Brian J. 'Doc' Dowd
Johns Creek, GA
QCWA # 36494
EPC #23052, 30MDG #6817
First licensed as a "1-Land" Novice 50 years ago. (1964 - Concord, Massachusetts while in high school)
Upgraded to Advanced as WA4REF at the FCC field office in Savannah, GA in 1979. It took me four months of nightly practice to get up to that 13wpm required. But it was well worth it. While studying the code I kit-built a SB-303 Heathkit receiver and SB-401 transmitter anticipating passing the code test. It was just as well since it required driving 1+ hour from Laurel Bay, SC where I was stationed in the Navy with the Marine Corps.
After my military service was up, my wife and I moved back to the Atlanta suburbs. I ran an indoor QRP dipole from the laundry room into the dining room of our apartment. It sagged to only about 6' so we were fine. Once we scraped up enough money to buy a house I put (well, Dave Johnson, K4SSU, actually) up a 100' TH6-DXX and confirmed phone WAS and DXCC. The aviation bug hit and I got my Private, Instrument and Multi-Engine ratings, enjoying aeronautical mobile.
Sold that house in 1985 and haven't yet put up another tower. Now I'm in a CCR-constrained community and running considerably less than barefoot into attic inverted-V fan dipoles on all the HF bands. My TS-2000, 901-DM, TS-830S, FT-897 and FT-736R sit quietly next to my new toy; a FlexRadio 6700 Signature series with GPSDO.
I work some SSB but am really enjoying digital modes, especially JT65 and PSK-31 on 10-30 meters. The indoor antennas and low power don't seem to matter as much. Running SmartSDR, HRD or DXLabs under Win8.1 on my ham computer. My real enjoyment comes from programming on Linux. Running Mint 17 on my laptop, work computer and a couple of other random PC's around the shack.
I'm a member of ARRL, SEDXC, QCWA, EPC and NFARL (North Fulton Amateur Radio League).
Hope to QSO with you on the bands...
December 16, 2015