My Amateur Radio Station
Here are photos and information about my amateur radio station as of October
2008. First, some background.
I obtained my first amateur radio operator's license in November 1958 --
Novice Class, KN4FPT. A few months later I upgraded to Technician Class,
K4FPT. Here's my license history:
Novice, KN4FPT, November 1958;
Technician, K4FPT, February 1959;
Advanced, K4FPT, April 1979;
Extra, K4FPT, September 1992;
Received vanity call W4HH, January 6,
While stationed in Japan, July 1990 -
July 1993, I held Japanese amateur radio license 7J1AJJ.
I have had a number of stations, some very simple, some complicated.
Now that we have settled down in Northumberland County, Virginia, I have put up
a small station in my new home. (Follow this link for more info on
our new house.)
I planned to put a small station in the utility room of the new house but didn't
realize how little room I would have.
Here are two photos of my station as it looks in January 2020. The station sits on a homemade table
in a small utility room.
The equipment is:
- Top shelf, left to right:
- Yaesu FT-211RH two-meter FM transceiver (oldie but goody).
- Equipment manuals behind which is a 20 amp-hour battery charged by a
solar panel. The battery powers the Yaesu FT-817 and Elecraft K1.
- Elecraft K1
- Yaesu FT817; on top is an LDG 817 antenna tuner; on top of the tuner
is an Oak Hills Research fwd-ref power meter.
- Tabletop, left to right:
- Yaesu FTM100 VHF/UHF transceiver
- Yaesu FT857
- Two telegraph keys: Old WW II J-38 straight key and
- On the wall behind the station are two digital voltmeters and a solar
charge controller. Current from the solar panel comes in through a
window into one of the digital voltmeters then to the charge controller then
through the second digital voltmeter then to the 20 amp-hour battery.
The digital meters allow me to monitor voltage and current in and out.
Here are close-up views of the station
My station antennas
My antennas are very simple:
- My HF antenna is an end-fed single wire about 135 feet long, only 20 or
so feet off the ground.
- A couple of VHUF/UHF vertical antennas.
Here are a two photos of the end-fed wire installation
This photo shows the fed end of the end-fed wire antenna. You see the wire
headed off to the left -- this wire runs out to my workshop/shed where it makes
a 90-deg turn and goes to my garage where it ends. The black box under the
eave of the house is the matching balun. Coming down from the balun is the
coaxial feed cable that runs into the station. Below is a better view of
the balun and feed line. Also, running alongside the coaxial cable feed
line is a piece of #6 copper wire that goes to a ground system to provide an
electrical and RF ground for the antenna.
AS OF LATE JANUARY 2020 I AM RECONSTRUCTING
MY AMATEUR RADIO PAGES.
This section will include links to specific pieces of equipment I use or have
used along with an occasional technical tip. Please bookmark this page and
come back from time to time to check on my progress.
My Low-Power Morse Code rigs -- QRP Radio
Operating with simple low-power radios is challenging. Most of my
operation is low power (5 watts or less) This page describes my low-power
An Old Vibroplex Semi-Automatic Telegraph Key --