Thank you for visiting my listing. Maybe you justheard me in the bands, or we have just completed a nice QSO.
After almost forty years of interest in HF radio, I finally got my radio amateur license in March 2011. Since 11 May 2011, I have been on the air as LA6VQ. Below you will find an account of who and what brought me into ham radio.
My radio interest was spurred when I was just a kid, growing up in Bremanger, an island on the northern coast of Western Norway, 160 km/100 miles north of Bergen, the biggest city in Western Norway. Admittedly, I was more than average interested in the big wide world out there, and deeply fascinated about the short wave radio signals coming in from all over the world. My older brother was a navigator in the Norwegian merchant marine, and many other relatives and neighbours were also seamen. They sent us postcards and told fascinating stories of their experiences from all over the world, which certainly didn't reduce my curiousity of the world outside our island.
But more than anything I was spurred by my uncle (the original LA6VQ Mr Trygve Hauge), who got his license in the early 1970-ies. He suffered from a muscle disease, and needed some help writing logs and QSL-cards, antenna work, etc. In return for my help, he let me tune the bands and listen to stations around the world, and sometimes make contacts as his second operator. For a 13 years old boy, listening and talking to stations in Pakistan, Antarctica, US Virgin Islands, Israel, Brazil, and other distant places, was indeed memorable experiences! No doubt I would take that license one day!
But, then there was school, military service as radio operator in the Royal Norwegian Navy, business school, work, family, you know the story! Studying and working in Bergen more or less continuously since 1980, I joined the license classes of the Bergen Group of NRRL several times in the 1980-ies, but always something else took priority over ham radio. I always had the interest, but didn't have (or rather, to be honest, take) the time to take the license and get on the air. My uncle died in 2003, having enjoyed ham radio for more than 30 years.
Out of the blue, one day in January 2011, I noticed on the web that a new license course would be started soon. I signed up for the course, held by and under the experienced auspices of LA1TNA and LB0K, and 9 weeks later I passed the license test. After so many years, I was a real radio amateur!
By application to the Post and Telecommunications Authority, I was lucky enough to be awarded my late uncle's call sign, which makes me both proud and humble. I will try to honour his memory by living up to his reputation as a gentleman on the air, and elsewhere.
When I checked with the Norwegian amateur radio organization, Norsk Radio Relæ Liga, they told me I had been a member since September 1977. That is more than 2/3 of my life! I guess I am high on the list of "time of membership without a transmitting license".
Living in the central parts of Bergen, my antenna conditions are similar to many city-dwelling hams, with limited space for antennas, zoning ordinances, etc. And some of the beautiful seven mountains surrounding the city andhave earned Bergen it's name, create some challenges between northeast and south.However, my Kenwood TS-590 barefoot and an inverted V with its apex at 9 meters above the ground, work fairly well. And my ICOM IC-7000 mobile rig and Moonraker AMPRO whips for various bands produce quite impressing results in pile-ups competing with considerably better antennas and PAs.
I also have a second QTH in my childhood home in Bremanger, where the space for antennas is better. Bremanger is in the IOTA EU-055 group (with its formal IOTA name being Bremangerlandet). When I am in Bremanger I try to be as active as family life and social commitments permit, in order to make EU-055 available. Being an islander by breed, heart and mind, I feel confident that contacting island hams will be an important part of my hobby.
I have put up an FD-4 Windom antenna there. Together with the ICOM IC-7000 and an LDG AT100 Pro II tuner, the FD-4 works well on all HF bands. The QTH is situated 15 meters from the sea in locator JP21LU (enter locator in the search field to see the location), and provides fairly good signals.
The relatively poor working conditions in Bergen enabled me to work all continents within my first five weeks of operation. By early May 2013, I have worked 137 DXCC entities in 2000 QSOs, but then there are the confirmations. With 121 entities verified/confirmed (and counting), I am quite satisfied with the response rate this far.
QSL - LoTW
Having started my ham career as a "QSL manager" 40 years ago, I fully understand that QSL-ing is also an important part of the hobby. And I certainly think that a QSL card is the final courtesy of a first QSO. In addtion to paper QSL cards, I have found Logbook of the World to be a most useful and fast tool, which I recommend to anybody who have not tried it.
I also took the liberty of translating the LoTW instructions into a set of LoTW instructions in Norwegian because some fellow hams told me it was so complicated, and even more so in a foreign language. Well, it is not! And as most logging software can offer direct upload and download of LoTW, it is even easier to use. LoTW fits my style of operation from several QTHs, while eQSL is regrettably useless in that respect. If you follow the instructions and upload your log, you will soon have many new verified entities. And if you want the QSL card in addition, just send one and wait a while. Suddenly you have both LoTW and paper QSL.
In 2012 I was honoured to be elected to the board of the Bergen Group of NRRL. I find the board service most interesting, capitalizing on my business experience and my beginner's enthusiasm as a new ham. The new board has taken some new initiatives and received good responses from the members, which is encouraging for further initiatives. I look forward to continuing the initiatives.
Like most hams I have antenna dreams and plans that will take some time and domestic and public approvals to realize. I am working on both of them. I like that our hobby have so many different aspects, opening the doors for rag chewers, contesters, DX-ers in all bands, satelliters, elmers, communication technology avantgardist and historians/"archaeologists", expeditioners, antenna builders, software developers, and many other ways of enjoying radio. And like most hams, I already enjoy many sides of the hobby.
On the Air
I like to talk with people, so if you hear me, please call me. As you will gather from the above, DX-ing and IOTA is close to my heart. And I like the challenge in a pile-up, so if 6 seconds and an exchange of call sign and signal report is all that is available, that is OK, too.
I support the ideas expressed in the DX Code of Conduct and the Ethics and Procedures for Radio Amateurs. They make ham radio better for everybody. If at any time you hear me getting anywhere near challenging any of them, please let me know - not through policing on the air, but by an e-mail to the address in my QRZ.com listing.
Remember, this call sign used to belong to a gentleman. I will strive to keep it that way.
Thanks for reading. Hope we meet in the bands soon.
Last modified: 2013-05-09 22:34:30, 11014 bytes cached
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