[amsat-bb] Why 6 digit grid locator in Europe?

Peter Goodhall peter at m3php.com
Thu Feb 18 14:26:27 UTC 2016

While I appreciate that passing 6 character grid square is slightly
more verbose than say 4 I do think it's such a small issue it's not
worth worrying about, in-fact you could go as far as saying you don't
even need to send the signal report (this is something that's been
argued about in HF Contesting for years) after all the logbooks
probably pre populated as 59 or 599 depending on the mode.

At the same time I don't take the argument of "its on QRZ", while it
probably is, I'm not sure it's a reason for not giving a grid square..
whether it's auto populated inside my logbook or not.

We can strip down exchange information to just be 2E0SQL EA1JM IO91 or
if we don't bother even with that 2E0SQL EA1JM.. I'm not really sure
it constitutes a contact by my licence regulations.

There's far greater issues like people calling over the top of in
progress QSOs, deliberate jamming etc which should be dealt with
first, if this was taken care of then more QSOs on FM satellites could
take place and that extra two letters wouldn't really make a real

Pete, 2E0SQL

On 17 February 2016 at 23:05, Dani EA4GPZ <daniel at destevez.net> wrote:
> El 17/02/16 a las 08:20, Juan Antonio Fernandez escribió:
>> I can´t understand it.
>> My thinking:
>> - Any award needs 6 digits
>> - Time on SATs is limited, Why to waste it trying to understand something
>> useless
>> - Other places, such as USA, only use 4 digits from years
>> - To wrap up, all are advantages
>> Anybody knows some reason why should we follow using 6 digits?
>> If there is not a strong reason, I think we should start using 4 digits
> Dear all,
> I would like to go even further. A valid contact is defined as one where
> there has been exchange over the air of:
> - Both callsigns
> - The signal report
> - A confirmation of the reception of these (usually a roger or 73 will do)
> At least it's written that way in the IARU R1 VHF manager's handbook.
> An exchange of grid locators is not required to make a contact valid.
> I don't follow all the awards, but I'm not aware of any awards that
> actually require grid locators to be exchanged over the air to make the
> contact count for the award. Sure you need to track grid locators if you
> are after VUCC, but you can get the grid locators by qrz.com/email/qsl
> cards/etc. It's not needed that you get them on the air.
> It bothers me especially on FM sats, where time is shared between all
> the operators and many times people insist in repeating their 6 digit
> locators several times because of difficult conditions. This is just a
> waste of time.
> Of course I want to put the grid locators on my logbook, but most of the
> time the locators I get on the air are just the same that are listed on
> qrz.com, so I could just get them there.
> In especial conditions, such as if you're operating portable and the
> satellite is not busy (read as only 3 or less people), then it may make
> some sense to pass the 4 or 6 digit locator over the air. But please,
> don't repeat it several times as you struggle to make a contact in
> difficult conditions.
> This is less of a problem in linear sats, because time is not shared
> between all the operators. Still, the same reasons for not passing the
> locator at all are valid.
> So, my suggestion is: Please, don't pass the grid locator at all, except
> in especial conditions.
> 73,
> Dani EA4GPZ.
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Peter Goodhall, 2E0SQL

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