[amsat-bb] Re: The USA Lower 48 Worked all 488 Grids non-Award

Adrian Engele aa5uk at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 25 11:05:28 PDT 2013


Congratulations on a job well done! 

What a great recap of your journey over these many years to complete this achievement. I know it took hundreds of hours, patience, more patience and lots of effort to get there. I am sure the journey to this achievement was a tremendously satisfying experience that only few people will ever know.

Hope you are doing well. I have not been much on the air due to family issues and other personal issues. 

Best regards,  Adrian AA5UK

> From: John Papay <FL at papays.com>
>To: amsat-bb at amsat.org 
>Sent: Friday, August 23, 2013 1:08 AM
>Subject: [amsat-bb] The USA Lower 48 Worked all 488 Grids non-Award
>Some of the active grid chasers on the birds are aware
>that KA6SIP just gave me my last USA grid when he operated
>from CN72 in Oregon.  And I thought it might be interesting
>to look at the stats and how one manages to work and confirm
>all 488 USA lower 48 States grids.
>Satellite operators come and go and grids come and go with them.
>A grid might have a very active operator in it and then it is
>off the air when that person goes away for whatever reason.
>Interestingly, about half of the 488 grids that were worked were
>from those operating portable, not in the sense of using a radio
>with batteries, but in the traditional sense of operating away from
>their home station location.  Once you have experienced being on the
>other end of a small pileup, you will want to do it again.  Just ask
>W7LRD who tried it recently and is planning another trip.  Here is
>a list of operators who exited the comfort of their home station and
>put a grid on the air.  The callsign is followed by the number of new
>grids they gave me towards the goal of working all 488.  Others may have
>been worked but these totals represent the first time a new grid was
>ND9M 54
>WD9EWK 27
>WC7V 19
>KD4ZGW 16
>KB0RZD 10
>AA5CK 8
>N5ZNL 7
>W6GMT 7
>N0JE 6
>N2SPI 6
>KK0SD 4
>AA5PK 3
>K7CWQ 3
>UT1FG 3
>W6ZKH 3
>AC0ZA 2
>AJ9K 2
>K0BAM 2
>K7DRA 2
>K7TRK 2
>N3TL 2
>N5AFV 2
>Jim, ND9M, is a seasoned grid expeditioner.  Along with working
>satellites he is also active on the county hunters nets.  Most of
>his activity was between 2009 and 2011.  He was also active from a
>cargo ship and gave out the very rare DM02.  Jim would travel for
>months at a time and worked from a few hundred grids.  Most of that
>operating was done on FM birds rather than linear ones.  It was
>great to have many daily fm passes when AO-27 and AO-51 were active.
>HO-68 and SO-67 were in the mix for a while too.  54 new grids came
>from Jim and he tops the list.
>Most everyone knows Patrick WD9EWK.  He has done a lot of traveling
>both in the US and Canada and he gave me 27 new grids.  He was very
>active on the birds until recently.  He was an alternate on the AMSAT
>Board of Directors and was recently appointed to oversee the AMSAT
>Area Coordinator program.  He virtually has no home station and most
>all local contacts were made from a park near his apartment in Phoenix.
>He knows how to do it and he is a meticulous planner.
>Next on the list is Kerry WC7V.  He lives in sparsely populated Montana
>and travels around by car and in his light aircraft.  He went to many
>grids at my request and made a lot of us very happy by operating from
>many rare locations.  He is in slot number 3 with 19 grids.
>Next on the list is Rob KD4ZGW/m.  Rob drove an 18 wheeler and we all
>heard him on a satellite one day.  He didn't know his grid square but
>he knew his milepost on the interstate.  From there we had the grid
>square.  Rob went on to improve his mobile station and activated over
>100 grid squares.  He is no longer driving on long hauls and has not
>been active for some time.  He is fourth on the list with 16 grids.
>The next three are very special because they all became new operators
>during the quest to work all 488.  Gail KB0RZD is very active today,
>usually operating with a handie-talkie.  He went to 10 grids around him
>and sent some photo qsl cards that were just outstanding.  KC0YBM operated
>from his home location for a long time before I realized he was very
>close to other grids.  Chris didn't have portable equipment so I suggested
>he look into an AC inverter for the car.  He did just that and soon he
>was operating portable from some new grids.  This speaks to the ham radio
>culture that you find a way to operate with what you have.  Chris continues
>to be active and hands out grids in the US and Canada.  And then there
>is Ted, AA5CK. He has operated in grids around his home qth as well as
>some rare ones in New Mexico.  He lives in EM04, not far from EM05 where
>I made my first grid expedition contact with KD8CAO from EM05 in front of
>the White Dog Ranch on old Route 66.  I remember Ted's first sat contact.
>There are a few very special operators that can't be left out.  My son,
>KD8CAO, provided 8 new grids for his dad.  He knows how to operate
>portable and gives out the grids when he travels.  Then there was
>Richard N2SPI.  I asked him about some grids in Maine that hadn't been
>on and he took the challenge and drove to all of them, getting back to
>his dad's place during the first snow of the season.  Dave KB5WIA made
>quite the trip by backpacking into CM79.  It took two trips to transport
>the equipment into the grid.  He has a video of it on youtube.
>I started with satellites in June 2006 and only had 47 USA grids by August
>2008.  From August 2008 till Jan 2009 I worked another 109.  In 2009 199
>were worked.  2010 was 76 and 2011 was 44.  Only 4 new grids were worked
>in 2012 and 9 were snagged in 2013.  Eight of those final 9 grids were
>handed out by Tom KA6SIP.  He heard about the need and decided to make a
>grid expedition to put them on the air.  He did 7 of them in one trip.
>Then Bob W7LRD went to the beach in CN77, operating away from home for
>the first time.  That left CN72.  Tom just got back from Hawaii and quickly
>made plans to camp out in CN72 and gave me the final grid on AO-7B, 20 August
>2013 at 2332z.  Then he put CN71 on the air on 22-23August, also a very
>rare grid square but one that I already had.  Many others worked him there.
>There is no award for working all 488 grids on satellites as there is
>for six meters (FFMA).  The ARRL awards committee has looked at it and will
>implement it if someone on the Board of Directors brings it up for a vote
>and it passes.  Hopefully that will happen soon.  Having that type of award
>gives everyone something to work for.  It promotes grid expeditions and
>interest in working through the satellites.  If we all contact our
>ARRL Director, it might just happen.
>There may be others who have already worked all 488 grids on satellites.
>K6YK might be one of them.  I know there are several others who are
>getting close.  It is not any easy thing to accomplish even if you operate
>every day.  It is something you can work towards over the years.
>I want to thank everyone that made satellite contacts with me that ultimately
>led to working all 488.  Many went out of their way to put on a grid.  Over
>half of the grids worked were from grid expeditions!  If you haven't 
>operating away from home, please consider it.  With new operators showing up
>on the birds every day, there is always a need for an uncommon grid.  And you
>will have a lot of fun doing it!  Just ask anyone on my list.
>John K8YSE
>Sent via AMSAT-BB at amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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