Monthly Archives: December 2009

Great Children’s Books

Awhile ago I was asked by some friends about children’s books and I prepared the following list.  I’m posting it here with some edits for form in the event that it is useful to others.  It’s organized by author in no particular order.

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Two quotes from two of my favorite people:

“We are the best informed people on earth as to the events of the last 24 hours; we are not the best informed as to the events of the last 60 centuries.” – Will Durant


“News is old things happening to new people.” – Malcolm Muggeridge

Which when combined may well mean that one should shoot their TV and pick up a book such as:

The History of the Ancient World: From the Earliest Accounts to the Fall of Rome

The Landmark Thucydides: A Comprehensive Guide to the Peloponnesian War

The Landmark Herodotus: The Histories

The recently published The Landmark Xenophon’s Hellenika

Or coming in February 2010, The History of the Medieval World: From the Conversion of Constantine to the First Crusade.

I have all but the last two.  All are great reading and give you a healthy perspective on daily events.  Guess what, man hasn’t changed.  Only the names are different.


Here’s a picture of the new Porta-Paddle that I recently completed building:


and the article that I wrote about it in my radio club’s newsletter.

Hamfest w\W9SIZ

Here’s a picture of Dominic and I at a Hamfest with Uncle Paul (W9SIZ) and our friend Bill Howe (KA9WRL).



Here are two photos of Uncle Paul (W9SIZ) and my son Dominic (W9KKX).  Upon passing his licensing exam I was able to get Uncle Bob’s call for Dominic.

W9SIZ and W9KKX at W9SIZ's station

W9SIZ and W9KKX at our test bench

Current station evolution

Here’s a set of pictures of the evolution of my current station:

KA9EAK – New station – October 2005

The picture above was my new station in October 2005 with the used ICOM IC-718 that I picked up at a local hamfest and a Kenwood TR-9000 that I got off of eBay.  (Also an AEA MorseMatic from eBay as well.)

KA9EAK – third station version – December 2007

Above is my station in about December 2007 with my new Kenwood TS-830S station assembled through multiple transactions on eBay.  This was my dream station as a kid.


W9SIZ and W9KKX sometime in the early 80’s

Here are two photos of my Uncles Bob (W9KKX/SK) and Paul (W9SIZ) at Uncle Bob’s station in North Carolina.

Uncle Bob and Uncle Paul

Uncle Paul and Uncle Bob

Note the Kenwood TS-520 station with external VFO and speaker.  Uncle Bob’s station was my first exposure to the Kenwood hybrids and it left a lasting impression.   Also note the IBM PC.  Uncle Bob loved to operate RTTY and ASCII.  At his station in Milwaukee he had an old Model 15 teletype machine that he used in the pre-PC days to operate RTTY.  He also had a Commodore Pet that he used for ASCII.

For you RTTY fans out there here’s an interesting site on RTTY with “Real Machines.”

W9SIZ and W9KKX sometime in the early 50’s

Here are two photos of my uncles Bob (W9KKX/SK) and Paul (W9SIZ) operating Uncle Bob’s station in Milwaukee.

Uncle Bob operating phone

Uncle Paul operating CW

Uncle Bob mobile station

Here is a picture that I recently obtained of my Uncle Bob (W9KKX/SK) on a trip to the East coast sometime in the late 40’s/early 50’s.  He took the trip with my Uncle Paul (W9SIZ) and their spouses (my aunts.)  They both had radios in their cars and operated mobile on the trip.  My understanding is that the radios were homebrewed.

Uncle Bob's mobile station

First Station

I recently came across a photo of my first Amateur Radio station.  (This was obviously taken in the pre-digital camera era.)  My guess is that this picture was taken in the Fall of 1979.

First Station

At that time my station consisted of the following:

On the top shelf from the left:  Halicrafters S-20R

On the next shelf from the left: Kenwood TR-2200A and its Radio Shack power supply, rotator control for a CDE Ham IV rotator (which rotated a KLM 13 element long boom 2m antenna), a Kenwood TR-7600 and matching power supply.

On the desk: Swan 350 with matching power supply, Heathkit HD-1416 Code Oscillator (wired into the Swan), Heathkit SA-2040 Antenna Tuner.