Just a kid and his radio playing in some fields

02 Jan

First of all Happy New Year! I trust that you all enjoyed the Holidays and find yourselves safely ensconced in 2012. Good Job!

I spent yesterday afternoon reading a wonderful Ham Radio Tale as told by Dave, W6AQ that can be found here.I found this on Larry’s fine blog over at I don’t know how long it has been posted there or how I could have missed it before but I thoroughly enjoyed the “all too brief” read. I certainly can identify with a lot of his early radio experiences, especially those involving FCC inspectors and early testing. Thanks for posting that link Larry! And a very big “Thanks” to Dave Bell W6AQ for writing this delightful account of his early experiences.

New Years eve found me in the shack wanting to do SKN again and yet for another year I failed to get on. This time stymied by a lack of proper adapters to hook the old J-38 to my rig and a decided lack of enthusiasm. I get up early (like 5 AM) so by the time I work up the fortitude to turn off the tube I am already looking forward to counting sheep. So it went again this year- no SKN. The prospect of firing up my soldering station at 9 PM was daunting for some reason. My Git up N Go left me. Look at it this way, I always have something to look forward to next December 31st.

My son received his handie talkie and is learning its strange programming techniques. He received a Woxoun UV6DP for Christmas and I have to admit its programming is strange enough to confound a seasoned veteran ham…..however, when I ordered this radio I had heard about programming so also ordered the programming cable. The computer programming makes this chore a snap. It is a nice little radio and seems to work well. Just how durable it is will reveal itself over time of course. His first ever attempt at trying it out was less than a positive experience though. I let him go solo and he asked for a radio check on a local repeater and some guy started lecturing him on proper procedure. Something like “you don’t ask for radio checks on a repeater” sort of thing. It was all I could do to keep my hands off the handie. So much for being friendly and helpful to new hams. The repeater in question belongs to MARS (that is the Metrocrest club here in N. TX). So later I called a local I know and he was kind enough to meet us on the local repeater so Matt could wet his feet in a friendlier environment. That experience went much better. We will work on more things during the week so by the time he gets ready to go back to school he will have steady radio “sea legs”.

We were fortunate enough to have some additional hours to play radio this week. I managed my usual practice and got down on 40M both early and late in the day to find and renew old acquaintances. The magic is still there for me after all these years; since 1959 in fact. Reading Dave Bell’s experiences with his testing for Morse under the watchful eye of the FCC Inspector brought back some equally terrifying memories. I hope that I never tire of playing with E&M Fields. I admit that like Latin, I don’t speak the language of field theory, but I very much enjoy the end result. Reaching out and touching someone, however far, with simple kit and a battery never ceases to delight.

Thanks for reading my Blog. Best, Chas W5PG

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Posted by on January 2, 2012 in Family, Morse, Radio


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