[AMRadio] Old Novice Days

Todd, KA1KAQ ka1kaq at gmail.com
Mon Feb 28 11:38:55 EST 2005

On Sun, 27 Feb 2005 19:52:16 -0600, Crawfish <crawfish at surfmore.net> wrote:
> Kind of like the no-code Tech back in 1991 or 1992 who asked another local
> what that "beeping noise" was. It was the repeater's CW identifier. I swear
> a lot of people on ham radio never listened to it before they got licensed,
> or they would know better. Let the Scientific Step Backward boys :just
> wonder what REAL amateur radio is all about. I can't seem to reach some of
> them. Our society is being dumbed down about everything.

Oh man, some of those techs have made it to Extra. A OT buddy of mine,
KC1BT (old BC engineer from way back when) gets to program the new
radios for several of the Extras in his club (another reason to avoid
clubs) because they don't understand what the manuals mean. One night
while I was visiting he spent the better part of a half hour
explaining to one of them over the phone how to make a half-wave
dipole. The formula was 'too confusing'.

Then there was the guy helping out at the marathon foot race who, when
told they were going to use a 2 meter simplex frequency,
asked..."what's simplex?". Yes, he is also an Extra!

I got stuck at Advanced years ago, never got around to upgrading. Some
days I'm not so sure I want to....!

My funny novice story has to do with my first CW contact. I'm a newbie
compared to most, licensed in March of 1983. Shortly thereafter I
spoke with a VE3 station for what I thought was 20 minutes or so, all
shakey and nervous and using the 'dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-dit-' error
signal many a time. My YL of the day was downstairs talking with my
mom (she apparently got bored). Later she asked me if I knew how long
I had spent on the contact. I said 'sure, about 20 minutes'. She
rolled her eyes and said 'try 2 HOURS'.

*shrug* It was still fun. A used ricebox 101EE piped to a 40 meter
antenna I made myself, keyed with el-cheapo imitation brass Ratshack
key screwed to a couple of wooden slats taped with duct tape to a
heavy piece of truck leaf spring steel found in the road in front of
my house. I still have the key and antenna.

DX(sortakinda?) on my first try! 

de Todd/'Boomer'  KA1KAQ

More information about the AMRadio mailing list

This page last updated 17 Jan 2018.