I took the RAE in 1976 and I have been licensed since 1978. I have been interested in radio since I was a small boy of 6. In my early years I learnt my radio and electronics principles from the Phillips Electronic Engineering kits EE8 and EE20. From this I made my first radio receivers and discovered that a super-regenerative VHF receiver made a fairly good transmitter with very few modifications. In the mid to late 60’s All forms of private/toy transmitters were illegal, except for amateur transmitters, even a small 100mW “walkie talkies” were not permitted in the UK until CB came in 1981! (forced in by public pressure and the film “Convoy”) The RAE was far beyond my capabilities, as a schoolboy, as I had no mentor. When I left school I could not find a collage that would teach full time electronics in Oxfordshire, So I joined the RAF as a fitter in Air Communications and Air Radar.
I found my knowledge from the Phillips kits put me in good stead to breeze through the two years of engineering training to the RAF standards. I worked on radio and navigational aids and radar equipment until 1989. I was a founder member of the RAF Finningley Amateur Radio Club which is still going strong today. The club is now run now by civilians and ex RAF members, See (G0GHK). While in the Falklands with the RAF, I got the call sign VP8 AXI and made many contacts and friends while on the islands.
I left the RAF to join Wood and Douglas working in R & D. My first project was the 1240 TVT a 1248 MHz FM ATV transmitter, it was a phased locked to a crystal and could be switched to a second frequency, It also had a 6 MHz sound sub carrier. I spent 6 years with Wood and Douglas working on Telemetry and Video/sound studio link equipment then moved to Ericsson as a RF GSM phone design Engineer. I was there 11 years and made redundant during 3G licence sell off, which sucked too much money out of the industry. I then started my own company and went contracting at Senalco (electric furnace and RF welding) , LG (GSM Phones), Motorola (software Flex engineer) Anite (LTE test equipment design), Harris (TV Radio Broadcast), and Rohde and Scwartz (TV Radio Broadcast), finally ending up at Arqiva in Radio and TV Broadcast as a Senior Project Engineer. I am currently commissioning, and testing new TV and DAB Radio transmitters for Digital Switch Over (DSO)
I am active form 1.8 to 1.2 GHz. My preferred mode is SSB 80/160 Metres. I am a member of the Hog’s Back Radio Club, and also the RAFARS field rep. for Hampshire No 2407, so any RAFARS members out there feel free to get in touch on 3.71MHz 18:30 to 19:30 local time 7 days a week. My shack consist of many home brew receivers and test a full range of RF test equipment. I can perform repairs and alignments and always willing to help other radio armatures out, I have a IC 7400, FT847, 800 Watt Ameritron Linear Amp. In the car I have an Icom 2820 D Star radio and can be heard on repeaters most days as I travel around the country. At weekends I can be found opperating from my caravan from the south of England, using a K2 and and 20M dipole inverted Vee Di-Pole, if anyone has had sucess on 80M from a caravan, or has a good working short aerial design for 80M, I would be delighted to hear from them!
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