RTTY Contesting

So I’ve received my certificate from Industry Canada, it’s a bit of a let down to be honest. It looks like somebody knocked it up in 10 minutes. I was expecting maybe some nice paper, possibly embossed, maybe a seal or hologram of some kind, but nope. Kids on a summer art courses have gotten better looking certificates, come on Industry Canada!

Anyway I popped along to the North Shore Club this weekend to get an overview of contest operations. They were competing in the British Amateur Radio Teledata Group (bit of a mouthfull isn’t it?) RTTY contest. I do like the digital modes, they are fun to play around with but as far contesting goes I had always presumed it would be a bit ‘dry’ so to speak.

I spend eight hours a day, five days a week working against the clock on a computer, doing it as hobby is the last thing I would like to do. My presumptions were completely bourne out and RTTY contesting is just not for me. I just felt is was more about being a swift computer operator than being a competent radio operator.

The CQ WPX SSB contest is on next week. It’s the one I’ve been looking forward to. Sideband contesting just seems much more fun. You don’t even need a computer on the day, a pen and paper will do. You as the operator do all the work, no computers to modulate and demodulate a signal! Hopefully my presumptions on sideband contesting WILL be bourne out!

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