Licensed in 1995 as a Novice and did a lot of CW back in the day. Trying to get my copying back up to speed these days. Upgraded to General at age 15 and upgraded to Extra in Sept. 2011.
In November 2011, I became an Elecraft K3 owner. I don't mean I just bought an Elecraft, I mean I became a proud Elecraft owner! This product is amazing and I reluctantly finally put the FT-950 in the box and in the cabinet after a long, long love affair with Yaesu. I'll miss my FT-950 but the K3 is just too good not to use as my main rig.
Currently using the K3 and P3 Pandapter driving an Ameritron AL-572 and into either my K4KIO Hexbeam or a Butternut HF6V Vertical stuck in ground on the side of the mountain where I live. It gets my signal out in an amazing way but is nothing like the Hexbeam. A Henry 2K-2 is sitting next to me on the floor under a protective cover (more on that below).
I built the K3 and P3 from the kit and had a blast doing it.
I chose the 2.8Khz SSB filter and 500Hz CW filter, but I recently ordered the KRX3 subreceiver and will try out the 400Hz 8-pole filter on that one for comparison.
Update Oct. 2011: Recently put up a K4KIO 5-band Hex Beam antenna for 10,12,15,17,20 meters. You can see the photo below. This thing is phenomenal. I've never had a directional antenna for HF before and this antenna is just amazing. It's about 30' off the ground, which means it's about 600' above sea level, with a "view" of about 30 degrees through 330 degrees. There's a house and mountain towards the North that blocks me just a little bit but amazingly not by much.
Also, the Henry 2K-2 "died" recently so in the interim I acquired an Ameritron AL-572 tube amp as I do love those tube amps. But then my Elmer K0GVS fixed the Henry by replacing the rectifier diodes and now it's back in action but regrettably the AL-572 uses less power and is a little more "modern", although occasionally I key up the Henry for its vintage audio, and, well, because it's a Henry!
I also have an IC-706MKIIG that I picked up right before they stopped making them. That's a great rig for portable and QRP work or for when I want to sit in the backyard with a battery instead of inside the shack. The Yaesu FT-950 is also being kept around just in case. But now that I have the K3 I'm pretty sure that's the rig I'd take if I need to go portable.
In the car I run a Yaseu FT-8800 into a Diamond 1/4 dual-band antenna on the roof for VHF/UHF.
My obsession with Yaesu HTs some would say is unhealthy but most hams would agree is normal. I have procured over the years every VX they made and especially like the VX5R and VX6R. I picked up a couple of those cheapo Wouxon dual-banders which are great for when you might be out in the field and want a radio you wouldn't mind breaking or losing.
As a former commercial pilot and flight instructor, my day job is now IT consulting and data network engineering. I deal with too much high-speed bits and bytes during the day that I enjoy the old-school modes of the HF bands in the evenings.
If you are seeing this page you and I are probably having a QSO or have had one recently. In either case Aloha and 73 from Hawaii!
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