Ham Radio Experience

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K0YDS: Ham Radio

Ham StationHam Radio for me has provided learning opportunities for the technical side of radio and electronics. Putting a station together, especially in the early days, required knowledge of antennas, feedlines, switching, transmitters, receivers, and maintaining it all.

I became a Novice ham in late 1959 (8th grade), after being inspired by George Botsford, K0UWK, of Ainsworth, Nebraska. My first station used a Heathkit DX-20 and a Hallicrafters S-38, seen in the photo below. After awhile I moved the station upstairs and exchanged the Hallicrafters for a Hammarlund HQ-129x, added a Heathkit VF-1 VFO and built a 25w plate modulator for AM. Again, see the photo below. I was active on 80 meter CW, 75 meter AM, ragchewing after school and handling traffic in the national traffic system. I was net control for the NEB CW traffic net for several years, and occasionally went to TEN, the tenth region net.

In graduate school I became active on 2 meter FM in Southern California with the call WB6NXE, and participated in some public service events with the Baldwin Park AREC/RACES group.  My gear was the Hammarlund FM-50 rockbound business band radio modified for multi-channel with a rock oven. I also built a Heathkit HW-12 SSB transceiver for 75 meters.

I started to get active again in 2005 and now have a Yaesu FT897D and Kenwood TH-D7A(G). I listen a lot to 75 meter SSB, 40 meter CW and 2 meter/70cm FM repeaters in the Denver area. The narrow city lot we live on isn't conducive to a fullsize 80m dipole, so I have the Alpha-Delta DX-DD 80-40 dipole in inverted vee configuration.  For VHF-UHF I have the Diamond X-50 gain antenna. I am again active in ARES, District 13, Denver City and County.

I have several Iron Horse ham sticks for mobile work with our Honda Odyssey or whatever vehicle I'm in, using a large magnet mount.

In addition to the HF ham sticks, I have a magnet-mount dual-band 2m/70cm. Below are photos of my antennas. Recently, I installed a length of PVC pipe over a tall vent pipe so I could get a bit more height and add a pulley for easy lowering the DX-DD for NVIS operation in emergencies.

And on my scooter holding up an orange flag is a Diamond NR770 or SG7500 dual-band 2m/70cm antenna, fed by the D7A(G). Besides the internal battery of the D7A(G), there is a 24-13.8V DC-DC inverter "under the hood."

The original S-38 is long gone, given away to some friend along the way. But I still have the "manual." Here are the pages as large JPG images: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Service Bulletin: 1 2 2h 3 4

I recently came into a Drake SPR4 with documentation, which I've scanned. There are documents online that are in better shape, but you are welcome to use these freely. Brochure; Manual; Parts; Crystals

Antennas L-R: Alpha Delta DXDD, Diamond X-50A
Antennas L-R: Alpha Delta DXDD, Diamond X-50A
bwd  Set 1/2  fwd
Antennas L-R: Alpha Delta DXDD, Diamond X-50A
Scooter Mobile
Operating Portable, QSO w/KD8LN