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VA3JOOriginally VE2FSS in 1978, my road to "Ham" Radio came from several years of Short Wave Listening. I began in 1972 with a Nordmende Globetraveler Pro receiver, and from that I became an avid Medium Wave DXer*, and following which became an amateur operator in 1978. My first station consisted of a National NC-155, about a mid 1960's model receiver, and a homebrew 20 watt solid-state transmitter for 20 meter CW. It was after that I had several years of fun with tubes (valves!) starting with a 40 watt homebrew on 40 meters (6K6 oscillator/pre-amp into a single 807 amplifier, and an inductive coupler for a 75Ω output). Then came an upgrade, this time on 80M, and also using a 6K6 front end, followed by 2 parallel 807s for an 80W output. I briefly used a Heathkit DX-60, and followed that with a DX-100. Finally I bit the bullet in 1983 and bought my dream Drake TR5 transceiver, which I still use today. I would have liked to have bought a TR3, but as usual, money the the issue! At the same time I obtained my advanced class license, and in 1993 I got the 2 X 2 call sign VA3JO.

My station photo, as seen at the top left corner of the home page VA3JO (circa 1983) consists of the TR-5 and a paddle key into a homemade electronic keyer, my computer with a program reading CW, and in the background, a Heathkit Monitor Scope. The computer then was the Commodore 64! In fact I didn't own any other computer until 1991. For a slightly larger view go to see a Slightly larger station photo

If you have good eyes or a magnigying glass, you'll see a little bit of 1920's history. I have 2 old AM radios, one is a 1924 Amerex Ace. The other was a kit, with a beatiful box and a bakelite front end, with all controls. They both use the '01A tubes as detectors and amplifiers. The "kit" model has "3" 01A's in which the first is the detector, and each of the other two act as amplifiers for the two extra listeners :)