CONTEST EVENTS ( Cooken Contest Animals)


2014 COOKEN CONTEST ANIMALS:        (updated  9/9/14)


JANUARY/FEBRUARY:    CQWW 160m Contests 


CW Contest: Fred and Bob  ran 100w. at Brads  FB QTH, and managed 500 QSOs in 24 hrs.  But after a strong start, M. Nature snowed us out of Day 2.


SSB Contest: Brad, Steve, Fred, TIZ-Bob and HKK-Bob put in 32 hours  and racked up  741 Q's, 61 mults, and nearly 98k points this year.  However, the Forces of Nature were again brutal, with   powerful levels of QRN the entire first night, including a blackout at around 10pm Fri, as well as  reduced  activity levels during the 2nd night due to solar eruptions and their after-effects. 


MARCH:  ARRLWW SSB DX Contest ( Mar 1-2):        WW8OH  completed 730 QSOs during excellent propagation on 10-80m, from Brad's QTH.


APRIL  ARBOR DAY from Dawes:                W8TNX  had a great turnout and  operated three stations fully  solar powered, but encountered marginal conditions - both weatherwise ( chilly, windy, rainy in the morning, sunny and cool in the pm until our solar power batteries were drained; and on the bands ( 40-20-15-2m) due to an active sun/multiple  flares on the days leading up to  Arbor Day.   QSO total were around 50.  Better luck next year.


JUNE  FIELD DAY at Four Church Farm:  W8FD decided to go qrp for FD, using  Brad and Kevins  terrific KX3 5w Elecraft rigs.  which performed admirably.  They have great receivers which made scrambling for qsos as easy as possible.  Total Q's= 325 on  cw and ssb.  Also, Alan and Mike put up  a GOTA station using their buddy-pole antenna and mast.


AUGUST      -      JOHN CLEM DAY:        W8TNX:   Thanks to Jack-Easy Money and his connections, we again were permitted to set up on the porch of  Webb House, this year deploying two rigs and two antennas.  Mike-DZ brought his   multiband vertical for 20-15-10m, which we set up in the front yard, and Ralph's donated 4BTV was the 40m antenna,  delivered by Kevin who assisted with the set up in the usual place ( the back yard.)  Jack-EM brought his trusty rig for the 40m station, and Bob-HKK brought his TS-50/tuner/power supply for the 20/15/10m station, and logging laptop.  Conditions were fair on 40m, which again was the main band.  20/15/10m: power line QRM was severe on all three bands, a notorious side effect of using vertical antennas. No sigs were heard on 10m; one QSO was made on 20m, and the remaining 97 were made on 40m ssb.  The notorious mid afternoon doldrums  kicked in from 2:30 - 3:45pm, but  contact rates really started to skyrocket on 40m as   the 4pm "pull-the-plug time" approached. ( of course!)


The day's festivities began at 8am with station and antenna set up, with the first  RF being radiated  at 10am, the August club meeting interlude at noon, chaired by Russ - W8ATA, and we pulled the plug at 4pm.  A good number of folks were on hand for set up and tear down which greatly facilitated/expedited those activities.  Thank you to all who participated.


AUGUST      -     OHIO QSO PARTY:       WW8OH did not participate in this years OHQP.  Those who did found fair conditions on 80m, very good  short skip conditions throughout Ohio on 40m, and good conditions to the USA on 20m. 


SEPTEMBER - OSPOTA:  WW8OH did not participate in this year's  Ohio State Parks on the Air contest.





2013:  Year End Numbers:  9530 total QSOs -  a new club record!  56% higher than in 2012!


Club on the air presence  continues to climb dramatically, year over year.  Thanks go out to the many who participated in one or more of our contest and special event activities.  Special Thanks go to Brad, AC8GX for his yeoman work in station set up, contest operations, and his generosity in hosting/feeding/sharing his station with the gang during 2013.


ARRL Mixed-Mode 10M Contest at Brad's.  SSB and CW modes:  The results are in and Ol' Sol DID cooperate by producing the best conditions in over 10 years.  The WW8OH team of Brad, Kevin, Fred  and Bob knocked out 1047 QSOs/209 mults, and a final score of 566,390 pts., all club records for this event. Operations were at AC8GX's station: The SSB Station ran 800w to  a SpiderBeam at 50'; and the CW Station ran 100w to a SpiderBeam at 50'.)



PA QSO Party at Brad's.  This is a cw and ssb contest.    This year WW8OH  increased it's  operating effectiveness, contacting  512 PA stations , and raising our   PAQP score to a record 50,100 points, just  5% less than the #1 score in the World, outside PA.  Our  station consisted of two barefoot rigs ( one cw, one ssb),   100 watts output, to Brad's 70 ft high 160m loop and  40 ft high fritzel antennas.  Thanks to all the visitors and operators/loggers who stopped by for some contesting camraderie.) 



CQWW DX Contest (SSB) at Brad's.  His new  Spider Beam at 52 ft got a good workout on 20-15-10, and his 70 ft high 160M horizontal loop was used to bring home the bacon on 40/80/160m.  RESULTS: 1058 total qsos and  1.295 million points scored by the team of Brad, Jack, Fred, Kevin and Bob.  WW8OH enjoyed the BEST propagation in over 10 years as  all the bands were open worldwide and filled to the brim with activity.  One hint that  cndx were good was  the 78 qsos we  had with Japan - the single largest number in any one country in  the contest.  Our 2013 scores were club records for any DX contest, and  amazing to behold by those who were there.)


2012:      6120 QSOs   That's how many QSOs COOKEN club stations made during 2012 during our contest, FD and special event station activations.   


WW8OH competed in  nine  different contests. We activated W8TNX - our Special Event station - for Arbor Day at Dawes Arboretum, and Johnny Clem Day at the LCHS in Newark. And, of course, W8FD,  was on the air from Four Churches Farm,  for  ARRL Field Day!


WW8OH took home 1st Place in Ohio in the  January 2012  CQWW160 meter CW Contest, in our first ever attempt on Top Band! .  Club members erected a 40 ft inverted L with 22 x 65 ft radials  on a cold December day,  at The Barn, another of our operating locations, using it for both the CW and SSB 160 meter CQWW contests. 


WW8OH  brought home several   2nd Place finishes  in  events like OSPOTA, FD, the PA QSO Party,  etc. In addition to having the #2 score in the world outside PA, we  won the coveted Clean Sweep plaque for working all 67 PA counties! 







11 / 1000 posts
Jul 9, 2018  ( 1 post )  
Bob Elek (w3hkk)

2018 ARRL FIELD DAY: W8FD @ Ellas Park:


With DZ-Mike at the helm,  COOKEN    made a return to contesting for the 2018 FD.  It was a true group effort that put two stations on the air, operating from 80-10m as well as 6-2m.  A new end fed  wire for 80-10m plus a windom for the 2nd HF station, and an impressive 2m and 6m pair of yagis  gave W8FD  a solid presence on  those bands.  We managed to operate for  over 16 hours of the 24 hour contest.  As always, a few more operators   would be welcome.


Thanks to everyone who were generous in providing antennas, gear, equipment, generators and  food, as well as help in set up and tear down, and to Eldon for his massaging of multiple logs for submissiion to the ARRL. . 


Hopefully, this   spirit of  adventure and activity can be carried forward to future events.

Feb 24, 2014  ( 1 post )  
Cooken Club (cooken)




CQWW 160m Contests ( Jan and Feb):

CW Contest: Fred and Bob  ran 100w. at Brads  FB QTH, and managed 500 QSOs in 24 hrs.  But after a strong start, M. Nature snowed us out of Day 2.


SSB Contest: Brad, Steve, Fred, TIZ-Bob and HKK-Bob put in 32 hours  and racked up  741 Q's, 61 mults, and nearly 98k points this year.  However, the Forces of Nature were again brutal, with   powerful levels of QRN the entire first night, including a blackout at around 10pm Fri, as well as  reduced  activity levels during the 2nd night due to solar eruptions and their after-effects. 


2014 ARRLWW SSB DX Contest ( Mar 1-2):


Up next, this weekend, at Brad's.



Jul 22, 2013  ( 1 post )  
Bob Elek (w3hkk)

2013 CQ WW VHF CONTEST produces a Record Score for WW8OH:


Brad and Bob  operated  this 27 hour ong contest from Brad's QTH,  putting in  c. 18 hours  in as Multi-Op Low Power entry on 2M ssb/cw and 6M ssb/cw.  Tom,  W8TNI assisted on Sat night, and urged us on.


Propagation was - similar to the ARRL VHF Contest in early June - very spotty, with  just two notable openings.  Some say this is not unexpected during solar maximums like the current year.


Sat night  the 6M band was fairly well populated by  weak to fair signals from all over

 0 and 7 land, requiring a diligent combination of  search and pounce and  single frequency CQing to produce a steady string of takers. At about the same time, a small opening into Europe produced two easy contacts with Portugal, and a couple of weak EA8's (heard but not worked)  that barely rose above the noise here at WW8OH.  


Then Sunday morning  NP4A appeared and was nabbed by Brad at around 8:30am.   A few sigs were in and out, until around 10:30 when a  nice one hour opening into FL produced a  steady stream of takers on 50.130, with peak rates of 48 per hour (on a 20 min sample)  and 33 actual qsos during that one hour, before conditions dissipated. 


The rest of the day was slow and we  almost burned out the MFJ CQ Contest voice recorder, with just the occasional taker to show for our effort. 


Meanwhile on 2M, we finished with 35 contacts, many via ducting, with the farthest being  Milwaukee, WI, and Ontario, Canada.  Indiana, IL, WI, NY, PA, MD produced the most contacts, outside of Ohio.  Inside Ohio, Central Ohio and NE Ohio were best represented, as one might expect.


Summary: VHF skills  are developing as only they can be, when you operate a band in contest mode and learn just what is  possible, during good times and bad.  Our 11 el 2M yagi  at 55 ft produced better than expected! 2M is fascinating to listen to during a contest, with signals popping in and out, in spurts.  (Brads  newly acquired IC746 proved excellent for both ssb and cw. This is a very good HF+VHF rig.  And the 6M 5  el M2 yagi at 51 ft is a nicely directional but not too narrow front lobe antenna that worked anyone we could copy.


We have the set up at Brad's to be competitive on VHF.  Very early returns on put us in 17th place  in NA out of 80 submitted logs. Pretty good for two guys and a truck.  Especially considering that  propagation really favored the Pacific NW, FL and the East Coast this time around. Oh to live on the coast where VHF  openings happen with far greater frequency than here in the midwest.


With the weak signal levels this year, and QSB that produced stations that were here one second and gone the next, we missed out on 30-40 contacts that could not be completed.  Ah ....Life on VHF.


One of these days we will again see the multiple openings of 2010 and 2011, perhaps once the current solar peak has passed. Now with our  quality set up, we are ready, willing, and able to give it a solid GO!


Lessons learned:

1. Use a voice keyer/memory keyer for routine CQing and save your voice for "runs."

2. Always have CW capabilities ready to go on the fly.  We made numerous extra contacts including  Portugal on  cw mode,  with other cw contacts on both 2M and 6M.

3. Headsets are almost necessary when  both stations are in the same room. Brad had a supply of excellent headsets including Heil ( which really are terrific.)

4. Never forget to be ready for the "Final Putsch." It works.

5. Have a band plan. Anticipate openings and be around for them.

6. A good contester  doesnt pull the VHF plug when the band is dead. S/he works thru it with various operating techniques.

Apr 3, 2013  ( 2 posts )  
Bob Elek (w3hkk)



The week didnt look promising.  SSNs dropping. A indices  in the 20s.   Warm WX 
with its  high QRN on Fri night in particular. 
DX wasnt that good.  10 was spotty. 15 better but not great.  20-40 were loaded 
with sigs and nowhere to go. 
WW8OH ( 500w to a 35 ft high hexxbeam and a 70 ft high  600 ft horizontal loop)  
has been on a quest to score 1000 Q's and 1M points in some contest! ANY 
contest!   So far this year we'd get 600 Q's on Day One, but struggle on Day 
Two, falling short....usually in the mid 800s. We were thinking the WPX could do 
it for us.
WW8OH went on the air with Brad, Kevin and Bob.   
Fri was  a steady slog. all night. Heavy QRN  hurt scores on 40-80-160m.    
Saturday  was more of the same....but the QRN was easing.   Around 9 pm Sat 
night we  moved to 40m....and began to work them...1 at a time....then 2 then 3 
then a small pile, then.....stations 10 deep!  We were  logging them  as fast as 
we could.  AC8GX was at the mic.  AC8GI was at the laptop. And I was  listening 
for calls and shouting them out.  Poor AC8GI.  He was getting one call in his 
left ear, and another call in his right ear, and had to  choose which one to go 
with.  Our rates were building (N3FJP software) into the 40s, 50s, 60's, 80's, 
100, 120, 140, and peaking out at 149 Q's per hour per the 20 min adjusted 
number.  We were having a  BALL!.   This went on for FIVE hours.  til  around 2 
am.  Sunday morning.  Loud ones, Weak ones.  In between ones. Mostly Stateside 
sigs.  Bless the West coast. They were ALL on the air in droves.  
By the time we broke for sleep Sunday at around 3 am,  we had set club records 
with 1100 Q's and 1M points.  What an amazing run on 40m.  Nearly half of our 
total Q's  had come on 40m! 
Sunday at 11am we resumed, but without any super runs.  By 6 pm we were up to 
1300  Qs but our dreams of hitting 1500 was dying.  At 7pm we decided to see if 
40M had another run left in it.  7.240 was quiet...and it began again.  A few, 
then more then another pile up!  We spent the last 55 minutes in ham 
heaven......until at 7:55 we heard a carrier, then music.  A broadcast station 
had  ended it for us......and we finished with 1450 Q's and over 1.5M points.  
COOKEN Club records, from our  QTH in Fairfield County. 
PS  80M gave us a nice couple of hours on Sat night, as well,  despite the high 
QRN.  But in order of QSOs, it was 40 by a mile, then 20, 15, 10, 80 and finally 
It feels GOOD to hear the pile up ...calling YOU!   Guys telling us we owned the 
frequency....were 40 over..... DX worked included  a smattering of good 
ones...Antarctica, VK, ZL, JA, DU, YB, CN2R,  a fair number from the NE coast of 
Brazil,  some really OLD guys in G, EI, GM, F, and SM5.  Guys I remember working 
back in the 60s!  Still going at it, getting a thrill out of contesting.  There 
is hope for all of us! 



Bob Elek (w3hkk)

2013 CQ WW WPX Score:


The COOKEN ARC three man crew sonsisting of Brad, Kevin and Bob with our  500 watt entry/hexxbeam at 35 ft/600 ft horizontal loop at 70 ft produced:


Total QSOS:      1449

Total Score:  1,589,460 BAND     QSOS    

160m        9

80m        87

40m      572

20m      358

15m      385

10m        38



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