40M dead?

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Right, short 40M skips at max solar cycle are to be expected. This is my 5th max solar cycle. Than combine that with few ham operators these days and that's what you will experience.

73,
Bob, NZ7N
Rogue River OR
 
Right, short 40M skips at max solar cycle are to be expected. This is my 5th max solar cycle. Than combine that with few ham operators these days and that's what you will experience.

73,
Bob, NZ7N
Rogue River OR
If you think there are only a few hams, you have not listened to 40M tonight!

What a mess. It's Fielday.

73, Don, AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 
And listen to 40M phone when contests are going...
I never even listen to the phone bands these days. I am 100% CW only. And that was really a mess last night.

I hate all the ham radio contests. I wish 30M was working better, that used to be my favorite band and no contesting there.

I wish they had a section on every band that didn't allow any contesting.

I don't know what the big attraction is to five second QSOs with phony signal reports of 5NN, but that is what the majority wants these days.

-Don- AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 
I have been 100% CW since I was 12. By few hams, I mean CW. From my experience phone bands are for the folks who always have too much to say about very little. I have never been interested in field day or contests either. Most of my ham radio interest from an early age centered around self-constructed radio, QRP and QRQ. But it takes all types...which is perfectly fine.

73,
Bob, NZ7N
Rogue River OR

Gayle & Bob
Los Gatos Casita
 
I have been 100% CW since I was 12.
I was going to say I am surprised we have not yet run into each other on the CW sections of the ham bands. But then I noticed you're probably not very active, only 555 lookups on QRZ.com. I have 12,565 lookups.

73, -Don- AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 
Nice to make your acquaintance Don! I have never used QRZ.com and I stopped exchanging QSL cards pretty early on too. I haven't been very active on HF for the last 25 years and I don't even have a HF antenna at our retirement homestead that we largely built ourselves about 10 years ago. There are photos and more about me here if interested:


73,
Bob, NZ7N
Rogue River OR
 
I have never used QRZ.com
Doesn't make any difference in the number of lookups as the count grows as others look you up. Most of that will be from those you have worked over the years.

I never send out QSL cards out first, but I have them for those who send me one. And that has been more than I expected when I got back into hamming in 2017. I am active now on CW only. Back in the late 1960's, I was also active, but did a little SSB then also. Between 1974 & 2017 I was mostly inactive on ham radio.

73, -Don- AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 
If you consider what literally happens in ham radio, it's all stupid. To turn up your nose at any one type of operating is a bit elitist - are the SSB guys accomplishing any more than the FT8 ops, vs CW vs DMR or DStar, contester or ragchewer? I did an informal Field Day saturday. Group of us had a cookout up on Sandia mountain just to the east of ABQ. Tall pines around 9Kft ASL, in the clouds for the whole day. Had a horizontal 40M EFHWA 50' up a couple ponderosas, and an elecraft K2 QRP rig. Tuned around and 15M was decent, so spent most of the afternoon there. 60%/40% CW/SSB. You know conditions are good when you can run QRP SSB on FD. Best DX (by FD standards) was Hawaii, Puerto Rico and Cypress, with the rest being pedestrian coast to coast US/CAN contacts. Nothing better than working portable HF with a breeze whispering through the pines and the birds chirping. Field Day is my favorite activity in ham radio. I'm not a contester, but I'll jump into the fray of a contest from time to time. Operating CW contests HF mobile is one of the most fun things I've ever done. I'm not a county hunter, but I'll work them when I hear them. I'm not a net guy, but I'll check in and give them someone new to hear. I'm not a SOTA guy, but I'll give them one for their log. I'm not a certificate chaser, but I'll work the lighthouses and museum ships if they're on. I'm in the camp that DStar/DMR isn't real ham radio, but I helped build 2 DMR repeaters. I don't operate satellites very often, but it's fun to put a rare southwest grid on the map and make some other op's day. Clearly some activities are more interesting to folks than others, that's what's makes the hobby so diverse and interesting. It's what's kept me enthusiastic about it for the nearly half century I've been a ham.

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
 
Clearly some activities are more interesting to folks than others, that's what's makes the hobby so diverse and interesting. It's what's kept me enthusiastic about it for the nearly half century I've been a ham.
I agree to each their own, it's just a hobby. But I sure like the ham bands a lot better the way it was back in the 1960's before they had contests almost every week.

-Don- AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 
Clearly some activities are more interesting to folks than others, that's what's makes the hobby so diverse and interesting.

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
Exactly so! I got my licenses (Novice, Technician, General Advanced and Extra) back when CW was a serious requirement. I likely built every imaginable radio, power amplifier, antenna possible, starting with a crystal radio back when was maybe 8 years old. Radio theory and construction likely motivated me to become an engineer...albeit a undergraduate mechanical engineer with electrical engineering graduate studies. After communicating with folks around the world, I lost interest in needing to continue doing it endlessly or to compete in any competitions. Ham radio served me well when I moved from east coast to west coast after graduating. It also served me well when blue water sailing around the world. As a Boy Scout Scoutmaster, I introduced many boys to ham radio. I may put up a HF antenna someday again (maybe home or RV based), but life has been keeping us way to busy for the foreseeable future. I still use my Yaesu FT-60 handheld on occasion.
 
I may put up a HF antenna someday again
I have a couple of these with the coils for all the bands they make 80-10 except for 60M (5 mhz). Handy to hide from the HOA here in Reno and also great for when set up at an RV Park. For only being 8 feet tall, they work great. I leave one set up here and another for my RVs which are both in Auburn, CA.
.
On the downside, with all the coils for 80-10M, the cost is a bit more than a thousand bucks each. The 80- meter center coil is $400.00 by itself.

I keep the covers off, so the coils can be tuned easer. Very important on 80M as there it gets very sharp in bandwidth, only being 8 feet tall. Of course, not very efficient on 80-M, but it has been working out very well for me with 100 watts on all bands.

At my Auburn, CA home, I use a G5RV antenna up in the trees. But I can also set up my RV Antenna there, if I want to. It can use a permanent mount as I use here in Reno, or the portable mount as I use on my RV trips. A very handy portable HF antenna. Only takes about three minutes to set up.

73, -Don- AA6GA/7 Reno, NV
 

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