As of August 2010 my new QTH is Elberta, Alabama - Baldwin County
The rig pictured below is a home brew project based upon the Norcal Sierra design by Wayne Burdick, N6KR that is featured in several years of the ARRL Handbook. Wayne is one of the designers of the Elecraft K2 and this is one of its precursors. It is available on the market as a kit. Bare circuit boards are also available. I chose to etch my own board and drill all the holes as a challenge. Also in the picture is a power amplifier based upon another ARRL Handbook article by WA2EBY. It is run at 12 volts and produces an average of 12 watts output. I topped the project off with a digital readout, the FCC1 kit from the Norcal QRP club. Enclosures were purchased from Ten-Tec. All in all it represents two full winters of work, as it was set aside during the summer when outdoor work and activities called.
I was first licensed in November of 1979 at the age of 15 and from my first contact I have loved CW. After graduating High School I started work as a Radio Technician with the Ohio State Highway Patrol. I thoroughly enjoyed the work but I heard the calling of the sea and worked for twelve years as a Radio Officer aboard merchant ships from 1986 to 1998 when the international requirements for the use of morse code by a licensed Radio Officer were lifted. I was fortunate enough to get paid for working CW and was able to visit 42 countries. After that I worked nine years for a large electric utility as an electronic technician maintaining trunked radio sites, mobile radios and mobile data computers. I am now working as a Flight Simulator Technician.
I am QRV on cw 160 - 10 meters at the moment with no serious big gun antennas. I have a Hustler 6BTV with a good buried radial system and an off center fed dipole at 30 feet. I only have a few 30 ft. tall trees so support for wire antennas is limited. I have been putting up a 30 foot mast to hold a 160 meter invertel L during the winter months when I do not have to mow. This fall I added 25 ground radials to it and I have been able to up my country count to 40.
I am active from time to time on the amateur satellites AO-7, SO-50, AO-51, VO-52 and now HO-68 on 144 and 435 Mhz with a desire to explore other satellites and maybe homebrew a down converter for the higher bands.
The HF Rig is an Icom IC746PRO and a backup Kenwood TS-930S. On 435 Mhz I am using an old Kenwood TR9500. The satellite antennas are 25 year old KLM 18C and KLM 14C. After so many years, the relays wore out. FYI Newark Electronics carries the relays.
I have been working the November ARRL Sweepstakes and the CQWW CW contests. The free N1MM logging software has turned out to be an impressive, easy to use tool. I hope to get involved in more contests as my shack becomes more organized.
I occasionally show up on Moonbounce along with KA1VHF. We have put up a small EME array, two 17 element yagis on 2 meters with a kilowatt 8877 amp. If you have never tried this mode I encourage you do some web searches on the subject and if it interests you, give it a try.
Thanks for checking out my QRZ page. I hope to talk with you on the ham bands.
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