Awards: SKCC Centurion #738, ARRL WAS-B #56833 (with CW endorsement), SKCC Tribune #578
I love being a "Know Code Extra"! I do not use keyboards or software for CW, only my ears and hands (OK except in some contests ;-). "If you don't know CW, you don't know DIT!".
My interest in amateur radio started off with a simple need to communicate during the charity events I volunteered for. As a volunteer EMT helping with long bicycle rides,I frequently found myself in remote areas needing to contact medical control, but not being able to find a HAM nearby. After much persuasion, local HAMs convinced me to get a tech license and a 2m HT. At the time it was all I cared about. I had no interest in going any farther. That was May of 2007. For several years I used my ticket for nothing other than just 2m commo at these events, and an occasional mobile QSO on a repeater when I was on the road and bored, but for the most part I was intimidated by HAM knowledge, lingo, customs and folklore.
Then in the fall of 2011 I read the novel "Survivors" by James Wesley Rawles. The novel is about a U.S. Army officer fighting in Afghanistan who suddenly finds himself needing to get back home to the U.S. after a societal collapse. When I got to the part where he uses his Elecraft KX1CW QRP rig for global communication, my interest in HAM went from almost non-existent to an obsession. In December of 2011 I upgraded to General Class, then in May of 2012 I upgraded to Extra Class. I then spent the next several months learning code, practicing every day until I finally got good enough to go on the air with it. I now work almost exclusively CW,sometimes on my own QRP rig, the Ten Tec HB1B.My QRO rig is a YaesuFT-897D running through an old Palomar 300A amp I scrounged up, usually putting out about 300 watts. I still try to practice copying different styles of code daily, around 15-20 wpm. I DX at 20 wpm and up, but If you want to chat, slow to about17 wpm and leave some space between your characters. If you just want a quick contact, 20-25wpm is fine.On 80m I use a dipole oriented E/W', for UHF I have a dual bander vertical, for VHF I have a beam, for all other bands, I use a31' Vertical S9. But like all good HAMs, I do experiment, so who knows for sure what you might be hearing me transmit from!
I am active with the Straight Key Century Club, and strongly encourage anyone wanting to get proficient in CW to join and get involved. The club has helped to turn me into a competant CW operator from someone who just understood code. There is a big difference. Also a member of the Benton County Radio Operators club.
I am an Kansas City native but moved to Arkansas to work for Walmart Stores Inc. as a Senior Programmer / Analyst. I design and develop software for their Treasury systems. I have a B.S. in Computer Science, and have served in the Army National Guard Infantry, and as a Volunteer firefighter / EMT. I also lead the NWA Preparedness Group, which can be found on meetup.com.
I log every QSO on LOTW and eQSL.cc. Please take the time to get registered on these sites and QSL! I also send QSL cards direct for first time CW contacts, and for others if I receive a request or a card.
"This station is now the ultimate power in the universe. I suggest we use it"
Last modified: 2013-12-04 02:14:55, 3778 bytes cached
This user has no active logs