James M. 'Mike' Monger
QCWA # 36675
I guess you are viewing this biography because we probably had a CW QSO recently and you may be wanting my address to either send me an e-mail or QSL card. Or, possibly, to find out a bit more about me. So, keep on reading.
First licensed as a Novice in February of 1988 with the callsign of KC4EJT. Upgraded to Extra Class around a year later(with the 20 wpm CW requirement).
Kept my Novice call until December 17, 2004, when I had applied for and was granted the call of KT2E (under the Vanity system) . There were not many short calls available in the 4 area and I did not like the few that were. But, I found several in the 2 area that I liked. Thus, I received my first choice of the 2 area calls that I had applied for.
I had been intrigued by Amateur radio, while a child (my Dad was/is a Ham). But, never really started pursuing it, until much later in life (around 40 yrs old). I had always been fascinated by CW but it was not CW that drew me into my pursuit. It was finding out that voice privileges were now available to Novices (which was not the case when I was a child or for many years later). But, upon finding out that voice privileges were available I got a book, started studying (even though I had an electronics background), learned the code etc. And, two weeks after I got the book, learned the code etc. I took my Novice test and made 100 percent on both the written and code test. Five months later I took both the Technician and General test with 13 wpm CW test. Made 100 percent on the written test for each. And, if I recall correctly, I just missed two questions on the CW test but still had a full minute of solid copy. Two months later I took the Advanced test but I missed two questions on it. Thus, I spoiled my 100 percent record. Then, two and a half months later I took the Extra test and made 100 percent on the written exam, missed three questions on the written code (still enough to pass) but also had another minute of solid copy (so I would have made it either way). I was glad to have it all behind me.
My love for CW came about as I got on the air and conversed with different people. I found that there was something somewhat mystical about it, as you tried to cypher out what the other guy was saying and you got in tune with him. And, even if he had a poor fist, after you had worked him several times, you could get a sense of his rhythm etc and begin to get more and more of what he was saying, what kind of guy he was etc. And, all this from a bunch of dits and dahs. I began to find people who (while not good in voice communication, due to speech impediments or not talkative in voice to begin with, self conscious about talking with people via voice etc) were able to convey their very hearts and souls through the means of CW. I have felt their pain, shared their joy and bonded (if you will) with a great many of them. Who, I have stayed in touch with for years via CW, landline, letters etc) Lifelong friendships developed through "dits and dahs".
I am a FISTS member, #5086. And, currently very active chasing FISTS numbers for awards. Currently, I have the Century, Platinum and Silver awards. Which, I earned during the month of January 2005.
I am also a Chicken Fat Operator (CFO #929 under my old call of KC4EJT). And, am also a member of the Fast Operator Group (FOG #12). I am ever striving to improve my CW skills, especially QRQ CW. I can normally (depending upon the other CW operator, his rigs keying characteristics etc) copy (read)from 60 to 70 wpm.
I love building wire antennas and am ever experimenting with different ones. Currently, I use my 80 mtr loop the most. But, I also have a 10 mtr Sterba Curtain and a 40 mtr Extended Double Zepp.
Rig I use most is a Yaesu FT 847 but I have a Ten Tec Delta 2 but the Ten Tec is not good for QRQ (very surprising).
For QRQ CW I use my Heathkit CW keyboard that I built back in the early 90's. For paddle operation I use a Bencher Mercury and a GHD.
Well, that's all for now. Until I decide to revise or update this with other tidbits of information.
August 20, 2015