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Re: Topband: Made it! 80 Years a Ham

Subject: Re: Topband: Made it! 80 Years a Ham
From: Billy Cox <>
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 2017 18:43:04 +0000 (UTC)
List-post: <">>
Well done Paul, Well Done! CONGRATS! 

May you continue to enjoy Top Band, and 
all the others too for a long long time. 

73 de Billy, AA4NU 

----- Original Message -----

From: "PAUL M ELLIOTT" <> 
Sent: Thursday, January 19, 2017 9:34:45 AM 
Subject: Topband: Made it! 80 Years a Ham 

Made it! 19 January 2017, is the 80th anniversary of my first ham license, 
Class C operating privileges with W5GGV as my call. Was 14 years old at the 
time. A little over a year later I upgraded to Class A. Many years later 
the Extra Class (with no added privileges) came along. Upgraded. Some years 
later the FCC announced that hams with an Extra Class license who had been 
licensed 25 years could apply for a two -letter call, no place on the 
application to request of a specific call. Was assigned W5DM. 

First rig made from junked Atwater Kent radio parts. First antenna was a 
wire going out a hole in the window screen to a tree. First DX was VK2SS on 
40 m CW, September 1937. (An aside. There were no phone privileges on 40 m 
for USA hams). The VK2SS QSL card is hung on my wall. My card to him was 
written on a postcard (Great Depression=no money to buy QSL cards). 

Been fairly active over the years, except, of course, for WW II. If 
interested in WW II, you can do a web search on DD 792 for a small part of 
my history. 

The first 20 or 30 years I built my transmitters (all low powered) and 
receivers. Operated CW only until SSB came along. Then I built a low powered 
phasing rig. A BC-348H receiver was made dual conversion using 85 kcs (kcs 
then= kHz now) IF transformers from a BC 453 receiver. Had a blast working 
the world with a homebuilt "cubical quad" on 20 meters. Since then mostly 

I may have made one small contribution to ham radio. In the April 1958 
issue of QST, in Technical Correspondence there was a letter from me that, I 
think, was the first mention in a ham publication that the formula for 
determining the length of a "cubical quad" antenna was not correct. Since 
my measurements were made using a BC 348, a grid dip oscillator, and a 100 
kcs crystal oscillator. I don't know whether I was just lucky to get as 
close as I did or did a fairly good job with what I had. 

In the early 1990s started out to get 160 m WAS from a 120 x 120 foot 
electrically noisy city lot (SE NM) with a long ( ~3/8 wavelength) but low 
semi-inverted L antenna. Ground radials of varying length in one 90 degree 
segment. Made 160 m WAS. Then started chasing DX. Now have 189 countries 
confirmed on 160 m, 324 on all bands. 

Age, not surprisingly, has taken its toll. CW now down to 20-25 wpm-at one 
time it was 35-40 wpm. Finger dexterity way down-has taken me over 3 hours 
to type this email. Physical realities remain physical realities--I am now a 
disabled, crippled old man. But--- 

No complaints-many people are worse off than I am. 

Thanks to all who have had the knowledge and the kindness to help me over 
the years. 

73 Paul W5DM 

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