by William Eric McFadden

Two members of the Southeast Ohio Radio Adventure Team operated Freeze Your B___ Off, an operating event sponsored by the Arizona ScQRPions. Mike Hansgen, AA8EB, and Eric McFadden, WD8RIF, operated the event from an outbuilding on Mike's Chauncey, Ohio, property. Eric operated the radio. Mike helped with the antenna, logged, and rustled grub.

The station consisted of Eric's QRP Plus and his W6MMA vertical. Operation occured on 20 and 40 meters. Operations began on 20 meters just before 10am local time with a temperature at the key of 43 degrees. As the morning progressed, the little outbuilding warmed to a comfortable 54 degrees.

The bands just seemed to die about 1800Z, so Mike and Eric shut down the station until about midnight zulu, when signals were again heard on 40 meters. Stations were worked until the end of the contest period except for a dinner break. With the falling of the sun, the temperature inside the shack dropped rapidly until, with the door and a window open, in the last minute of the contest, the last QSO was achieved at a temperature at the key of 29 degrees.

The QRP Plus performed well despite the cold, and a single 7Ah gel cell battery was used for the duration of the event. The W6MMA antenna also worked well, despite buffoons tangling the radiators and support-strings during band changes.

Eric logged thirty-one QSOs on 20 and 40 meters, had 19 SPCs, a temperature multiplier of 5, a field multiplier of 4, and an alternate power multiplier of 2 for a total score of 23,560 points.