Do you ever feel stupid doing ssb?

Today I was on the Farrenkopf DM/BW-093 … not famous. A nice walk to a clearing in the forest and up there is a small shelter and a small meadow.
Up there are already some people, sitting on picnic blankets in the sun.
I installed my antenna a little beside, put on the headphones and called because of the contest in cw at 30m. It all went quite well. later I was in the mood for some s2s and there were some… but most of them in ssb.
with 10 watts in the pile up you are not necessarily the strongest… and also my call: “summit to summit” did not come through.

I was sitting there with my headphones - calling the same thing (Delta Lima Six Golf Carly Alfa Portable - SUMMIT TO SUMMIT) over and over again into the microfon and noticed how one after the other slowly turned to me… I felt really stupid! … and withdrew again to silent cw.

:smirk: Armin


Sometimes, me too… :upside_down_face:
73, Fabio


You won’t look any sillier than people searching for a geocache, so let them wonder! If anyone asks, you can always say that you are having trouble contacting the CIA! :wink:


… same here on Farrenberg (DM/BW-089), Armin!
Several people nearby watching me shouting “Delta Lima Three Tango Uniform Portable” over and over again. At least we had a nice chat afterwards about ham radio and SOTA.

BTW: Thanks for the S2S QSO - must have been on ground wave :slight_smile:

73 and awdh!
Roman - DL3TU

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Hi Armin

Having contacted DL3TU on the similarly named Farrenberg, I had noticed your spots – unfortunately not in SSB on short wave, hi.

No. I always bypass these feelings – searching eye contact and looking if I could take profit of the situation and tell them what I am doing there helps frequently. Life is too short to feel stupid.

Vy 73 de Markus, HB9DIZ


Hi Armin,
When there are people around, I prefer working CW, not to avoid feeling stupid, but being annoying.
Working the pileup as an activator on SSB with people around is even fascinating for the people around because it’s everytime a different callsign and name/location, but being a chaser and shouting the own callsign over and over is really annoying for the people around. My family can certainly say how annoying I can sometimes be when chasing on SSB.



Do I ever feel stupid doing SSB? No, because I never do SSB.

Someone had to say it… :slightly_smiling_face:

73, Mike


With the correct settings, it makes no difference if you shout or speak quietly with the mic close to your mouth.

So, the answer is no.



On average on every second activation I get approached and asked about “what are you doing” or rather “wass machen sie da?” - if I were on CW (which I don’t do) - I suspect most people would not approach. Even though this simple question often costs me 20-30 minutes of explaining time (in, for me a foreign language), I feel it’s worth it to advertise the hobby.

73 Ed.


Dear all

Oh my, a great topic here, hi. We all see tons of people in the streets talking loudly to nobody about nothing - and when they pass by we can see that they have plugs in their ears, having meaningful QSOs on their cellulars – the world of NOTA (Nothing on the Air). They have forgotten to feel stupid. So why should we?

Vy 73 de Markus, HB9DIZ


Of course - in noisy surroundings where other conversations take place, people are on the phone, I wouldn’t mind.

If I had been there before and already active in ssb - I would not care either.

But on the quiet summit, where people are already enjoying the sun and peace and quiet, talking to each other quietly at best… my: Delta Lima Six Golf Charly Alfa Portable - SUMMIT TO SUMMIT …was somehow disturbing and wrong on the course. :neutral_face:

73 Armin

True in these situations, silent cw is better. For voice perhaps a recorder and of course always headphones. i will set an memory of mi KX2 “EA7GV summit to summit”


Well, I certainly didn’t feel stupid, working Ernie VK3DET, at 22:33z last night from G/SP-013 on 20m ssb.


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if there are folk on the summit already, I usually tell them what I am going to do and apologise for any disturbance in advance. I have never had anyone saying I shouldn’t be using the radio. It often starts a short conversation and often they later explain to others who arrive what I am doing. So it stops them disturbing me!




I’m guessing you were probably the only one up there at that time of the evening? :wink:

Just looked at the title of the thread, Rick :wink:

I have to say, your story gave me a chuckle.

I managed to freak someone out one time on SSB. I was up on W4C/CM-110 (Rich Mountain, NC). The summit contains a fire tower, and can be accessed via a trail or by driving up an old forest service road. It is clearly open to the public and is popular even for non-activators. The vehicle I had at the time was covered with antennas (because that’s what hams do) and I was sitting on the top of the fire tower, with my end-fed configured as a sloper off the tower. A random guy pulls up and sees the vehicle, the wire antenna, and hears me shouting into the microphone something that went like “CQ SOTA 20m on Whiskey Four Charlie Stroke Charlie Mike One One Zero from Kilo Mike Four Bravo Lima Golf” The guy immediately throws his car into reverse and starts speeding down the road. I waived hello and and his voice is shaking with fear as he says “I’m sorry. I thought this was open to the public. I’m leaving right now.” I told him what I was doing and that I was “just a ham radio operator playing with my radios”. He breathed a sigh or relief and says “Whew. I thought you were a government agent.” So he parked and came up to check out the fire tower. We talked for a bit about SOTA, and had a good laugh about the whole situation.


I used to feel frustrated and exhausted…until I put together a BX-184 . Then I felt relaxed and relieved and wondered what I did without one!

I hike up, setup the rig and get it calling—then I find a good seat, break out the sandwiches and lunch until something comes back to me. That so beats desperately calling on 2m SSB while I am hungry after the hike but worried I wont have enough time to get 4…

Sometimes I just hang the FT-817 on a branch with a 2m telescoping whip on it and set it calling on SSB and that’s all it takes…its slow but you get to relax a bit!

Tom, N2YTF


Hmmmm. Am mainly SSB and yes seen and heard some daft remarks one made me laugh a woman with a dog asking what am doing my reply was fishing for Australians. Funny enough i was and worked a couple Aussie Sotas that day from Kitt hill.

But the best one was in CB days sitting in me car on Mersea island talking to Micheal in DL. Some one comes up to car and asks whom am i talking to and with mike keyed note said Michael Binlardin out in Afghanistan and then said say hi mike and he did there face was a total picture and they were soon out of there. Told mike what happened, he did laugh.

But you do get some funny looks when running a portable like this. a 3 El yagi 20ft up on a prop pole and A99 on top of that by ya car :slight_smile: