Posts Tagged ‘QSL’

A Brief Rant on LoTW

March 5th, 2014

If I had a dollar for every tirade I read or heard from a U.S. amateur regarding the “difficulty of setting up ARRL’s LoTW” software, I’d at least be able to buy another roofing filter for the K3.  These tirades are almost invariably qualified by the assertion that the complainer is “an IT professional.”

Personally, I find LoTW’s security simple and logical: they are simply trying to make it hard for one individual to generate a lot of untraceable certificates (to sign enough falsified logs to get on the “Honor Roll”).  And, since they optimized the database last (?) year, the processing and web interface are pretty good, too.  I kinda just followed the directions and it worked.

I don’t believe in Karma, but every time I read one of these rants by “an IT professional,” I feel a small amount of revenge has been exacted on them for all of the frustrating interactions (mercifully few, all things considered) I’ve endured with incompetent IT drones over the years…

This is the photo I wanted to headline this post, but I refuse to hotlink or copy it.  Positive, regularly-scheduled programming will return to the blog shortly, including a couple of construction projects…$50 HF triplexer, anyone?

A Follow-up to “New QSL card”

November 19th, 2010

This is a follow-up to a post from Sunday.

On Wednesday night, Sarah handed me an envelope from the day’s mail that had the appearance of a QSL card.  I took out my knife and opened it.  It had a some sample QSL cards, along with a brochure inside.  I scratched my head for a moment and concluded that I had just received my first QSL card for a blog post.

This curious turn of events brings me around to a couple of points.  For those of you who don’t know, this blog is aggregated by (and it is syndicated on my Facebook profile).  My agreement with the owner of is that he provides me with visibility in return for select content from my blog.  The QSL printer who sent me the samples is one of his advertisers.  Thanks, by the way!  The cards were very beautiful and of high quality and I will consider him to print photo cards for my next DX operation.  In full-disclosure, I received nothing from the printer who printed my cards in return for mentioning them.  But, I should clarify that the blog is something I do for fun and I’m not really in the business of product endorsements.

A final point of clarification is that my beef with the available QSL cards was not so much the quality available, but amount of semi-relevant stuff hams try to cram onto the card.  I guess if 10 meters ever opened up again regularly, we might start getting asked for our “Ten-Ten” numbers again.  After listening to the V31BB clip about the secret decoder ring, I’m sort of ashamed to admit that I have one.  Strike that from the card!  The long and the short of the original post was that I wanted an uncluttered, distinctive card.  And, I think I found it.

New QSL card

November 14th, 2010

As I have bemoaned in the past, good QSL card designs are hard to come by.  This is my attempt to remedy that situation.  The front has my callsign, with a QR code linking the interested recipient to this web site.  The reverse is postcard-friendly with space for six QSOs, corresponding to 1.8/3.5/7/14/21/28 or 50/144/222/432/903/1296 MHz.  The address space can be used for a personal note if the card is mailed in an envelope.  The card is also QTH-unaware.  This means that I’ll have to write or sticker my way along, but I won’t be limited by my moves and travels.  The font is Gil Sans everywhere.  The cards were laid out using Adobe Illustrator CS4 and printed on 100-lb matte cover stock by Carlisle Printing, who printed my last cards as well.

One final note:  one week after SS CW, I am already up to 43/50 states for my CW WAS from Maryland using LoTW.   I’m not sure how many of these QSLs will actually make it into circulation at this rate.  Be sure to work me so you can have your own copy of this rare collector’s item!

Bureau Cards

October 18th, 2010

If you have come to the site checking to see if I am still alive because you have not received a QSL card via the bureau system, you have come to the right place.  I finally mailed about four years worth of CE/K8GU, KP4/K8GU, PJ2/K8GU, and K8GU bureau cards out this week.  (Yes, it was a nice-sized pile, but not as big as it could have been.)  There are a few recent requests that have not been filled because I ran out of CE/ and KP4/ cards.  I will get some more soon.