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Author Topic: Your story: How did you get into Amateur Radio?  (Read 154815 times)

Posts: 3203


« Reply #45 on: December 27, 2017, 11:13:27 AM »

I first posted to this thread in February of 2011.  Here I am at 71 and still an Extra.  My Wife also has gotten a license so we have some common ground. 

I am not on the air as much but have gotten into doing lots of homebrew projects based on the Arduino platform.  I am also amassing the parts to build a 5W, tube transmitter for 80/40M.  I will need a tuner for the rig so that is in the works.  I have assembled a milling machine based on a bench drill press and am making my own panels and parts for projects out of plastic and aluminum. 

Like they say, the license is just the starting point for ham radio!

Posts: 564


« Reply #46 on: January 02, 2018, 06:45:26 AM »

As a kid 7 or 8 got some walkie talkies, must have been at a peak of a solar cycle. I herd a guy Arkansas Fat’s, must have been at a solar cycle.
Always had some interest still 7 or 8, I noticed at night you could pick up radio stations all over the country. I would listen for a long time just to get a call-sign and location. Kept that up for years. I even retuned a transistor radio and picked up stations on the 41-meter band.
 Then came CB.
Cut grass to get a Midland 6 Ch walkie talkie, by next summer got a 6 ch Midland base 13-874 Still have one. Soon after got several 23 CH.
By 16 I had a Johnson Viking Valliant Dow-key and receiver.  I was miss guided away from ham radio (darn CB’ers) by local CB’ers.

10 years later I saw a Triband antenna at a guys house stopped to ask about is station. Good setup a Kenwood TS-830S. with in a few months I had my Novice, a year later I had my Tech. 4 years later took my 13 WPM test got my General. Now I am a 13 WPM Extra. I am retiring in 2018, and my wonderful wife gave me her blessing to build a retirement ham shack. I now have a Dream setup. Not a contest or even close to that, but it is my station with all new stuff.
Looking back with 20/20 vision I should have jumped to ham radio when I got the Valliant. I just had bad influence as a kid. And no equipment to buy because I already had it.
I don’t radio near as much as I did back then (work in the way) and loss of interest. Maybe Jesus will give me life and health for retirement to enjoy.     

Posts: 514

« Reply #47 on: January 02, 2018, 08:19:14 AM »

My dad had a CB, but I quickly realized that for experimentation and hobbyist purposes it was all but useless. I'd played around a little with AM and shortwave, so the hook was set. Got the Tech in 2001, General and Extra a few years later when I was in college.


Posts: 84

« Reply #48 on: January 13, 2018, 05:24:11 AM »

It was the late 1950s. My friend's Dad had a tall aluminum pole in his back yard mounted on a 6 foot 4x4 post with some long wires stretching out from the base of it. I was told it was for his ham radio. When his Dad came home that day I was quietly ushered into a bedroom converted to a radio room. I was allowed to sit quietly in a chair and watch him operate as long as I said nothing and kept my hands in my lap. I saw a marvelous Hallicrafters receiver and home made equipment with tubes and meters all enclosed in metal cases covered with black crackle paint. He gave me a book from ARRL called the NOVICE LICENSE STUDY GUIDE and a U.S. Military Signal Corps LP record containing 5 digit code groups at 13 wpm. He was an Electronics Engineer employed by Sylvania Corporation. He had practically no personality and never spoke to me again. I read the book and learned the code on my own. I do not recall who gave me the Novice test by mail, but it was not him. I received my first call sign in 1961 - Novice. I never had an Elmer. I did not know any hams. I bought books from ARRL and taught myself from the ground up using their books and manuals. I bought and assembled a station using HeathKit gear. I made my own antenna and taught myself how to attach connectors to coaxial lines. I did not meet another ham until 3 or 4 years later. So I am of the self-taught school of hard knocks crowd. Due to this, I have very little patience with or sympathy towards the whiners and complainers. I am now age 72 and 57 years into the hobby and still at it. If you want something badly enough you will find a way and go get it. Make America great again - get off your butt and get to work.
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