I am a new CW operator. Can I check into the New Zealand Net?
Yes! But you might like to listen to a few net sessions first, to get an idea of how the net works. And we also suggest looking at the resources list. Don’t feel you need to learn everything though, just jump in when you feel ready.
I don’t have any traffic. Can I check in?
Yes, the NZ Net welcomes all check-ins! You can simply say hello and give some signal reports. Or listen for a friend, and call them after the net for a chat.
How long does the net last?
Usually 10-15 minutes, but longer if there’s traffic to be handled.
How do I know who is the Net Control Station?
Listen for “QNN …”, which means “Net control is…”
If you’re still not sure, ask “QNN?”
If I am checking in late, how do I know who is on the net?
After NCS feels that most stations have checked in, they will send a list of stations, e.g. “QNS ZL1ABC ZL2DEF ZL3GHI…”
If you don’t hear that, feel free to ask “QNS?”
Once I check in, how long should I stay?
It is assumed that stations will remain on the Net until the Net finishes, or they have been excused from the Net. NCS will take check-ins for 5-10 minutes, then excuse any stations not needed for traffic handling, using the signal QNX (“you are excused from the net”). So you will hear something like this from NCS:
ZL1ABC, ZL2DEF, ZL3GHI QRU QNX TKS 73 [dit dit]
meaning “I have nothing for you, you are excused from the net, thanks, 73”
Can I leave the net earlier?
Of course, but please inform NCS, using either:
QNX? (“May I be excused from the net?”)
QNO (“I am leaving the net” This one is usually used if NCS expects that you will be leaving, e.g. to check into another net.)
Do stations move to another frequency to exchange traffic?
Yes, if a station lists traffic during the first five minutes of the net, and the receiving station also checks in during the first five minutes, Net Control usually will send them off frequency. For example, NCS might transmit “ZL1ABC QNY U5 ZL4XYZ” meaning “go up 5kHz to clear your traffic.” Stations acknowledge this instruction by each sending “R”. They return to the net as soon as they have cleared their traffic and check in again so NCS always knows where every station is. Traffic listed after the first five minutes of the net is usually passed on the net frequency.
I still have questions. Is there someone I can talk with?
Please feel free to contact Neil ZL1NZ after any net session, or via email.