Hooked up when I was 10 while listening to short wave broadcast on the family receiver, I started reading the French periodical Radioplan like others were reading comics.
At 12, I tried to build my first receiver from a kit which was made available from Radioplan. Of course, as I did it alone without any help and assistance to fix my beginner errors, it never worked. I was a bit upset my piggy bank savings went to this silent amount of components soldered (melted?) on the circuit board.
In my village was a house with a lot of wires around. My parents reported the man who lived there told them one day they were radio antennas.
Having so many antennas around the house made me thinking he must be a radio ‘expert’ so after the school I rang his bell and asked him to help me to have my receiver working. He refused but explained he was an amateur radio operator and he would teach me about radio technics if my parents approved, so I could repair it myself. So for few years I started learning radio tubes, antennas and operating procedures after school. I wasn’t able to operate myself because no novice license existed in France. At this time you needed to build your own radio before asking the inspector to check it and test your technical skills. Far too complex for a teenager and even if you will be able to, you couldn’t pass the Intelligence Service inquiry needed to get a license approved.
Then I went to the ‘Lycee’ (French High School) and the University and as my Elmer sadly passed away, I fell out of the hobby.
In 1992, after I was relocated to a new city for my job, I saw a radio club season opening announcement in the local newspaper. This recalled me the great sessions in my Elmer’s shack. I decided to meet with the club members and was able to pass my license few months later, first with VHF privileges only but glowing radio tubes and having lights blinking with the Morse rhythm quickly missed me, so I upgraded to the full privilege license.
For now more than 10 years, I am a CW operator only. I enjoy chasing DX, long CW ragchews and modestly participate to some HF contests. Operating HF bands is my ‘secret garden’, where I can take rest after a business trip or stressful project meetings.
Managing IT topics in the northern European countries for a large American company, I am traveling a lot in Europe, Middle East and the US. I am usually traveling with a radio so you could have contacted me from about 40 different countries, signing with my own callsigns F5IYJ and NK2F (my callsign while in the US) or my host callsign when I am authorized to.
Elmering the new generation of operators is also very important for me and I am trying to free time to promote amateur radio and telegraphy and assist youngsters. I am married, father of 3 and will turn 52 at the end of the year.This biography is what appeared in Solid Copy when the member joined CWops.