This year I chose to operate the Oceania DX Contest(OCDX) from home. The OCDX contest is a favorite of mine as the idea is for the rest of the world to work Oceania of which Australia is apart of so lots of people are on the air Looking for VKs. I have recently made some additions and modifications to the shack most notably the addition of a Heathkit SB200 amplifier giving me Full Legal limit of 400W. The transceiver was the trusty IC 7600 with a FunCube Dongle Pro+ in the RX Loop giving me a 195Khz Band Scope that tracked the receiver on a separate monitor. Antenna was the usual Cushcraft A3S being used on 40-20-15-10m.
The contest started at 0800UTC which is 1730 Local time for us here in VK5. This was getting toward the end of the daily Long Path opening into Europe. So I started calling CQ and quickly got a pile up. After about 50m i swapped across to 15m for a short burst then up onto 10m, as things started to flatten out on 10 I jumped down to 40m which was kicking as I was working all sorts of DX. This band hopping continued over the first 6 hours of the contest resulting is 325 QSOs. By this time I was looking for a break, as 15m was slowing and and 20m was not really do much I decided to get 2 hrs sleep. With 2 hrs of something resembling sleep i jumped back into the shack but was not having much luck so after about half an hour i opted to get a bit more sleep before rising early for some grey line. Sadly i slept though the alarm. missing the grey line and LP USA on 20m. The remainder of the morning and early afternoon was spent on 10 and 15m working whoever was out there the QSO tally was ticking over well with the occasional burst of activity. The last hour of the contest was on 20m LP EU with a constant stream of contacts. Below is the graph of contacts per hours and the Multipliers worked (new prefix).
It was a successful contest with 560 QSOs made filling in a lot of slots and a few new counties as well. Final contest Score was 502153. The contact spread is reasonably even across 20-15 and 10 with 40m doing well for just a rotary dipole. The amplifier and 400W makes a big difference, the manual turning did not slow me down that much but a KPA500 is still on the wish list. I’m looking forward to a few more contests from the home QTH in the not too distant future.
Thanks to all the Hams that replied to my call… 73 catch you next year. de VK5AKH
Map of Contacts Made.