CQ Crew rewards — How you can earn them.

    So I’ve discussed the basic goals of this new CQ Crew.   I’ve got a lot of time, passion and $ stuck into my station, so I’m more than willing to award nice-looking certificates to those who meet certain criteria.   For those who go  farther, there will be some modest plaques for you to keep forever.   If you are the kind of person who shies away from awards, just tell me, and I’ll respect that.   Make progress toward the 8 goals anyway, and your reward will be improving VHF.  

     Please understand that there are no dues or formal obligations for being part of this program.   It is open to sincere, honest VHF’ers all across the Midwest, and heck, the whole USA  and Canada.   Anyone who shows a really good effort deserves a little recognition.   If I don’t know you from Adam, do expect me to keep tabs on how you’re doing.   I want that sort of communication because seeing others get motivated keeps me motivated. 

    The rewards period starts today, August 12, 2009.   Because it will take some time for folks to get up to speed, the rewards period will end on Dec. 31, 2010.   Please keep track of your progress on Goals 1-8, and update me and this website from time to time.    I will be promoting this CQ Crew frequently throughout the fall, winter and into next year.   Expect to hear about it often.   I WANT to hear about your efforts often.   So many hams don’t respond unless others get the ball rolling so work with me here.   With enough participants and publicity, this could end up being a pretty big deal.  

    To receive these awards, I will ask you for a report in late 2010 or early 2011,  showing me the progress you made on any or all of the 8 goals.   So keep track of what you do, as time passes.  Unless I hear that you are an untrustworthy scoundrel, I will assume you are telling me the truth.   The Honor System applies here.   I will also be paying more attention to the bands, to see who’s out there trying and who isn’t.   You may do the same with me.  🙂 

     I will devise a point system and tweak it in the next few weeks, as comments come in.   
     500 points will earn you a nice-looking certificate with your name, callsign and accomplishments listed.  
     If you get to the 3000 point level, you will get at least a 5×7″ plaque.   In fact, I will award a larger plaque if anyone gets past the 5000 point level.   Don’t get stuck on the exact numbers at this point.  Instead, get motivated and start working toward the 8 Goals.    We should have a final plan in place next month.   I want questions and comments before I set everything in stone.  

    Goal #1)  Improve activity on bread-and-butter VHF bands, 2m and 6m.   
               The reward for this goal comes from calling CQ and answering CQ’s.   Far too many guys sit with the rig on, and don’t call CQ.   They hear little activity and declare that the band is dead.   That won’t work here.   You need to put time in calling CQ into a dead band.   You also need to answer CQ’s that you hear.   Further, you need to point away from the guys that you know locally.   You need to point beams toward out-of-the-way locations, to include those who don’t get the activity the bigger cities do.   More points will come to those who work stations in out-of-the-way grids.    If you only get on for contests, or when the band is open, you’re not getting this concept. 
       The whole idea is to create activity — not wait for it to come to you.   So the criteria is:
               1)   Call CQ at least two hours per month.   A half hour per week is great.   Do more if you get the hang of it.  The more you do this, the more you will find pleasant surprises.   That means swinging beams and calling into a dead band, even if you feel foolish.  (We all do, LOL)   If you do this, you will find stations.    It is fine to also answer other station’s CQ’s.   You get 20 points for each month where you call CQ for at least two hours.  
                     You get another 10 points for working at least 10 different stations per month.   This can add up to 120 points if you do it for 12 months.   Each month is a new one, for point-counting purposes.   In fact, if you work over 25 stations in a month (talking uniques, starting over each month) then you get a 25 point bonus for that month. 
                     You get an additional 20 points for working at least 10 different grid squares in any given month.   If you work at least 10 different grids each month, you get 240 points.  
                     The whole idea here is to get VHF’ers to reach out.   Just sitting and ragchewing with your same old buddies won’t cut it.  

          2)       Find and encourage new VHF’ers.
                     You will get 200 points for each new VHF’er that personally vouches for you getting them going.   These VHF’ers have to at least make a consistent effort to be on the air and get involved.   If they sit back and lose interest, you’ll still get 50 points for the effort, but those who stick around will get the bigger points. 
                     If you find a new VHF’er who ends up getting at least 500 CQ Crew points, you will get an additional 200 point bonus. 

      3)     Station improvements.   
              Improve existing antennas on any band by at least 3db —  100 points per band.
              Raise antennas and tell me truthfully you hear farther — 100 points. 
              Improve coax and also say you hear better/louder — 100 points

      4)     Adding bands.
              Add  222 or 432  and actually use and enjoy it — 250 points per band
              If you have an interest in microwave bands from 900 MHz on up thru 1296, 2304, 3456, 5 gig or 10 gig — we need to refer you to microwave specialists who will be thrilled to help.   — 500 points per band.  

     5)     Starting your own net.
              If you start a net (especially in an area that needs one) AND you operate it weekly, at least 80% of the time, you get 500 points.   This would also apply to co-net controls, if you have a group.   The net commitment must be steady, no starting one up for 3-6 months and quitting.  
             You get a 1000 point bonus if your net shows at least 150 unique check-ins between now and Dec. 31, 2010.  This is to reward publicizing the net, and not just chatting with your same old buddies every week.  

     6)    Learn CW.   
             Between now and Dec. 31, 2010, you learn and use CW on the air, at least 10wpm — 500 points.    You will have to schedule a CW Q with me later next year to verify that we both accomplished the goal.  

     7)   Promote VHF/UHF.
            A lot of this falls in the other categories, so it’s sort of redundant, now that I look at it.   However, if you tell me some unique ways you promoted VHF and it worked, I’ll award an extra 250 points.

     8)   Be a rover in contests or host some nets or activity periods from your rover or portable location.
            Those who put out a good effort in this area will get 500 points.   A good effort will NOT be going roving one time for 4 hours and getting 10-20 Q’s in your log.   Nor will it be doing one portable/rover net on a pleasant summer evening and working 7 guys.   At the same time, you don’t have to kill yourself doing this one.   I’ll take them on a case-by-case basis.  
            Generally speaking, at least two roves of 4 grids for at least 8 hours in a contest will get you 500 points.   Or doing at least 4 nets/activity periods from a portable location in a year with 50 total contacts will get you 500 points.  Do both and you get 1000 points.  

           There are the criteria for awards in the CQ Crew club.    I strongly suspect I will tweak them a bit.  I also hope that many of you will express your support and offer suggestions.   There are probably things I’ve overlooked, so bring them up to me and we’ll discuss.   Hopefully in a month or so, we’ll have everything firmed up.   In the meantime, start doing your part to improve VHF and UHF.  

          Print these posts out and save them.   Keep track of your progress.  I’ll enjoy seeing how everyone’s doing.  
As with anything we do, the more you spread the word, the better V/UHF will be for it. 

         Thanks for your time, 73, good luck,
         Todd   KC9BQA   EN63ao    40 N of Milwaukee
         http://www.kc9bqa.com    For Frequent VHF/UHF Updates

One Response to “CQ Crew rewards — How you can earn them.”

  1. KB9KTD Says:

    All good ideas. The CQ club does sound like a good way to promote
    our favorite bands… vhf plus.
    Couple ideas off the top of my head..
    1. Perhaps award some trivial amount of points for net check-ins to
    encourage people to get on atleast one nite a week. So if a
    station makes say 50 percent of the year’s nets the points are in
    total say 500.
    2. Award something for special enhanced contacts like Meteor or
    EME thereby encouraging station improvement and also CW and
    data mode proficiancy.
    3. Points for getting a new check in for a net. Some one that other
    wise would not have even turned on 2 meters… of 432 or other.

    I have talked to several hams that have taken down antennas for
    vhf plus for lack of activity and have over the last couple months
    had some of these same hams now confess that they should now
    put antennas back up. So your efforts have been effective and I think will continue to interest new and old hams in vhf plus.
    As always I will do what I can to support the cause and ofcourse
    improve my “dead valley” station.
    You are making a difference.