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Winning practices for the Easy Sats, (no whiners)

1) Operators who only put their call out are seldom picked out of the crowd 
and engaged in a QSO. Instead, pick a station and call them specifically. 
Try to time your transmission so you jump right in when the last QSO clears.

2) Rehearse what you're going to say. When the bird is yours, speak loudly, 
clearly, and to the point. Excess "umm, ahh, well, ah" transmissions will 
only cause other operators to ignore you, especially on a busy bird.

3) Don't call CQ. If there is at least one other operator out there, they 
will hear you. Reserve calling CQ for the linear birds where one must hunt 
up and down the transponder for a signal. If you are calling CQ, most 
operators assume you can't hear the bird.

4) Use email and posts to the BB as an effective means to increase your 
chances. Pick a regular, and send them an email. You might want to tell 
them you are going to be QRP portable on AO27, SO-35 or UO14 the second 
pass tomorrow, and ask then to listen for you. Many times such a technique 
will open the door, and other operators who have heard your call and grid 
will call you as well.

Usually, when an operator posts they are going to be working a special 
events stations, or a rare grid, or from a unique operating position, they 
generate traffic. Try announcing you will be working mass transit 
portable.  :-)

5) Use a gain antenna, properly oriented and pointed at the satellite. Move 
around and optimize your position. Many times unseen elements affect the 
antenna pattern, and moving a few feet makes all the difference.

6) Invest in a preamplifier. Many times it makes the difference between 
being able to work the bird or not. If you can't hear it, you can't work 
it! (see #3)

7) Be polite and thank the other operator for the QSO. Nice guys DO win, 
and will be given a second chance.

8) If another operator calls a station, and you hear them, wait a second 
before "grabbing" the bird. If you jump in too soon, you will acquire a bad 
reputation and other operators will avoid you.

I think many times the case is an operator does NOT hear the initial call, 
instead of a callous disregard for decorum, which stems from having a poor 
downlink. (see #6) There are several frustrated operators out there who fit 
this model, and believe me, they ARE ignored. There IS a culture on the 
easy sats, and a little time spent monitoring and learning this culture 
will be time well spent.

9) Don't whine. If you whine here, or on the satellites, you might acquire 
a bad reputation and other operators will avoid you. If someone else tries 
to engage you in negativism here or on the birds, dismiss them. Do not 
enter into negative dialog, period.  Generally negativism comes from 
failure. Encourage them to improve their lot, and become a winner.

So, the well equipped operator, who is polite, persistent, speaks clearly, 
and gets to the point is the operator who will have most success as a 
portable satellite operator.

73, and think positively -  Mike

     |                              .  / ^  _ \  .
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    |||   | |   * Mike Gilchrist - KF4FDJ ..... AMSAT Area Coordinator *
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    [X]~~~|k|   * Fort Myers, FL  33902 ....... ARRL  member  #1781549 *
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