WB2OZA QSL card (1970) by the Little Print Shop
In 1966 my first short wave receiver was a Viscount Model 833 8 transistor 3 band portable. It tuned the AM broadcast band and marine band from 1.6 to 4.5 MHz on the internal ferrite antenna, and 6 to 18 MHz on the telescoping whip antenna. I collected SW broadcast QSL cards and upon registering with Popular Electronics magazine I received the short wave listener "call sign" WPE2RDU in November 1969.
In May 1970, Mark Grossman K2CON (now a Silent Key), salesperson at Arrow Electronics at 97 Chambers Street, Manhattan administered my Technician class license exam at his residence in Jamaica, Queens, NY. I soon received my first call sign WB2OZA.
I recall he preferred that I should take the Novice exam, as he suspected that I would forever be bound to VHF operation as a Technician.
Mark sent me this photo in 1995 after we reconnected on 15 meter SSB while I operated my mobile station in Omaha, NE. Mark passed away in 2010.
I built my first ham radio in 1970 -- a Knight Kit TR-108 AM transceiver. This radio put out 5 watts with a 2E26 final amplifier tube to a Hy-Gain 8 element Yagi antenna.
Amateur Extra Radio Operator License, 10/3/1974
The test bench at WB2OZA in 1976: Left to Right: Eico AF and RF signal generators, Top: ARRL Life Membership Plaque, Heath transistor tester and resistance decade box, VTVM and Knight-Kit KG-635 oscilloscope, Foreground: project box with meter and binding posts, AT&T touch tone pad, and homebrew plate modulator for Globe Chief. At the left of the photo the corner of an original Pong game console atop a console TV are visible. Bronx, NY (1976).
WB2OZA Fast Scan ATV Test Pattern
On 03 SEP 1973 I made my first fast scan amateur television contact with Ralph Molino WB2DTT in Cliffside Park, NJ on 439.25 MHz using a modified Motorola T44AAV commercial UHF transceiver and CushCraft 20 element collinear antenna. I later published an article in A5 Magazine on modifying the WWII surplus BC-645 IFF transponder for ATV.
As a college student in 1975 I built (and still use) this Micro-TO MK II Electronic Keyer from the September 1975 QST Article. Here it is shown with the original straight paddle used until 2 years ago--a cheap plastic base Radio Shack straight key with a guitar pick with its pivot turned 90 degrees on the base and between two microswitches. Oscar Rubinger WB2GVN (SK) made the weighted base from an electrical fixture box filled with melted lead.
WA2SUR FM Repeater newsletter, 1971
02 NOV 1971 - I modified a 2 watt military surplus sonobuoy transmitter board for 2 meter FM. Purchased for about $20 from Leeds Radio on 57 Warren Street in New York City, these were a popular low-cost option for FM repeater operation before VHF FM transceivers were manufactured for the amateur radio market.
I improvised the case by bending sheet aluminum.
Sonobuoy transmitter close-up. The sonobuoy transmitter consists of an 18 MHz crystal-controlled transistor oscillator and several multiplier stages driving a final amplifier stage that delivered about one watt output in the 160 MHz range. In 1971 WA2ZSD and K2BO described a simple procedure to replace the crystal with a custom ordered 8 MHz unit, and to re-tune the oscillator tank circuit and the multiplier and amplifier stages to transmit in the 144-148 MHz frequency range.
Sonobuoy transmitter schematic diagram
Sonobuoy modification instructions by WA2ZSD and K2BO
In the early 1970's, USAF MARS assigned me to their Youth Training Program and I conducted several Morse Code and Novice radio theory classes and exams at Fordham University club station K2FO on Fordham Rd in Bronx, NY. John A. Ross IV, WB2K (now a Silent Key) was one of our students. Sadly he passed away after a long illness on 11/1/2002. (Photo courtesy of Jim Young, W7FTT)
The Unimetrics Ultracom 25 was a 25 watt 12 channel crystal controlled mobile FM transceiver originally marketed for the VHF Marine Band and rebranded for use on the 144-148 MHz band. On January 27, 1977 I used this model radio to make my first satellite contact from Puerto Rico with Ben Stevenson W2BXA in Colonia, New Jersey via Oscar 6 by keying the push to talk line to send Morse code.
KP4MD QSL card (1977)
KP4MD QTH at Calle 62 SE #1186, Urb. Reparto Metropolitano, Rio Piedras, PR (1979)
KP4MD Station: Heathkit HW-101 transceiver, phone patch. Urb. Reparto Metropolitano, Rio Piedras, PR (1979)
From JAN 1977 to AUG 1979 as Air Force MARS station AFP4MD, then AFAØAF, I operated on TRANSCON net and ran weekly phone patches with AHA6AIR at Howard Air Force Base for servicemen in the Panama Canal Zone.
1978 Membership Directory, Radio Club of Puerto Rico
1978 RCPR Membership listing, Agustin Santana, KP4CKY
Augie, KP4CKY, showing DX QSL cards
Augie KP4CKY at his station
Augie, KP4CKY at teletype
Don Augie, KP4CKY, with Papo, WP4Q (then KP4EQG). Papo passed away on 11/21/2002, Augie about a year earlier.
The amateur radio station of Agustín Santana, KP4CKY & Agustín Jr. KP4EQG in Villa Carolina, Puerto Rico (ca. 1980)
Visiting KP4CKY & KP4EQG: Front: Dick Gordon WB2CEL, Augie KP4CKY Behind: Mrs. Gordon, Papo KP4EQG and Doña Esperanza.
My mother, Conchita visiting with Augie KP4CKY's wife, Doña Esperanza in Carolina PR
KP4EMN QTH at Ave. Palma Real #908, Urb. Hyde Park, Rio Piedras, PR (1977) My HF Antenna was an end fed 30AWG enamel wire to the top of the lamp pole
KP4EMN station: Heathkit HW-101 transceiver. Urb. Hyde Park, Rio Piedras, PR (1977)
Augie, KP4CKY, at 1999 Field Day. (photo courtesy of Rafael Bonano, KP4RV)
Augie, KP4CKY, setting up his tent at Field Day, 6/26/1999. (photo courtesy of Rafael Bonano, KP4RV)
KP4FLP - PEDRO, WP4Q - PAPO, KP4SQ - PEDRO AND SECTION MANAGER KP4ZZ - RAUL ESCOBAR. (LF TO RIGHT) at 1999 Field Day. (photo courtesy of Rafael Bonano, KP4RV)
Papo, WP4Q, takes a break at Field Day, June 26-27, 1999. (photo courtesy of Rafael Bonano, KP4RV)
1978 RCPR Membership listing, Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ
Visit with Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ, in Barrio Negros, Corozal, PR (1980)
Visit with Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ, in Corozal, PR
Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ, with XYL Mirtelina Román in Corozal, PR
Home of Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ, Barrio Negros, Corozal, PR (1980)
Luis Rivera, KP4AHQ at his station in Vega Baja, PR. 7 July 2011
My visit with Luis, KP4AHQ, at his station. Vega Baja, PR, 7 July 2011.
KP4MD Station: Astatic D-104 microphone, Heathkit SB-610 monitor scope, MFJ-949B antenna tuner and Kenwood TS-140s transceiver. Florence, NE (1989)
KP4MD Station: Heathkit SB-1000 amplifier, HW-101 transceiver, SB-610 monitor scope, Micro-TO MK II keyer, Astatic D-104 microphone. Florence, NE (1989)
KP4MD Station: Heathkit HW-101 transceiver, Micro-TO MK II keyer, Astatic D-104 microphone, SB-610 monitor scope, MFJ-949B antenna tuner and Kenwood TS-140s transceiver. 8234 N 47 St., Florence, NE (1989)
KP4MD QTH at 14108 Seward St, Omaha, NE (1997-99). Full wave 40m and 20m loops are inside the attic.
Diagram of my 40 meter horizontal and 20 meter vertical full wave loop attic antennas at my station in Omaha, Nebraska.
QSL card, KP4MD, 2006
eQSL card, KP4MD (2010)
USAF MARS License, 2009
KP4MD Station: Icom IC-W21AT handheld, Bearcat BC210XLT scanner, MFJ-949B tuner, Heath SB-610 monitor scope, Knight-Kit P-2 SWR meter, Kenwood TS-140s transceiver. Citrus Heights, CA (2006)
Operating Digital Modes with the Ham Radio Deluxe software, July 2010
Icom IC-W21AT 144/440 MHz handheld
High Sierra Sidekick Screwdriver Vertical with 6 foot whip (80-10m), Citrus Heights, CA (2006)
Arrow OSJ 146/440 Dual Band J-Pole (2m & 70cm), Citrus Heights, CA (2006)
Arrow J-Pole raised to 20 feet. The new 40 meter full wave loop feedpoint is also atop this mast. (11 Sep 2010)
KP4MD reunion with Joe Salvo WA2PJI in Bronx NY. Joe is holding my original QSL card from our QSO in 1974. Bronx, New York, May 3, 2011.
Hall of Science ARC Hamfest, Queens, NY, June 13, 2010
KP4MD reunion with Howie Levine, WB2HWW at Hall of Science Amateur Radio Club Hamfest, Queens, NY, June 13, 2010
KP4MD reunion with Donald Breda, WA2IWC at Fuji Sushi Restaurant on W 56th St in New York City, June 11, 2010
We chatted almost daily on 2 meter AM during our teenage years in the Bronx from 1970-1976.
Bob Zimmerman NP4B and me at the Arecibo Observatory, 7 July 2011
KP4MD Station (11 Aug 2012)
MFJ-1126 PowerPole DC Distribution Box and Turnigy 130A Watt Meter/Power Analyzer (11 Aug 2012)
HF and Repeater position - Kenwood TS-140s, Yaesu FT-8800R, MFJ-949B Tuner, LDG Z-11Pro II Tuner, Astatic D-104 and Micro-TO MK II Keyer (11 Aug 2012)
144 MHz WSPR Station - Elecraft XV144 Transverter, RM Italy KL-145 Linear Amplifier, Knight-Kit P-2 SWR/Power Meter (11 Aug 2012)
Bearcat BC210XLT Scanner, Icom IC-W21AT HT, MFJ-4245MV Switching Power Supply, Heathkit SB-610 Monitor Scope (11 Aug 2012)
AEA PK-232MBX Multimode Controller, FLEXRadio 3000 and FLEXRadio 1500 (11 Aug 2012)
Multitasking SDR's - 2 meter WSPR and 6 meter FSK441 ready for the Perseid meteor shower (12 Aug 2012)
Now running two instances of WSPR and two instances of PowerSDR, running WSPR simultaneously on HF and 144 MHz. (15 Aug 2012)
Moved the MFJ-4245MV switching power supply to the top shelf (25 AUG 2012)
The Legacy HF and VHF position before moving the AEA PK-232 multimode controller (25 AUG 2012)
To complete the legacy station, I moved the AEA PK-232MBX multimode controller above the Kenwood TS-140s. The PK-232 is used for HF and VHF Packet, AMTOR, PACTOR, Baudot, Morse and has the PSK upgrade that interfaces with the computer for SSTV and the soundboard digital modes. (1 SEP 2012)
OCT 2012 - KP4MD QSL Card
eQSL card sent to IK6BGJ in Pescara, Italy contacted on 14 MHz SSB while I was operating portable from Luis Rivera's station KP4AHQ in Vega Baja, PR
QR Code to my www.qsl.net/kp4md website
Assistant Section Manager Appointment, ARRL Sacramento Valley Section
Straight Key Century Club #14087
Joined SKCC to participate in the monthly Weekend Sprintathon (WES)
ARRL Sacramento Valley Assistant Section Manager 2014-2015
ARRL Sacramento Valley Section Manager 2015-
KP4MD QSL Card with photo from Dec 2014 QST