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What is the procedure for calling someone you think might be listening but who's call sign you don't know?

Obviously, for someone you've already heard you could say, "last station." But what about the case where you think someone you met is out there but you don't know his or her call sign?

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  • $\begingroup$ i can't think of a convention. On voice, you could just explain who you're looking for, and as long as you give your call, you'd be ok (at least in the US) because it's not a one-way transmission, it's clearly an attempt to establish a connection. As far as other modes, I'm not sure how you'd accomplish that. $\endgroup$
    – Duston
    Commented Mar 14, 2022 at 13:30
  • $\begingroup$ In Morse, "QRL?" is common. You might add your callsign at the risk of overpowering an ongoing conversation. Its like fishing, where you hope someone takes the bait. You'd expect the "bait" would reply with his/her callsign. $\endgroup$
    – glen_geek
    Commented Mar 14, 2022 at 13:49

2 Answers 2

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There's no well defined procedure for this, so I'd suggest just approaching it from a very human perspective:

This is firstname callsign, I spoke with another operator recently, but don't recall your callsign, give me a shout if you happen to be listening.

And if you remember their name, toss it in.

Even if your target doesn't respond, you may get a response from someone else who's interested in a chat.

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What is the procedure for calling someone you think might be listening but who's call sign you don't know?

That's exactly what a 'CQ' call is intended for.

'CQ' is short for 'seek you'.

Any listener, on the look out for a contact, could answer and that could possibly be a person you had worked earlier but whose name and call sign you have forgotten.

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    $\begingroup$ That's interesting. I was aware of the relationship with securite, but had not heard this. Other than Wiklipedia (whcih also does not cite a reference for this), do you have any authoritative source you can cite for this? $\endgroup$
    – David Hoelzer
    Commented Mar 26, 2022 at 12:22
  • $\begingroup$ Hi OM David, I'm sorry I don't have any! 73, Nandu. $\endgroup$
    – vu2nan
    Commented Mar 26, 2022 at 14:09
  • $\begingroup$ That's ok. Very interesting! Thanks $\endgroup$
    – David Hoelzer
    Commented Mar 26, 2022 at 15:41

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