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CQ World Wide DX Contest

Jan 1

CQ WW Contest Committee member CT1BOH has set-up a public.tableau account with the 7 million skimmer RBN spots during 2017 CQWW CW Contest.

Go to this link https://tinyurl.com/y8jhn27r

In the page you can compare Contest Calls in the different skimmers world wide. You can compare your signal against your competitors, check if claimed power makes sense, understand antenna performance, etc.

The graph plots for every band, and for every hour of the contest, the hourly median SNR signal of selected contest calls, for a selected skimmer.

I will give some examples:

The link opens with CR3OO versus CR3W on 40 meters, as heard by KM3T-2 Skimmer (a very active and reliable East Cost Skimmer).

Notice that CR3OO is constantly stronger than CR3OO during the two days of the contest, except the last 3 hours of the contest. Although CR3OO was just using an Inv. V the location is fantastic towards the USA, and much better than CR3W, but there was a minor storm and the dipole fall from the tree to the ground. So there was only the beam fixed to Europe. That explains why CR3OO signal dropped considerably during the last three hours.

Now select a European skimmer on the right of the screen. For example DL3KR a very active skimmer. You will notice that there is no big difference between signals of CR3OO and CR3W, except again at the end of the contest.

Was CR3W beam just to USA?

Another example:

Remove CR3OO and CR3W from Contest Call list (mouse over each call and click the X) and add K3LR and W3LPL, and select DL3KR skimmer

It is interesting to note that W3LPL is stronger at DL3KR skimmer during the night both days.

Both K3LR and W3LPL are big stations. Why is there such a difference?

Probably different take-off angles of antennas set-up?!

Also interesting that in first day, after 07Z K3LR becomes stronger. Is is because of different take-off angles due to after sunrise in Europe? Or is it because K3LR keeps the stack into Europe and W3LPL puts the stack into Asia?

Last example:

Can we use this tool to check if competitors are using adequate Power according to claimed category?

Lets select 40 meter for band, CR3OO, CR3W and CT9/OK6RA for contest calls and select DL3KR skimmer Both CR3OO and CR3W use 1.5K, but CT9/OK6RA is claiming low power 100W We look at the graph and everything makes sense. Good!

CT1BOH José Nunes

Dec 10

We received some comments that indicated that we make available the Raw Scores for the Overlays.  This was not previously available.

We are pleased to announce that this is now available for CQWW 2017, SSB and CW.

To see the Overlay Raw Scores, please go to cqww.com then select the Results tab.

On the drop down, select Raw Scores (either SSB or CW) and then scroll all the way down to the bottom.

NOTE: If you enter your call in the Raw Scores section, you will see your total Raw Score for your entire log.  That may or may not match your Raw Score for your Overlay entry, depending on how many total hours you actually operated.

If you operated 24 hours or less, then the scores will match.  If you operated more than 24 total hours, you will see two different Raw Scores: one score in the “upper” section for the full log score and another score in the Overlay section.

Thank you to Ken, K1EA for doing the raw scoring magic and thank you to Randy, K5ZD for making it happen on the CQWW.com site.

Jul 31

Please see http://cqww.com/rules.htm

English only for now.

Jul 23

The following are updates made to the 2016 rules, effective for the 2017 CQWW SSB and CW weekends.  Full rules will be published soon.  In addition to the updates, the thought process behind each update is included.  We hope this will provide some insight into the reasons for the updates.

  1. Multi-Single definition: The word “transmitter” is updated to “station/signal” and there is now reference made to the FAQ section. This was in response to a post on CQ-Contest made by a member of the contest community.

Reasoning: This further clarifies the definition of MS as was already provided in the FAQ section.

  1. Club definitions. The new rules are shown below.
    • USA Clubs: Participation is limited to club members residing within a 250 mile radius circle from the center of club area.
    • DX Clubs: Participation is limited to club members residing within EITHER the DXCC country where the club is located OR within a 400 km radius circle from the center of club.
    • The word “reside” shall be defined as: To dwell permanently or continuously or to occupy a place as a person’s fixed, permanent, and principal home for legal purposes.


This language is simplified from prior versions.  Basically, it says that a club member can operate anywhere in the world and still have the score count for the participant’s club.  The word “reside” is also defined.


  1. GENERAL RULES FOR ALL ENTRANTS has two additions.


  • For ITU Region 1 stations: transmitting on the 40m band, above 7200 KHz during the SSB (phone) contest weekend is not permitted.
  • For ITU Region 1 stations: transmitting below 1810 KHz during the contest weekends is not permitted.


Interpreting country and ITU rules has consistently been a topic of debate on several forums, including in the CQWW Contest Committee, such as what is a rule versus what is guideline and what about individual country rules.  The CQWW 2017 Rules now remove the option for debate by defining two important frequency limits as part of the rules.


  1. Audio Recordings: The updated rule expands the scope from “top three” to “top five.” It also expands the timeframe for such requests from 90 days to 120 days. The Classic Overlay is now also specifically included in the “top five” definition.  Further clarity about the recording now specifies that it must be a continuous recording and that “recordings of individual QSOs” alone in not acceptable.  Finally, the category options to which a log can be reclassified, if no recording is provided, are elaborated and expanded, including the addition of a new category (Administrative Check Log).



The top 3 was expanded to top 5 because, in some cases, a top 3 entrant could be “knocked out” after review.  Since we are still focused on the top 3, even after one was “knocked out,” in order to be fair, the rule was expanded to the top 5.


      Equally, with the possibility of a top 3 being “knocked out,” the timeframe for such requests (for a recording) was expanded to 120 days.

      Specifying that the Classic overlay is included in the recording requirement closes a perceived gap in the Rules as they were written.  This was done based on feedback from the contest community.

      At least one “top 3” entrant submitted a recording that was not a continuous recording but instead recorded each individual QSO.  This prevented the committee from hearing how the entrant was tuning the band, something which is essential to proper adjudication.

      In 2016, the committee was faced with a difficult decision about what to do with entrants who did not, or were not able to, submit the required recording.  Disqualification of an entrant for failure to make a recording, in many cases, did not seem appropriate, and some of those were made into a Check Log.  However, such action by the committee then groups the entrant in with those who actually submitted their log as a Check Log.  Therefore, a new category, designed specifically for future top 5 entrants who do not or are not able to submit a recording as required, was created.

      [Editorial comment: It is important to note a few things about the “recording” rule.  First, 2016 was not the first year for this rule.  Second, the committee does not and will not request a recording simply because an entrant is in the top 5.  The committee will request a recording when something suspicious or curious in the log is identified by the committee.  This can be a statistical flag or something identified after human review.  The committee does not request a recording in an attempt to “go fishing” for something “out of the blue” or “without reason.”  If you are not breaking the rules or trying to stretch the rules beyond the letter and/or spirit of the rules, you are probably not going to be asked for a recoding.]

5. Log Checking. The penalty for a call sign copying error (busted/bad call or NIL) is changed from 2:1 back to 3:1.  The penalty for altering the QSO time, for M2 and MS entries, is changed from “remove the QSO” to a penalty of 10x for QSO points and multipliers.


Historically, the BAD and NIL penalties have, for decades, been 3:1.  The 3:1 penalty dates back into the paper log days, well before the release of the IBM XT home computer.  In 2013, the penalty was changed to 2:1.  The current committee leadership feels that the 3:1 penalty provided more incentive to “get the call right,” and so it is reinstated.

The MS and M2 categories have strict time requirements.  It is possible to alter the time that an individual QSO is logged so that the QSO (or QSOs) no longer results in a band change violation.  In the past, some entrants would have a “small number” of such events, also known as “rubber-clocking.”

Over the years, there has been debate within the committee on how such offenses should be addressed.  Some argued that rubber-clocking is intentional cheating and that even one such violation should result a DQ.  Others argued that it is not “fair” to DQ a log with thousands of QSOs for just one or two falsified contacts.  Both arguments have merit.

However, if the falsified QSOs are simply removed without a penalty, then the entrant has not incurred any harm by cheating; their score is simply returned back to where it should have been.  This means that the entrant has no potential downside impact.  If the committee fails to find the rubber-clocking, the cheaters win.  And if the committee does find the rubber-clocking, then, under the previous rules, the cheaters suffer no injury, because they simply lose the QSO.   So really, they still win.  Risk without possible consequences only encourages risk, in this case, cheating.

Now, with the 10x penalty for rubber clocking in place (for both points and mults), there is a strong incentive for the entrant to not falsify the logged times (rubber-clocking).  If they cheat and get caught twice, they will lose a lot of points and even worse, 20 multipliers (or 40 multipliers if both QSOs were “double mults”).  The idea is to make the penalty for altering logged times so intolerable (high penalty), that the entrants will not be tempted to try.

As has always been the case, excessive rubber-clocking (intentionally subjective) will result in disqualification of the entry along with DQ for all of the operators at that station.

Please note that any band-change-violation which does not involve altering the actual time of the QSO is not impacted by the 10x rule.

Rule changes discussed, but not approved

  1. Combine SO with SOA
  2. Make SOA an overlay category for SO
  3. Allow Self-Spotting of some sort
    • Everyone can self-spot
    • Only assisted entrants can self-spot
    • Assisted entrants can self-spot; Not-Assisted entrants can request to be spotted using the HF contest band where they are operating, in real time.

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