(#71-80 May 2005-March 2006)
#80 - How do you copy CW most of the time?
Date: 2/15/06-3/14/06 --- Voters: 171
How Nr %
Listen and take notes 80 47
Write or print everything on paper 45 26
Just listen 37 22
Use a computer program to copy for me 6 4
Type everything in a computer program like Notepad 3 2
Type everything on a mill (typewriter) 0 0
Use a code reader device to copy for me 0 0
I split my copying between the first and third choices. If the ham I'm working has a lot to say, I take an occasional note to help me remember what I want to comment on. Otherwise I just listen while watching TV, filling in the log, looking up some info, etc. I guess after 43 years of CW it's easy to do that. I'm surprised that 6 folks use their computers to copy for them. Perhaps they are hearing impaired or have some other such reason for doing so. Personally that would take the enjoyment out of it for me. Might as well be running RTTY, PSK, etc.
#79 - What are you going to do in 2006 to promote CW?
Date: 1/15/06-2/14/06 --- Votes: 592
What Nr %
Use CW as often as I can to keep the CW segments active 103 17
Encourage others to use CW as much as possible 82 14
Generally talk up CW whenever possible 79 13
Join and/or be active in pro-CW clubs like NAQCC, FISTS, etc 71 12
QRS when appropriate 65 11
Try to work hams new to CW as often as possible 62 10
Help new hams learn the code 42 7
Make my pro-CW views known to the ARRL and FCC 39 7
Operate as many CW contests as possible 39 7
Give CW equipment to hams 10 2
Wonderful! No comments other than that. Now get out there and do your promoting.
#78 - Which QRP/CW activities do you engage in REGULARLY?
Date: 12/15/05-1/14/06 --- Votes: 193
Which Nr %
Rag Chewing 38 20
DXing 38 20
Building 31 16
Contests 28 15
Awards 17 9
Sprints 17 9
Foxhunts 6 3
Nets 6 3
County Hunting 3 2
Other (email and tell me) 9 5
Several brief comments: I hope all those engaged in building gear also take the time to actually use it on the air. We need as much CW activity as possible to help preserve this wonderful mode of operation. - Not surprising to see Rag Chewing and DXing at the top. These two activities seem to always be the most popular ham activities no matter what era. - I'm glad Contests and Sprints got so many votes. These are both great ways to promote CW/QRP. - I'm surprised to see Foxhunts so low. They seem to get a wealth of publicity. - How come almost NO ONE ever emails me to tell me what their 'Other' choice was? I'd love to know. Over these 78 polls, a rough count shows a total of 161 'Other' votes and only a very few took the time to email me and tell me what their 'Other' was. I am going to stop adding an 'Other' choice to the list of items to vote on.
#77 - On which band have you worked the most countries?
Date: 11/15/05-12/14/05 --- Voters: 115
Band Nr %
20 64 56
40 20 17
10 11 10
15 5 4
30 4 3
160 3 3
17 3 3
80 1 1
12 0 0
Not a DXer 4 3
I figured 20 meters would be far out in front. I thought maybe 15 meters would come in ahead of 10 meters, but I guess a lot of the results came from the past sunspot maximum when 10 meters was really the best band for DX. I'm shocked at the 3 votes for 160 meters. Those have to have come from 160 meter DX specialists who don't care for other bands. Or someone just joking around.
#76 - What are your ham plans this winter near a sunspot minimum?
Date: 10/15/05-11/14/05 --- Votes: 279
Plans Nr %
Improve CW skills & speed 67 24
Make more CW QSO's 61 22
Install and/or test new antennas 41 15
Build some new gear 32 11
Just be more active on 160 & 80 meters 30 11
Chase 160 & 80 meters DX 18 6
Lots of contesting 14 5
Participate in NAQCC activities 9 3
Work for the NAQCC awards 4 1
Other (email and tell me please) 3 1
The only surprising thing to me is the large number who are going to do antenna work during the winter. I'm disappointed at the low number of folks showing any interest in the NAQCC activities because since the founding of the club, I have been very interested and active in the great sprints, challenges, and awards the club offers. It is great that the number one answer was improving CW skills followed closely by making more CW QSO's.
#75 - When did you first learn Morse Code?
Date: 9/15/05-10/14/05 --- Voters: 353
When Nr %
before 1940 7 2
1940-1949 6 2
1950-1959 82 23
1960-1969 77 22
1970-1979 62 17
1980-1989 35 10
1990-1999 36 10
2000-2002 15 4
2003-2005 28 8
Never 8 2
Sorted by answer. Always keeping in mind that responses to my polls are only from a very small minority of hams, these results are particularly inspiring to me. I love seeing the upswing in the past couple of years of the number of hams learning CW. Possibly it's due to the fact that in some sense CW is becomming a forbidden commodity and everyone is attracted to the forbidden. For whatever reason, it is great to see.
#74 - In which range is your top CW copying speed?
Date: 8/15/05-9/14/05 --- Voters: 232
Speed Nr %
1-5 WPM 9 4
6-10 WPM 20 9
11-20 WPM 80 34
21-30 WPM 68 29
31-40 WPM 40 17
41-50 WPM 11 5
51-60 WPM 3 1
Above 60 WPM 0 0
I can't copy CW 1 0
Sorted by answer. It's great to see only one person can't copy CW although that is certainly due to the fact that those visiting my site and voting are interested in CW operation to begin with. Wouldn't it be great if these days everyone knew and used CW as in the early days of amateur radio. Wow, just thinking about that excites me. I'm glad I got my ticket in the 60's when CW was much more widely used, and wish I had been around ever earlier when it was THE means of communication on the ham bands. It's extremely interesting to note the results are almost exactly the same as back in 2000 for the first running of this poll. That was poll number 7 if you're interested in comparing the two. There is one outstanding difference however. There were no votes for 1-5 WPM in 2000, but 8 this time around.
#73 - Which of the following antennas do you use regularly?
Date: 7/15/05-8/14/05 --- Votes: 334
Antenna Nr %
Dipole, Inv V, etc. 108 32
Vertical or Inv L 74 22
Long or Random Wire/Other 44 13
Yagi or LP 30 9
G5RV 28 8
Full wave loop 26 8
Quad 9 3
Mini-Loop or Whip 8 2
Phased Verticals 5 2
Stacked beams 2 1
Interesting to see about 3/4 of the respondents use simple wire type antennas. That makes sense since my web site promotes the use of such antennas. The results are pretty much the same as when this poll was first run back in Mar-Apr, 2000.
#72 - What is your favorite on-air activity?
Date: 6/15/05-7/14/05 --- Voters: 91
Activity Nr %
Rag Chewing 34 37
DXing 28 31
Contesting 12 13
Antenna Testing 7 8
County Hunting 4 4
Award Hunting 4 4
NAQCC Challenges 1 1
Traffic Nets 0 0
Satellites 0 0
Other 1 1
Again we compare a poll with the previous time it was run. This poll was first run back in Oct-Nov, 1999. Rag chewing then was the favorite activity as it is now with 43% then and 37% now. DXing was second both times, 33% then and 31% now. Traffic nets declined from 3% then to 0% now - not surprising as email has pretty much taken over what the ham traffic nets used to do. Contesting jumped from 10 to 13%, or more contesters are visiting the site. Since my polls only get a response from a tiny portion of the ham population, it's hard to draw any official conclusions from them, but they are fun.
#71 - Which MF/HF CW band is your favorite?
Date: 5/15/05-6/14/05 --- Voters: 139
Band Nr %
40 82 59
20 19 14
30 15 11
15 8 6
17 7 5
80 3 2
10 3 2
160 2 1
12 0 0
It is interesting to compare this running of the favorite band poll to the first time it was run back in 1999 as my Poll #1. 30M took a big jump from 4% to 11% while 15M dropped from 22% to 6%. That shift is no doubt due to the sunspot cycle. Meanwhile old favorite 40M remains the leader and almost doubled its percentage from 30% to 59%. If I'm still around, I'll re-run this one again the next sunspot peak.