SW History

Me? A ham radio operator?

Hi; I have always been interested in Short-wave radio since my Dad started SWLing when I was about 10. I’ve always had one SW radio or another around; things like a low-cost heathkit receiver, some of those off-brand early solid
state “5-band” radios, and when I was in my 30s I picked up a Lafayette KT 320 receiver which never worked very well and which I still have. I am planning to finally try doing some work on that just to learn more. The Lafayette was sold both in kit form, the KT 320; and a ready-made model, the HE-30.

Here is a picture of the Lafayette:

Lafayette KT-320 Shortwave Radio
When I was playing around with that Lafayette in Spring of 2009, someone at a radio forum suggested I get a ham license. Since radio theory had always interested me, and I already knew quite a bit about it from my Physics background, I decided to do just that. Passed my Technician on April 09 and my General on May 19. On June 2, I got a vanity call shorter but similar to what I had been issued.
Conditions were really at a low point then and the ICOM 730 I bought from someone on QTH just never pulled in much. Didn’t know if it was my limited wire antenna or the radio, so I didn’t do any transmitting and put the whole hobby aside – until May 2011. I had that ICOM 730 transceiver in the shop for a full work-over during the month of June. Meanwhile I was using an ICOM R70 I had just picked up, to do my shortwave listening (SWL). Conditions seem to be a little better on some days than they were in 2009 so I’m hopeful that I will be able to get more into this hobby and start transmitting.
I have a few nice vintage pieces of radio test equipment and will be featuring those in another page here, including pictures.
Morning Ritual painting by Emily Balivet


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