Monday 14 April 2014

Blast from the past!

As is usual at the time of year I persuaded Roger G4BVY to go out locally to Malvern to do the 6m contest operating as usual as G4BVY/P. Conditions were not as good as last year, but while I was  operating, I was called by G4AEH, who was surprised that G4BVY/P knew his name, that is was until I told him I was operating! Why was the call so memorable?G4AEH was the reason I took up amateur radio and this was our 1st ever QSO!
At school I was interested in medium Wave DXing. I had a Fidelity Rad12 portable ( I couldnt afford a HAC One tube Short wave set) that heard a lot of DX stations (especially after I worked out how to connect a long wire to it). However one Sunday morning I was surprised to hear one side of a conversation with somone signing G3YTW in the middle of the Medium wave band.  I remembered that at school (King Edward VI Grammar school, Nuneaton:KEGS) there was a Prefect who I had heard was into Ham Radio. So I plucked up courage ( needed as he was a prefect and many years older than me!) and asked him what was going on. He very carefully explained it was a 455kHz image from the 160m band that was mixing to the medium wave band, G3YTW wasnt actually transmitting on Medium Waves. He also answered a whole load of associated questions. He invited me to see his 160m station which started my Interest in amateur radio.
In my 4th year (1974) I attended an RAE class one night a week at the local technical college G3YLG  This needed written consent from my headmaster R.P. Brown as it was the same year as "O" level exams and they were worried about distraction but he thought a "non critical" (to him) would be good. This was the days when the RAE had essay questions, as can be see by the 1974 paper All went well and I got an RAE pass. As I was underage my Parents had to countersign the application. My father would not sign it until i built a lockable box to secure my Pye Cambridge 2m rig from my brothers and sisters . I built a substantial one out of 3/4" chipboard. It lasted a long time, much longer than the Cambridge; I only threw it out when moving out of the Mckinney house in 2012, I was using it to store waveguide components. Impressed he signed the form and I was issued G8JMO, which being VHF only started my long interest in those bands
After the 6m contest we put up the 1296MHz 23 ele F9FT antenna to see if the transverter still worked. Fortunately there was a "low band microwave" contest in motion so a few stations were worked: GW3TKH/P, G8OHM, G4BRK and G8XVJ/P in 30 minutes
The 23cm view to the East

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