***THE SET PICTURE IS OF MY GRID MOBILE- ON CAR NOW I HAVE 50 MHZ VERTICAL, 432 AND 1296 BEAMS PLUS 144 LOOP (AT THIS HEIGHT I CAN GO IN/OUT OF MY GARAGE), BUT I ADD 144 AND 50 MHZ BEAMS AT TIMES FOR GREATER GRID MOBILING***
THE ABOVE PICTURE (5/13/12) SHOWS 3 TOWERS-
(L) 50 MHZ 5 EL @ 76' w/1/2" HELIAX , 144 MHZ M2 18 XXX (37' BOOM) W/1 5/8" Heliax @ 72'
(MID) 50-144-222-432-1296 BEAMS TOP ANTENNA @ 80',
(R) 20-15-10 TRI-BANDER on a HAZER @ 47', ABOVE IT, 8 el 144 (vertical polorazation for Fm) @ 52', 5 El 50 MHz @ 55', above it 16 El KLm 144 MHZ @60'.
HAM 63 YEARS ( MAY 25 1952-May 25 2015)
I'm a VHFer-I love the DXing part-I do very little rag chewing.I enjoy working, on 50 mhz, a weak F2 signal on cw from a distant country or during the Summer on E Skip working multi hop EU or AF stns.
I also enjoy the SSSP contacts on CW to JA during the summer E Season.
I'm on 144 thru 1296 (except 902-03)-working Aurora,E Skip,tropo or Meteor scatter.
I've been On VHF since 1958. I Don't do EME & the only digital I do is CW.
Some memorable times include-
50 mhz-On F2-Working FR5DN or FR1GZ Reunion Island (Indian Ocean)on 10/30/01 Via F2 16746 km(best DX)
222 mhz -On E SKIP (very rare) to CT,NY,OH,PA,VE3 (2047 km).
1296 mhz-On tropo-Working long distance to FN02 in NY (1569 km)or EM85 in NC. I have 17 states.
144 mhz-On E Skip-Working Cuba,XE3,WA,CA ,VE2 or ME (2377 km). Also on a trip to Upstate NY I caught VP9 on as I passed thru N/E OH & into PA. On other trips I've worked NM & FL.
144 mhz-On Tropo To the East-Maine (2377 km-Best DX).To the S/E Florida Keys EL94, CUBA EL83 To the N/W EN19 Manitoba & DM79,DN70 in CO & DN71 in WY.To S/W N. Mex EM 65, XE2 DL95
144 mhz-On Meteor scatter (old style on CW or SSB-No digital -using my ears -I have worked CA,VE4,VE5,XE3,VE3,plus many other states)
222 mhz-On Tropo- MA FN32 (2058 km) EL96 in Florida. 222 mhz. is one well kept secret of how good a band it really is-Very close to 144 on tropo & almost as good on Aurora.On M/S have worked 8 states + VE3.
222 MHZ-On Aurora best DX is CT FN31
432 mhz-On Tropo-Working FN31 CT (2069 km) & DN80 in CO, also XE2OR DL98. 432 MHZ Aurora is rare but I've worked some.
HF- Using Vintage Gear-About the only HF I do is with the SKCC gang (on SKCC I usually use W5WAX as my call) or during Winter when VHF is poor I work 80/40 CW. Using Drake 2NT/ Drake R4-A or Heath HW-16/HG-10 VFO. Speedx or McElroy Keys.
(1963)-erecting a 90' tower on 900' hill overlooking Lake Ft. Gibson, Ok.. A 10 KW MARS Generator is to the left.
I used this VHF location from 1963-1980 (I'm going up the tower to add last section (with the gin pole), I'm just above the tree line-I never owned a climbing belt at that time in my life, I would just hook my leg inside tower & work hands free-what a dummy -I'm lucky to be alive now) You can see a long rope extending from base of tower-that is how I lifted each tower section with my car, then climb tower to attach as I did all this by myself) Good memories!!
50 MHZ -Ant. was a 6 el HY-GAIN 66-B-it is above trailer at top of tree.
After tower was up ,
I put stacked 144 mhz-11 el Cushcrafts , then on 50 mhz I put the 6 el Hy-Gain & on pole where 6 mtr. was I put up 432 mhz ant.s-4-16's
on a (H frame)
Old Tube Amplifiers -Still in service-50 MHZ Johnson 6N2 T-Bolt (500 wts) built in Feb '60.-----144 MHZ Gonset 903 (250 wts) New in 1967.
My two most favorite Bands-50 & 144- A 3rd favorite wud be 1296 mhz
1964-My uncle, Sam Lemons, W5ALI (born 1897 TN) -A ham--1929-1974 (on his left) is my mother, Allene, (born 1903- here in Indian Territory-now Oklahoma) ,my oldest daughter Barbara (not a ham),me W5WAX, now K5SW -ham from 1952-present on Barbara's left.
--W5ALI was 1st generation,W5WAX/K5SW is 2nd generation,#3 Daughter Melissa N5KK - ham--1982-to the present- is 3rd generation of hams in family.
This Picture was taken during June 1964 VHF contest- located on hill by Ft. Gibson Lake.I Have a Grand Daughter Lilly, born in 1998 , who missed on Tech license recently,but will test again soon. She wants her call to be K5LIL ,then my K5SW call , if something happens to me. I hope she has a long wait!!.
THIS IS THE OLDEST PLATE I STILL HAD IN MY POSSESION-I 1st got tags in the 50's I think.These colors (Black & Orange) are Oklahoma State University colors-1968
My Early Ham Radio
My first ticket was in May 1952 as WN5WAX, I became W5WAX in fall of 1952-- My first rig was a 6L6 xtal osc with one xtal 3728kc (8 watts W/40 dipole thru homemade antenna tuner) and the rcvr was a BC-342-N, surplus I bought for $35-- I worked 33 states as a novice on 80 mtrs.
Next I got a 80 mtr command xmtr (now I had a vfo)---the first commercial rig was a used Heath DX-35 and VF-1 and from a Montgomery Ward catalog store I ordered a Hallicrafters SX-99--I used these radios for many years .
I even operated 11 meters (When it was still a ham band in the 50's on CW & AM).
My tickets- Wn5WAX Novice May '52------ W5WAX Technician Nov '52------ W5WAX General Mar'53-------- W5WAX Advanced May '66 -------W5WAX Extra June '66
Later (1958) I became interested in vhf,converted a DX-35 from 10 to 6 mtrs,used a Intenational crystal converter 50 mhz to the AM bdcst band as an
I. F., then to the SX-99 ,then I built a Heath Sixer, later built a Heath Seneca for better six and two work.-- I'm a pre-5 WPM ( I got extra in 1966-I Tested @ 20 WPM))
In 1977 I traded off my W5WAX and got K5SW because it had all three of my initals in it--however in Apr 1997 my wife and I formed a club (INDIAN CAPITAL AMATEUR RADIO CLUB) to allow me to get my W5WAX call back for it and when I am using vintage gear I use W5WAX to re-live earlier fun times.
I am also very active on vhf-uhf on ssb and cw, (not fm), on 50 thru 1296 mhz (except 902-03 mhz)-- I love it when vhf condx go beyond normal ground wave distance of 400 miles.
I learned of Ham radio in '46,when right after WW2,the hams could get back on the air. My uncle quickly re-built an old ten meter AM rig (from before WW2) & I talked over it to a hams son in NJ,who was 11 years old also & I was "hooked' on ham radio. But it was in the fall of '51 as a junior in high school that the HS biology teacher (Dale Reins ex-W5VJU-now KC5TL in FL) who was a ham & offered code/theory classes in the evenings, that I got my Novice ticket & built up my 6L6 XTAL OSC rig that I still use. Daughter, Melissa N5KK, is third generation and I have Grandaughters and two great-grandaughters & great-grandson-who knows ,maybe 4th & 5th generation coming up. Life has been great and am enjoying smelling the roses --check out W5WAX and W5VHF .
NOTE-All my gear is older, nothing newer than the '70's,for the most part.
On 50 mhz I'm up to (149 worked & 149 countries confirmed for DXCC). My rig is a TS-600 (circa 1960's) with a digital readout (Electronic Speciality Counter) to a Johnson 6 N 2 T-bolt Amp (kit form-built by Bob Cooper K6EDX in Feb. 1960) @ 700 wts to a M2 5 el beam @ 80' with 1/2" heliax feedline. The M2 5 el was a 6M7JHV that an ice storm damaged.
Best DX FR5DN 16746 km
WAS #91 in 1970 ( I was the 1st OKIE to get WAS) & at that time I was the Easternmost station to work a "50 state" WAS .
WAC in 1981.
DXCC #412 in 2002
W5WAX '52-'76,K5SW '76- PRESENT - 50 MHZ DXCC COUNTRIES "NO EME OR DIGITAL"-ONLY SSB/CW/AM
DXCC # 412
***cycle #19 cont.***
G6SIX 1979 England
Here is a QSL I rcvd in 1979.At that time England did not have 50 mhz. We were working them crossband USA was on 50 Mhz & EU stations were on 28 Mhz. This station showed up on 50 mhz cw, I worked him & I rcvd this card. He also sent me a tape of my 50 Mhz sig as heard in England & of other ZS stations he heard.He never operated SSB to keep from giving away who he was to other G stations.I am told the operator was G5KW -now SK.
VHF ACTIVITY PINS 1992-1999-Only years that pins were offered-Got one every year
I AM HONORED TO HAVE RECEIVED THIS AWARD. I WAS ONE OF THE FOUNDING MEMBERS OF THE CSVHFS IN 1967
On 144 mhz I have 47 states,VE2-VE5, XE1 ,XE2 and XE3,CO & VP9 ( I need Oregon-no EME)-I'm old fashioned-the only digital mode I use is CW
Rig TS-820-S to a MMT/144 to a Gonset 903 at 250 wts. Antenna is a M2 18 XXX (37' boom) @ 75' with LMR-1200 heliax.
I have a 2nd beam (Cushcraft 13-B2) @ 80' with 7/8' Heliax on another tower.
.Lots of memories on- TROPO--MS--AURORA--E SKIP over the years.
My SWOT # is # 34-(there are not many hams , still "active", with lower SWOT #'s)
.Here are my records on 144 MHZ
AU W1VD (CT) 1274 mi (2018 km)
M/S WA1OUB(NH)fn43ad 1345 mi (2051 km)
Tropo K1WHS (ME) fn43mj 1398 mi (2251 km)
E/S WA6LHD (CA)cm88xf 1477 mi (2378 km)
The VP9 qso was when I was mobile going thru en92 Erie, Pa*** only 724 mi ***-counts for DXCC country
AS OF DEC 20 2010- 306 worked-295 confirmed -Got tired of trying (QUIT) to confirm the rest
For FM I use a Yaesu FT-7900 to a 16 KLM beam on a tower with a Hazer at 53'
I have 33 states plus VE3
-Rig TS-820-S to a MMT/222 to a 110 wt Brick to a 14 EL KLM (circa '75) @75' with 1/2" Heliax
Here are my records on 222 MHZ
On 222 MHZ I Have 33 states + VE3
AU W3ZZ (MD) fm19jd 1022 mi (1645 km) Nov 8th 1991 2356Z
Tropo W2SZ/1 (MA) fn32kp 1279 mi (2059 km) Sept 13th 1992 0306Z
M/S VE3AX (ONT) fn02cw 968 mi (1558 km)
E SKIP WZ1V FN31 1273 mi (2047 km) July 6th 2004 2308Z
*** NOTE WORLDS RECORD AT THAT TIME 1275 miles***
***222 MHZ E SKIP QSO WITH CT.-On 7/8/04 I also worked NY, OH, & VE3 on e skip-VERY RARE OPENING *****
When I retired (1999) I got off 432/1296 to limit climbing towers. But as of June '06, I'm back on 432 mhz.
Rig-Kenwood TR-9500,S.S. Amp @ 100 wts,24 el Cushcraft @ 77' Wid 1/2" Heliax.
Here are my 432 records
On 432 mhz- On Tropo I have 32 states (have 33 but never conf. VA)+VE3 + XE2-Best DX is CT - grid fn31, CO DN80 & XE2 DL98
" " " On Aurora- N0LL EM09 KS is best DX
1296 MHZ QSL Cards-17 States Confirmed (posted around outline of map) Map used to plot 50 MHZ Paths
As of 22 Sept 2007 I'm back On 1296 mhz with 45 wts -
Rig is a ICOM 251A, to a KK7B board, to a DEMI PA2360 @ 45 wts)-(Also I use a WD5AGO Product preamp in the shack) to a ( SSB TOWER mtd PREAMP) to a 55 el loop yagi (WD5AGO design) @ 82' wid 7/8" heliax .
I used to run a 2C39 water cooled amp & 50 wts, but sold it in about 1999 when I got off 1296 for awhile. I do also have a portable setup-TS-700 to a MMT1296 /144 (with an internal 10 wt. amp built by W7QJQ) & a 25 El loop Yagi, that I setup from my car on hills or loan it out to other stations.
In past times-on trips to NY to visit family-I'd run a mobile setup-on 144, 432 & 1296 mhz-Had beams mounted on luggage rack of car (just turned the car to point antennas) & made contacts all the way from Oklahoma to Upstate NY ( Early 80's -before grid mobiling became popular)-especially used it from a hill in FN12- NY & made many contacts -working AU on 144, or ground wave on 432/1296 to CT, NJ,VA, OH, IN, VE3 etc. from that hill- lots of memories from that era.
Here are my 1296 records
Tropo-I have 17 states-Two of the best DX are EM85 NC & FN02 NY. I currently have 64 grids
I have a I D chip that I run as a TEST BCN "de W5VHF/b EM25" on any VHF/UHF band ,on request.
USS BATFISH #310
I also operate from the submarine USS BATFISH #310, (4 miles from my home)a WW2 Memorial station is in the radio room of the boat (Ham call WW2SUB) where we have TS-440 , using an old Navy Key, to a 4-El Cushcraft 20-15-10 beam on tower @40' or to a 40 mtr dipole apexing off the coning tower, on cw our # is SWOT # 1366.
***Punch up link below to the USS BATFISH**
To check out W5WAX & to see what I do to re-live earlier fun times with old tube gear when I'm not on VHF/ UHF go to site below.
THE ABOVE PICTURE IS MY VINTAGE CW OPERATING STATION-HEATH HW-16, HG-10 VFO OR MY DRAKE 2-NT & DRAKE R4-A
ALSO I USE THE McELROY HAND KEY & THE LES LOGAN SPEEDX BUG. ALL GOOD CW OPs USE HEADPHONES TO COPY CW.
SKCC #617C "Centurion # 3"- "WAS # 2" Love CW USING OLD KEYS
WW2 KEYS,J-38, McElroy Teardrop, Les Logan SPEEDX BUG,
BROWN BROS,NAVY BIG KNOB, NAVY CLT 26001-B,VIBROPLEX BUG
EARLIER SETUP-ON AM I USED A COLLINS 75-A4, JOHNSON VALLIANT, D-104 MIC, also used the FT 101 for low power AM. Hallicrafter SPKR
Below is my FT-100 Mobile rig,Also note the Speedx Key I use. most active on 144 SSB and CW,with a N0MST loop, also 50 MHZ-Some HF at times. Or ( on 1296) I have a 25 EL.loop yagi, (on 432) I have a 15 El beam mounted on roof rack above. I and on (144 ) I have an 8 el Beam.
THE SUBARU MOBILE HAS A 144 MHZ LOOP ON TOP FOR SSB/CW OPERATION, THEN BEHIND IT ON AN ANGLE IS ANOTHER ANTENNA POSITION-CAN BE USED FOR 50 MHZ, 40 METERS OR 20 METERS-THE 50 MHZ ANTENNA IS ON NOW.
I'M A MEMBER OF THE W5VHF WEAK SIGNAL SOCIETY. We have on the air meetings on each monday @ 8PM on 144.190 with NCS in EM26.If you are located close enough & would like to check in with our group please listen & join in. We are horizonial polarzided on SSB & CW for checkins. We have anywhere from 20-26 checkins from 7 states (OK,MO,AR,KS,TX,LA & TN) each net. We also have meetins at some of our members homes from time to time, also we meet yearly at the Green Country Hamfest at Claremore , Ok. in March.
Here is our web site on QRZ-
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