Wednesday, September 09, 2009

Here's why you should use Logbook of The World

I've been a fan of Logbook of The World (LoTW) since it was announced by the ARRL, and have written about it in previous posts. I've gotten a lot of stations confirmed by the use of this electronic QSL method, but today was, I think, the first time that I've gotten a confirmation for an all-time new entity via LoTW prior to receiving a physical card. By way of explanation, for new entities, I always send out a card to the station that I worked. At this point that's a relatively rare occurrence, so I normally mail my QSL card to the other station pretty quickly. Under the best of circumstances, I'm thrilled to hear back from the other station in 2 or 3 weeks. It's not unusual to wait 3 months or even longer (sometimes a lot longer; I'm still getting cards back from stations that I contacted in 2000), but in this case, I got confirmation via LoTW today for a contact made just 3 days ago. In fact, the total elapsed time between me "sending" my QSL record to LoTW and the confirmation being made was a grand total of 36 hours. (This information is available within the system.) You can't beat that kind of turnaround time.

It's not that unusual to get a confirmation from a domestic US station within minutes of a contact (especially at the end of a contest, where many stations all upload their log information at once), but this is a confirmation of a contact that I made with a station located in the Solomon Islands. Wow.

And yes, I will send for a physical card for this contact as well, just because it's fun to have the cards.

Posted via email from k2dbk's posterous


  1. I've used LoTW since I was on HF which is only just over 1 year ago. When I applied for DXCC, I had over 100 entities via LoTW. I'm not sure how many I only had via LoTW, but it was more then half. When I applied I had I think 14 or 19 QSL cards as part of that application to cover entities I had QSL cards for but not LoTW QSLs.

    Like you, I enjoy getting the cards and have sent out many hundreds and I'm just starting to get some in via the bureau. I also sent many direct for some new entities and received those too, but for the most part LoTW is how I got all the confirmations.

    I'm sure over the upcoming months/years, I'll receive more QSL cards for new ones that are already confirmed via LoTW months/years earlier, but I enjoy getting the cards.

    K2DSL - David

  2. I too am a devoted users of LOTW
    and if you work me and want a QSL then please use LOTW
    If you want a real printed qsl card then please send an sase, snail mail of qsl's is time consuming and I would rater either eQSL or qsl via LOTW
    I however would love to see the ARRL adopt a simpler method for users to join and use LOTW
    I know several friends that struggle with the certificate key issues
    Cheers !