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CJRCILE liON READER SERVICE CARD

Letters

Ucl W1PL. Melrose MA Wayne, it was great to meet you and even more so to hear you taking to the Ne* Eng land DX people about the problems, ihe negative effects of ihe pursuit of the ARRL DXCC as it happens today This proolem bothered me also for a long time, discussed it with a few close friends, but we felt incapable and utter ly powerless to even try to do anything about Ft.

You have proven so often that you see (he lulure of amateur radio way ahead ol ihe rest of us. It seems 10 me, ihe DXCC problems must be solved in some reasonable manner to keep It de* sirable, obtainable, and alive at all.

I know it is very difficult to change anything, but it could be done, I think, if vatid DXCC credits would be given for QSOs worked only during Ihe world's mam contests, CQWW, ARRL DX, WAE and AA This would increase par-ttapation in the contests, concentrate the DXpeditions in those time frames, and -vould eliminate the discouraging, alienating effect of so many pileups with ail the annoyances. The general ham population would enjoy operating in a more quiet atmosphere (ionosphere?). Even the rare DX stations woulc be free of that aggressive calling hystena. which chases the rare DX operator olf the bands.

Immediately after the war. when t was practically Ihe only HA station on the air. I lived quite a few years under the pressures of a rare DX It was a bit easier than today, due to the lower powers, fewer beam antennas, and (may I say so?) snappier operators and more gentlemen It still was often loo much lo lake

\ leave my idea now with ycu, and please continue working for amateur radio's better future.

TTianhs for your nice letter I was wondering what impact my talk might have on the DXCC brethren, t had to get back; so t didnt hang around fo see whether they would arrange a monument or tar and feathers.

One added benefit, as you ment' o n ed con test conta cts would eUm ■ inate most of the QSL problems smce they'd atf be handted by computer

Lap, I've changed amateur radio a gooo deal, so maybe I can do so we more. I 'm trying.

If I remember weiL our first OSO happened 43 years agoI Hit .. Wayne

Kent Phillips WB8HWO, New York

NY Wanted you to know 73 has fol-Jo^ed me everywhere m the Middle East, and without your refreshing comments life would be rather dull. Keep up the satire only worthy of "Uncfe Wayns Please enter me in Ham-IL-Up Sweepstakes; Vm only 6,000 miles from my nearest dealer.

Steve Kati WB2WIK/6, Canoga Park

CA I've been following your 'Never Say Die" editorials for years, and have also been reading the ' Letters" section o' 73. which are far more interest ing than Ihe same section in competing magazines, for two reasons: One, the letters appear to be pnnted in full; and two. they often contain replies

From the Hamshack

Actually I ve been a Green fan ever since you were my first New Hampshire contact on 2 meter AM back in 1966 when I was a new Novice in New Jersey running a Healh "Twoer To make a contact with NH using about 1 5W output to a little 8-element yagj — a 250-mile path over hilly lerrain using terrible equipment on my end—was such a staggering accomplishment that it turned me on to VHF/UHF lor lite, l believe on your end, you were running high power and an enormous collinear antenna part way up Mt Monadnock, You used to generate pileups among us 'lowland leaf-lookers" in NJ and PA.

In Ihe December 73 "Random Output" by David Cassidy. Dave recalls the magic of wireless communications and how the newcomers to the hobby might miss out on the feeling. I agree It's sad that most new hams are such appliance Operators; they never think about what goes on inside their equipment lo make easy QSOs possible Anybody who hasn't home-brewed at least ore complete setup, or ai least a simple transmitter, doesn't know whai he's missing.

Over the past 25 years. I've upgraded to Extra (J 'ove CW, anyway, color me crazy) and home-brewed dozens of stations sometimes including complete receivers (what a job!) and often ot my own design, good oi bad All my kW amplifiers are home-brewed except for one Henry Radio RF deck using a 30X1200D7 and I buift the power supply for that Nowh living in a townhouse in Los Angeles, after owning several homes on large lots back Easl, I enjoy the challenge of working DX using small antennas, or going h^i-top-ping lo work VHF DX. There are always a million challengesi To sit In front of one's store-bought transceiver for hours on end cannot be anybody's idea of a thrill can it?

I agree with you. we need more young blood in amateur radio. It does seem that most of my CW contacts are with retired folks who learned the code before or during WWII Even the ^orid-class contesters, presumably the best operators in the world, are getting older Who w'tll replace them, to set new standards? Who is going to be the first to make 300 QSOs/hour in a com ¡est? Work DXCC in 60 mmyles? Develop systems to make packet meteor scatter contacts a daily occurrence? Keep pushing for less restrictive legis-lahon regarding antenna and tower zoning and ordinances? Design the new amateur equipment? Distribute and sell it?

There's far fewer ham stores in America than ever in my personal tenure I don't see how any of them make it. I'm lucky enough to be within a one-hour's drive on crowded freeways lo not just one or two. but five amateur radio outlets. This may exist only in Los Angeles. Used to be, New York City alone had a dozen—bul I believe only Barry remains. And do the locals' support their local dealers? No! by a long shot? Most folks around here would rather mail-order their gear lo save the sales tax. Big deal! They probably save $35 on a Si.000 pur chase when the shipping costs are added in.

Then, the average ham is looked upon as a weirdo by the rest ot society, anyway. Many are socially inept, severely introverted (except on the air}. Some are bona fide sociopaths! {Just listen in on a couple of the wide-coverage L A -area repeaters )

What can we do to generate interest among the youngsters, who might be able to save ham radio? Fo' starters, we can get our own kids interested and licensed Every licensed amateur who is a school teacher a: any level should introduce the wonders of wireless communication to his or her students—maybe even convince the board lo make ham radio an accredited class. Every active ham who is a radio club member should bring one non-ham to the next club meeiing, and make the effort to introduce that person to the gang. Make an issue of it, with formal introductions and the rolling out of a great, big welcome mat. We have a great hobby for retirees, bul licensing the old-timers will not help the service survive. Only the kids can do that.

Every time I have a youngster in my car, for any reason, I don i ignore The two transceivers installed therein I pick up the mike and make a few contacts. explaining to the visitor what's going on and how much fun it is, Their eyes open wide as ihey hear the foreign accents roiling in on my 10 meter ng and get wider when they hear an Aussie or Slav respond to my call 'Howsthe weatherihere rn Belgrade, old man? Do you do any s*:ing on all that snow?" "Do you guys in Sydney really use boomerangs to gel your dipoies up in the trees?" Make Jt interest tngf The kids are guaranteed to go nuts, asking questions aboul how to get licensed,

I show my Limited DX QSL card collection (about 100 countries are hanging on the wall—the mosi interesting cards I coufd pick out from my collections, with bright colors and bold descriptions of the DX locations) to practically every single visitor to our home. Since everybody here in Calilornia is from someplace else (or so it seem si}, l ask each new acquaintance where they're from, and try lo show them one QSL card from that place, stating proudly, "'Oh, yeah, I know this guy Sam from there He's an avid fisherman, and pulls the big trout out of Lake Whatchamacallit.' They are absolutely dumbfounded Maybe one in five will ask some questions about ham ra-dno then they're hooked

My eighi-year-old nephew, belter traveled than most because he was porn m the Middle East, lives with us. He's probably the only third-grader in his school who actually knows where ail the DXCC countries are. along with the names of countries no longer in existence, and what's taken their places. With mildly incapacitating cerebrai palsy, his coordinalion is not great, but he can copy 5 wpm and gel mosi of it down on paper. A Novice ticket can't be more than a ye a raw ay— probably closer—for him. He's the only eight-year-old I know who can answer nearly all the "World Geography" questions on Jeopardy! He's also getting a grasp of simple algebra which won t be taught in his school for another two years, based on his interest in Ohm's Law.

Tnere are as many ways to get youngsters interested in rad<o as there are youngsters. One only needs to lake a bit of time to find the right button to push. I compel anyone interested in the future ot amateur raoio to took for those buttons, push them, and keep on pushing until all the neighDorhood kids have their tickets.

t know you're not just trying to sell more magazines Wayne There ate lots of easier ways to make money, if the hobby were heaithier. really booming, 73 could be free paid for entirely by advertising revenues Keep up the battle. Some reaily are listening. And thanks for being my first 2 meter DX contact, 25 years ago. 1 still remember.

Thanks for taking the time to wnte such a great tetter■ / vwsh more hams would do that! I'll be publishing it . hoping that maybe you can get some of these tired old geezers off their butts„

Good news: I m getting closer to getting NH to set up my electronics educa-lion course. This could turn out 10,000 hams a year, Just from NHL Wayne

Trevor M, Artingstoll G0JOE, UK So

Ole Ozzie KA1BIK is the other guy left on the planet with radio dust infection? I suggest we manufacture ihe drug and peddle it in schools and institutions of htgher learning t'd pay St00 for an inhaler packet with the stuff, myself, Imagine, in adufl moment, unscrewing the little plastic cap. inserting ihe tube delicately into the waiting nostril, and—kepow!—back to Ihe Land of Glowing Bottles—searching in the coal box for gold streaks to stick in a crystal set—wrecking basket coiis for the neli of it—soldering real, honesHo-God, sofid copper wire seductively wrapped in cotton—drilling ebony wood front panels—! Sul i speak a foreign Language to young and middle-aged hams. Sigh! There's no cure, you know.

David Terrell KB5LAM/AA Thanks for producing a high-quality product. I weighed 73. CO. QSTr and World Radio in the balance 73 has Ihe best mix of the things t want to see I devour the technical issues and construction articles. I also enjoy the human side about clubs and individuals We requested the writing quidelines you've established and intend on trying my hand in bom areas

Lowell E, Robertson K6QXQ, Riverside CA \ am ral her stow at responding to the article Rad Radnor," in the May 1990 issue of 73. I just want to comment that the wrre hanging down from the bottom of the walkie-talkie creates a variation of Ihe "counterpoise" antenna which may be a long iorgotten antenna type. This may sound critical of an otherwise weW-wnt-ten articie. but the term "counterpoise" has a more professional ring than "rad radiator "

Richard Ernst /EA7t FPO NY Three months ago I purchased the new 1990 ARRL Handbook at the cover price of $23. Table 42 on pages 35-36, and 39 contains the "ARRL Parts Supply List." Being an avid home-brewer of just about everything, and being posted overseas, I said to myself, "Rich, here is your source of mailorder parts.'7 t sent 12 letters lo companies on This ARRL list, and as oí today I have yet lo receive the first reply After 26 years I guess t haven't learned my fes-son yet. Caveat ??

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