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I got into amateur radio via the SWL (shortwave listener) route in the late 60ís. What an interesting time for a SWL - many high power broadcast stations around the world transmitting their versions of what was going on in the world. I grew up in South Bend, Indiana about 1 mile from The University of Notre Dame. I was first licensed in 1970 as WN9DLC and did most of my Novice work with a Globe Scout 680A and a National NC173 Receiver.
I have typically been very active except for an 8 year QRT from about 1996 till December of 2003. This included running RTTY with a Model 15 Teletype machine and an Electrocom FSC-250 converter made by South Bend native Burt Jaffe - W9BJ(sk). In 1980 I interfaced a Commodore Pet Computer for RTTY - one of the first computer based RTTY setups. I Operated a lot of Packet before the nationwide packet network was somewhat obsoleted by the internet. Since December 2003 Iím active on HF and 2 meters again and having a blast. At the present time I operate mostly CW at both QRO and QRP levels. I also operate some PSK31 and occasionally some SSB.
I've also been acquiring, repairing, and using some vintage gear. I've got a couple of Globe Scouts that I am working on as well as a fully operational Knight T60 and a Knight T150. This old gear really takes you back-in-time! It also makes you appreciate the modern gear. Occasionally I operate AM in the 75 meter AM window (3875-3900 khz) and am making some new friends there. Some of these guys are hard-core AM enthusiasts that are fun to listen to, especially on the Hammarlund HQ-170A receiver. Click the 'Vintage Station' link above for more on that project
I am still using a Heath HW-8 QRP rig and have started down the QRP slippery slope. What a blast to learn (after 36 years) how much you can do with very low power and how much fun it is. See my QRP page for more on that.
In July '07 I
acquired a used Ten Tec OmniVI+ on an ebay auction. This seemed like a lot
of radio for the money - especially for a CW operator. This wonderful
radio suffered a fatal lightning strike and was replaced with my current
transceiver, an Ten Tec Omni VII. My faithful 26 year old
Kenwood TS-440 has become my backup rig as well as my general coverage receiver.
By the way, in side-by-side A/B tests, the TS-440 still does quite well.
HF antennas consist of a Butternut HF-6V vertical, and a Lightning Bolt 2
element 5 band Quad. For the digital modes I'm currently interfaced with a
MFJ-1279 Sound Card Interface and running DM780 Software from Ham Radio Deluxe.
When QRP or even 100 watts doesn't seem to be enough, I have a Ten Tec Centaur
that will output about 600 watts. If I use it on CW I usually run at
about 500 watts out. What a beautiful amplifier!.
Click here for station picture.
More to life than Ham Radio...
XYL and I also enjoy riding our motorcycle. The current bike is a
'93 Yamaha Venture Royale touring bike - click here for