This is a little on the delayed side as I thought that I had posted this a few weeks ago!
Prior to the VHF contest I always try and do a run through of equipment, especially when it comes to software as updates can hose drivers, port linking, etc. I remembered having some issues with WSJT-X the last time I had it running on my MacBook, which would have been the June contest.
I was not planning on having FT modes be a primary focus, but I did want it ready in case of any unique openings, which did in fact happen. I updated the software, and tuned the FT-818 to receive on 144.174, and make sure that I’m actually transmitting audio on the end of the 7100 – enough experience with that being my simple problem. I put out one test CQ call using 1/2 a watt into a mobile antenna in the corner of the basement that I use just to talk on the local repeater during our RACES net. Everything sounded good, it was working fine on transmit, so I just hung around for a second as I could hear a signal transmitting in town, and figured that I would check the decode. Low and behold it wasn’t someone in town, it was someone about 20 miles away… and they were calling me back! They must have a good antenna to receive my 1/2 a watt in the basement!
That gave a good laugh, and was a great start to contest weekend!