I am honored to be nominated for CWops membership by Mike, N5KB and thanks to those who sponsored me. My interest in ham radio and CW goes back to 1966 when I joined the high school ham radio club and took a novice class under Mr Kulp. I learned CW and passed my Novice tests, but never submitted my results to the FCC because I had no money to buy anything and knew I couldn’t improve my CW skills to 13 WPM within the required year without operating. In 1973 I had the time and a little money, so I got my Novice and moved to Advanced a week after I received my Novice in the mail. School and work often got in the way for the next fifteen years. CW skills were low by then, but I managed to pass the Extra as the test was then multiple guess instead of one minute solid copy.
Most of my operating was on ham satellites for the next 15 years and mostly on SSB. Again work interfered often for another ten years. I got more active again a few years ago and I mostly enjoyed building radios and associated equipment and antennas. Operating CW was not a premium. That all changed when the QCX from QRP-Labs came out. I built an early one for 40 meters and I was hooked. I’ve since built four more and a number of other QRP-Labs pieces.
My early interest in ham radio made me want to become an EE, but various deviations along the line led me to my MD. As with many professions and with family requirements, hobbies took a back seat intermittently. However, my recent retirement has now given me the time to increase my ham activities.
The other pieces of the puzzle for me were an introduction to SOTA and more recently, to POTA. I only operate QRP CW for SOTA and while I can make contacts, I really wanted to improve my CW skills to get comfortable above 15 WPM. A number in my Skyview RS club have used CWops Academy and so I signed up as well. Lots of practice and encouragement from my intermediate class with Advisor Mike this fall has really helped with increased comfort at higher speeds.
I still enjoy building radios and other equipment, but CW operating is getting a larger amount of my time in the hobby. I have a long way to go in advancing my CW skills, but CWops is giving me the tools to do it. Thanks to this great organization for all you do. I’m looking forward to the next level course this winter.
I enjoy hiking and camping with my XYL of 40 years, Janice and that gives an opportunity to get out to parks and summits to operate as well. Other interests are biking and of course, spending time with the grandkids. Maybe I’ll even get them interested in radio!This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.