Information and Rules for the 2015
CQ-WE Contest

Updated 07-Jan-2015

The Annual CQ-WE (Western Electric) Contest is open to all Radio Amateurs. The objective is to contact, via ham radio, as many Radio Amateurs as possible who currently work for, did work for, or are retired from, any part of the pre-divestiture "Bell System", or any company that was created from the separated parts of what was once the "Bell System". This includes AT&T, Bell Labs, Western Electric, Local Phone Companies, and many other companies that are/were part of the "Bell System". Contract employees of these companies are considered to be working for the Bell System for purposes of this contest.
Please note: The rules are subject to review and change by the
Contest Committee until October 1st.
- - - - - -
Please use the most recent forms since they reflect the latest changes.
(See the FAQ for more info about the rules, including recent changes.)

    The contest shall be held the second full weekend in November, from 1900Z Saturday through 0500Z Monday. See the Contest Schedule section below for more detailed information about the various contest times.
    Only contacts within the following bands will count for contest credit: 160m, 80m, 40m, 20m, 15m, 10m, 6m, 2m, 70cm.
    A contest exchange must include the following information:
    • Callsigns
    • First Names
    • Location Codes:
      • Bell System Participants: Visit our Location Code page and use the instructions given there to determine your Location Code.
      • Non-Bell Participants: Use Location Code 'ZZ'.
    • Years of Service:
      • Bell System Participants: Use your Years of Service, the number of years you have been employed, or were employed, within the Bell System. Alternatively, if you desire, you may opt to use the formula for non-Bell participants, described below.
      • Non-Bell Participants: Use the number of CQ-WE contests you have participated in, counting those past contests for which you submitted a log, plus the current contest. (For non-Bell participants in 2015, this number will fall between 1 and 8.)



    • Each entry submitted must be for an individual operator, using one transmitter at a time.
    • Bell System Participants may contact anyone.
    • Non-Bell System Participants may only contact Bell System Participants.
    • A station may be worked in any and/or all of three categories (CW, PHONE, DIGITAL) for credit.
    • The PHONE category applies to all voice contacts (SSB, FM, AM, D-STAR voice*, etc.).
    • The CW category applies to all contacts made via Morse code.
    • The DIGITAL category includes non-verbal and non-CW contacts made using a form of digital modulation (for example: RTTY, AMTOR, PSK, and D-STAR data*).
    *  To be valid, D-STAR contacts, like all CQ-WE contacts, must be point-to-point and not involve a repeater or gateway.

    • Each station may be worked once per band and category for contest credit.
    • Each of the three categories (CW, PHONE, DIGITAL) is scored separately.
    • The number of points for each contact is the "Years of Service" number received in the exchange.
    • To create an additional incentive for working a large number of locations, a Location Multiplier is used. This multiplier is the number of distinct Location Codes contacted in a given catagory.
    • One's score for each category is determined by multiplying the sum of the points (i.e., the Years of Service associated with each contact made in that category) by the Location Multiplier for that category.
    • To encourage log submissions that lend themselves to computer validation, if one's contest logs are submitted in the format produced by the current year's CQ-WE contest logger, and in a form that may be read and processed electronically, 100 incentive points will be added to the CW score of those making at least five CW contacts, and 100 incentive points will be added to the PHONE score of those making at least five PHONE contacts. No incentive points will accrue for DIGITAL scores.
    • One's Total Score is the sum of the three category scores.


    • All logs must be kept in UTC (Zulu) time.
    • You may not change your contest information (Name, Location Code, Years of Service) during the contest.
    • Only Published Location Codes may be used in the contest and when calculating a Location Code multiplier. A separate Location Check Sheet is required for each category being scored. All Location Codes being claimed in each multiplier must be noted on the check sheet for that category by entering the call sign of the first station worked from each location beside that contact's Location Code.
    • Simplex operation only. Contacts made through repeaters, digipeaters, or gateways are not permitted.
    • Cross-band contacts are not permitted.
    • Soliciting contacts by non-Amateur Radio means (for example, Internet or Telephone) during the contest is not permitted.
    • Working the same station consecutively on the same band in different categories is not allowed.


    Awards will be issued for the following categories:

    • Works Location High Top-5 Combined Score ¹
    • Works Location High Participation ¹
    • Individual High Total Score
    • Individual High CW Score
    • Individual High Phone Score
    • Individual High Digital Score
    • Individual High QRP Score ²
    • Individual High Active Bell System Employee or Retiree Score ³
    • Individual Non-Bell System Participant High Total Score
    • (And maybe a few others for 'Special Effort')
    ¹  Only location codes representing actual physical facilities are eligible for this award.
    ²QRP status may be claimed by those operating the entire contest using a PEP power output of no more than 5 watts in the CW and DIGITAL categories, and no more than 10 watts in the PHONE category.
    ³Whichever category serves to complement the "High Total Score" winner, from those self-designating themselves as such on the submitted forms.

    A Certificate of Participation will be awarded to every entrant who submits a properly completed entry form and who has made at least five valid contacts.


    • Send your completed logs to your Location Coordinator as soon as possible after the contest.
    • If there is no Location Coordinator listed for your location, send your entry directly to the National Coordinator.
    • Your submission must be postmarked, delivered, or date stamped, no later than Dec 1st of the contest year to be valid.
    • Electronic entries are assumed to be signed when submitted.
    • Hand delivered logs are permitted, but if not on paper, they must be received on a medium your Location Coordinator deems acceptable.

    Logs may be submitted in one the following ways, in decreasing order of preference:

    Submissions from the CQ-WE logger:

    • Using the CQ-WE logger and emailing us the XML file it generates is the preferred way of submitting your contest logs.
    • Refer to the instructions provided with the logger program to produce an XML file. It is the only thing you need to send us to certify your score.
    • Please do not hand edit the XML file or change its name. If you find a mistake, use the logger software to make the necessary corrections and then generate a new file.
    • The XML file should be emailed or otherwise electronically delivered to your Location Coordinator.
    • The XML file must be emailed as an Attachment. Use the body of the message for any personal comments.
    • Code the contest name and year, your callsign, and your exchange, in the Subject line of the email. Example: CQ-WE 2015 - W2EQ - Tom MT 14
    • You can earn incentive points by using this methodology. If you qualify, these points will be added to your score automatically.

    Electronic Submission of Downloaded Forms:

    • All entries must be submitted as either (1) standard ASCII text files, (2) a PDF file, (3) a .doc file (not a .docx file), or (4) legible GIF, JPEG, or PNG images scanned from paper logs.
    • These file(s) must include (1) your contest Summary Sheet, (2) your Location Check Sheet(s), and (3) your Contest Logs.
    • The most current forms should be used, as scoring rules, location codes, and requested information do change from contest to contest.
    • All forms must be sent as email Attachments. Use the body of the message for any personal comments.
    • Code the contest name and year, your callsign, and your exchange, in the Subject line of the email. Example: CQ-WE 2015 - W2EQ - Tom MT 14
    • All filenames must start with the operator's call sign and end with the appropriate file extension (Example: W2EQ.PDF, KD8WK-SUMMARY.TXT). The material may be coalesced into one file, or sent as multiple attachments, but if more than one attachment is used, each must have a unique name.
    • Files that are sent using a filename other than the operator's call sign are subject to being classified as checklogs.

    Submission of Paper Logs:

    • Handwritten or printed logs containing all the required contest information are acceptable for a CQ-WE contest submission.
    • Entrants must use official Contest Forms or an acceptable facsimile.
    • The most current forms should be used, as scoring rules, location codes, and requested information do change from contest to contest.
  9. FORMS

    Here are copies of all the forms needed to participate in the contest. Only these forms should be used for filing your 2015 results:

    Saturday, Nov 14 1900-2300Z CW, DIGITAL
    Sunday, Nov 15 * 0100-0500Z PHONE

    Sunday, Nov 15 1900-2300Z PHONE
    Monday, Nov 16 * 0100-0500Z CW, DIGITAL
    *  REMINDER: The Sunday and Monday 0100-0500Z times are really Saturday and Sunday evening in the States!

    (These times are merely suggestions designed to enhance efficiency. Digital contacts may be made at any time during the CW/DIGITAL portion of the contest. For HF digital, note that the suggested digital frequencies have been located adjacent to the upper edge of the suggested CW frequencies, so that they may be easily checked for activity throughout the contest.)

    Saturday, Nov 14 10M 2000Z

    6M 2030Z

    15M 2100Z

    2M 2130Z

    20M 2200Z
    Monday, Nov 16 40M 0200Z

    80M 0230Z

    70cm 0300Z

    160M 0330Z
    160 1810-1820 1820-1825 1850-1860
    80 3540-3560 3560-3565 3825-3925
    40 7025-7040 7040-7045 7178-7240
    20 14040-14060 14060-14065 14250-14300
    15 21040-21060 21060-21065 21360-21400
    10 28040-28060 28060-28065 28450-28480
    6 50.0-50.1 50.4 50.1 - 50.3
    2 144.08-144.1 145.6
    145.67 (D-STAR)
    145.75 (FM)
    146.55 (FM)
    146.58 (FM)
    147.54 (FM)
    146.60 (D-STAR)
    70 cm (420-450) 432.1 432.6
    446.0 (D-STAR)
    432.5 (SSB)
    446.0 (FM)
    446.0 (D-STAR)

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