Tuesday, June 02, 2009
Let's get real!
Why are you here? Looking to connect with new genetic cousins? Want to get over (or around) that brick wall? Like to prove or disprove that relationship you've been troubled about?
Well, this is the page for you!
Everyone should go to your FTDNA Personal Page: First, click on the 'Setup Preferences' tab and select your matches to be set against the entire database. Leaving it set to "display of matches only to my Surname Project" will severely limit your opportunity to see matches that may be of interest to you but are not yet in the Project. Severely, as in 'No Chance'. One exception to this advice is that if you have more than 12 markers tested it will probably be a good idea to uncheck the 12 marker button. Since 12 marker matches are mostly meaningless this will avoid those 'dear cousin' emails from folks with different surnames.
Next, you should all check your Y-DNA 'Matches' tab. Those of you who have gotten new results, be sure to upload them to ySearch. Take a look to see if the 'Click here to upload to Ysearch.org' line is there. If that line's not there, no worry. You've already done it. If it is there, click it. This doesn't happen automatically, only semi-automatically. You don't have to type the numbers in but you do have to click the 'Click here to upload to Ysearch.org' line in the Y-DNA 'Matches' tab.
Also, while you're at your Personal Page, you have the opportunity to upload a gedcom of either your Y-DNA family tree or your mtDNA family tree, or both. Just click on the 'GEDCOM - Family Tree' line and follow the instructions. Or you can ask me for help. Having this information available online can be very helpful to others trying to make a connection to you, particularly on the mtDNA side.
FTDNA's third panel, Y-DNA26-37, contains five fast-moving markers, four of which, DYS570, 576 and CDYa&b, have been useful for separating lines in some families and in some cases determining whether there is a family match or not. Those of you having only 12 or 25 markers tested might want to consider upgrading to 37.
Unfortunately, those of you who have tested elsewhere than at FTDNA are missing those important 'fast-movers'. I suggested to FTDNA that there must be a price point at which they could offer that third panel as a 'stand-alone' product but they seem to be having none of it. At this writing the most economical method of getting these markers that I've yet been able to devise is to order Y-DNA1-12 from FTDNA's Promotion for individuals that have tested their Y-DNA with Relative Genetics, DNAHeritage, Ancestry, Oxford Ancestors or Genebase (not SMGF) for $59 and then order Y-Refine12to37 for $99.00, total $158, or the just the missing five markers, DYS607 $7.20, DYS570 $7.20, DYS576 $7.20, CDYa&b (DYS724) $12.00, plus a $9.50 transfer fee, $43.10, total $102.10.
I'm assuming that you've gone to the trouble and expense of DNA testing to further assist your family research. These steps will help optimize that possibility.
Another friendly reminder - If you've been considering upgrading or ordering any new tests where FTDNA already has your DNA sample on hand, take this as a sign that by Wednesday is the day to do it. It will save you up to a week on getting your results back. Place the order before 4:30 or so that day, Mountain Time, to avoid waiting up to a week additional for the next batch to be shipped out.