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I was first licensed as WN8CGF in 1955 when 12 years old. My dad gave me my inspiration to be a ham. He was a commercial radio pioneer in Hamilton, Ohio in the mid 20's. He had the first radio store and the second commercial broadcast station (WSRO and later WEBO) in town. The picture below shows my mother and dad in the Radio Company show room. My mother did a "cooking show" for the Estate Range Company on my dad's radio station.

I had great "Elmers" when starting out in the hobby. They included W8IUV, W8OEQ, W8HXB, W8RDJ, W8HFY, W8COU, W8DXR, W8DZK and W8BVF (now K8FL) and many others who were members of the Fort Hamilton Amateur Radio Association.

Here I am operating with the FHARA gang in the 1957 Field Day:

As a young ham in Hamilton, Ohio, I operated quite a bit of NTS CW traffic nets and did some equipment building.

Here is a picture of my shack just before I left for college in 1960:

The big rack contained my home brew 304TL AM/CW amplifier that used a single 304TL Class C amplifier  (one is pictured in my CA QSLs) and pair of 811's for modulators. The 3600V power supply used a retired "pole pig" 3KVA  transformer that I bought from Cincinnati Gas & Electric for $3. I knew what TVI was in those days!

After I married in January 1964, my wife Phyllis and I moved to Phoenix, Arizona. In the next 26 years we raised 4 children, of whom, I am very proud. While in Phoenix, I was W7DNF and then N7FF where I operated mostly QRP/M with a Heath HW-7. (I even managed to work one bycyle QRP QSO).

Thanks to the urging of a very good friend, Bill Franklin, W7DOZ, I was also active in Air Force MARS. Bill and I joined the gracious leaders, K7UGA and W7TPG, were some of the first operators at U. S. Senator Barry Goldwater's MARS station. Below is a picture of me at AFA7UGA doing phone patches for service men and women stationed in Southeast Asia.

I moved to Morgan Hill, California in 1990 and got my first real transceiver (TS-440)!

In California I was active in the formation and operation of the Garlic Valley Amateur Radio Club. I became the Emergency Coordinator for Morgan Hill and also supported Gilroy. I joined in as one of the many hams that helped with communication in the annual Gilroy Garlic Festival. Here is my California QSL:

In October of 2005, I retired from HP and moved to beautiful Hot Springs Village, Arkansas. (http://hsvpoa.org/)

I am active in the Hot Springs Village ARC (http://w5hsv.com/). I help coordinate things and maintain their two repeaters. I still love "Elmering", CW contests, building things and playing with antennas

In 2008, I ramped up my interest in DXing and got DXCC. I'm at 285 confirmed now. My thanks to the Arkansas DX Association. (http://www.adxa.org/).

I was interviewed by 4Z1UG in his QSO Today podcast #36 in April, 2015. (http://www.qsotoday.com/).

I managed to get an article published in QST about my antenna system. See QST, October 2013.

Life is good! Ham Radio has been a big part of my life and it has brought a series of discoveries, the best of which has been the discovery of new friends.

See you on the air, friend.


    Frank,  N7FF

8215011 Last modified: 2017-07-13 17:36:09, 4146 bytes

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