After setting up, I started by running equipment tests that I didn't get finished in October. I had to wait all winter (November-April this time) to get another chance. I wanted to try using the transceiver's attenuator in conjunction with the "too hot" external preamp to see if the resulting lower number of dB worked better. It did--it raised the S/N ratio by both decreasing the noise and increasing the signal. Sounds like the receiver's front end was being overloaded. So it's time to have the gain figure of that preamp decreased a bit and try again. Since there was no time to get that done, I turned the external preamp off and just used the one in the transceiver and the one in the amplifier for this event.
I knew the sprint would be a good one when the first contact was all-time new 2m grid FN53. It was a portable-to-portable contact, too, and with big signals. I don't even have that grid on 6m yet and I have over 200 grids confirmed on 6m from FN22 (with no tower and no rotors at the home station). Later in the sprint I ran into N1BUG FN55 and that was another all-time new grid for 2m (and another one I've never heard on 6m). WB2SIH/R filled in FN33 and FN32 on the grid map for me and was the only station I worked in those grids. The only missing adjacent grids were FN23 and FN11. Best DX to the south was W3BFC FM18 on the eastern shore of MD, but his 5x8 signal suggests that others further south could have been worked also. Best DX to the east was WA1MTI FN41. Best to the northeast was Maine station N1BUG FN55 (384 miles/618 km) who was the best DX overall. Best to the north was Ottawa station VE3KKL FN25, the only station I heard to the north. I almost worked a station in southeast LP Michigan who copied the last letter of my callsign incorrectly and didn't hear my grid. That would have been 395 miles and a new best DX for this Sprint. This was one of the most fun sprints I've ever seen because of the high activity levels in almost every direction (despite no band enhancements), and because of lots of good signal strengths. Ten contacts in each of the last two hours is unprecedented. This sprint also produced the highest number of QSOs (and grids) I've had in any spring 2m Sprint since my first one in 2007.
BAND QSOs UNIQUE GRIDS --------------------- 144 50 26 -- Claimed score = 1300 --
MD UTC CALLSIGN GRID SIG ------------------------- PH 2314 K1HC/1 FN53 PH 2318 K1RZ FM19 5x9 PH 2321 W3IP FM19 PH 2325 N2GHR FN30 5x5 PH 2326 N2NT FN20 PH 2329 W2KV FN20 5x3 PH 2330 WC2K FM29 PH 2331 N3NGE FN20 5x6 PH 2335 N2RLA FN22 PH 2337 N3VS FN21 PH 2338 K0BAK/R FN20 PH 2339 WA2FGK FN21 PH 2345 W1VD FN31 PH 2345 KE2DN FN12 5x7 PH 2347 WA1MTI FN41 5x6 PH 2348 KE1LI FN41 5x6 PH 2358 AA2UK FM29 5x9 CW 0001 NE2U FN20 PH 0007 W3BFC FM18 5x8 PH 0009 K1TR FN42 PH 0013 W1GHZ FN34 PH 0017 N2FKF FN30 5x7 PH 0020 KB3VQL FN21 5x5 PH 0022 NF3R FN20 PH 0025 N2DCH FN22 PH 0030 K1TEO FN31 PH 0036 N1NQD FN13 5x5 PH 0041 N3JDR FM19 5x8 PH 0043 W3CMP FN10 PH 0044 KA2LIM FN12 PH 0105 N2LID FN12 PH 0110 VE3KKL FN25 5x6 PH 0112 KC2SFU FN22 CW 0139 W3SO FN00 PH 0142 KA1ZE/3 FN01 PH 0145 W9KXI FN12 PH 0147 K3TLP EN91 PH 0152 VA3HD FN14 PH 0156 K1GX FN31 PH 0159 N1JEZ FN44 PH 0203 AF1T FN43 PH 0204 N1JHJ FN43 PH 0207 WB2SIH/R FN33 PH 0208 N1BUG FN55 CW 0221 WA1EAZ FN42 PH 0223 WB2SIH/R FN32 PH 0236 VE3ZV EN92 PH 0240 W2CNS FN13 CW 0246 K1ZE FN31 PH 0258 K0BAK/R FM29