From 2007-2009 we lived 20-km northeast of Geneva, Switzerland in the farm town of La Rippe (population 978). I operated as HB9/KE3X along with my General-class sons Patrick (K3PAL), Kody (K3ODY) and Aidan (K3ADN). Currently we operate from Washington, DC. If you want to help get kids involved in our hobby, I recommend calling your local BSA Scoutmaster and offering to run a Radio Merit Badge session. Excellent materials are available at: http://k2gw.tripod.com/radiomeritbadge/. It will take about 4 hours, you will have fun, the Scouts will appreciate it and you'll be helping develop youth interest in ham radio.
Activities: I like HF Contesting (DX contests, Sprints) - my favorite contest is the NCCC Sprint on Thursday nights, also known as 'The Fastest 30 Minutes in Radio', see www.ncccsprint.com. My son Kody and I competed at the 2009 HST World Championships in Bulgaria as members of TeamUSA, and again at 2011 HST World Championships in Bielefeld, Germany. High speed CW is great fun, and there's always some aspect of it where you can further improve. I am an active member of Potomac Valley Radio Club and participate in Multi-Ops from many PVRC area stations.
Station Design: 2x FT-1000MP's, Alpha 87A and Alpha 78, 2x Dunestar 600 filters, Six-Pak, Top Ten Devices band decoders, DXDoubler with PIEXX SO2Rxlat USB interface. Antennas: Tribander at 45 feet, R-8 Vertical (40-6M), 80M dipole at 40 feet, 160M Inv-L at 55 feet. All antennas on a 50'x200' city lot.
Computer Hardware: Custom i7 Quad Core at 7.2 ghz running Windows 7, custom built by my son Patrick, K3PAL.
Computer Software: N1MM logger, RufzXP (www.rufzxp.net, for speed training), MorseRunner (www.dxatlas.com/MorseRunner, for pileup training) and LCWO (www.lcwo.net, for 'code group' training). I highly recommend LCWO to anyone wishing to improve their CW skills, no matter what the current level of proficiency - there are lots of practice exercises and 'Top-10' lists where you can challenge yourself and prevent boredom while practicing your CW.
Previous Calls: WN1UUA (Novice 1974), WA1UUA (General 1975, Advanced 1977), NV1P (Extra 1989-2009). Operated from Mexico City as XE1/NV1P (1991-93), Geneva at 4U1ITU (2007-09), and from Bulgarian HST 2009 special event station LZ8WHST, and German HST 2011 station DA0HST.
History: I was first introduced to ham radio at age 12 by my great-uncle Bob Fairchild K4FG (SK), one of the original pre-1947 'Spark Ops' who built his first radio when he was 15 years old in 1921. He's one of those guys right out of the ARRL's book "200 Meters and Down" about the history of Amateur Radio. Here is Bob's OOTC (Old Old Timers Club) profile - how cool is this?
"#1549 FAIRCHILD, Robert B. K4FG ex K4GXU. Born 1-16-06. First on air 1921. Spark coil using 1 inch coil and stationary gap and marconi type antenna. Later built a ten watt CW with C302 tubes. Retired from AT&T 1966 38 years with them. Active on phone and CW all bands."
QSL's: All QSO's uploaded to LoTW. Bureau QSL's answered 100% plus all direct QSL's if SASE and postage/$ included.
Thanks for all the Q's and hope to work you in the next contest! 73,
Sunrise view of Mont Blanc from our Swiss QTH:
Field Day with the Boys from La Rippe, Switzerland, 2009
Example of a MorseRunner run using 'HST Mode':
Current SO2R setup at KE3X, Washington DC:
In 1979 as WA1UUA, New Haven CT with SB-200, HW-101, homebrew keyer and 120 DXCC countries:
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