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I was gainfully employed for about 38 years (30 as a Law Enforcement Officer)  and recently retired with a permanent home address where I can put up a base station antenna. I have been a licenced HAM since 1999 having only a need for Technician Licence until recently. I'm trying to study for the General but it's going slow. My current radios are a Kenwood TM-D710, an Kenwood TH-D74, Yaesu FT-991 (mine seems to work correctly??) and last, 2 Wouxun HT's (KG-UV2D & KG-UV6D V2).

I upgraded to a Kenwood TM-D710 as my VHF/UHF base and traded my Alinco 635D & the Kenwood TM-D700 in on thw Kenwood TH-D74. In July of 2016 I also purchased the Yaesu FT-991.  I have the FT-991 mounted on a nice piece of wood so I can use it on trips. The base antenna is a Comet GP-9 on a 21' mast. So far this has been a great setup with low SWR on all frequencies, even the out of band freqs and a 10/6 meter antena. I will update the pictures when I have more time.

I have owned a couple higher quality (2 ICOMS) HT's but both were lost or failed to work. For a while I was using the Wouxun HT's, which for the price have beeen awsome radios. Now I'm using the Kenwood TH-D74 as my primary HT. I haven't had a chance to play with the D-Star side of it.

I usually get on the radio for the Insomniac Net on the IRLP system as well as other IRLP nets. I think this system of dialing up a "node" almost any where in the modern world is great.

I was considering  several  "upgrades". One is getting my General Class License (still working on this one) 2; setting up my own "node" which I have accomplished. My AllStar Node, # 46125, is a Nano Node AE. For now, I'm just using it through the internet & traveling; 3.  setting up a tower (see note below). Our house is undergoing some renovations (new roof & adding  front & back extentions) so the base antennas are "down".

From most locations in my area it is difficult to reliably hit an IRLP Node / Repeater from this far (15 mi.) East of Houston with an HT or even my base in some cases. So to possibly help this situation, as of 05/17/12 I  acquired a 30' tower (if you want to call it a tower, lol). It was originally supposed to be a 70' tower but the individual who hooked me up with the tower decided he wanted the 2 middles sections, leaving me with two mis-matched sections totaling only 30' (20' base & 10' upper section). It's a used tower from a local high school that was being re-built (see attached picture). During the "saving" process one of the base "feet" were damaged so I'm not sure how I will install it. This antenna was originally bolted to a concrete slab. My current mast is 21' so this short tower will only net me about 9'; less if I have to bury it a couple of feet to put it up. The only real advantage is that all of our antennas can be mounted on this tower (HF, VHF/UHF and the Direct TV dish antenna). I'm not sure what I'm goint to do with the two micro-wave dish antennas that were attached to the upper section of the tower. Any ideas???

My other hobies are Scuba Diving, Horses (we had 2 but had to put one down a couple of years ago) and firearms. Being a retired L.E.O. I usually have a sidearm on me. I am currently carrying a S&W 629-6 (44 Mag, 2.5", from S&W Custom Center). Yes it hurts to fire magnums from this gun but it's fun to shoot. Shooting specials is awesome. Why??? Just because I always wanted one! I will probably go back to my Springfield XD40 at some point. However, with a good holster the Smith is just as comfortable to carry.

8256129 Last modified: 2017-08-05 19:12:44, 5492 bytes

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