August 2015 has been my best month for operating on the HF bands. A total of 255 QSOs, of which 177 were CW, 6 were JT65, 71 were JT9 and 1 SSB. This compares with 70 total contacts for July.
The reason for such a large jump in contacts, Has to do with several tools I started using, and deciding to go for my "S" suffix for SKCC in earnest.
The tools are:
K3UK SKCC SHED page , the K7MJG SKCC skimmer and the AC2C's SKCCLogger
The K3UK SHED page allows you to schedule contacts with other SKCC members. It is more or less a chap room that allows quick exchanges to setup QSOs. You can also send private messages and post a status next to your call sign. (Like were you might be listening)
The SKCC skimmer is a Python utility that uses several source to determine who is available to help you achieve your goals. It also lets you know who you might help to achieve their goals. It takes it sources from the SKCC group's data base, your log file, the SKCC SHED page and RBN skimmers that are geographically near your location. It also keep tracks of your log and lets you know when you qualify for an award. Very cool program!!
AC2C's SKCCLogger is setup for SKCC contacts. It lets you know, when you enter a call sign, whether or not it is already in your log and displays any previous contacts with the same call sign. It will also generate list of contacts that you can use to submit to the SKCC group for awards, such as "T" or "C".
In my opinion, these programs are a must if you wish to achieve awards in a reasonable time frame.
I also realized something that I should have know from the beginning. Not all SKCC members participate in the awards. So I have learned that when you see a SKCC member on the skimmer without a suffix(C,T,S), listen to their CQ. If they are not calling "CQ SKCC", then chances are they will not exchange numbers.
Crashed again. Same type of crash as before, but on 40 meters this time. I was able to recover as before. Haven't heard anything from Flex. Hopefully the next release will fix it. Today I broke down and ordered the FlexControl USB tuning knob. One thing I don't like about SmartSDR is it is very difficult to adjust the volume. I am always grabbing the wrong thing with the mouse.
Stumbled onto a interesting program and video on QRZ.com the other day.
JT65 and JT9 are easier than ever . It talks about using JT9/65 on Flex 6300 SDR and a utility called JTAlert. The YouTube video is OK. A little slow in parts but well worth watching. Jon K7CO did a great job in my opinion. Watch the whole thing, you will get a lot out of this video if you are a JT9/65 user.
Anything to add, please do.
73 Dave KB1WOD