P40L-P49Y Contest Summary Information

Back to P40L-P49Y Contest Page







Callsign Used:




Station - I want to thank John P40L/W6LD and Andy P49Y/AE6Y for giving me an opportunity to pilot their station last week. Once again it made the CQWW PH a joy.

Note: All of the P40L/P49Y towers are on a small 100 x 100 foot lot:

Rohn 45 tower (66’): Single boom 2-element shortened 40m interlaced with 4-element 20m (68’) (JK2040, long-boom version); 80m Inverted-V (65’); 160m Double-L center-fed vertical dipole (65’)

North Rohn 25 tower (56’): Single boom 5-element 15 interlaced with 6-element 10 (58’) (JK1015 configured for dual feed)

South Rohn 25 tower (45.5’): Tri -bander (JK Mid-tri)

Beverages: 4 controlled by K9AY switchbox: West-US (800’), East US (500’), EU (800’)and East-West (AF and OC) (350’)

Rig: Elecraft K3/P3 + Alpha 91B 900 to 1000 watts Logging software: Win-test 4.28


This has been a most enjoyable week. I once again had the pleasure of piloting a well engineered station that was fully renovated just 18 months ago - all new towers and antennas. I was spared the physical exertion normally needed to get my own station operational.

Traveled to Aruba on Monday ... allowing three days for station setup. Since last year at this time obtaining the required Covid PCR test within a 72 hour window before departure has become virtually routine - the local pharmacy had results back to me in just 30 hours.

Initial station setup and testing revealed just two problems. The 15m portion of the JK1015 was 'dead' and the 10M portion had a strange SWR curve. On Wednesday morning I found the feedline on the 15M was damaged at the top of the tower and was replaced. Then perhaps a little voodoo happened later that day, the 10m SWR curve changed dramatically after a heavy rain storm ... being it back to near perfect (sometimes it is better to just get lucky). All of the beverages functioned normally which would later be important with persistent t-storm activity over in Venezuela during the entire contest weekend.

Conditions leading up to the contest weekend were encouraging as the SFI reached 111, SN over 90, with low A/K indices. Causal DXing was fun and ten meters was opening to EU and USA with exceptionally strong signals. BUT then (there always seems to be a BUT) the sun let off a big flare on Wednesday that was predicted to make the contest weekend propagation miserable. Fortunately conditions never seemed to deteriorate much on Aruba during the contest - perhaps sometimes it is best to ignore predictions.

For years I've reviewed logs to find my mistakes and to see how other competitors build their scores. Band selection and operating technique are particularly important attributes. In my own case, using just one radio, it is particularly critical to be on the right band to accrue mults while sustaining rate.

Opened the contest on 20 meters after a particularly dismal start on 40m a year earlier. Managed to more than double the overall rate the first five hours by aggressive CQing, overcoming a personal tendency to not press F1 enough, preferring instead to go chase callouts/mults. A lesson learned ... if you are not CQing you are not winning ... a concept I've found hard to grasp and perhaps even more difficult to retain for many years. I worked on this part of my style all weekend.

With fear of the flare looming, made a concerted effort to max out mults (in lieu of some rate) on the lower three bands the first night, not knowing what would happen Saturday (as it turned out the flare was essentially a non-event on the low bands). Conditions on 160 were somewhat absorbed and local t-storm static made any move there painful and generally non-productive. 80m was far more manageable. Never found 160 very useful all weekend.

By the time of my first off time about 0800, I'd managed to nearly double my rate compared to 2020, and went to sleep within about 450 contacts of what I thought would be an optimistic goal. All good.

Awoke at sunrise to find 20m open to EU but vry quickly transitioned to 15m where the EU stations were loud and plentiful. The first opening on ten was discovered at 1220z. Spent the next several hours jumping back and forth between 15 and 10 meters. The big 10 meter action came later ... a three hour 700 qso 10m run occurred between 1700 and 2100 ... a top hour of 301. This was followed with some decent rate on 20m. At the contest halfway point the line score was 4009/121/368 5.8M. Decided to increased my goal from 11.8 to 13 meg.

The next six hours were rather typical on 40/80/160. Chased whatever mults appeared fairly aggressively while still trying to sporadically maintain rate. Top Band never showed sufficient propagation to sustain a run. Worked just one EU all evening although I could hear many through the QRN. At 0700 took a three hour nap in the hope I'd be best prepared for high rates on Sunday.

At sunrise lingered on 40 meters for some US/AS, then transitioned directly to 15M, skipping 20 entirely. Ten meters opened to EU at 1300 for an hour then disappeared. For the nest several hours I listened to US/VE running EU stations like crazy that I could not hear! Sometimes this gets very maddening. Ten finally came back in my direction at 1700z producing a five hour 950q run. Finished out the last two hours on 20m - passing my goal of 7,000 contacts with just ten minutes to spare ... what a rush.

Overall it was a terrific weekend. Increased my score by 30% compared to 2020. Congratulations to my friend Sergio, PT5J, for supplying some very spirited competition.

See everyone again during CQWW CW in a few weeks.

73, John W2GD/P40W/P44W