radio contesting is about the numbers: both number of contacts and the multipliers. In this contest the number of CQ zones and countries is the multiplier, so I optimise a bit for that number. And I suspect a lot of the other contestants do the same.

The overview of my single operator multi band effort:
Band   160   80   40   20   15   10
QSO's    0    0   28   33  108   20
Cty      0    0   18   22   31   10
Zone     0    0    5    8   11    6
Pts: 344  Mul: 111 Score: 38184
This was one of those contests where I had it all planned beforehand to participate, made sure everything was working optimally and had it marked in the family calendar. Normal things like weekend shopping still needed time, but the family wasn't surprised I spent a lot of time behind the radio.
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