After the ham radio contest is over, many ham radio contest operators review the log before submitting it to the contest sponsor. This section shows how to review the log beyond fixing the contacts during the contest using the Edit QSO tool.
This section will highlight how to review the ham radio contest log using the following tools:
- What to look for in reviewing your log
- Review of editing the log using the Edit QSO tool
- Finding Call signs in the log
- How to Reorder your QSO’s according to Time
- Editing Time On/Off
- Changing the day/time
- After Recording the Contest
What to look for in reviewing your log
Reviewing logs can be simple or complex depending upon the station operator. But all looks should minimally be reviewed for obvious errors. WriteLog supports this type of review. Here’s what to look for:
- Look for any ham radio contacts that have a ‘?’ in the log. This means that WriteLog does not know what to do with the exchange recorded. For example, in Sweepstakes, entering ‘NVD’ as the section will get a ‘?’ for the QSO. Changing this to the correct abbreviation,’NV,’ will provide you the corrected log (or multiplier!).
- Look for any ham radio contacts that have a red ‘B’ in the line. This QSO is not counted towards your score because WriteLog thinks the contact is ‘out of band.’ There are a variety of causes from not including the frequency in the ‘band’ listing to not checking ‘LSB is really FSK’ for RTTY contacts. Determine the cause and then fix the contact.
- Look for any ‘X’ notations in the log. This means that WriteLog has not counted this contact.
- If you HAVE edited any of your QSO’s, even during the contest, you can, before log submission, recalculate your score. For example, correcting the ‘NVD’ in Sweepstakes to ‘NV’ for Nevada might mean a new multiplier. Recalculating the score after reviewing your log insures WriteLog counts the multiplier. To recalculate the score, select ‘Contest’ from the main WriteLog tool bar, then click on ‘Recalculate Score.’ Note: Cabrillo submissions will have the sponsor of the contest calculate your score regardless of what WriteLog (or any other contest program) says your score is for the contest.
Review of Editing the Log using the Edit QSO tool
Here is a quick review of editing the log file from WriteLog:
- Click once on the log line to be edited in the QSO Log window. The QSO will be highlighted in black.
- Double click on the field that needs editing, such as the appropriate multiplier field. This action opens the QSO Log Edit window automatically. Make your change needed for the log and press ‘Enter.’ The window automatically closes and your QSO edit for that field is now complete.
- Insure that all portions of your QSO that was in error are now correct.
Finding Ham Radio Call signs in the Log
To find a specific ham radio call sign in the log, type the ham radio call sign in the QSO Entry window and select ‘Edit|Goto QSO’ or press ‘Ctrl+G’. After typing ‘W9ZM’ in the QSO Entry Window, WriteLog will highlight W9ZM in the log.
If you don’t know the exact call sign, use a ‘?’ or a ‘*’ character in the Call field in the QSO Entry window and WriteLog performs a more restricted search. With these characters, a match occurs only if every character matches except that:
? – matches any single character
For example, ?9ZM will produce K9ZM and W9ZM
* – matches any string of zero or more characters
For example, K4J* will produce K4JA and K4JAB
How to Reorder you QSO’s according to Time
Perhaps you were working a 2-radio ham radio contest but had separate logs, PC’s, (and radios) rather than tackling WriteLog’s 2-radio capabilities and now you need to merge the logs. Once the logs are merged, you will want to reorder the QSO’s in the log according to time.
First, Highlight all of the QSO’s to be reordered by time (this could be all QSO’s or just a group). Then select ‘Edit’ and ‘Reorder QSO’s by Time’ as shown on the screen below:
Once this option is selected, the log order will change based upon time shown in the log for contacts.
Editing Time On/Off
As you can see from the screen print above, you can also edit your times that you were on and off during the ham radio contest by selecting ‘Edit|Time On/Off.’ Note that this option will only appear in contests that require you to take time off based upon your contest rules and entry class. Also note that for Cabrillo log submittals, the Cabrillo evaluation software used by the contest sponsors will automatically calculate your off times.
Selecting this option produces the following dialog box:
WriteLog automatically calculates time on/off from the time gaps between QSO’s and lists those times in the box labeled “Calculated”. If you have already logged any times off, WriteLog shows how you’ve logged them in the box labeled “Enter these in log”. To use WriteLog’s calculated off times, just click on the Add All button and then click OK.
WriteLog doesn’t commit any changes you make in this dialog until you click OK. That’s what the “Removed” box is for. If you remove any logged Times Off from the log book, WriteLog shows those removed choices in the Removed box. You can add them back in with the Add button.
To manually enter off time for a contest, you don’t use this dialog box. Just scroll to the QSO where you want to show a time off, and click in the column labeled “TIME-OFF”. Type in the starting and ending times of the off period in UTC.
Other features of this dialog:
- If you double click any entry in any of the three lists, WriteLog does an Add or Remove as appropriate.
- When you Remove an off time from the “Enter these in log” box, WriteLog remembers whether it was originally a manually entered off time or a calculated one and puts it back in its original list.
- WriteLog scrolls the log to show you the corresponding QSO if you click on any entry of the three lists.
Changing the Day/Time
Sometimes our computers are off by an hour. Or a day. Here is a fast way to modify the date and time on the QSO’s.
1. Select all of the QSO’s in a given hour by clicking on the first and then, holding down the shift key, clicking on the last QSO for the given hour. You will select all the Q’s for the hour (00Z) as shown here:
Next, double click on a highlighted QSO in the Time column. A little dialog box will come up as shown below. Change the highlighted hour to your correct time, and click OK:
At this point, another dialog box opens asking to make the same change for the rest of the highlighted QSO’s. Answer ‘yes.’
Once you select ‘yes,’ all the other highlighted QSO’s (in my case, the 00Z ones) will change to the new hour placed into the time box.
Note too that at your crossover point on the date, you can click on the date in the highlighted QSO’s as well and the same dialog box will work for the date. So if you had 100 QSO’s in hour 23 of the first day that should really be in the next day, you could change the time and then change the date using the same process.
After Recording the Contest
WriteLog has the ability to record the entire contest. To review a recorded QSO, single click a QSO to highlight it and then right click the mouse:
Right clicking the W7CT QSO will provide a menu selection with the last option being ‘Review Audio from this QSO.’ Click the selection and WriteLog will open its internal player and play the audio from the QSO.