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Calling Frequency Ettiqutte

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OK, I've had this question for a while now. Whenever I read about operating practices I inevitably come across something like the following: (Bold empahsis added)

 

The 50.110 MHz international DX calling frequency has been used for more than 20 years, but its original purpose has been largely eclipsed by the dramatic increase in 6-meter activity over the past decade. It was intended for making initial contacts with stations outside one's own continent when the band was dead. It is still used that way, but widespread abuse, crowding and consequent QRM around 50.110 has dramatically undermined the DX calling frequency's intended function.

 

It is probably most useful now as a place for American stations to listen for DX before the band opens. Leave 50.110 MHz clear so that others have a chance to hear intercontinental DX stations calling CQ. Resist calling there yourself. You merely make it impossible for others to copy weak DX stations you may not be hearing. If you feel the urge to call CQ, pick another frequency. You will be more likely to be in the clear on the DX side, and you will not interfere with those who are assiduously monitoring 50.110.

 

Now, this question doesn't just apply to 6m or DX calling, but I see quite frequently words to the effect of "listen to but never call on the calling frequency." This just doesn't make any sense to me. I mean I can see that if you are to call on it, someone else may not be able to hear a weak signal call. But, if that's the case, who would EVER use the calling frequency and what would you be listening for? I mean, in the case above, yes you may be talking over a weak signal, but c'mon... isn't the whole point of a calling frequency so you can call other stations to make contact? American stations are never allowed to call, only listen for them? Again, I go back to the point of what is a calling frequency for if you're not supposed to call on it.

 

Please someone explain the logic to me.

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To further illustrate my point, this from an European website:

 

50.110 CQING: LISTENING is the first rule of working rare DX on 6m. So think twice before calling CQ on 110. It would be stupid to say that you shouldn’t call CQ but please remember that this is a shared frequency so your reputation will be on line if you insist on calling CQ unceasingly every minute of the day or throughout an opening - even if you do say "CQ DX only" or "CQ outside of my region only". The occasional CQ is good as it can discover an unrecognised opening.

...

If you really must call CQ on 110, think twice, listen for five minutes, cross your legs, count to 100, and if the overwhelming desire is still there go ahead and CALL - but keep it short! At the end of the day the choice is yours and yours alone.

 

So if americans are NEVER supposed to call on the "calling frequency" and Europeans should rarely ever.... WHO THE HECK ARE YOU LISTENING FOR?

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Americans and Europeans are listening for "rare" openings. Strong stations should call off the calling freq as it's easy to tune around (or use a spectrum analyzer) and find 'em.

 

An example would be New Zealand opening-up and calling CQ. SA would be another I've heard.

 

We don't call on the call frequencies because A) we're plentiful and <_< we'd just step all over each other with the amount of traffic.

 

So the upshot is that you want to stay out of the way and listen for the rare traffic. They most likely won't work you first because of the pileup they get when they open-up. So working state-to-state is best done anywhere but on the calling freq.

 

Does that help at all?

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yeah, thanks for the reply that clears it up conciderably. I guess I wasn't thinking about the rare contacts, since I've never worked anything DX, only some repeater chatting and 2m simplex local. The idea of a "rare" contact on that is foreign to me, so I just wasn't thinking in those terms.

 

Thanks again.

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OK, I've had this question for a while now. Whenever I read about operating practices I inevitably come across something like the following: (Bold empahsis added)

 

The 50.110 MHz international DX calling frequency has been used for more than 20 years, but its original purpose has been largely eclipsed by the dramatic increase in 6-meter activity over the past decade. It was intended for making initial contacts with stations outside one's own continent when the band was dead. It is still used that way, but widespread abuse, crowding and consequent QRM around 50.110 has dramatically undermined the DX calling frequency's intended function.

 

It is probably most useful now as a place for American stations to listen for DX before the band opens. Leave 50.110 MHz clear so that others have a chance to hear intercontinental DX stations calling CQ. Resist calling there yourself. You merely make it impossible for others to copy weak DX stations you may not be hearing. If you feel the urge to call CQ, pick another frequency. You will be more likely to be in the clear on the DX side, and you will not interfere with those who are assiduously monitoring 50.110.

 

Now, this question doesn't just apply to 6m or DX calling, but I see quite frequently words to the effect of "listen to but never call on the calling frequency." This just doesn't make any sense to me. I mean I can see that if you are to call on it, someone else may not be able to hear a weak signal call. But, if that's the case, who would EVER use the calling frequency and what would you be listening for? I mean, in the case above, yes you may be talking over a weak signal, but c'mon... isn't the whole point of a calling frequency so you can call other stations to make contact? American stations are never allowed to call, only listen for them? Again, I go back to the point of what is a calling frequency for if you're not supposed to call on it.

 

Please someone explain the logic to me.

This may help you a lot more than sitting there monitoring the call freq. What I'm referring to is similar to fishing. When you go fishing you throw your hook in where you think it looks good. Then when you get a boat and you're using a depth finder/fish finder, you notice those places that look good don't always have fish. Same thing here. So don't waste your time looking and listening where the DX isn't at.

 

I'm a DX hound and have been for years. I started asking around long time ago about how others discovered their rare DX contacts. Here's the answer in a nut shell. DX-Cluster, once you arrive there book mark this website. You'll need it if you want the really rare stuff.

 

Now look over at the left side where it says "Custom Spots". Click on 50 MHz. Now you are viewing the latest spots worldwide of the known activity on 6 meters. You can see who heard or worked whom. What the frequency was. And you see the time and date of the post in UTC time. They also are posted by mode.

 

You can also post there.

 

You will find this DX-Cluster very handy for conditions on all bands and modes. Click around the bands and you can see how the "Grey Line" affects long range communications. Pretty soon you can see that some of the conditions are predictable depending on the time of the day and where the stations are located on the earth.

 

Hope that helps you out a bunch!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Edited by n7viv and DB

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Thanks a bunch n7viv!

 

So let me see if I'm deciphering this correctly:

 

G4PCI     50204.0 W1JJ        EME JT65a tnx -25             1549 31 Jan

 

So that's saying that G4PCI contacted W1JJ on 50.204 MHz using moon bounce. I'm assuming the JT65a is the grid locator? What's the -25 mean?

 

Thanks again!

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