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[TowerTalk] Amateur Radio Greats, W6SAI, et al..

To: Jeff Carter <>, <>
Subject: [TowerTalk] Amateur Radio Greats, W6SAI, et al..
From: Pat Barthelow <>
Date: Wed, 30 Apr 2008 10:05:14 -0700
List-post: <">>
Jeff/KD4RBG  in TT thread relating to ham Great,  LB Cebik, Said:

"At this point, there are many more Amateur Radio Greats who have gone SK than
 ones remaining.  What other name comes to mind with regard to antenna
 work that goes as deeply into the physics as Cebik's, yet remains
 totally understandable and accessible to any given Amateur Radio
 (Snip)    -- Jeff/KD4RBG

Which segues into a question/Dilemma I have..
When another Ham great, from the Left Coast,  Bill Orr W6SAI, went SK, his 
family had a number of estate sales, at his home.   When someone mentioned that 
Bill's  tower was on the block, I went up to see.     I visited long after the 
majority of his more valued 
(in terms of dollars)  ham commodity, station stuff was sold off, but a lot of 
less valuable,  personal Bill Orr stuff remained.   While in his garage, 
looking over his stuff that remained, I felt quite humbled,  to be  in/at his  
shack, in a very modest home, on Campbell Lane, Palo Alto;   looked like a home 
on the  "Leave it to Beaver" set/era.  a very mall shack/shop 
in his double car garage.
(Though he did had access to  rather large ones in San Carlos ...(: >)  )

There were so many personal items, his hand built test gear, noise bridges, 
transistor checkers, etc.  old breadboard works of art/radios, that were 
featured in his  HR and CQ series of articles, all of his Radio Handbooks, 
which he authored, many of the smaller books that he wrote, about quads, and CB 
antennas, and more of his of his technical library.
Also there, were  the original paste up artwork masters that were the classic 
Eimac Ads in 

the ham mags of the 70s and 80s.  Featuring 3-500Zs, to tubes with handles, to 

giant steam cooled VOA style Eimacs, that had Plate voltages in the 12KV range 
and fil currents in the hundreds of amps, jaw dropping stuff for a young ham at 
the time.

But most personal were his hand drawn, penciled in, Smith Charts, and notes, of 
his own antennas at his house and those of his friends, that he studied, going 
back to the 60s. His "Ham Laboratory" notebooks.   Featuring "80 meter diple, 
back yard" and "15m beam" ...antennas that he built and tested  at his 
home...Done long before I even learned what that weird "Smith Chart" was..and 
before computers were accessible to hams.
On the Bill's  bookshelf, in the garage, I spotted  a book about another 
great... Don Wallace, W6AM.....but that is a  story in itself...  Then were was 
Terman, Eitel, Hewlett, Packard.....

 I called Jim Maxwell, W6CF (Yet, another  Great--SK  to see how/if he could 
to find a good, deserving home for most of these and the other particularly 
W6SAI Homebrew projects that were featured in Orr's Ham Magazine writings.  
These were the ones I once saw featured in color pics in Ham Calendars.
I think Jim was able to do that, but don't really know, because Jim went SK 

I could confirm.   
Anyway, If someone does a biography on Bill, W6SAI, and wants material,
I may be able to help.  

All the best,
Pat Barthelow    (916) 315-9271

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