In some ways, 1966 seems like a week ago! I vividly recall a sunny Sunday afternoon out on Long Island at a schoolmate’s house, as I prepared myself for what would be my very first QSO. I had not yet assembled a station of my own, but Donny had a pretty nice one, so I was slowly tuning his receiver on the 40 Meter Novice Band. I had a handful of crystals that would establish my transmit frequency, as transmitter VFO’s were not allowed to be used by Novice Class operators.
I had slowly called CQ and before long, I received a response from a fellow in Paducah, KY. I had an instant case of ‘key fright’, and, armed with a Boy Scout Morse Code guide, used it to decipher letters that I was unsure of. It was a very intense few minutes as we traded the needed information for a complete QSO. The memory of that on-air encounter was worth every awkward second, and destined to be high on my list of firsts…..READ FULL ARTICLE