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alias for: WB5LFO

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THE NAME I GO BY IS  GARY,  My middle Name.   The reason for that is that every first born male in the Sims family was stuck with the first name of John. 

Licensed in 1973 as WN5LFO, in Austin, TX. Moved to Corpus Christi, TX in 1974. Finally passed my Tech license exam, just before my novice license expired (2 yr non-renewable at that time). Spent 18 years in Corpus and upgraded to General in 1976, Advanced in 1983. Was laid off from the banking industry in 1992, and moved to Massachusetts. Spent 18 years in MA, passed the Extra in 1998.

Over the years, I've been an avid county hunter (since 1976) and have given out over 2,000 counties as a mobile. I've transmitted from all counties in Maine, New Hampshire, Vermont, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Delaware, and Montana. I've never collected them, but as I near retirement years, I plan on working toward the USACA.

Moved back to TX in 2010 and I am dealing with retirement issues, i.e. I still like to work and keep busy. I'm active in our family's business, which manufactures porous plastic products. It's a unique business and still holds fascination for me. My two sons are taking over at this point and I'm glad that's happening. At age 71, I'm "warming up" to the idea of actually retiring.

I've always used vertical and wire antennas as previously I never had the funds or space for a tower. In October, 2012, I embarked on a LARGE project for me, that project was to put up an antenna tower. We have 63 acres here and I did not have the excuse of "no space" any longer. We purchased a U.S. Tower HDX 589MDPL - that's tower company talk for "Heavy Duty, 5 sections, 89 feet tall, Motorized Drive, Postive pull down, Level wind.

To tell you it was a large project would be a gross understatement, at least for me. We finally finished the project in September, 2013 and I did a lot of the work on the antenna building and got the tower base in (i.e. 6 ft x 6ft x 10 ft of concrete), but kudos to Matt KC1XX and Andrew, who did the antenna install on the mast and raised the tower. I've included some pictures of the completed tower.

The antenna complement is as follows (from the bottom up):  40M Cushcraft 2 el model XM240,  2 - horizontall phased M2 6M7JHV antennas for 6M,   2 - horizontally phased M2  432-9WL antennas for 440,  2 - horizontally phased Cushcraft 17B2 antennas for 2M SSB and at the very top their is a 4 element hombrew 2M antenna and a "loose" coax end where the K1WHS 14 element (spiral wound) bean for 1.2 gig would have been placed, but I could not find it - must have been lost in the move from Massachusetts to Texas.   

Note: You can just barely see Andrew on the tower doing the final work on attaching the 40M beam to the mast.

UPDATE as of 4/4/16

I purchased a new radio, an ELAD FDM-DUO.  It's an SDR which operates thru the computer OR as a standalone radio and can use Windows or Linux software.  It's really a neat radio, and I'm having fun using it and learning all of it's various capabilities.  I'll post some updates as I get more acquainted with the radio.

View of antennas on top of tower

Cushcraft XM-240 2el 40M beam (as 40M is my favorite band)

2 - M2 7el 6M7JHV 6M antennas stacked horizontally with 22' of horizontal spacing

2 - M2 28 el 432-9WL 440Mhz antennas stacked horizontally with 10' of horizontal spacing

2 - Cushcraft 17B2 17 el 2M antennas stacked horizontally with 12' of horizontal spacing

1 - 4 el beam vertically polarized for 2M FM work

I've had a lot of fun, especially on 40M, since they went up. Plan to try my hand in a VHF contest or two.


View from the shack 200 feet from the tower base

8400692 Last modified: 2017-10-21 00:34:57, 4167 bytes

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