W2AAT: Retired and loving it!
Charles T Brunskill aka Corky is one of a
group of three US amateurs I chanced upon rag chewing late on 40m
demonstrating the art of relaxed conversation that US citizens
tend to do rather better than brits.
I tried to poke my oar in, but although I was heard, I
was too feeble to get called back. 40m
is one of those bands that when it is quiet is capable of the
most startling DX, but paths can be very asymmetric and QSB free;
it seems power is generally rewarded more than on higher bands
with absorption in different layers. The temptation for a
linear will grow as the next generation of beefy
NXF transistors are getting into new equipment and promise
the possibility of 1kW for around
Until I can fix a contact, Corky kindly replied
to an email with his story of amateur radio...
This Red Drum was caught, photographed -
QSLed - and released on 11/26/2012 at the Georgetown SC Near Reef.
It's good to talk
Yes, ham radio is a lot like fishing and your web page covers a lot of the two hobbies or ways of life :-)...... I've spent the majority of my 55+ years of hamming being a rag chewer. I would guess that I've worked 300 plus countries over these years. Actually, after all these years, many of the countries that I have worked don't exist any more. I don't chase DXCC, contests, awards or special events. I simply like to talk to people. In honesty, I never cared if the fellow whom I was talking to was on the other side of the world or across town.
I call CQ quite often. CQ is like bottom bouncing in fishing. You put your line in the water, wait for the strike, enjoy the action and release the fish for another person to catch. You never know if you are going to catch a small fish (local ham), medium sized fished (across the country) or a big fish (some rare DX station). Oh yes, I do like big fish... Take a look at my QRZ page. Yet, last year while fishing in Hawaii, I managed to catch a most beautiful tropical fish that was 3" long. I didn't take a picture of it...
I should note that I do have fun with contests. I generally will make one or two contacts during a contest. In listening to contests it became apparent to me that during the period of the contest every participant talks to every other participant. In theory, everyone should have the same points. By my making my one contact, I assure that one person has one contact more than every one else. Secondly, I try to be the last contact made by a big contest DX high roller. For example, in the CQ world-wide contest I logqed my only contact, OM7M at 23:59:593480. I had to be the last entry for the entire contest :-)
Like fishing, there are a lot of personalities wetting their lines. Some are good sportsmen, others ....well.... they leave a lot to be desired. I try to avoid these people.
One of the great things about rag chewing is that in one QSO you might have the opportunity to talk to a over-the-road truck (lorry) driver. Then your next QSO may be with a person who wrote the book on classical thermodynamics.
Ya never know...
Why I got my license? I was a nerdy kid who did science with other nerdy kids. We were into radio control. In those days radio control was on 27Mc which was also the frequency for garage door operators.
Two of us nerds were selected to get their licenses to operate on 220Mc. After getting my novice license and getting on the air, I fell in love with the hobby and never looked back. I've always had a active station. (note the Mc and not MHz)...
First Licensed: 1957 (WV2AAT), 1958 (WA2AAT)
First Rig: Heath DX-20, Hallicrafters SX-16, Various ARC-5s
Present Rig(s): Kenwood TS-590, MC-60A , Kenwood SP-31, Kenwood TS-590 (Backup), Yaesu FT-8800
Amplifier: Ameritron AL-80B
Antenna: W5GI Mystery Antenna @ 50', Heath SA-2060, Arrow J-Pole
Other Stuff: Eddystone 940, SB 200, Murch Transmatch
Hobbies: Ham Radio, Fishing (see above), Astronomy, Target Shooting, Our Mustang and
Spending our kids inheritance :-)