From: Joe Gervais (email@example.com)
> I'd appreciate any suggestions on ways to capture
> everyone's attention.
Here's a starter - most of 'em are probably already working
QRP!!! What's the power out on those HT's they use? Are they
communicating with other hams? They've been proving that QRP
works all along! :-)
Which brings me to the next point. QRP does NOT have to mean
"CW HF". Sure it's the most popular (and easiest) QRP mode,
but there are plenty of folks running QRP SSB, QRP digital
modes, etc. Mention the NW QRP Digital contest in Feb! How
about the ARCI QRP SSB contest? QRP categories in the major
And you don't have to go "cold turkey". Cut your power from
100w to 50w for a week. Then try 25w the next week. Etc.
Another good approach would be to address the Great Myths
of QRP. If you poll the audience about the "limitations"
of QRP, I'm sure plenty of Anti-QRP QRO-ers will cheerfully
parrot them for you.
#1 - "Running QRP means making few contacts." Sheesh. I'm
sure I'm not alone in this, but very rare are the nights
that I get on the air to have a QSO and can't get one. (Hey,
Fox nights don't count! :-) ). Most nights I'm on the air I
have 2-3 QSOs. How many QSOs did some of us score during
Sweepstakes? How many 2xQRP QSOs are made during Fox nights?
Know the bands, have a reasonably efficient antenna system,
have all the QSOs you can handle!
#2 - "To successfully run QRP you have to have stacked Yagis
up 100 ft." No No No. No. Sure, it'd be nice, but who of us
can boast being so lucky? Simple, resonant antennas are all
you need to be happy. A nice resonant dipole, low or high.
Or in my case a Hamstick vertical with raised radials. Again,
carefully tuned to resonance.
#3 - "You can't work 'real' DX with QRP." This is the mantra
of the poor fellows who've spent thousands of $$$ on their linear
amps. Must be a defense mechanism to protect their investment!
The Great Maker as my witness, I had a KW diehard tell me to my
face that you could never work DX with QRP and a Hamstick. I
told him I'd recently worked Russia and Japan with just such
a setup. He stammered a bit, muttered something about it being
a fluke, then walked off. I'm sure he's managed to block out the
traumatic conversation by now. :-) We have two List members who
have DXCC with their trusty ol' NorCal-40s, as I recall. And
who was the happy 6-land ham who just worked EA9 while SSB?
#4 - "QRP is too hard for beginners." Well yes and no. If you
can put up a resonant antenna, have a reasonable fist (for CW),
*and* understand how the bands behave on average, you have all
the prerequisites for being successful at QRP. That and a bit
of attitude. :-) For beginners, stick to calling the loudest
signals on the band. Not bragging, and I'm not the only one here
to do this, but I've been QRP since my first day as a ham. It's
not for everyone, but there's certainly no harm in trying.
TRUTH: QRP puts the fun and excitment back into hamming! The
rigs can be small, battery-friendly, and very affordable. You
can really build a simple rig and make contacts with it! You'll
constantly amaze yourself (and others!) by what you can do. And
that alone will put the magic back into ham radio for most of
them. And best of all, QRPers are *very* polite and friendly.
We could all use more of that in amateur radio!!!
Guess I've gabbed enough. Yeah, I know - big surprise. :-)
Hope the talk goes well!!!
Ho Ho Ho de KC7NEV,
-Joe, firstname.lastname@example.org, AZ ScQRPions
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