I’ve had a lifelong interest in ham radio, but it wasn’t until November 1997 that I decided to sit for my Technician license. I was in the Army and stationed at Fort Hood, Texas, when I decided to study to get my license. After earning the system-assigned callsign KD5COL, I really didn’t do too much with my license until 2008 when I decided to upgrade to my General license.
I then got on the air occasionally until I moved to Tennessee in January 2009. I was able to get a proper shack set up and built my first real antenna, a G5RV Junior. That little antenna served me very well. I had a new ICOM IC-718 but had to sell it. I later bought an ICOM IC-735 and an ICOM IC-706MKII. I’ve traded off the IC-735 but still have the 706. I bought a Yaesu FT-450D but after a while, the constant menu navigation to do anything got old, so I traded it off for a good used IC-718.
I upgraded to Extra Class in June 2019.
I enjoy working SSB on 12 through 80 meters currently. I chase DX and sometimes I am DX depending on my mood. I am a paper chaser (receiving QSL cards and certificates) and a good ragchew is always enjoyable. I am an avid shortwave listener when I am not actively on the air. I do like to participate in a contest occasionally. I like Field Day, 13 Colonies, ARRL November Sweepstakes, and CQ WW DX.
I’d like to learn CW one of these days. I am interested in the digital modes, especially Feld Hell, Olivia, RTTY, and PSK31. I use a Signalink connected to my IC-718 and fldigi for operating.
I really like providing public communications, such as races, parades, and the like. I’m a member of The American Legion, The American Legion Amateur Radio Club (TALARC), and the Feld Hell Club (#6163). I am a certified weather spotter for the National Weather Service in the SKYWARN program.
Occasionally, I like to pack up my 706 and head out into the Appalachian Mountains to operate when I get a chance. Out here, there’s plenty of places to operate and to be in peace.
I enjoy building my own antennas, mainly wire ones, and experimenting with them.
I use N3FJP’s Amateur Contact Log as my main logging program. I have his entire suite of ham radio programs registered.
Besides ham radio, I enjoy computer programming, running my bulletin board system (BBS), cooking, baking, reading, hiking, “shadetree” mechanics, listening to music, and going for drives out in the woods with my four-wheel-drive SUV.
My cat, Felix, occasionally will grant me permission to stay on the radio for long periods of time as long I promise to keep his food and water bowls full.