Barry Gardner , W3FV

CWops# 2025, from East Greenville , PA , USA.---->View on Google maps

First licensed in 1956 as WN3JSX at the ripe old age of 14. I became interested in electronics several years prior as a cub scout and boy scout with xtal sets and walkie talkies, etc. A neighbor down the road, W3BUR (SK) had a big Telerex beam mounted on a pair of telephone poles with a cat walk at 70 feet. That really got my attention! I walked back the road and asked Bill’s wife if they wanted the lawn mowed. She said yes and when I finished she said Bill was in the other room and I should get paid by him.

When I entered the room (his shack) my eyes must have nearly popped out of my head and he noticed! From that point forward my ham radio journey started. Bill was very good with CW and I picked it up quickly from him. I passed my test and built a xmtr (6AG7) oscillator and (6L6 final), xtal controlled of course and a Halicrafters S20R receiver. Had lots of fun. Shack was in the attic of our row house.

Dad helped me put a pole on the garage and we ran a wire from the garage to the third-floor chimney. I was really excited to make my first CW QSO with a W2 with no wires connecting us. From that time till the time I met Gerry Mathis, I finished high school, college and the US Army. My MOS back in the day was 053 “high speed Morse code and radio teletype”.

W3GM was my mentor for contesting. He moved from the city to a property just down the road from my apartment. I didn’t know him, but when I saw those towers going up I knew I had to meet him. Eventually he sponsored me for membership to the Frankford Radio club in 1970 and I have been an active member ever since. I just love contesting, particularly CW and RTTY. For many years I operated a W3GM’s station and learned everything about contesting and station building from him. After Gerry passed away I went on several expeditions to V26B, WP2Z, KP2M, etc. Great fun! Its nice to be hunted instead of the hunter, hi hi. Now I have a small 1.5-acre lot with two 70-foot towers (5 el 10M, 5 el 15M, 4el 20M and 2 el 40M Yagis). Have a 65ft, 4 in irrigation tubing GP for 80M which can be changed to an inverted L for 160M. Inside I have an SO2R station with old xcvrs and amps. It provides a lot of fun times for me. I have also been a regular for a number of years at the great stations N3RS and WE3C. What a great experience that is!

It’s a pleasure to join CWops and I look forward to our future QSOs.

This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.