The photo above is the Collins station (32S-3, 312B-4, 75S-3C, 62S-1, 30S-1) I ran from the early 1970s until the end of the century. It is gone now - with the exception of the Vibroplex paddle. While my new station equipment is really high-tech by comparison, I can't get a picture of it that looks as warm and friendly as the old, reliable Collins station. Call me nostalgic!
Continuously licensed in Ohio as K8EUR since 1957, I now enjoy DXing on 160 and 80 meters, and chasing new ones on all the other bands for the DXCC Challenge total. I QSL to DX stations 100% via the Bureau, and also via ARRL Logbook of the World (LOTW). All the DX contacts in my paper logs since 1957 have been put into a digital log and uploaded to LOTW. So far, my oldest LOTW confirmation dates to 1968, and my first confirmed DX contact with a paper QSL was G2ART on 15 meters on November 3, 1957. Being on the air back then during the grand-daddy of all sunspot cycles is an unforgettable experience! I now operate on SSB, CW, RTTY and other digital modes.
Living on a small city lot, I realize the importance of getting the most antenna performance from available space. Since hearing the weak ones is the most important part of working DX, I took a "walk in the woods" behind my home and installed a ground-mounted DX Engineering DXE-ARAV3-1P Broadband Active Receiving Antenna - it has only a 9-foot vertical stainless steel whip and receives its power through the 75 ohm CATV-type coaxial cable. It needs no ground radials. By placing it away from houses and other noise producing sources - and its inherent reduced susceptibility to atmospheric noise - I have been able to get Q5 copy on 160 and 80 meter DX signals that are absent on my full-size transmitting antennas.
A pair of these antennas - along with the DXE-NCC-1 Phasing Controller - can give me the ability to rotate the antenna pattern much like a beam when I add a second antenna in the future. A Receive Four-Square Array is not in the cards for me because my city lot doesn't have enough room, but I can probably do well with a two-antenna receiving array.
My main antennas currently consist of full-size dipoles for 160 and 80, a high performance DX Engineering DXE-4030VA-1 dual band vertical for 40 and 30 and a DX Engineering 5-band Hexbeam for 20 through 10. I recently added a small 6 meter yagi in case we get some propagation here in the W8 "black hole".
DX Engineering has the most advanced products and technical support to allow anyone to get the most performance from their station and be competitive with other DXers and Contesters. .and they do all this with guaranteed lowest prices.
During my pre-1980 VHF days, I took time to complete WAS and WAC on 6 meters. I also have 42 states confirmed on 2 meters (without EME), and several countries/continents via EME. Just back on the HF DX trail since 2002, I have DXCC on 9 bands and have pushed past 325 confirmed total for DXCC - 184 on Top Band alone - and 2400+ for DXCC Challenge. A wise old DXer once told me "The first 300 are the easiest". Now I know what he meant!
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