5MHz Permission in Spain

At the end of November 2015, the existing Spanish 5MHz permission came to a close.

Following the result of the WRC-15 decision on 5MHz, the Spanish administrator has now permitted access to the new allocation from 5351.5 to 5366.5 kHz with 15W maximum EIRP and 3kHz maximum bandwidth, using SSB and CW modes.

The permission runs until 31 December 2016.

Christmas Contests

UK Christmas Cumulative Contest

In the UK the Christmas Cumulatives take place from Saturday 26th December through to
Tuesday 29th.  Activity is on all bands between 50 and 432MHz each day from 1400 to 1600 UTC.  The exchange is signal report, serial number and locator.

DARC Christmas Contest

The DARC Christmas Contest takes place on Boxing Day/St Stephen’s Day (26th) from 0830 to
1059UTC on 80m and 40m.  The exchange is signal report and serial number with German stations sending DOK or NM.

The XMAS-Contest is a very popular short-contest sponsored by the DARC. It’s the last competition which counts for the German annual club championship, which ensures a competitive field of participants from all parts of the country. For these, the XMAS-contest which only lasts 2.5 hours truly is a sprint contest, where every second wasted can hurt the score. But there is another feature which makes it unique: The QSY rule. After completing a contact, the station which called CQ on the frequency has to move and leave the frequency to the calling station, Contrary to most contests where the big guns with high power are occupying the run frequencies for most of the contest, in the XMAS contest the skill, speed and experience of the operator is the key to success. And a clean log is a must: More than once, the top places in the XMAS contest changed from the claimed scores to the final results, where bad contacts were removed,

But the XMAS-Contest is also an event where you meet many old and new friends, most of them for the last time in that year, and you often hear the words “Frohes Fest” (“Merry Xmas!”) or in CW “FF” after a QSO.

Also the propagation makes the XMAS contest an interesting and challenging event. Especially on 40m, the skip zone is often too large to make contacts within Germany at the start of the contest; yet the multipliers from 40m are needed to achieve a high score. The right strategy and a lot of experience are more helpful than a big amplifier.

Foreign stations are always welcome to take part, and with the current conditions on 40m, they truly have an advantage in propagation over the DLs.

The Stew Perry Topband Distance Challenge

Known as The Big Stew, the Stew Perry Topband Distance Challenge runs for 24 hours starting 3pm on Saturday 26th. Entrants are limited to 14 hours operating, which, considering the band is closed during daylight hours, seems about right for Middle America. In Europe the band is open for 14-18 hours, depending on how far north you live. The exchange is your four character locator.

Gabi EB1BT dies in Taliban attack on Spanish Embassy in Kabul

King Felipe of Spain awarded posthumous police bravery medals to Isidro Gabino San Martín Hernández (Gabi EB1BT) and his colleague Jorge García Tudela on Tuesday evening, during a public funeral service for the two men upon their return to Spain from Afghanistan.

The two men died following a Taliban attack on the Spanish Embassy in Kabul, Afghanistan and the evening of Friday 11th December 2015.

Gabi EB1BT on duty at the Spanish Embassy in Kabul where he died in a Taliban attack.

Gabi EB1BT on duty at the Spanish Embassy in Kabul where he died in a Taliban attack.


A group of suicide bombers” began the attack on the Embassy at 7 p.m. Afghan time on Friday, in the Shirpur district of the Afghan capital.

A suicide bomber detonated an explosives-laden vehicle at the entrance gate at first, opening the way for other attackers.

Afghan Interior Ministry spokesman Sediq Sediqqi said on Twitter that: “Afghan Police Special Forces have killed all the attackers who were involved in last night terrorist attack in Kabul”. Four Afghan policemen” and three suicide bombers also died in the fight which followed.

Spanish Air Force aircraft carrying the coffins of the two policemen arrived at the Torrejón airbase in Madrid on Tuesday morning. Queen Letizia accompanied the King, along with the Prime Minister and Home Secretary. Seven other police officers whp survived the attack were also present, having returned to Spain on the same flight.


Spain’s Home Secretary offered the King’s and the Prime Minister’s condolences to Mr. Gabino’s widow and ordered Spanish flags flown at half-mast for three days on police buildings.

SKSE European Sprint – TONIGHT 1945-2215 UTC

The Straight Key Century Club European Sprint takes place TONIGHT from 19.45 TO 22.15 UTC/GMT

Everyone is invited to join in. SKCC members will sent RST, Name, Country Code and SKCC number. Non-members send RST and name (and QTH if you wish).

19.45 to 20.00 is dedicated to QRS slow morse.
Main Sprint is from 2000 to 2200.

The sprint finishes off with another session of QRS from 2200 to 2215.

Look around 3550, 7038, 14050, 21050kHz depending on band conditions.