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I have been interested in radio from a very early age, introduced to the hobby by my late uncle. I held G7UST (VHF-only) until taking the M5 in 1999 when it was first introduced, and before a choice of call was possible (M5AEH is not good phonetically for DX working!). The M5 call has always been a full (advanced) licence, initially with a 100w power limit. It only lasted for around a year, when the new, tiered system was introduced. M5's were given the choice of keeping their call, or changing to an M0; most did, so today, the M5 call is quite rare! I enjoy and work all bands from 160m through to 70cm, all modes, although more usually on SSB. I was an RSGB GB2RS newsreader on 145MHz and 1.990Mhz and often chaired the Sunday morning "Yorkshire Pre-News net" on 145.475 between 08.15 and 09.30, and the top band net on Sunday evenings.

I am a member of UKSMG..no.1856

Rigs in use now are an Icom IC-7400 (IC-746PRO),Yaesu FT450D on 6m, an Icom 7100 for 4m, 2m and D-Star, an Icom 706MkIIG, Yaesu 7800 and various handhelds. My favourite bands are 2m ssb and 6m; I enjoy DX-chasing and QRA-locator-collecting on 2m, 4m and 6m. I use an MFJ 949E ATU on HF. I previously used a TS440 (a lovely set), FT857 and FT817 and a TS2000 - which I changed for the Icom.

We bought an early retirement property in central France in 2005, where I held the French call F8VOC, but returned to Suffolk, UK in Dec 2010. I no longer have the large shack or antenna system I had previously: currently I am using a low and bent doublet on HF.  For VHF I have a rotatable 4m/6m sleeve dipole, the 2/6/70 colinear at around 5m, a 2m 7-ele ZL-special for 2m DX work and a 432MHz HB9CV.  Not the best arrangement as all these antennas are too close and very low - but the system works reasonably well and keeps me and everyone else happy! The tree in the picture is across the access road so is unuseable to me. The HF doublet is hidden away in the rainwater gutterings - apart from the section across the back of the bungalow - as no visible wire aerials are allowed on the site. The shack is in a wardrobe - compact but functional - and can be closed away completely. The QTH (JO02NC) is only 40m ASL unlike my previous 360m in the UK and 258m in France, and compared to previous large aerial systems, I struggle on HF - but I still manage to have fun!

I also enjoy data decoding, and broadcast DXing, with either a short end-fed wire or, more usually, a 6-turn indoor receive loop built on a wooden frame, which works especially well with the 7100 on the NDBs around 300-400kHz, and an old Sangean 803 on FM, linked to a full-wave quad loop (indoors). I also monitor lightning, using the loop antenna - and am now just getting into D-star with the new Icom.

Over the years I have owned an R1155, BC348, Canadian 52 set, 19set Mklll and many home-built pieces of equipment. Antennas previously included beams for 6m, 2m and 70cm, a full-sized 160m dipole in inverted-vee form, supported by a pneumatic 60ft mast, a 360ft end-fed wire, full-size G5RV at 35ft and a 141ft horizontal loop.

My XYL is also a licensed ham operator, 2E0YKS.

Current system in use now (July 2015)

 

 

 

73 to all my Yorkshire friends.... Colin

8133611 Last modified: 2017-06-02 17:44:20, 3766 bytes

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World Continents Award#1384
Granted: 2015-01-23 19:17:36   (M5AEH)

Grid Squared Award#1265
Granted: 2015-01-23 19:17:33   (M5AEH)

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