A Few Kodak Radio Moments
& Memories - Enjoy!
- 1980 - Novice - Age 16
This is the oldest radio shack photo I could
find. There might be one somewhere else but I
haven't found it yet. My original transceiver was
a troublesome Swan 500C. It was time to bid
farewell to the Swan when I received two OO
reports for putting out a harmonic on 40 meters
while on operating 80 meters.
Before you start
laughing, here's the scoop on this Polaroid snap
shot. This photo was taken early one morning in
October 1980. I was probably working 10 meters CW
at the time, my passion as a kid, when my father
jumped in the room and surprised me. My mom wrote
on the back on the photo "Ulis looks
like he is loaded". Yea well what the
hell do you expect at 7 AM in the morning mom?
The truth is probably most hams look worse than
this if you were a fly on the wall at 7AM. But I
give my parents a lot of credit, the put up with
a lot of noise from my bedroom. I guess that day
it was just too much for the old folks.
Pictured is a
trusty Kenwood TS-520SE. I am using a pathetic
radio shack plastic straight key. After I got my
first job, one of the first things I purchased
was a keyer. I swore off those damn straight keys
for the rest of my life. To me they are nothing
more than a symbol of my life as an impoverished
poor young ham.
- 1981 - Age 17
to General and added a keyer (Heathkit). Life is
great! The Shure 444 worked much better on the
Kenwood TS520SE than the Astatic D104. I took out
the pre-amp circuitry and used the D104 on an
Icom IC2AT HT. Seemed to work pretty well but I
never got the 2 meter bug. It sure seems like
hams are a lot nicer these days to kids on 2
meters than they were back then. When I was a
kid, a lot of hams, NOT ALL, treated young hams
like they were intruding on their beloved hobby.
Who knows why? Maybe it was the generation gap. I
don't know. But amateur radio is paying the price
now for not encouraging young hams back in those
days. I always preferred CW as no one would know
how old I was during a QSO.
- 1982 - Age 18
Added a Nye Viking phone patch to
help out my friend Roberto YS4ADV and his family.
Notice the Radio Shack Realistic DX160. My best
remembered catch was listening to the Windward
Island BC from Grenada on 15050 +/- or something
One of my most rewarding
experiences as a radio amateur came when I
arranged schedules for two exchange students that
attended high school with me at Arundel High
School, Gambrills, MD. My first experience was in
1981 with an exchange student from Ghana. My
classmate had only spoken to his mother once
since he arrived to the USA and like any young
boy he missed his family. I looked in the
faithful Callbook for a radio amateur that was
|the same town as my classmate from
Ghana. There were only 2 radio amateurs from his
town. With a hope and a prayer, I dashed off a
letter to this radio amateur in 9G-land
explaining the situation. I set a date, time and
freq that we could meet on the air. To my
surprise on that pre-arranged day the OM in
9G-land showed up with my friend's mother in his
shack. I quickly thanked him for helping and
handed the microphone to my friend. What followed
would show me the true value of amateur radio for
the rest of my life. As my classmate was speaking
to his mother, in what I assume was in
"Twi", tears of joy began to fall down
his cheek. For the remaining of the school year
we arranged a few more schedules. It's strange,
though I was a "DXer" I never bothered
QSLing the ham in 9G-land. How possibly can a QSL
be better than what I had experienced? One day I
will have to look in my logbook and see if this
ham in 9G-land is still active. I heard from my
old classmate from Ghana a few years ago while he
was doing his Doctoral in England. Unfortunately
I have lost contact with him again. Perhaps he
will find this little paragraph and know that I
still remember those days fondly.
during my senior high school year, I set up some
phone patches for another classmate, Alejandro
from Uruguay. Alex was always very happy to talk
to his family and we became very good friends.
Twenty years later, Alejandro and I still
exchange correspondence via the Internet.
- 1988 - Age 24
By 1987, I had went away to
college (Towson State University), graduated,
traveled some and returned home.
some radio gear and sold some. Around 1983 I
picked up my first digital receiver, a Sony
ICF2001. Sold the 2001 and replaced it with a
Uniden CR2010. Sadly the Uniden CR2010 later was
stolen out of my bags while flying to Costa Rica
after my luggage got lost. I also added the
matching antenna tuner, AT-230, for the Kenwood
TS520SE. Gave QRP a try with an Heathkit HW8.
With my first paycheck out of college in 1987, I
added the Kenwood TS440SAT with the Astron power
supply. The Hallicrafters SX28 was a gift from my
twin sisters godfather who had retired from the
Voice of America. The SX28 today is still around,
although a few years ago I loaned it indefinitely
to my good friend Scott, W3CV. I just don't have
the room right now for the SX28 and how can you
get rid of a classic radio like that?
Here I am with my wonderful wife,
Carmelina TI5CMA. In 1996 I took advantage of the
vanity callsign program and changed my call sign
DXpedition - December 1999
This photos was taken while up at Gifford
Pinchot State Park, Pennsylvania on a SWL
DXpedition with Hans Johnson and Dave Valko. We
had a great time with some excellent openings to
Euro Pirates and Asia in the early morning. The
radio pictured is a Drake R8B. My big head is
covering up a lap top that controls the R8B via Mark
Fine's Smart R8 control. I had
all the info at my finger tips.
Come Back Again Soon For More Photos!