My home rig is a Yaesu FT-991A and Heil PMD-6 headset for working HF as well as the analog and digital System Fusion world on VHF/UHF. The radio is linked to my computer via USB for logging and control software from Log4OM and Ham Radio Deluxe. I have to say, this is a very nice radio, as is the logging software.

Behind our home, a 55' Rohn tower holds a Diamond X-300A VHF/UHF vertical antenna, and a GAP Titan DX on a 6' pole is set up nearby for HF work. I also have my dad's trusty old Barker & Williamson BWD-90 folded dipole between a couple of big trees. What an awesome antenna.

In the Jeep, I have a Yaesu FTM-400XDR dual-band VHF/UHF with a Comet CA-2X4SR NMO antenna for broadband analog and digital QSO's on simplex, analog repeaters, and Yaesu Digital Fusion repeaters and networks.

A MARS modified Yaesu FT-60R moves between the home and office desks for the times I am at work.

A Yaesu FT-70 joined my collection earlier this year and has become my regular carry radio, even more since I bought a ZUMspot RPi. VoIP QSOs all over the world with the FT-70D on C4FM, from anywhere within about 500 feet of the ZUMspot. How fun is that!

Current radios:
  • Yaesu FT991A with a GAP Titan DX or Barker & Williamson BWD-90 broadband antenna
  • Yaesu FTM-400XDR mobile with a Comet CA-2X4SR NMO broadband antenna
  • Yaesu FT-7900R mobile (MARS modified) with a TRAM 1181 broadband antenna
  • Yaesu FT-7800R mobile with a Comet SS-680SB NMO antenna
  • Yaesu FT-60R HT (MARS modified) with a Comet MH-255 or Comet HT-55 antenna
  • Yaesu FT-70D HT with a Comet SMA-501, Comet SMA-503, or Comet SMA-24 antenna
  • Tytera MD-390 HT for DMR and analog FM
  • ZUMspot-RPi kit with Raspberry Pi Zero wireless (DSTAR, DMR, NXDN, P25, YSF)
Sold radios:
  • Yaesu FT-857D (excellent radio!)
Wish List:
  • Yaesu FT-891 for mobile/portable and QRP and a portable magnetic loop antenna

Nancy and I are now in our soon-to-be retirement home we built about 800 feet from the western shores of beautiful Lake Michigan. All the wood walls, ceilings, posts and trim were logged, by me and my good friend Ryan, from where our home now sits. The logs were milled at a nearby 102 year old circle saw mill into about 6,500 board feet of lumber. We have spent the last two years ship-lapping, sanding, installing, and finishing (still finishing) the boards with four coats of dark tung oil. The hand-made wood interior is one of my dreams come true!

A Little History

When my father was young, he was an electronics geek always experimenting with HF radio setups and antenna configurations from his home at 46 Hillside, New Hartford, New York. With a simple folded dipole antenna strung between his window and an old Hickory tree, he has enjoyed many QSO's from all around the world!

His interest in electronics and amateur radio continued while he was a U.S. Navy submariner and Electronics Technician (ET) aboard the USS Chopper from 1951 to 1955. Continuing into his adult life, dad logged almost 10,000 QSO's and has confirmed 286 countries, most of which were made with less than 80 watts from a vertical antenna.

From 1955, here is one of K2JGL's many memebership certificates from the ARRL.

After his divorce in 1972, dad and I became distant in many ways. I was a police detective, married with four children, and living in Wisconsin. Dad was an engineer living in Nashua, New Hampshire. As the years passed, we had less in common, visiting only every few years.

Bill K2JGL with his Yaesu FT-920 and Astatic model D-104 crystal microphone (2000).

In 2007, I decided to take up amateur radio as a means to rebuild my relationship with my dad. Through this common interest, and on January 17, 2009 I earned my Technician license as KC9OYS. On March 14, 2009 I continued on to earn my General license and changed my call sign to K9KMS.

In honor of my dad, now that he has passed on, I am trying to get and keep his K2JGL call sign, as well as recover my original KC9OYS call.

Amateur radio has been very instrumental in the restoration process of a broken relationship with my dad. It has also led to other personal accomplishments and satisfaction in my own life. For this, and for my dad, I am very grateful.

No comments:

Post a Comment