I have been licensed since 1963 (WN8JXM novice call). Upgraded that year to General (WA8JXM) and Extra in 1967.
I retired in 2001 and we bought a farm and have horses. My wife and I enjoy camping and the outdoors.
I operate mostly digital and CW, I prefer to rag chew. I prefer the lower bands, 160/80/40/30.
Lately I've been operating mostly 40 CW and a little SSB. Current rigs are an Elecraft K3 and a Flex 6300. I love the panadapter display on the Flex but I otherwise prefer the Elecraft K3 for operating. I added the panadapter to the K3 but the Flex panadapter is definitely better. Both rigs share an Elecraft KAT500 turner, a really great tuner, by far the best tuner I have ever used. I also have a Palstar AT2K manual antenna tuner for some antennas at high power. A Heathkit SB-1000 amplifier gets occasional use when needed.
Current antennas include inverted Vees for 160/80 and 40/30, an 80m half wave end fed Zepp, a 200ft dipole fed with ladderline. a 160m inverted L, and a 35ft vertical. The 200 ft dipole works on everything from 160 to 6m with the Elecraft tuner.
I like to experiment with trying out different antennas and I finally have a place to do it. I have a 56' tower and a half dozen 35-40' utility poles and black locust poles. I often use WSPR mode for comparing multiple antennas.
Perhaps this is why they no longer call this "wireless"?
Recently I drug the old Viking II and Drake R-4a out of the basement to see if I could get it on for SKN. It's probably been 40 years since the Viking was fired up. I put it on a Variac and brought it up to full voltage over a couple of days. It still works! I needed a new 5R4 rectifier but it's been on the air and made some contacts. I bought the Viking II shortly after I passed my General exam in 1963. The R-4A was bought new a couple of years later, it's a one owner model. The bug in the picture was given to me, it's a WWII Army contract Vibroplex (J-36).
One of the great things about the Viking is that it will load just about any antenna. The only thing it ever failed to load was a 3' fishing pole on 2 MHz. The downside is that it is a heavy beast to carry up from the basement, it weighs over 70#.
7092659 Last modified: 2016-02-15 17:57:00, 2653 bytes
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