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2.8.4 Single Operator Call Stacking

1. Call Stacking Overview

Single Operator Call stacking allows a CQing operator to enter multiple call signs that are received in response to a CQ message, and work them one after the other sequentially without re-entering a new call sign for each QSO. Macros and keystrokes used for call stacking include {SOCALLSTACK}, {STACKANOTHER}, CTRL+ALT+G, {LOGTHENPOP}, and ALT+D. The first three are used to place calls onto the stack and the last two are used to take calls off the stack. The macros only operate in RUN mode. Stacked callsigns appear in the Bandmap on your RUN frequency. Single Operator Call Stacking is functional in CW, phone, and digital modes and is compatible with manual key operation or ESM. It can also be used in SO1V, SO2V and SO2R modes and in multi-station environments.

{SOCALLSTACK} or {STACKANOTHER} or CTRL+ALT+G
The operator can stack a full callsign or a partial callsign that may include a "?" that will be highlighted when that callsign is removed from the stack. The operation of the {SOCALLSTACK} and {STACKANOTHER} macros differ slightly:

{STACKANOTHER} or the keystroke short cut, CTRL+ALT+G, simply pushes callsigns onto the stack and clears the Entry Window callsign box.

{SOCALLSTACK} functions as a single level stack macro. The first execution of {SOCALLSTACK}, stacks the first callsign and clears the Entry Window callsign line. When a second callsign is entered and {SOCALLSTACK} is executed again, the two callsigns are exchanged. If the callsign window is empty when {SOCALLSTACK} is executed, the callsign is removed from the stack and placed into the callsign Entry Window. The user can thus control which call sign will be worked first, whereas with {STACKANOTHER} the last call sign entered is the first one to be worked.

{LOGTHENPOP}, ALT+D
The stacked callsigns can be removed from the stack with several methods: logging the current call, unstacking the next callsign with {LOGTHENPOP} or manually removing the stacked callsign with the keystroke ALT+D. The ALT+D keystroke is useful if a callsign appears on the stack via a telnet spot and is not one of the ones you want to work. The next callsign on the stack is displayed on the callframe when the CQ-Literal is not present. Pressing Space will move a stacked call from the Callframe to the callsign box and remove it from Bandmap.

ESM Automation
The Configurer, Function Key tab, Next Call Key is used to select the function key that contains the {LOGTHENPOP} macro along with the message string for ESM automation. If a Next Call Key has been specified, then when Enter is pressed to finish a QSO and there is another call sign on the callsign stack, the Next Call Key will be sent instead of the TU(F3) Key. The last option in the drop down menu for the Next Call Key allows the ESM SOCallstacking automation to be disabled.

SOCALLSTACK ESM Example
Program F9 key to: {STACKANOTHER} or {SOCALLSTACK}
Program F10 key to: {LOGTHENPOP}TU NW {F5} {F2}
The appropriate SSB wave file can be inserted into the F10 message in place of the " TU NW" letters above.

Set >Config >Function Key tab >"Next Call Key" to F10

Select RUN mode and turn ESM on. For this example two stations are calling, N2IC and K3CT
Type K3CT, press F9, type N2IC and press Enter
Copy N2IC's report and press Enter. This will log N2IC, and then instead of F3 it will invoke F10, which will send the TU, unstack K3CT, and send the exchange

SOCALLSTACK Non-ESM Example
Program the function keys as listed above.
Select RUN mode.
Type K3CT, press F9, type N2IC and press the exchange key programmed in Configurer, usually ";". This key is programmed to F5 & F2.

Copy N2IC's report and press F10. This will log N2IC, unstack K3CT, and send the exchange.

If multiple callsigns are stacked, ESM will continue to unstack the callsigns. The same is true in non-ESM mode as F10 is pressed. Should a logging error occur such as a bad call, the sequence will be interrupted until the error is corrected. When no calls remain on the stack, the normal TU message is sent (if not using ESM, you would normally press F3 instead of F10 at this point). If there are multiple callsigns on the stack, the order that they are removed or exchanged with {SOCALLSTACK} depends on the internal sorting order and not necessarily the order they were stacked.

2. Additional SOCALLSTACK Information

It is important that the contest callsign is entered in the Config, Station Information window. That way, the station callsign will not appear in the Bandmap via a telnet spot and the SOCALLSTACK code will not place the station callsign or the Busy literal (ALT+M) into the callsign box.

If a callsign appears on the callsign stack via a telnet spot and you want to remove it, use the ALT+D keystroke to remove it without popping it off the stack into the Entry window.

Single Operator Call Stacking does overlap slightly with multi-operator call stacking. Multi-operator call stacking is the program feature that allows a second operator to listen to the run radio and send calls to the run operator's Entry Window.

3. Digital Call Stacking

In digital modes there are two different ways to work stations one after the other in series when more than one station responds to your CQ. The first method is based on the Single Operator Call Stacking described in the previous sections, adapted to use the features of the DI window. The second method, using the Grab list, is unique to digital modes.

LOGTHENPOP: To use this, you must program a function key using the {LOGTHENPOP} macro, e.g.:
{TX} ! {LOGTHENPOP} TU NW {F5}{F2} {RX}
When this function key is pressed or clicked on at the end of a QSO instead of the normal TU key, it will log the previous contact, pull the next call sign off the single operator call stack in the Bandmap window, and send the exchange to the new station. If you designate this function key as the Next Call Key in the Configurer under the Function Keys tab, ESM will automatically select this key instead of the TU key at the end of a QSO whenever there is an unworked call sign remaining on the call stack in the Bandmap. Note that you must use two different function keys for the TU and Next keys; do not put {LOGTHENPOP} into the TU key. Don't program the exchange (e.g. # in a serial number contest) directly into the Next key; use the {F2} macro to call up your regular exchange message, as in the example above. Using # in the Next key will send the wrong serial number.

How do you get call signs onto the call stack in the bandmap? You can do this effectively in digital modes by selecting the Setup > Digital Call Stacking menu item in the Digital Interface window's menu bar. This enables an efficient way to place call signs on the single operator call sign stack in the Bandmap window. You have three choices, depending on which order you want calls to be popped off the stack ready to be worked: Enable using First In First Out (FIFO - the first call to be worked will be the one that was placed on the stack first); Enable using Last In First Out (LIFO - the first call to be worked will be the one that was most recently placed on the stack); and Enable using FIFO Mults First (callsigns will be taken off the stack in order of their multiplier value. In those contests where one QSO can yield 2 or 3 mults, the higher-mult calls will be taken first. Among calls with the same multiplier value, the first call to be worked will be the one that was placed on the stack first).

When Digital Call Stacking is enabled and you are in Run mode:

  • If there is already a call sign in the call sign box in the Entry window when you mouse-click on another call sign in the RX window, clicking on the new call sign in the RX window will either put the new call sign directly on the stack (FIFO), or else (LIFO) it will move the call sign that was formerly in the Entry window onto the stack in the Bandmap, and will bring the new call sign into the Entry window
  • Alt+left-clicking on a call sign in the RX window will move that call sign directly onto the stack in the Bandmap without changing the call sign in the call sign box in the Entry window. You can place any number of call signs on the stack ready for working one after the other
  • You can also use {GRAB} or Alt+G to pull the highlighted call sign off the Grab list into the Entry window. The call sign that was formerly in the Entry window will be moved onto the stack
  • Instead of using {GRAB} or Alt+G, you can use {STACKANOTHER} or Ctrl+Alt+G to move that call sign from the Grab list directly onto the stack without changing the call sign in the call sign box in the Entry window


When Digital Call Stacking is enabled, left-click, Alt+left-click, {GRAB}/Alt+G and {STACKANOTHER}/Ctrl+Alt+G give you a variety of ways to choose which call signs you want to place onto the call sign stack and into the Entry window. Once there are one or more call signs on the call sign stack, after working the first station in the Entry window, the Next key (automated with ESM) lets you work the call signs from the stack rapidly one after the other.

LOGTHENGRAB: There is a separate method that uses the Grab list in the DI window with the {LOGTHENGRAB} macro. You do not need to enable Digital Call Stacking to use this method. You can use any method you wish to get the first call sign into the Entry window so you can work that station. At the end of the QSO with the first station, if you want to work the call sign that is highlighted in the Grab list, you can use an F-key or message button that contains:
{TX} ! {LOGTHENGRAB} TU NW {F5}{F2} {RX}
This will log the contact with the first station, then grab the highlighted call sign from the Grab list and send the exchange to that station. You can repeat this for as long as there are workable call signs being highlighted in the Grab list. If the next highlighted call sign in the Grab list is invalid or not workable, you should press or click on the normal TU key instead, in order to avoid attempting to work a bad call sign. You can also program a {DELSEL} macro into an unused function key or DI message button for use in removing unwanted call signs from the Grab list. Don't program the exchange (e.g. # in a serial number contest) directly into the function key that has the {LOGTHENGRAB} macro in it (the # macro in this key will send the wrong serial number); use the {F2} macro to call up your regular exchange message, as in the example above, to get the correct exchange sent to the second station.

Using this method, the Grab list is populated automatically, but you have to decide manually whether to use the normal TU function key or the message key containing the {LOGTHENGRAB} macro. This is because of the possibility of unwanted or incorrect call signs in the Grab list - it is up to you to decide whether the next call in the Grab list is one you want to work using {LOGTHENGRAB}, or whether you just want to end the QSO with a normal TU message. Do not put a {LOGTHENGRAB} macro in your normal TU function key, or in the Next Call function key if you are using one. {LOGTHENGRAB} must be in a separate function key or in one of the DI message buttons. Also, if you have enabled the Next Call key in the Configurer, do not put a {LOGTHENGRAB} macro in the Next key message; the correct macro to use in the Next Call key is {LOGTHENPOP}.

4. How to Tell Visually Which Call Will be Put in Next

If "CQ Frequency" is on the call frame, then look at the Bandmap.

The {LOGTHENPOP} calls the {SOCALLSTACK} routine. {SOCALLSTACK} will remove the CQ-Literal ("CQ Frequency") and take the next callsign listed on the Bandmap's run frequency. There are cases where the CQ-Literal string will replace the callsign on the call frame. The stacked callsign isn't lost, look at the Bandmap.

The same is true when you are spotted. Your callsign will appear in the call frame but the routine will not pop it into the callsign box. If you find that it does, you don't have "your callsign" entered into Station Data window. When you use {LOGTHENPOP}or {SOCALLSTACK} they remove the station callsign and discard the callsign, then grab the next call on the stack.

If you have {SOCALLSTACK} programmed to an F-key, pressing it once at any time will exchange the current callsign with the next callsign on the stack. If there is no callsign on the stack, then it stacks the call and gives you an empty callsign window to enter one. Pressing the F-key again will reverse them again.


Last Modification: 25 September 2017 19:44:45 EDT by VE3KI.