Above right: The man, the vertical, the beverage...
Hi, I'm Frank, and I'm a CW operator.
I was born in 1968. I'm currently living on a beautiful spot just west of Almere (info in Dutch and photos here), in Flevoland province. I'm living there together with Marielle and our two Irish Setters Raya and Luca. I'm a free-lance IT specialist since 1999. My company is called QRD ("where are you bound for?"). Besides playing radio, I like to play the piano. Also, I enjoy brewing beer, listening to jazz music, dancing to EDM, and going on long-distance hikes. Finally, I enjoy running half marathons and playing the occasional game of squash.
I'm a proud member of FOC, HSC and CWops.
I've been known to regularly tune the living room radio as a toddler, but it wasn't until I was in my teens that my interest for radio really developed. First with listening to shortwave broadcast and utility stations. Later, my interest moved towards ham radio and I became an SWL (NL-10191). The receiver was a Kenwood R600.
I received my ham radio ticket (with CW included) in 1990, and the callsign PA3FLV. At that time, I was using homebrew QRP CW transmitters and the Kenwood R600 receiver. Later, I purchased a TenTec Argonaut II QRP transceiver.
In 1999, when setting up my own business, my interest in ham radio faded. But in 2005, the bug bit again, and I changed my callsign to PA4N. I acquired a second-hand Yaesu FL-110 PA for a 10dB power increase.
In October 2008, I bought an Elecraft K3, to be followed by the subreceiver in early 2009, the panadapter in 2010, the 500W PA in 2011 and the KAT500 antenna tuner in 2012.
I'm intrigued by the magic of the shortwave bands, and am nearly exclusively active on CW . My interests are contesting, rag-chewing, DX-ing and DXpeditioning.
Since 2012, I taken an interest in rag-chewing. And today, it's what I do most of the time, actually, hi hi. I'm often QRV around 25 kHz from the lower band edge, looking for rag-chew contacts at around 25-30 WPM.
To find CW clubs members, I've made a small web application that filters Reverse Beacon Network spots. The application supports CWops, FISTS, FOC, HSC, VHSC, SHSC, EHSC and SKCC.
In 2009, I started to seriously participate in contests. It's not often that I can participate the full time period. Below are the results of the contests in which I was able to engage in an 'all out' effort as a single-op.
(*) = claimed
Also, each year I try to participate in the domestic PA Beker contests. The PA Beker contest is a short contest on 80 and 40 meters, phone one day and CW the other day. It's probably the only contest in which you can hear me on phone :-)
I do seem to find time to participate in some of the three weekly CWops CWT contests. One hour of contest fun per session. Open for non-members too. If you like CW contesting and like short contests, you really should take a look here.
Finally, the last couple of years I've been quite active in multi-multi contests, mostly as part of the now defunct PA6Z contest group. Subsequently, we've had some fun with PA6K, most notably the ARRL 10 meter contest in december 2012. Lately, I've doing several guest-ops with LX7I.
In 2010, I promised myself to go on a DXpedition at least once a year. Up till now, I've kept that promise:
For 2015, I don't have any concrete plans yet. I do have a wish to join a larger DXpedition group, though, to a somewhat more challenging destination (read: outside Europe). So if you have such plans but are still lacking a good CW op, please drop me a note...
Currenly (1 January 2015), I have 287 entries confirmed for DXCC (CW only, 160-10 meters, including deleted). Here are some historical standings:
My station consists of the Elecraft K-line - and I'm loving it! K3 rig with subreceiver, P3 pan-adapter, KPA500 500W amplifier and KAT500 automatic antenna tuner.
My favorite key is the Begali HST. Man, this thing feels solid! Further, I have an Elecraft/Bencher hex key, a Kent straight key, and an old ETM-8C. Last but not least, the good old ex-army Junker straight key on which I learned the code many moons ago. The keyer I'm using is a K1EL Winkeyer.
My antennas currently consist of:
The doublet is fed with 26m ladder line. I can extend the feedline with another 7m (relay-switched from the DIGOUT1 port of my K3) and improve the SWR on some bands, making the job easier for the Elecraft antenna tuner (and increasing its efficiency).
The 5-band Spiderbeam (20-10m) is down for good, after many times storm damage in the 4 1/2 years that I've owned it. The mechanical construction of the antenna simply isn't robust enough for the windy conditions hear at the lakeside. See the picture below for the most recent damage...
QSL via the bureau or LOTW preferred.
DXpedition QSLs: Please note that I will post any DXpedition logs to LOTW within one week from returning home.
7324292 Last modified: 2016-05-19 07:56:34, 32757 bytes
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