I was born in 1942 and licensed in 1957 as a novice and upgraded to general in 1958. I have held several different calls since then. In 1978 I upgraded to extra and received my present call.
I worked mostly CW but started working some RTTY and AMTOR in the mid 1980s. After retiring and moving to a development with restrictions I was on only VHF until 2011 when I bought a 30 year old TS-430S and put up some stealth antennas and began working digital modes (mostly PSK and JT65). My present stealth antenna is a fan dipole of camoflagued wire laying on the roof. Averaging signal reports of over 300 JT65 QSOs indicates that I am at a -3.4 dB disadvantage. Lately I have started to work a little CW and have found that even when copying by ear a waterfall display is valuable in seeing the environment and tuning.
I am using a 10 year old HP desktop running Ubuntu Linux. Software is Fldigi and JT65-HF (under Wine). I acquired a 20 year old PK-232MBX which is interfaced to both the VHF and HF rigs but it seems that almost nobody uses packet anymore and most PACTOR activity is on mail systems that require PACTOR III.
Recently I have been experimenting with JT9 after figuring out how to get the program to run on Ubuntu Linux using the Windows Emulator (Wine) program. Unfortunately, after changing computers I found that the latest version will not run under Wine. Perhaps Joe will eventually release a Linux version. I feel that Linux is very much in the spirit of ham radio where experimentation and building your own is encouraged.
I am a member of the local ARES but that seems to be moving to D-STAR which I don't have. My first emergency operation was during the Cuban Missile Crisis (October 1962) when I did a shift as the NCS for the Illinois state net. Yes, we were activated because of the real possibility of mushroom clouds. My most recent emergency activity was in 2004 when I operated from a shelter during three hurricanes. Storm clouds are better than mushroom clouds.
Last modified: 2013-03-16 20:12:22, 2162 bytes cached