Saturday, October 17, 2015

A while ago I had a reader get in touch with me for what hams call a sked.

 It means he wanted to make contact with me at a scheduled time. This guy was working for an award.

He wanted my county on the twenty meter band for some award or another.

The guy lived a few states over and it really was no big deal. I think I had to reschedule grocery shopping for about twenty minutes. Big deal. I was glad I did.

When I got to the store a clerk was labeling a coffee I like at $5/can on an overstock. I bought 6 and saved a bundle.

I worked Fiji on a sked recently. I had emailed the Fujian to see if I was in his log and he said I was not. He had heard my signal but couldn't get it right. He had sent part of it back to me and told me where and when he'd be on the air next. It was the following morning. 

I ended up working him. He knew I wanted him, he likely had QSOs in his log from my area so he didn't need another. He was simply being kind. I sure appreciate it.

Actually this worked out well. He has halfway around the world and was on the air in the evenng before he hit the rack at a resonable time. I was up and starting my day and having my morning coffee. 

I also am grateful he took the time out to work me as my CW is still very poor. He deserves a medal for patience.

There are a number of place I want to work. The problem is that propagation and the liklihood of making a solid contact is on a definite time frame. It's apt to be at very odd hours for one of us or maybe even both.

I always wondered how you ask a guy on the other side of the planet for a sked.

"Hey, would you mind waking up at 0300 all sleepy and gummy-eyed and then trip over an end table, step on your cat's tail and get scratched on the way over to your rig to try and make a contact with some guy you have never even met halfway across the world so he can make an entry in a logbook that will likely never be seen by anyone else?"

Or this.
How about skinning out of work for a couple of hours and losing a day's pay to go home on the off chance you might make radio contact with some dope in Pennsylvania so he can then mail you for a QSL card?

It makes sense to use the propagation tables and figure out when the best time is to try. There is little use trying at times when all the bands are dead. One has to make hay when the sun shines. Hams have no say over when the propagation gods open the bands up.

Anyway, there are a couple of people out there I want to work and before I do I'm going to have to wait on propagation until I'm the one that is inconvenienced.

To find out why the blog is pink just cut and paste this: NO ANIMALS WERE HARMED IN THE WRITING OF TODAY'S ESSAY

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