Started in ham radio in 1963 as WN8KBR at age 13. I held the call WA8VDC from 1966 until March 4, 2008. My first rig was a Heathkit DX-20 an ARC-5 receiver with a dipole antenna on 40 meters and only one xtal.
This year will make 50 years since I got into ham radio. Look for me as K8P for 2 weeks starting August 1, 2013 in celebration. wu wu
After 10 years as a technician on 6 and 2 meters AM, my Elmer urged me to upgrade to General. A chance meeting with California ham a few years later got me inspired to get the Advanced license and dx has always been the main challenge. It took 31 more years, band changes and missing a couple new ones for DXCC to push me to get the extra in Feb. 2008. It is never too late,hi.
In 1994 a heart attack put the radios on the back burner, but I slowly got back into radio after retiring from law enforcement in 2000.After returning to the DXCC Mixed Honor Roll, new challenges have my attention. This included trying 30,17 and 12 meters for the first time starting November 2007. DXCC now stands at 349/336. 5 Band DXCC and DXCC Challenge Award (2175) are now on the wall. 30, 17 and 12meters DXCC are in hand. Recently made it to DXCC SSB Honor Roll. A full size 80 meter loop antenna is back up for the first time since the mid 80s and working good into Europe and Pacific.
The picture above shows me in 1978 running all Heathkit and reminds of the good times in radio, plus I look a lot younger, hi. The current station is also all Heathkit, with an SB1400, SB220, a Hygain Explorer 14 beam w/40 meters and a Cushcraft vertical on the roof for 160/80/30 meters. A new Cushcraft A3WS sets above the tribander and the 30 meter add on is in the picture below. An Icom 706 is on standby and for mobile trips. Even get some of the qrp rigs out on occasion.
A tornado in 2010 reduced my antenna farm,hi. The vertical turned into an inverted L and the beam was pointing the wrong direction. A replacement vertical is back on the roof. The 80 meter loop is back up and looking to the Pacific and all points east.
Ham radio and the association with other organizations including the International Police Association has allowed me to travel and visit many of the hams I have met on the air. Trips included operating as M1IPA (San Marino) for one week in 1981, DL/WA8VDC 1984 and 1987, G/GW/GM/WA8VDC in 1986 and 7J5AAD(Japan) in 1991. Two more trips to Japan in 1993 and 1999 rounds up the last major trips. We have a sister city program between Monroe, MI and Hofu, Japan since 1993 with student exchanges each summer.
Also check club call sign WA8IPA in QRZ.COM and K8P in the ARRL 1X1 listing in May each year. Contacts for both calls can go direct or LoTW.
I am really glad I got into ham radio and look forward to making many more qso's in the future. For qsl cards; direct, buro, LoTW. LoTW is updated very frequently. Ok, every few days, hi.
If you hear of any of these RARE places going to be active let me know; BV9P, E3, P5, or XZ. I am not getting any younger and sure would like to work a couple of the ones I still need, hi.
This is my other baby, a 67 Mustang. The main beam tower is in the background.
Now what are you doing here? Go out and work some stations, hi. And, dx can be tough. If it wasn't,this would be called Ho-Hum Radio,hi.
Remember, polite is right
73’s Tom KG8P
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