As we get quite a few DX stations calling on HamSphere nowadays it usually creates an inferno of callers trying to catch the DX.
I have assembled a simple instruction on how to work a DX and also how to operate as a DX station. These instructions come from my own experience of the real shortwave band where these pile-ups are taking place all the time.
What is a Pileup?
A "pileup" is what its name suggests: When a desired DX station attracts many DXers who may want a QSO for an award (like HamSphere's DXHC, for example), several may call the DX at the same time. Although this relatively unstructured event may seem chaotic, it really can be superior to a more structured "list operation": As long as everyone keeps their calls and QSOs short and to the point, far more contacts can often be made within a shorter period of time. Here are some tips that may help to maximize the number of QSOs — and eventual QSLs! — during a pileup...
For the DX hunter in a pile up
* Be patient
* Listen, listen, listen!
* Get as much info as possible from the DX by listening before you start calling. Who is it? What is the call sign? QTH?
* When the DX has a QSO, never transmit. Wait for QRZ.
* Only say your call sign or the suffix of your call sign when you make your call. Keep the call extremely short.
* Never say the DX station's call sign. It already knows that you are calling.
* When you are called by the DX, keep it extremely brief like "Thank you, you are 5 and 9, my name is xxxxx, QSL". That is enough to make a log entry and send off a QSL card. No more transmissions to "round off" the QSO!!!
For the DX station
1. Call CQ, call sign and QRZ
2. In the calling inferno, try to distinguish one caller, wait just a bit and give the station's call and the report 5/9, nothing more.
3. Listen for the confirmation and transmit "Thank you, 73" and then go directly onto next QRZ and transmit "QRZ" or "This is call sign, QRZ?"
4. In a few of the QSO's you can mention your name and QTH just to give out info about your name and whereabouts. Other stations will hear this and note it down. So no need to give this info in all QSOs.