I have known about ham radio as long as I can remember. My father was a swl and as a child I was taken by my father on Sunday morning visits to various "uncles" Dick G4BU, Cliff G3EBH,Frank G3BCA and Harold G5XL. In my early teens I became a swl myself with first an R208 and later a National HRO. At the age of 17 in May 1962 I passed my Radio Amateurs Exam but not the morse test. Two years later my father got tired of waiting for me to pass the morse test and took both the RAE and morse test and was licenced as G3TOA.I continued to listen at college using an MCR1, a borrowed 1155 an RA1 and finally an RCA CR91 ( AR88LF). On leaving college in 1966 I came to Zambia as a teacher on a three year contract with the Zambian Ministry of Education.I took the morse test twice at the central telegraph office in Lusaka and failed both times. Finally in 1973 whilst on leave in England I passed the morse test at Humber Radio and obtained my licence G4CGC. I applied for a Zambian licence and was given the call 9J2BO.This was just in time as shortly after the licencing authority stopped issuing new licences for about 20 years! I was active in the Radio Society of Zambia as newsletter editor and later chairman and IARU rep.I represented RSZ at IARU Region 1 Conferences in Tel Avive and Lillehammer. My first transmissions from Zambia were on cw with a borrowed Heathkit DX40,an AR88LF rx and a G5RV.This enforced cw operation gave me a love of the mode and I have been primarily a cw op ever since. In 1977 I was invited to be a member of The First Class CW Operators Club, FOC and I have been an active member ever since.A very memorable visit to the USA took place in 1980 where I met many FOC members and others. At the ARRL National Convention I was made most welcome and was honored to meet some of the leading lights of amateur radio there. I had my dxcc application checked and had a dxcc score of 253 mixed mode. My work took me to mainly rural boardng schools as teacher and Deputy Head. I bought a property in Lusaka from an old friend 9J2JN who had to leave Zambia due to difficulty in getting medication for his diabetes.I have been here in his former qth since 1987. The present set up is a TS440S transceiver and antennas are inverted vee dipoles at 50 feet for 160m and 80m, sloping dipoles for 40m and 30m , a triband beam for 10,15 and 20m at 42 feet and a 4 element yagi for 6m at 45 feet. Parallel connected dipoles suffice for 12m and 17m. I am about 99% cw using a Bencher paddle and ETM-9COG keyer,Lionel J-36 bug key and an East German military flame proof straight key. I make an appearance in the major cw contests but quickly get bored. I prefer rag chewing on cw these days to contesting and chasing dx. My qsls are managed by G3TEV, Mike Mills who I can't thank enough for the excellent job he has done for me putting in many hours of work to ensure that qsls are answered as promptly as possible. We have a daily sched for this purpose. When my father became a SK I took over his callsign, G3TOA but it has had little use as I do not return to G land often.
1846245 Last modified: 2015-04-05 06:44:38, 3140 bytes
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