W5VE Wins DXCC Award!

dxcc The American Radio Relay League, the sponsor of this award, state: “DXCC is Amateur Radio’s premier award that hams can earn by confirming on the air contacts with 100 countries.”

“Confirming” being the operative work. You can’t just say you talked to someone in New Zealand, it must be authenticated. Two way exist of accomplishing this authentication. In the old days, hams exchanged postcards (we call ’em QSL cards). You could bundle those up when you had 100 different countries and mail them to the ARRL. I did that under my original call years ago, WA4NUO. Today, the ARRL maintains a secure online method of authentication, the Logbook of the World or LotW. Continue reading…

Radio Ham heard Titanic’s call for Help

from South Wales Argus via http://QRZnews.com by Martin Wade — “ARTIE Moore was born in 1887, Victoria was still on the throne and he lived in a 17th century water mill. But his fascination for the very modern technology of ahamtitanicwireless communication meant that on the night of April 15 1912 when a disaster happened which would be known across the world, it would change his life forever.

As a child, Artie had an accident at the mill badly injuring his leg, which had to be amputated. Perhaps spurred by this setback he developed a fascination for engineering, which saw him make a device so he could still pedal his bicycle while wearing a wooden leg.

The water mill at Gelli Groes was the perfect workshop for the youngster. He used a lathe driven by the water-wheel to build a working model steam engine. Having entered a competition in The Model Engineer magazine, his prize was a book called ‘Modern Views of Magnetism and Electricity’. It was to be the spark which would ignite his interest in radio. …

Artie used his engineering skills to store electricity in his batteries using a generator hooked up to the water wheel. He would also charge batteries for local businesses and farmers, who must have come and gazed in wonder at the sparks generated by his radio transmitter.
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Elements Required for a Perfect Ham Station

20150907_100039[3]Needed for efficient amateur radio operation: transceiver, antenna tuner, good microphone, excellent Morse code key, and (most important) a multi cup coffee operator enhancer. This is my personal version of that perfect station. –W5VE

(click on pic to enlarge)
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13 Colonies Award

11224138_10206185948259982_608409981888040627_o[1]July 4th weekend this year, hams all over participated in the 13 Colonies contest. The goal being to make contact with a special amateur radio station in all 13 of the original 13 colonies which formed the nexus for the establishing of these now fifty United States. Not as easy as it might seem at first, only one station in each state and thousands of other hams trying to get an acknowledgement as well. In short, I had a tremendously fun weekend working to get all 13 and made it. My award took almost two months but worth the wait. Already looking forward to next year. It’s what we hams do. Have fun! (click on certificate to see it larger).

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My Swag from the Shelby Hamfest

20150906_132338[1]It’s a Vibroplex Code Warrior Jr., wonderfully sturdy iambic paddle for Morse code (CW), marvelously crafted and a lot heavier than it looks. Love it. I’ve had a Vibroplex “bug” (semi automatic key for over fifty years. This acquisition brings me into the modern age. I got to the hamfest earlier specifically looking for a paddle since I want to get back into CW. I would have been delighted with a cheaper BY-1 or anything else of a lesser ilk than the Code Warrior but I lucked into this find at a price less than a used BY-1, etc. Mighty pleased. Yes!

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Worked All States (WAS) Award

wasW5VE qualified for the Worked All States award on Sept. 1, 2015. Sponsored by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL), the rules for this award read in part:  “The WAS (Worked All States) Award is available to all amateurs worldwide who submit proof with written confirmation of contacts with each of the 50 states of the United States of America.” Which means I made a confirmed (a paper “QSL” postcard exchange or an official entry authenticated by both parties online in the ARRL’s Logbook of the World or LoTW) two-way radio contact with one or more harm radio operators in each of the 50 U.S. states.  It took me from Dec. 12, 2014 to Sept. 1, 2015 to achieve these contacts. In this case, all states were confirmed via LoTW. Continue reading…

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