Had to throw my 2 cents in: I've only operated on Mode A (RS-10 before its demise). I'm gearing up for P3D and learning a lot in the process. I strongly support continued Mode A (or, more precisely, LEO analog) birds in operation for a number of reasons. As has been pointed out, they require less specialized equipment for results than the HEO birds. This is good for all the reasons already mentioned. But there is more to these birds than a 'playground' for those who 'wanna grow up to be HEO operators'. Think of it in the framework of QRP or microwave operation. Are these hams going to be able to nail DX every time they show up on the air? No. Does that stop them? No. It makes the game more difficult, and more fun. And more instructive. Trying to make WAS on a LEO bird, even from Minnesota takes some planning (I'm not there yet!) Trying to figure out how the sunspot cycle may or may not affect HF/VHF signals on the up/down link sure is just as difficult as some of the other problems facing HEO operators. Finally, these little guys are less expensive to build and launch and can be done without an international effort. All the more reason to keep their design and development in the mix. Best 73's to all. Paul Beckmann firstname.lastname@example.org P.S. If you want to see a great series of experiments with OSCAR and non-OSCAR LEO and HEO satellites, look into the RSGB Space Radio Handbook. Definite food for thought!