Contest How ToFldigi
supports a basic contesting format. Select the menu item
View/Contest fields to see how the qso entry entry fields change for
contest data. You will see that fldigi has fields to support
received and sent contest numbers as well as generic contest exchange
serial number out (#Out) is automatically initialized and updated by
the built-in serial number generator. You can enter the
appropriate exchange information via the keyboard or mouse. Text
in the Rx pane can be selected by the usual left-click-swipe of
highlighting. Then right click anywhere after highlighting the
desired text and a popup menu will appear allowing you to select the
destination QSO field. Make your selection and the info is placed
in the correct text box. Note that the popup menu changes with
the QSO logging view and also with a change in "Quick entry". A
full description is found in the description of operating the Logbook.
The important thing to note for contest operation is that the
Call and Serial # are single word captures. The Xchg capture can
be either single word or multiple word (mark / right click). If
the Xchg field has text contents then the new capture is appended to
end of the current text in that field. That means you can point
to the word representing
the field, right click and select from the menu. You do not need
to highlight the text for the word capture. You can very rapidly
fill in the serial number and the exchange data (even if multi value)
by simply pointing and right clicking on the desired word.
set up fldigi for contesting you will need to open configure contest.
the 1st row contains what info you want sent with the appropriate macro
tag. ie...if the contest requires rst and name you would fill in the
box with your name. The contents of this field are accessed from
a macro with the <XOUT> tag. You will also need to check the rst
always 599 box
as this is the de-facto signal report in contests.
If you are
participating in a cw contest you may want to select the "Send CW cut
numbers", cut numbers is the norm for a CW contest. The cut
numbers will send N for 9
and T for zero.
The next box contains the needed requirements
to use serial numbers for a contest. you will always want to use
leading zeros, start with 1 and use 3 digits. Press reset to
initialize the #Out QSO field to the Start number.
Check the appropriate fields for determining if this is a duplicate call. If
a duplicate is detected the Call entry will be highlighted as shown in
the "Dup Color" button. Pressing this button opens a color
selector so you may customize the color. There are many choices
to alert you to a duplicate
contact. The duplicate is based on the logical AND of all of the
fields to be checked. The DUPE is cleared when you press the
clear QSO log button (the brush icon).
After you have filled in all the required infomation, make sure you save and close.
YOU MUST click the Reset button in the Serial number panel for the
serial number counter to be initialized. You should also press
the QSO clear button (broom) in the qso entry widget for the other
changes to take effect.
would be best to create a new log for each contest. You create a
new log by selecting the menu item File/Logs/New logbook. The
default new log name will be newlog.adif on Linux and newlog.adi
on Windows. You can rename the new log file now or later by
using the system file manager or when you save the log. The import/export feature of
fldigi will allow you to export the log into your everday logging
software or the built-in fldigi logbook.
Restarting a contest sessionYou
might have closed down fldigi in the middle of a contest, everyone
needs a break now and then. You then start fldigi and want to
continue the contest. Here are the steps to insure that you
continue operations with no glitches.
You are ready to keep on contesting
- Load your macro file that contains your contest macros (more on that below)
- Select the menu item View/Contest fields
- Select the menu item View/Logbook
- Make sure you have the contest logbook open ... if not then this is the time to open that logbook database.
Select the menu item "File/Logs/Open logbook..." and find your log data file.
at the last record and check the serial number sent. Enter that
number plus one in the Start entry on the config contest tab (see
- Press the Reset button in that panel.
Remembering a contactIf you are copying a potential contact but you are not being heard you can save fldigi's modem state using one of two methods
A line of text will be inserted at the end of the Rx text buffer. It will appear similar to this:
- double click the signal on the waterfall
- right click on the Rx panel and select "Insert marker"
<<2008-12-30T10:06Z BPSK-31 @ 3580000+0781>>
date-time, the mode, the transceiver operating frequency and the audio
offset will be recorded. The text line is in blue and behaves in
a way that you might expect a url reference to behave in a web browser
window. Work a few more contacts (even on a different band or
frequency) and then scroll the Rx pane to that special divider.
Left click on the line of text and fldigi will restore the
transceiver to its frequency, change the mode to the saved mode and put
the waterfall cursor at the audio offset frequency. Changing the
transceiver frequency will only work if you are using CAT control of
your transceiver. If you are not using CAT control the mode and
waterfall cursor will still be restored.
There is no limit to
the number of divider lines that can be inserted into the Rx pane.
They will all be removed when the Rx pane is cleared.
Saving the entire sessionSelect
the menu item "File/Logs/Log all RX/TX text". If this toggle menu
is checked your entire session of received and sent text will be saved
to a file in the fldigi default files folder. It will be given a
name synonomous with the date and time is is started, ie:
fldigi20081230.log. You can review this log by selecting the menu
item "File/Show config" which will open your OS default file explorer
to the fldigi files folder. The file is an ASCII text file.
The format of the daily log is shown in Working Logs. OK, now we have fldigi setup for basic contesting, lets
move on to some ideas on macros to use. I tend to make generic one size
fits all macros. I recommend that you make a new macro file, mine is
named contest.mdf, this will give you 48 macros to use based on the
type of contest you are entering. Take a good look at the examples I
have listed, you will notice there are no commas, hyphens or other
extraneous items. I have seen just about every example of a poorly
thought out macro there is or has ever been dreamed up. Classic
The list goes on and on. Just think, you have to try and capture the exchange, try it and you will see what I mean.
- w3nr you are 599 in Alabama your serial number is 001-001-001 how copy ??
- hello ed thanks for the call you are 599-599-001-001-001 qth Alabama back to you
you enter a contest you have to decide whether you are going to sit on
one frequency and call CQ (Run) or are you going to tune the band
looking for stations to work (S&P). So lets set up some macros that
should cover both cases.
Several new macro tags
have been created to facilitate contesting, these include the following
|<LOG>||add QSO data to the logbook &
clear the QSO data fields|
|<CNTR>||insert current contest serial number into the text stream|
|<INCR>||increment contest serial number|
|<DECR>||decrement contest serial number|
|<QSOTIME>||current log time in Zulu HHMM format|
|<LDT>||local date time|
|<ILDT>||LDT in iso-8601 format|
|<ZDT>||Zulu date time|
|<IZDT>||ZDT in iso-8601 format|
|actual time of execution of the macro ... useful where exact times are used to match contest log submissions
|save entire contents of the expanded macro text to the "Exchange Out" field in the logbook
|mark the beginning of a text string that is to be saved to the "Exchange Out" field in the logbook
|mark the end of the text string that is to be saved to the "Exchange Out" field in the logbook
note: <SAVEXCHG> and the <XBEG>...<XEND> macro tags are mutually exclusive
<XBEG>...<XEND> is given priority if both all three are specified in a single macro
See Macros for additional information on editing and using the fldigi macro system.
RUN MacrosWe need just a few, starting with a CQ macro - Put this in the F1 key defintion
cq test de <MYCALL> <MYCALL> cq k
that I left 2 spaces between my call and 3 spaces at the end before the
k. This will make it easier for a station to grab my call and the k on
the end elminates garbage characters before my macro finishes. The
tx/rx are on seperate lines as I want to be sure my macro is on a line
by itself and not mixed in with screen garbage.
Now the exchange macro - Put this in the F2 key definition
<CALL> 599 <CNTR> <CNTR> <X1> <X1> <CALL> k
do I have his call at the beginning as well as the end, to make sure I
have copied his call correctly. You will also see that I have not as
yet logged the contact,why, well are you sure he does not need to
correct his call or ask for a repeat.
You are asked to repeat
the exchange, you can just re-send the exchange macro, this verfies all
of the information. Now he sends you his info and if you have copied it
correctly you need a TU macro. - Put this in the F3 key definition
qsl tu qrz test <MYCALL> k
we have done all the necessary items to complete the exchange. Notice
that I did not log the contact until after everything was correct. I
have fldigi set to clear on save, so when the <LOG> part of the
macro executes the QSO area is cleared.
Thats the end of my RUN macro setup, told you it was rather simplistic and generic.
rarely if ever use S&P, but there are times I need to, especially
if my QSO rate drops while running. Again the macros are very generic
with only the needed info. If band
conditions warrant you may want to send your call 3 times. Put this in the F5 key definition
<MYCALL> <MYCALL> k
Why just my call ?? Well I assume the other guy already knows his call !
The exchange macro is basically the same as the RUN macro. Put this one in the F6 key definition
599 <CNTR> <CNTR> <X1> <X1> k
you see I have not as yet logged the QSO or incremented the serial
number. This is the final S&P macro. Put this one in
the F7 key definition
this is the most important macro you will ever need......trust me.
Put it where you won't fail to find it. How about F9 ?
You will see that it is used many times during a contest, especially with weak stations and heavy QRN/QRM.
time sent in Tx stream
repeat execution of <QSOTIME> before a <LOG> macro or a save to log button press will resend the original time
<LOG> macro or a save-to-log button press appends the QSOTIME to
the STX_STRING field in the adif log record and clears the QSOTIME.
An example of the SAVEXCHG macro tag
use at end of a contest exchange to save the entire exchange string in STX_STRING
usurps QSOTIME if both are contained in same macro text, ie:
"<RST> <CNTR> <QSOTIME><SAVEXCHG>" will send an
exchange as 599 024 1125 if RST = 599, Counter = 024 and time of
execution is 1125
repeats the same as <QSOTIME >
<LOG> macro or a a save-to-log button press saves the associated
macro text (after expansion). QSOTIME and the saved exchange text
are cleared after the save occurs.
<RST> <CNTR> <XOUT> <QSOTIME><SAVEXCHG>
where RST = 599, CNTR = 0125, XOUT = AL, QSOTIME = 1433
will save this string to the Exchange Out field in the logbook: "599 0125 AL 1433"
Please note that you should not include any text or macro tags that are
not to be a part of Exchange Out. If your macro had this:
<TX><CALL> UR <RST> <CNTR> <XOUT> <QSOTIME> de <MYCALL> k<RX><SAVEXCHG>
where CALL = W3NR, MYCALL = W1HKJ
the saved Exchange Out field would contain: "W3NR UR 599 0125 AL 1433 de W1HKJ k"
Probably not what you want. Use separate function keys for the
"<TX>CALL ..." and the "de <MYCALL> k<RX>" or use the next set of macro tags
These two macro tags are delimiters for capturing the transmited exchange data, for example:
<MYCALL> QSL <XBEG><RST> <CNTR>
will place the expanded <RST> <CNTR> <QSOTIME> into the Exchange Out
field of the logbook when the contact is saved. This is much
better illustrated with a screen shot. This one shows the macro
editor contents, the logbook entry in Exchange Out, and the transmit text buffer.