Thursday, May 18, 2017
Lessons learned the hard way
You'd have thunk that after being an Amateur Radio op for some 39 years now, and a dedicated QRP'er for about 14 years now that the "slogan" shown immediately above would be like second nature to me. But no, I still fall prey to the occasional troll, especially the species that insists that "The guy on the other end of the QRP QSO is the "hero" who does all the heavy lifting". While I agree that the receiving station is an invaluable part of the QSO - isn't that true for EVERY contact, not just the QRP ones?
Calmly explaining that signal strength is a combination of power, antenna and propagation falls on deaf ears with these folks. It's power, power, power and more power, and that's it. When you counter with the addition of the word"skill", that usually gets even more laughs from these folks. "How much skill does it take", they ask, "to shoot out 5 Watts out of a piece of wire?"
Thanks to Steve Yates AA5TB for answering that question in a recent discussion I became involved with on a social media site. Steve put into words, what we all know; but sometimes fail to enunciate. Steve countered with (and I'm paraphrasing) that the skill comes in in knowing your equipment, understanding propagation and understanding antenna theory enough to put all three of those elements together in order to get the communication through is a reliable and efficient manner.
Eloquent and to the point! So the next time you're baited - feel free to use the words you've read here and "Keep calm and move away from the troll".
72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!