Back in the middle of April I wrote an entry about how effective Search and Pounce really is for a low power (little pistol) part-time contest station. What kind of scores are really possible with that kind of setup and approach? I had some good responses and comments and I thought I'd revisit that briefly, since there was a similar thread not long ago on the CQ-Contest reflector.
In CQ WPX CW I managed just over 500 QSO's - all S&P. That's NOT 24 hours of operating, probably closer to 12 actual operating hours, with several breaks and such. I have no idea what my rates were (I need to look), but that averages out to just over 40 QSO's per hour. Certainly nothing to set the world on fire, but considering that the bulk of those QSO's took place in the first 6 or 7 hours, along with a rush at the end, I probably had a few hours of decent rates.
Again, if I could ever manage to work an entire contest, then my figures might be more valid or comparable.
And I should add, I don't think I busted very many callsigns, but I KNOW that I busted some numbers. So that total will come down. For sake of comparison, some of the claimed numbers by an assortment of world-class contest operators ranged from a low of 90 to a high of 240. So, let's think about that for a minute. At their 'worst', provided their numbers are accurate, they're doubling what I'm doing. At their best, their rates are 7 to 8 times what I'm doing! Add to that the fact that many are probably using another radio to run, and it becomes even more impressive.
Talk about humbling. But I have to keep it in perspective. I'm not much of a contest op. I'm getting better, but until I join a club or decide to really get serious about it, I'm going to make marginal improvements. I haven't decided what to do yet. Also, when those fellows are talking about rates above 100, well above 100, then they're also talking about using the legal limit with antenna arrays that would make me drool. Not all, but most. I wonder what they would do with 100 watts and a vertical? Run circles around me still, I'm sure :)