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KG6LI USA flag USA

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QSL: Direct, LoTW, eQSL

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Let me begin by thanking you for our QSO. I know talking to a "6" call zone holds all the amazement as watching Elmer's glue dry. Coupled with my powerhouse QRP signal, well......you're just a good person!

I was raised in the coastal community of Manhattan Beach, CA. My neighbor down the street was Mr. Stewart. Mr. Stewart had a workshop in his garage and was always surrounded by AM radios and scanners. In the evenings he'd tune in some distant radio station and explain how the radio waves were bouncing off the atmosphere. The hook was set from that point on. My parents let me put their old Zenith radio in my room, and Mr. Stewart gave me enough supplies to put up an antenna. I would often fall asleep to the glow of the tubes in the radio as it picked up distant clear frequency stations. That morphed into SWL, CB, and eventually ham radio. When I entered Aviation High School (Redondo Beach) I was given the opportunity to get my ham radio license and join the radio club. The rest is history.

So with a brain full of new information, and 5 wpm code speed, I took my test and was granted the call letters WN6GQD. But before I could set-up a station my family was transferred to San Diego. Soon my license had arrived and I purchased a Swan Cygnet and a Hustler 5BTV vertical. I remember sending out my first CQ hoping that nobody would answer, but answer they did. Next thing I know I'm spinning around the Novice segments of the bands having a blast. 

My first QSL card

I elected to study for the Technician license and received the call KA6PSV. I purchased my first 2 meter HT. Upon turning it on I yelled like a 5 year old boy and ran. Man, the amount of bickering was staggering. So I would like to thank all the crappy hams of the time for motivating me to study for my advanced class license, I hope you and your doctor, with appropriate medications, got things worked out....

In 1984 I received the call KG6LI, so as with all things ham radio, I celebrated the accomplishment with the purchase of a Kenwood TS430-S. I also purchased a Heathkit HW-7 kit and built my first QRP rig. I would drag that thing everywhere, and even though it was deaf as they come, I had so much fun working portable. Back then QRP was not mainstream in a world of 1,500kw amps that gave everyone in the neighborhood erectile dysfunction, or their dogs were spinning in circles barking in morse code..!

Also in 1984 I got married, and with all newlyweds, radio became secondary to starting a new life. In 1990 my son was born, soon followed by my daughter, so as I wandered aimlessly around the house covered in baby powder, and barf, my licensed slipped away. It would be 20 years before I returned to the airwaves.

My whole life has been surrounded by the emergency services. While still in High School I enrolled in the Redondo Beach Fire Explorer program, from that point on my career was set. I worked as a volunteer, and paid, for a number of agencies in San Diego County. In 1980 I received my paramedic certificate and landed a job with the Lakeside Fire District. During that time I did a 10 year stint with the San Diego Sheriff Search and Rescue as a technical rescue specialist. That eventually led to my participation on the local USAR team.

So after 33 years of being a Fire Captain-Paramedic I elected to pull the plug. When the young guys/gals are making you look bad it's time to go, so with some free time I was motivated to get my ticket back. I passed the Technician license and received a call that would require both hands (and your feet) to send in CW, so I received my old call of KA6PSV. But what I really wanted was to get my old 2x2 call back, but now there was no Advanced class license. There was no way I was smart enough to take on the Extra class, so I kinda figured the call was gone for good.

OK, I obsessed over it, so the books came out and once again I was burning the midnight oil..... After months of studying my hair was 3 feet long, I was sporting a beard, and I smelled like a cat box, but I was ready for the test. After the grading was over I had successfully passed and KG6LI was mine again. But looking back at the extra class test, who writes those questions? "In the first US submarine what was the model number of the tube in the final stage of the VLF transmitter? Please answer in German." See I think I could come up with some better "real world" questions. "You've just made a rare DX contact and suddenly your wife is parading her most recent Victoria Secret purchase in-front of you, what do you do?". Before you answer remember one might involve lawyers and half of your radios.....

So here I am in a neighborhood with antenna restrictions. You can skinny dip in the community pool, but get caught with an antenna...they put you before the HOA tribunal and stone ya to death. So I'm QRP all the time. My favorite antennas are the SOTAbeams linked dipole, the LNR EFT-10-20-40, and the LNR EFT-MTR. For 2 meters and 440 I use a N9TAX slim-jim on the mast or an Arrow Antenna OSJ 146/440. I have a double bazooka for 6 meters and look forward to openings. Maybe we can connect on 50.06 one day. On the road I have also strung inverted vee's and used a Ventenna HFp vertical. I always have a radio with me camping, and love to activate weird grids. My primary rig is a Ten Tec Argo VI for tabletop work. When I hit the trail, or camping, I run the FT-817nd.

Some of my QRP buddies on Mt. Laguna (L-R) Tom (N6NUG), Phil (WA6FFT), and Joel (W6TC)


By nature CW is my preferred mode. There is something about CW that is just as boss as corduroy bell bottoms. Recently I have ventured into PSK and OLIVIA, but the judges are still out since I tend to rag chew and PSK is more bump and run. I think it's healthy to explore all the communication modes (with one exception). QRP-SSB is like calling for help in an outhouse in the middle of a NASCAR race. Nobody ever hears ya..!

I'm not much into contesting and chasing DX, I would rather have a nice rag chew with a fellow ham. I think people really miss out when they get selective about answering certain CQ calls. That next CQ could be a life-long friend you missed out on... or it could be the creepy guy that sends you a QSL card of him in a Speedo swimsuit..... Chances are better it's the first scenario ( I hope ).

Activating KFF-1126, Anza-Borrego Desert State Park from West Butte area,

Back in the day I really loved CW. I could rap out 20 wpm while doing homework and watching TV. Now 13 wpm makes my face go numb, and I lose sight in my left eye. So I've now discovered the difference between a 22 year old brain, and a 59 year old brain. Well if my math is correct I should be back to 20 wpm when I'm 187 years old....neat-o! So if we're doing CW with one another and suddenly I make no sense, I'm either on my 6th cup of coffee, or I'm just plain "spazzing-out".. whatever you do don't call 911. It typically passes when my XYL turns off the radio and prys my fingers off the paddles

I don't really get the whole "Won't QSL" thing? Man, that's the good stuff that makes radio fun. It would be like a skinny Raquel Welch...where's the fun in that? So listen....I love the whole QSL thing, so you're likely to get my card in the mail from me... I would love to get one back. If you send me a card, no I don't need a SASE, the keys to your RV, or your first born. I'll dig around in the couch and find enough change to send one back...promise! While I kinda dig the old tradition of hand filling out a paper QSL I can see the benefit of electronic QSLing. So I do maintain an eQSL account and upload to LoTW for those that prefer this method.....

Occasionally I pack up the radio gear and head into the Cleveland National Forest to Mt Laguna and run QRP from the desert overlook. If I get too many people bugging me I just give em a blank stare and say "You wanna talk to Elvis"... That typically sends them scattering till you run across the guy with the t-shirt that says "Muskie for President" that says "sure"...?

Never leave home without a QRP rig in the car. FT-817nd my favorite field radio.

Running an LNR-EFT-MTR from a 12 meter Spider Beams Pole. WA6FFT running a ham stick dipole (Mt Laguna, CA).

I have a Twitter account at @KG6LI and try to update it with ham related topics from the San Diego-Riverside County area

I recently got interested in putting my public safety background to some positive use in retirement. I'm a member of the Red Cross Communications Team, and the San Diego ARES Team. These are some great, dedicated people, who give of themselves freely for the public good. 

Active with Parks on the Air. Great program to get outside with the ham gear. Since I love hiking, most of my activations are made from the trail. Nothing like operating out of a backpack...

 

Operating from UCSD Thornton Hospital during the Costal Warrior drill.

Setting up for 2017 Field Day at the Temecula Promenade Mall with the Golden Triangle ARC

When in the car (which seems to be too much) I kinda hang on the following Repeaters:

San Diego County

Lyons Peak          146.265 (+)(107.2)  Great wide coverage repeater located on Lyons Peak.

Otay Mountain     449.440 (-)(107.2) Another great repeater that has better coverage than Lyons.

Riverside County

Keller Peak            146.385 (+)(146.2) Very wide coverage from the deserts to San Diego.

 

Golden Triangle Amateur Radio Club - Temecula Valley, CA

Flying Pig QRP Club - #3560

ARRL

Four State QRP - #1122

NAQCC - #7826

QRP-ARCI - #15746

SKCC- #13981

 

 

Four element beam and an FT60 from the top of Iron Mountain (Poway, CA)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8397819 Last modified: 2017-10-19 16:08:11, 15328 bytes

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