Ray Colbert, W5XE
(formerly KN4LNE, 1956)
I started in the early 50's as a SWL and in 1954 my folks got me a Hallicrafters S85 receiver which was a dream after using a table model RCA broadcast radio with a mystery third knob. When I had that 3rd knob turned, the fascinating world of shortwave and hams came blasting thru. I could hear the code but unable to copy as there
was no BFO. The S85 resolved that. One of the people I met in 1955 lived nearby and was a ham W4ENC - Elmer Beck. Elmer loaned me a oscillator-buzzer to practice and in March 1956 along with Dan Smith (now K4JJF) took our Novice tests. I had studied the theory and thought the code but did not allow for nerves. Dan Passed and I didn't. Went back to Elmer after the 30 days and took the test again. Passed but the wait was enormous - some 20 weeks til the paper with KN4LNE appeared.
By that time, I had a WRL Globe Chief 90 to go with the receiver and a host of crystals (most I still have) for 80, 40 and 15 meters. This was 1956. In February 1957, I took my Conditional test and was soon on the fone bands - mostly 75 meters. I attribute my start in amateur radio to a career in government communications as a cw radio op in the Air Force and later with the FBI.
After entering on duty with the FBI and the engineers indicated having a ham license was a big help, my duty station was Albuquerque NM and when the FCC visited in March 1968, I took the General, Advanced, Extra (had to take all since I only had a conditional) 3rd and 2nd Radiotelegraph all at one sitting. Made for a very long day. Over the years, I operated from Shemya Alaska as KL7FBI, Germany as DL4MQ and DJ0MQ, Albuquerque as W5QYK, Los Angeles as W6NJP, El Paso Tx again as W5QYK, and when eligible in 1977 applied for and received my present call W5XE.
Thanks for making the site available.
"Politicians are like nappies. Both should be changed regularly -- and for the same reason"
former cw op kki73, kkj67, kmi66, kmi66a, kge22
Ray Colbert, W5XE, OOTC#3618, SOWP#1064M GQRP 6115
ARCI-5784 fp #111 NCT2R El Paso, (FAR WEST) TEXAS