10th Anniversary Giveaway!

On April 30th, it will be ten years since the "W2LJ - QRP - Do More With Less" blog was born.

In appreciation for all who read this blog, I am going to give something away to one lucky reader. I have a new, mint condition, unused, complete sheet of fifty United States Amateur Radio stamps, issued in 1964 on the 50th Anniversary of the ARRL - Scott #1260. I am going to have the sheet matted and framed - ready for display on some deserving shack wall. All I ask is that you send an e-mail to w2lj@arrl.net - entitled "Blog Anniversary Giveaway". Include your name, call sign and mailing address.

Any Amateur Radio op worldwide can enter. I will package and ship the framed stamps to any destination that the United States Post Office will accept.

The names and call signs will be loaded into a software program such as RandomPicker on April 30th and a winner will be determined. The winner will be announced here, and then the framed stamps will be posted.

Good luck, and thank you for reading!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Seller's regret

I guess there's SOMETHING, in every Ham's career, that he regrets parting with. In my case it was my venerable Heathkit HW-8. I sold that little rig probably about 15 years or so ago; and I still regret it to this day.

It was the mid 90s; and we were running another one of our Piscataway Amateur Radio Club annual auctions. We needed material and I had just recently figured out how to get my Icom IC-730 to go down as low as the 100 milliWatt level. So who needed that HW-8 at that point? I had a first class QRP rig for all intent and purpose; with a receiver section that literally blew the HW-8 out of the water. Foolishly, I brought it to the auction and got some ridiculously low price for it.

In my case, the regret wasn't immediate. It probably really started in earnest when the HW-8 started earning cult-like popularity. I had built it myself; and I still get nostalgic for it. I fondly remember regularly working Europe with its 2 Watts into a homebrew magnetic loop antenna that I had built from an article that I had read in 73 magazine. It was small, portable and light. I was able to keep it on the nightstand by my bed; and whenever I got a hankering to operate (or couldn't sleep) my HW-8 was turned on and I was working the world (back in the days when there WERE actually sunspots!).

Was it the best radio I have ever had? Not by a longshot. But I had built it; and didn't realize the connection I had with it until after it was gone. Maybe that's the "kitbuilder's / homebrewer's bane", in that we tend to consider our efforts more like kids than radios. They do become hard to part with; or maybe it's just that I'm an old sentimental sap. Probably that's it!

It's nice to see that these little gems still garner a nice price on eBay. Around $150.00 (plus or minus) will get you one. I would never bid on one, though; but I sure would like to have MINE back!

73 de Larry W2LJ

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

I had the HW-9 and let me tell you I really, really miss not having it around today.