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Split during pileups?

Is there a reason SOTA ops don’t run split? It would really help during pileups which occur often once the spot is announced on the SOTA reflector. I believe most CW rigs can do split…

GL/73

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Most pileups are not big enough to justify it.

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Working split takes up more space in the band.
There are moments with several activations within very few KHz and having them all working split would be a complete mess.
I enjoy pulling out callsigns from the pileup of chasers calling me and I prefer that rather than having them calling me in a wider range up 1 to 3 from my frequency.
Definitely I don’t think split operation is recommendable on SOTA activations.
73,

Guru

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Hard to tell what frequency activator is listening unless he/she sends UP on CW or tells SPLIT on phone operation. FT8 is mostly split anyway I believe.

73, Jaakko ac1bb/oh7bf

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Thats true. But you can use the RIT as some signals are not zero beat with yours for sure. This helps a bit … without having real split.

73s Ingo

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I’ve found working the SOTA station up a few cycles (not zero beat) helps during pileups.

EA2IF…other than during popular contests, I find nowadays the CW bands aren’t crowded, not like when I was a novice in 1965.

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But not any place in the band is good for a SOTA activation. Most activations take place around the QRP frequencies (i.e. 14.058, 59, 62, 63, 64, 65 on 20m) and I’ve often found some activators choosing odd frequencies like 14.032 or 14.034, 14.048 and the like and I was often unable to hear them because they were swamped by nearby QRO stations.
QRP SOTA activators should better operate around the QRP frequencies to avoid conflict with other QRO traffic on other frequencies.
73,

Guru

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Hi Guru,

Since you suggested to me a year or so ago that I widen my CW filter from my previous very narrow setting I have learnt to discriminate simultaneously-sent callsigns when they have different pitches (because the chasers are not on the same frequency). Practicing with Morse Runner in pile-up mode (e.g. activity 3 or 4) has helped.

But I don’t know how you manage - not alone enjoy - to distinguish one callsign from another when the chasers are on the same or almost the same frequency (usually zero beat with me). In my head it’s just an audible blur.

It’s only if, when they repeat sending, their callsigns are not completely overlapped that I can usually snatch a few callsign characters to send back, e.g EA? UR 559 559 BK

Best wishes, Andy

BTW: it’s funny I ‘worked’ you last night in Morse Runner - it’s fun to hear a familar callsign on that app.

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Hi,
If all those chasers not exactly zerobeat on the activators freq but are placing themselves lets say somewhere within ± 150 Hz Activator freq there is some kind of split,but all chasers signals within the receiving window of the ativator.
Simple as that

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This! I find picking up chaser callsings in the pile up as fun and challenging as practising with the morse runner.
It’s a mental exercise where you need to try to concentrate on a specific signal. Not always but most of the times there are small differences in tone pich in signal strength, in cadence, in speed or whatever that helps you distinguish one call from the others.
My goal is always trying to pick up a callsign ASAP, the sooner the better. I find it very, very fun!

73,

Guru

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Hi Guru,
Exactly, that is what I say is the cw fingerprint of anyone sending cw. Helps me to identify the activator.
Example: on Sotawatch it says that on a certain freq the activator is HB9BIN, but what I hear is activator cw speed in several qso of 15 wpm so it is certainly not HB9BIN who is usually around 30 wpm.
73 Patrick

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One reason for not using split from a SOTA summit is that, chances are, you’re running QRP up there in the wind and cold. Your chasers would no longer be on the same frequency as you, and that means someone else who can’t hear your QRP signal may think your frequency is actually un-occupied and decide to use it. When there are chasers on your frequency as well that is rather less likely to happen…

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I haven’t need to work split on SOTA for a long time. Last time the pileups were intense enough to warrant it was around the last solar maximum and then on the higher bands. I never had a problem holding my TX frequency normally 1kHz lower than RX. I only went split when there were so many people calling there was little chance for me to call as the chasers never stopped sending. UP 1 UP1 K at the end of the CQ worked wonders. Those who were really listening heard that and went splt and got worked quickly.

Despite sending UP 1 every time I called CQ for maybe 30mins there would be people calling me on my TX freq. at the end of the activation still. Plus ça change, plus c’est la même chose!

Wow! That’s cool!
I didn’t know my callsign was there.
It’s been a very long time since I last used Morse Runner, but I never heard my callsign in those pileups.
Perhaps, it’s been included in recent versions of the program.
Thanks for letting me know.
73,

Guru

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On the Windows 10 directory for my copy of the Morse Runner app there’s a text file called SOTA_Calls_CW.scp and your callsign appears there a number of times: CT7/EA2IF/P EA2IF EA2IF/1 EA2IF/P F/EA2IF/P

If you used that version you could end up ‘working’ yourself.

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Ah, now I understand. You have that file for regular SOTA chasers. I don’t have that, as I wasn’t in SOTA when I was using Morse Runner for training before the major contests like CQ WW, CQ WPX, some of the ARRL contest and the IARU test.

I hope you will chase me on the air more often than on Morse Runner :wink:

73,

Guru

Just to be clear, that file came with the app download, I haven’t added any callsigns to it although I’m sure one could. I’ve no idea who decides which callsigns to include in it.

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