HOW IT ALL STARTED...AND WHAT IT IS NOW...
In 1966 I joined the Netherlands Royal Military Academy in the ancient town of Breda . This city also became known as it appeared in the painting "Surrender of Breda" by the Spanish painter Velazques. Part of the training was "CW". If the Signal Corps cadet succeeded to meet the set criteria in the classroom he was allowed to experience the real world ..... PI1KMA was the first call I was bringing on the air....One of the QSO's I remember from this time was a QSO with the King of Jordan, Hussein, who had the call JY1.
King Hussein I on his amateur radio station
To have the feeling of doing something for myself I became a member of VERON and applied for a SWL number : NL-135 was my SWL-'call' as of January 11th 1969. It was in those days that Sikkim counted for DXCC.
After some years of marriage, changing homes etcetera, my knee was injured on the (field)hockey pitch. Having a few possibilities my XYL Ria proposed to buy the VERON-book to start the study for my personal call....
On June 6, 1980 I was licensed as PA3AXU.
It started with a small YAESU handheld FT-207 and a small 2 element HB9CV antenna on 144 MHz using FM-modulation.
Soon I made the big step to HF: Heathkit HW-7 with a fieldwire dipole. It was a thrill to make CW QSO's all over the world.
However with just a few watts it appeared to be impossible to "catch the big fish". The QRP set was soon replaced by a second hand FT-200 and the wire became a groundplane :GPA-30 by Fritzel for for the 20, 15 and 10 meter amateur radio bands. To become QRV on 40 and 80 meters a Windom FD-4 was installed. This was the setup that, with a lot of patience, allowed me to make the steps on the DXCC ladder : for 100 countries confirmed and 100 countries on each of the bands, I hold the worldwide recognized ARRL DXCC (number 26413 dated April 17, 1986) and 5Band-DXCC (number 1827 dated March 29, 1985)Awards.
Further improvements included the change to a rotatable antenna. First a 2 element and later a 3 element beam. And between the actual radio and the antenna I purchased a linear amplifier: FL-2100 by YAESU, to help pushing my signals through the pile-ups.
And so on and so on....always trying to improve....and try other modes and frequency bands to communicate, and therefore trying the traditional modes like Continuous Wave (CW) ,Radioteletype (RTTY), but also the Fuzzy Modes like Phase Shift Keying (PSK31) and Hell Schreiben. In preparing for my ZK1-trip I have been convinced to get to SSTV as well !!
Now the actual
set-up is :
Transmitters/Receivers : FT-990 by YAESU, DX-70 by Alinco, Kenwood's TS-450 SAT and ICOM's IC-706MkIIG. The last 3 are my DX-pedition friends.
Antenna's at home are : 3 element YAGI for 20/15/10 meters, rotary dipole by CUSHCRAFT for 30/17 and 12 meters and a 3 element CUSHCRAFT for 50 MHz. I use wires for 160/80 and 40 meters. They are on a 20 meter tower. Separately I also have a CUSHCRAFT R-7 vertical installed.
Modes I am
operational in these days are : SSB, CW, RTTY, PSK31, Hell, and
My DXCC Achievements make me proud.
Pictures of PA3AXU