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VE4VJR Canada flag Canada

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Ham Member Lookups: 1676


SKCC #16466

Hi all! I was first fascinated by short wave radio in the early '70s as a young boy listening to a mutliband radio I bought for $30 from a catalogue. I eventually discovered I could pick distant AM radio stations from eastern Canada and the U.S., especialy on winter nights. I remember many Sunday nights listening to the Mystery Radio Theatre on American stations. That led me to visting the library every month to read the latest QST magazine then go across the street to the Heathkit store where the resident hams would let me listen as they worked the radios. 

I tried getting my Amateur Radio license back then as a teen, but with no mentor and a lack of discipline to study CW, I did not persevere. A few decades later I found out that the CW requirement was dropped. So along with a co-worker (VE4BEF), I took a class put on by the WInnipeg Amateur Radio Club and obtained my Canadian Basic Amateur Radio license in March 2016. This was followed by the Morse Code qulification in January 2017 and finally, the Canadian Advanced Amateur Radio license in April 2017.

Along the way I have had tremendous help from VE4EA. He is the mentor I was missing as a teenager. Along with W6NF they helped me find a radio, put up a 20 M dipole, taught me the necessary basic operating skills and introduced me to contesting. The past year has been incredibly exciting, finally doing what I wanted to do all those years ago! I have made new ham friends both on and off the air, with VE4EA's support participated in a few contests along with fellow new ham VE4JBB, am a member of Radio Sport Manitoba and even find myself as the Vice-President of the Winnipeg Amateur Radio Club, go figure!

To date, the hilite of my short Ham life was the ability to operate for a short time while in Lviv, Ukraine from the Lviv Children Technical Center station UR4WXQ as UT/VE4VJR. This was made possible by my gracious hosts Ihor (UR4WG) and George (UY5XE). They provide after school activities of a technical nature, including amateur radio, for children including blind children. If anyone feels inclined to contribute to their cause I am sure they would be thrilled!

I am currently using a Kenwood TS570D and a G5RV held up at about 30' by 8 (yes 8) stacked 4' aluminum military surplus tent poles. I have them braced at about 10' but still worry about that whole setup whenever a prairie storm appears! As finances and time permit, I eventually plan to put up a tower and directional antenna. One of the difficulties with being a ham in Canada (especially here in central Canada) is that it is not as big an activity as it is south of the border in the U.S., and access to equipment and supplies requires effort, time and money - so patience is a virtue!

Other intersts that sometime compete for radio time are fishing in the summer, duck\goose hunting in the fall and the WInnipeg Jets hockey team. Here in the province of Manitoba we are Blessed by God with incredible natural resources - thousands of rivers and lakes with fish in them (not that I am able to catch them, but that's another story...), miles of wilderness hiking, camping, hunting and positioned in one of North America's major flight paths for migratory birds! From my doorstep it literally takes me less than 1 hour to be in the marsh waiting for the ducks.. 

I am a CW newbie. If you hear me - reply, even if for a really quick QSO. I need the practice!






8167887 Last modified: 2017-06-19 01:38:56, 3727 bytes

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