Thursday, April 09, 2009

Much Ado About Nothing?

You be the judge.

On QRP-L appeared the announcement that the Feld Hell group is moving their "watering hole" to 14.063 MHz, which is just 3 KHz away from the QRP "watering hole" of 14.060 MHz.

"...After much discussion, the Feld Hell club has decided to move the recommended 20 meter calling frequency for Hell Modes to 14.063 MHz (from 14.074.) This is being done to avoid the growing number of digital signals at 074..."

Of course, the normal QRP-L melee' ensued with a variety of posts following. These ranged from the "Chicken Littles" (The sky is falling!) to the "Alfred E Newman's" (What .... me worry?) all chiming in.

Is there anything to worry about? Perhaps; and then again perhaps not.

Feld Hell itself is a transmission mode that is VERY narrow. I highly doubt that such a narrow band mode would cause the demise of the 20 Meter QRP "watering hole". What IS troubling, however, is that the Feld Hellers are moving down because THEIR old "watering hole" of 14.074 is being encroached upon by other digital modes.

Could this be the beginning of a Domino Effect? It could very well be; and I would hate to see 20 Meters become like 40 Meters, where you almost have to go down below 7.030 MHz to escape the digital signals on a busy weekend.

I think a very amicable and friendly note to the Feld Hellers would not be an entirely bad thing to do. Making them aware of our presence now, in a friendly manner, is a lot better than being told later that "No one ever told us that this was going to be a problem!"

In the end, though, we have to remember that no one group "owns" a frequency. They have a right to 14.060 as much as we have a right to 14.063. If this were a perfect world (and Lord knows, it ain't) then we should all be able to get along without a problem. But since it isn't a perfect world, I am hoping (probably against hope) that the resulting attitude won't mostly be "QRPers be damned!" by them and "Feld Hellers be damned!" by us.

73 de Larry W2LJ

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