W4H Sticky

W4H - 2nd Anniversary of the 470 Amateur Radio Group
Start Date: November 1, 2009
End Date: November 15, 2009
Frequencies:Voice - 24.450, 14.260, 7.260, 3.860
PSK31 - 14.070, 7.070.
QSL Info: Note the amateur's name and send QSL to the call that is working the W4H event. For example if you work me as W4H I will also give you my home call and tell you to QSL to me AJ4IJ.
More Info: The 470 Amateur Radio Group website

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Saying Goodbye to an Icon - NN3SI

I was fortunate this morning to receive a phone call from my Dad (KU4ME), that NN3SI was on 40 meters calling CQ. I didn't know what NN3SI was at first, but then he informed me that it was the Smithsonian Institute's call and that they were going QRT -- forever -- after tomorrow, July 31st. (Time out -- He would want me to give credit where credit is due, so A Many Thanks goes to Jack, KD4TNY, for spotting them and phoning this morning.)

I was pretty sad to hear that after 32 years of being on exhibit in the National Museum of American History (and in working condition!) that they would be closing down the station forever. I noticed that they claimed that "
For most of the three-million visitors to the Museum annually, it was the first – and possibly – only amateur radio station that they had every seen." So sad that such an icon is going to be taken out of the museum.

But I contacted them, and spoke with a really nice "Old Man," Ray (AA4SI) on 7.243 at 14:28z. He verified my address, and told me that they were sending out certificates to those who contacted them during this time. I didn't even know it was going on! I'm always out of the loop :(

In any case, Tim (AJ4JD) came home for an early lunch and contacted him on 20 meters -- on 14.239.90 at 15:37z to be exact. He was pretty happy to be able to get him.

Oh... and another exciting first for me:

I noticed that there was no spot on the DX cluster for NN3SI -- So, I spotted them. My first spot on the cluster! Woo hoo!

Anyway... I was going to stay and play more, but the bands started dying out on me. I might go back in a little while and try again. I need more states if I'm ever going to get WAS.

Sunday, July 27, 2008

The Waynesville Hamfest

It was Tim's (AJ4JD) big idea to get up at 4:30am on Saturday morning and make the two hour drive to Waynesville, NC. It was a long one, we were tired, and the folks were supposed to go, but chickened out on us HAHA.

We found the place easily, which was a good thing. I always hate having to get lost before I can get somewhere. It was $12 for the both of us at the gate, not an unreasonable entry fee, and we found a close parking place on the grassy bank and proceeded inside. I took my camera with every intention of taking pictures, but there wasn't really anything to take pictures of.... at least not that met my scrupulous eye.

It wasn't a bad Hamfest, whatsoever, but it wasn't the best either. They did have quite a bit of ham equipment, but unless you were going for circuit board parts or coax connectors, you were SOL. There were a few choices for radios, but I didn't see any that I wanted or could afford. The boneyard was the best, but I only seen one thing I wanted... a tower tied in the back of a truck. I didn't inquire about price because I knew that I either A) couldn't afford it or B) couldn't get it in the trunk of my 2001 Chevy Malibu...

In any case... that's about all I have to say about the Hamfest. We stayed for a little while and didn't see hardly anyone we knew. I seen a couple of familiar calls, but didn't talk to them. We spent the rest of the day galavanting around and seeing some sights.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

13 years of Amateur Radio

Hello everyone. Welcome to my "Internets" about ham radio.

I've been hanging around the airwaves since I was a wee-lil'-girl. I remember toying with radios as a tot, helping my daddy by sifting through his immense collection of resistors looking for the correct color combination for whatever job he was doing. I was always really good finding that rare color combination that existed somewhere in the bucket.

I remember my daddy talking about Ham radio long before any of us got our tickets. I used to listen to the DX'ers on shortwave late at night in the backyard on a little portable shortwave radio with an extendable antenna that we connected another antenna to (and don't ask me what it was, 'cause I was too little to remember). I recall how interested I was to listen to foreign broadcasters, and even the ocassional CW conversation that we would pick up.

So, needless to say, I grew up with radio. In 1994, my father and I went to take our tests for our Technician license. Back then, you had to take the Novice and Technician test, which I did, but failed the Novice the first time. I went back a month later and passed the Novice and then waited and waited and waited for my license to come in. You couldn't get online back then and get your callsign. You had to wait for it to come in the mail. It seemed like forever....

Then on Christmas morning of 1994, I woke up to the best Christmas present EVER!! On the limbs of the Christmas tree was a #10 envelope addressed to me from none other than the FCC. Inside was my license, and my callsign: KE4TKH. Under the tree, and the last present to be opened (of course), was my first Ham radio... A Kenwood TH-22AT HT. A monster was born from there......

Except for one thing -- I was a teenager, living in the 90's, going to high school, and interested in boys... That cut into my Ham Radio time, and before you knew it, I had seemingly forgotten my Radio Roots.

It took about 10 years or so before I would return... but here I am, and now I'm married to a Ham (AJ4JD), I have a Ham for a daughter (HAHA, KJ4EGJ), and my Mom (KF4SSI) and Dad (KU4ME) are still active Ham operators.

Recently, I've upgraded to Extra class, now that they removed the Morse code requirement. Not that I'm not interested in CW, because I am, it's just being a full-time mom, full-time student, full-time wife, and full-time daughter kind of cuts into the time needed to study CW. So thankfully, I was able to upgrade, and I also changed my "mouthful" callsign to a more memorable AJ4IJ.

So... That's that. You can find me monitoring the 145.470 and 147.360 repeaters here in East Tennessee, as well as on 20 meters HF.

Scavenger Hunt Sticky

Thanks to all for helping me with the Scavenger Hunt!