You’ll have quite a lot on your mind during those initial QSOs, so trying to remember what to say and when to say it can be surprisingly difficult. Fear not, for LIDS is happy to provide you with this crib sheet to help you through those first contacts. Print this page and keep it close by in your shack.
You don’t need to follow this to the letter – in fact as you gain confidence you’ll find yourself going off-script as the conversation takes you over and you want to make it more personal – but this covers the basics of a ‘rubber stamp’ QSO.
In this example, you are M0ABC and you are answering a CQ call from K9XYZ, but if it’s you calling CQ then you just swap the roles.
Pro-signs have been underlined. There are three in general use: AR signifies the end of the message, KN marks the end of your transmission and an invitation to the other station to reply, and SK says it’s the end of the contact and your last transmission to that station.
K9XYZ: CQ CQ CQ DE K9XYZ K9XYZ K9XYZ PSE K
M0ABC: K9XYZ DE M0ABC M0ABC M0ABC KN
K9XYZ: M0ABC DE K9XYZ = GA ES TNX FER CALL = UR RST 599 599 = NAME IS JANE JANE QTH NEW YORK NEW YORK = HW? AR M0ABC DE K9XYZ KN
M0ABC: K9XYZ DE M0ABC = GA JANE TNX FB RPT UR RST 579 579 = OP JOHN JOHN ES QTH YORK YORK THE OLD ONE HI = HW? AR K9XYZ DE M0ABC KN
K9XYZ: M0ABC DE K9XYZ = R TNX RPT ES INFO JOHN = RIG IS FTDX1200 PWR 100W ANT IS YAGI = WX IS SUNNY ES WARM 100F = HW? AR M0ABC DE K9XYZ KN
M0ABC: K9XYZ DE M0ABC = RIG IS FT817 5W ES ANT IS DIPOLE = WX IS WET AND COLD AR K9XYZ DE M0ABC KN
K9XYZ: M0ABC DE K9XYZ = MNI TNX INFO ES FB QSO = PSE QSL VIA BURO = 73 ES CUAGN AR M0ABC DE K9XYZ SK
M0ABC: K9XYZ DE M0ABC = FB JANE TNX FER NICE QSO 73 ES BCNU AR K9XYZ DE M0ABC SK
K9XYZ: TU 73
M0ABC: TU E E
If you want an even simpler template to remember as you get more familiar with the how to say things in CW then you can try this:
- CQ call / answer
- RST / Name / QTH
- Rig / Power / Antenna / WX
- Thanks / QSL info / 73
This information is also available to download as a PDF for ready reference in your shack.