N4ARO - Richard A. 'Dick' Church N4ARO

Richard A. 'Dick' Church
Johnson City, TX

QCWA # 13591
Chapter 182


N4ARO is located in the far north-east corner of Tennessee in Washington County. 20 miles from NC and 20 miles from VA. Near several TVA lakes, the Appalachain mountains, and lots of beautiful green scenery.

Member ARRL, QCWA (Life) #13591, SKCC #1099 C. Past President (2010) of Johnson City Amateur Radio Assn. During 2012, I achieved 5-Band WAS and 5-Band DXCC. After 59 years of collecting zones I also qualified for the CW - WAZ award.

QSL POLICY: I love to get and promptly send QSL's. , I appreciate a SASE from US hams. Canada and Mexico please $1 for postage and a SAE. For DX, QSL by the bureau is fine or $1US and SAE. I always reply 100% and usually use the bureau for outgoing DX cards.

LOTW - Yes I use LOTW but mainly for DX contacts. If you are in USA or Canada and wish LOTW confirmation, please send an email requesting LOTW giving date or contest information, and I will by happy to upload it. I am curent with LOTW inputs back to 2005 for all DX and 160M contacts.

First licensed in July 1952 as WN4WNJ just after the novice license was initiated. Hit the airwaves on 80 M cw crystal control using a war surplus BC-454 command receiver and a homebrew 6L6 final xmtr the day the license arrived. It took me a while to figure out that my random wire end-fed antenna was acting as a dummy load on 80 meters, but it did work very well at blacking out all the TV sets, telephones and radios within a 2 mile radius. TVI complaints were so bad I built one of the first QRP transmitters using a battery powered 1T4 (tube) sealed in an aluminum box (running about 1/10 watt) which allowed me to work the local guys during TV watching time. Changing to a center fed dipole, I was able to get a signal out of the back yard on 80 Meters and most of the TVI problem was solved. Within the next six months, I upgraded to General class and dropped the "N" becoming W4WNJ. Shortly thereafter, a new 100 wt. home-built transmitter with parallel 1625's in the final, an external VFO, and a 20-meter ground plane turned me into a moderately dedicated CW DX'er. During those early years, I also worked AM phone on 160 meters (my ragchewing days).

From 1966 to 1978 after moving from TN to Los Angeles, California, I traded in my call for a 6-land call (W6IMD). During that period, I occasionally found time to operate. If you have one of those cards it is a rarity as I found lots of other diversions in the big city during that time frame.

Upon moving back to W4 land, I naively asked FCC for my old call back; they of course completely ignored the request. Upon receiving the new ticket I was surprised to learn I was now N4ARO. Receiving one of the earliest "N" prefix calls was a bit of a surprise, but with phonetics of "Amateur Radio Operator" I quickly became happy with the new call. Even after upgrading to Extra class in 1980 and after being transferred back to W6 land in 1982, this call was kept VERY active as a /6 during the 80's and 90's in Contesting especially the California QSO party, Field Day,160 meter contests, QCWA, and various other contests.

While living in California, I learned to enjoy some of the world's greatest wines. I helped start a wine tasing group in Los Angeles area that is still going strong after more than 30 years. Upon returning to Tennessee to enjoy my retirement, I joined and later took over leadership of a local wine tasting group that has grown to over 400 people on the email list. Check out our website at: http://sites.google.com/site/triwinebunch/ .

I was largely inactive as a ham from 1996 until late 2005 during a period of life adjustments, retiring and moving back to Tennessee.With the help and insistence of some local hams including Don - N4TN (now SK); I became busy hanging wires in the trees. Now I have an inverted "L" for 160/80 Meters up about 60 feet, two full wave Delta Loops (E/W and N/S) for 40M with which I also work 20,15, and 10 meters, a Multi Delta loop for the three WARC bands, a 5-Band Hexbeam up about 15 feet awaiting spring time and a small tower, and various other vertical and horizontal wires. I mostly work CW and every night that I operate is Straight Key Night as I use either an 1800's Western-Union "Pole Changer" telegraph key or the same trusty J-38 key which went on the air with the original home brew rig 59 years ago. If you use any type of mechanical key, straight or bug, check out the SKCC website, it is for you and its free.

If you can't wait to read the whole 9 yards of biographical information, see exciting pictures of xtal sets, old radios, and many other fabulous things and more words than you will want to read, go to my personal webspace and check it out. Thanks to N4TN (now SK) for making the page for me.I hope to find some help updating it with new and more exciting information and photos as I remember it. Click on the following ink: http://webpages.charter.net/ham-n4aro/index.html

73 and hope to work you on the bands. Look for me in the Tennessee QSO party the first week-end of September each year.

73 Dick

January 5, 2015