I was about 13 years old (1967) I built my first radio on a wooden kitchen
board to listen local BC-stations. Short time later I visited a friend. He
had an all band shortwave radio. I heard amateur radio for the first time
and was fascinated instantaneously. To talk with people around the world offers
a part of friedom and friendship with countries far away from my little world.
Receiving QSL-cards and the technic to handle a long distance talk was a great
challenge for me.
I bought one of the very rare books about ham radio with easy discription about the hobby and a simple circuit diagram for an amateur radio receiver. It was a so called 0V2 audion receiver with a big transformer, tubes and changeable coils winded on different russian tube sockets for each band. It was a real hand made top receiver I built and I got familiar with propagations, abbrivations and QSO technics. I passed the test for a SWL-number to send and receive QSL cards and the cards came in from all over the world.
Few years later in 1979 I passed the test for the highest german licence class and got the call DF7DQ. My first rig was a Kenwood TS130S with a groundplane antenna. Fortunately I have broken into a big sunspot activity and worked lots of rare countries on 15 and 10 meters for my DXCC award.
First I run SSB only, but later discovered the CW parts on the bands to keep in touch with CW. This was a big advantage when I spent 6 month in Reno/Nevada during my study.
There was a great new challenge to go home with an US call sign. I learned and learned and few days before I left Reno for Germany in February 1986 I took and passed the test for the highest US Extra class. This was the first time in Reno that somebody came in with zero and left with Extra. My special thanks for the help goes to SNARS (Sierra Nevada Amateur Radio Society) and to Gerhard (KY7V, now silent key) in Silver Springs/NV. I was already back to Germany when I received the license paper with the callsign NT7D.
I was using the TS130S for a very long time without any filter or without any 7 element beam. Just using two delta lazy loops in a basin-shaped valley helped me to go on air. And, o wonder, even DX was very often in my log. I discovered RTTY and SSTV with computers help. Even some RS12 QSOs are to find in my log.
Now, I'am living in sunny Spain with my family. Bought a modern radio TS2000 and still using a vertical.
Hope to hear you on the