Michael J. 'Mike' Mello
QCWA # 36300
Buenos Dias from Eddy County (oilfield country) in the Land of Enchantment
Thanks for looking me up. I was first licensed in 1980 as N0BWK, courtesy of the Denver Field Office of the FCC, and upgraded to Extra that same year. The Air Force offered me a teaching gig at the PMEL technical school at Lowry AFB, so 20WPM CW was the only challenge. When the AF sent me to Williams AFB in AZ in 1983, I applied for a sequential call change, and was KQ7E through various assignments until 1996, when I was granted N5MJ (initial issue, the "N" 1x2 series calls hadn't been sequentially issued) as a vanity call. QCWA #36300, I joined that group 7 years late.
Favorite ham activities: Geratol WAS net on 3.668 (#2124, Director #765; also #2661), 10-10 (#67526), 3905 Century Club (#2270), occasional mobile HF operation like MARAC, some CW operating including SKCC (#11469), building/repairing radios and repeater systems, and homebrewing wire antennas. I am a life member of the NRA and ARRL, and have been an ARRL VE since 1985. Other ARRL station appointments include Technical Specialist and Official Emergency Station. The radio shop includes an IFR 1500 service monitor and other implements used in the radio repair trade.
Fixed station rig is a Kenwood TS-590S feeding a Carolina Windom 80 at 40', MOL, or an inverted-V hung from 35' that can handle the AL-80B output on 80m. Spare rig is a mint IC-735 that was used to work 75m WAS. I will be rebuilding and raising an ancient TH7DX tribander that used to belong to Glenn Swan, W4GL(SK) for many years.
Mobile HF station is a Yaesu FT-857D or Icom IC-7100 driving a Little Tarheel 2 antenna or a classic Webster Bandspanner. Other VHF/UHF are several (4, at last count) IC-208H in various vehicles, a TM-271, TM-281, FT-7100, FT-2600, an IC-2820 for rate DSTAR use, and a Kenwood TK-730 for public service. Lots of HTs, an IC-02AT, FT411E, 2 ea IC-32AT, FT-41R, IV-V8, IC-F3, F-50, 2 ea IC-T90A... but my favorite go-to is the venerable Yaesu FT-60R. I can't seem to part with any of them. I might be an HT hoarder.
USAF MARS (AFB6NI) inactive, but the license doesn't expire. ex-US Army MARS AA4VLY. Was a volunteer operator at AGA8OS, Osan Air Base, Korea from 1984-1985. Made tons of phone patches. Heard way too much personal matters. Some things you can't unhear. We didn't have cell phones, internet, or Skype back then, but as long as both parties could say "Over!" to listen, free phone patching worked fine compared to $3 a minute overseas long distance.
Careers: Retired USAF Precision Measurement Equipment Laboratory (PMEL) technician to superintendent from 1979-1999. Now with FAA Technical Operations at the Carlsbad, NM RSSWC, maintaining ground to air communications systems, navigational aids, instrument landing systems and other things that guide aircraft pilots transiting through SE NM and west TX. I've worked as a low observables radar measurement technician on White Sands Missile Range, and spent a couple years in Afghanistan as a US Army contractor working on MRAP-mounted Counter-IED Gyrocam systems.
I'm a volunteer firefighter/EMT-I with Otis Fire Rescue, a life member of ARRL and NRA, a Legionnaire, a member of the Patriot Guard Riders, and obtain therapy riding New Mexico byways on a 2012 H-D FLD. Hope to work you on the bands soon.
November 10, 2014