Missouri Section Net (MON) Procedures Primer
by Kent, K9ZTV
WN0X asked for a summary of CW net procedures, and this is what I came
up with off-the-cuff this afternoon. I'm sending it to a couple of
others who have expressed interest in CW traffic handling.
First, check into the net at whatever sending speed you yourself can
comfortably and accurately receive. No speed is too slow! We will
ALWAYS slow down to YOUR speed, and we will always use plain text
instead of Q-signals if you aren't comfortable with them.
Second, the NCS (net control station) will periodically send: "MON MON
MON de K9ZTV QNI" which means he is inviting anyone who wishes to check
into the Missouri CW Traffic Net, and that he is the NCS for that
session. When he completes the above, merely send a short character or
BK to get his attention (I always send a "Z" -- many traffic men use the
first letter of their calls). NCS will then respond exactly to whatever
you sent, thus letting you know he has heard you and not someone else,
and is listening for your check-in.
Third, send the following: "K9ZTV de WN0X GE QNI QRU K" (QNI
means you are wishing to check-in; QRU means you have no traffic). If
you DO have traffic, in place of QRU you would send, "QTC CHILLICOTHE 1
MOBERLY 3 K"
or some such thing. If your traffic is for outside Missouri, you would
send, "QTC TEN 3" which means you have 3 pieces of traffic for the
Tenth Region Net which is the next NTS level for out-going traffic.
Fourth, the NCS will respond: "WN0X GE NAME ES QTH PSE BK"
(self-explanatory ... respond with "RICH JEFFERSON CITY" NCS will then
likely welcome you and beg you, on bended knee, to come back again. He
will then send, "TU AS" meaning, "thank you, please wait" (AS is a
prosign with the dits and dahs run together to form one character)
Fifth, if you DO have traffic and there is someone on the net who can
handle it, at some point the NCS will send: "WN0X ES W2RRX U4
CHILLICOTHE" meaning, you and W2RRX are to QSY up 4 kilocycles and
you are to pass your traffic for Chillicothe to him.
IMPORTANT . . . the receiving station ALWAYS finds the frequency and
calls the sending station. Without this rule, both of you could be on
different frequencies (in poor conditions or on a crowded band) calling
the other with neither of you finding each other. Again . . . the
Receiving station ALWAYS calls the sending station. You tune for him,
he doesn't tune for you. And he might not be exactly Up 4 either,
depending on QRM and whether the frequency is already in use. He will
continue to call you until the two of you establish contact, or until
several minutes of trying has passed, in which case he will return to
the net frequency. During high QRN periods this does happen and
sometimes you have to go back to the main frequency. NCS will usually
ask you to try passing the traffic on the main frequency with himself
acting as a relay (QSP) if he has decent copy on you both.
Sixth, once you find the receiving station, you send . . ."W2RRX de WN0X
GE ORV?" meaning, Good Evening, are you ready for me to send?" He
will reply, "GE RICH (if he knows your name) QRV meaning, I'm ready, go
ahead and send. You would then send, "QSK" meaning you have full
break-in capability and he can break you in the middle of words
(characters, even) for repeats. If you don't have QSK capability, send
"NO QSK" so he will know he can't break you until your VOX drops out.
If you don't have full QSK, you should let your VOX drop out
occasionally to check whether he needs a fill.
Seventh, you send your message according to NTS format as amply
discussed in various ARRL publications.
Eighth, after sending your message to him, he will either send "QSL" or
else ask for fills or confirmation that he copied a particular word or
phrase correctly. Then you say your goodbyes (73, etc.) and both return
to net frequency.
Ninth, when you return to net frequency, you wait until NCS does his
"MON de K9ZTV QNI" bit. You then send "WN0X" to let him know you are
back. He will then dismiss you by saying, "R QRU QNX 73 GE" meaning,
the net has no further traffic for you, you are excused from the net.
You reply, "TU 73 VA DE WN0X GE" with VA (a prosign run together,
sometimes interpreted also as SK) meaning you will no longer be
transmitting. GE of course means, Good Evening. GA means Good
Afternoon. GM Good Morning. GN Good Night.
Just do it a few times and you'll get the hang. The only intimidating
part is assuming you can't use plain words. YOU CAN! AND DON'T BE
AFRAID TO DO SO if the Q-signals confuse you. We've used them for so
long we don't even think about them being confusing anymore. Plain
language is ALWAYS acceptable. We will always slow down as much as
needed to make you feel confident you know what is going on.
Your mission, should you chose to accept it, is to be on 3.585 at 7 p.m.
and/or 9:45 p.m. any night of the year.