I have been a ham for almost 20 years, and when on CW I have always sent my call, name, RST, and full QTH. I have noticed that now many operators send NR 5280 or something similar instead of their QTH. What does this number represent? I know for sure it is not a Grid Square.

  • $\begingroup$ Does this answer your question? What is a CQ contest and what is the proper way to respond to a CQ contest call? $\endgroup$ – rclocher3 Feb 10 at 17:41
  • $\begingroup$ That sure does sound like a serial number in some contests. Was the station calling CQ TEST? $\endgroup$ – Mike Waters Feb 10 at 19:11
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    $\begingroup$ Without context any of the proposed answers could be correct but my best guess is that it is a club member number such as for FISTS or SKCC. If you hang out around the FISTS calling frequency (e.g. 14058 or SKCC 14050) then expect them to send their member number just like that. Mine would be NR 12930 for FISTS or NR 2796 for SKCC. $\endgroup$ – K7PEH Feb 12 at 5:45

I found a reasonable-looking answer here:


As @Mike Waters said, it's probably the sequence number for a contest, i.e. the number of contest stations they've worked.

  • $\begingroup$ Hello and welcome to ham.stackexchange.com! $\endgroup$ – rclocher3 Feb 17 at 18:53

"NR" has double meaning in CW - its both "near" and "number". 5280 in your example is most likely a number in a contest. Also it might be a club number, e.g. SKCC NR 123, depending on a context.


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