Welcome to my ‘portal’ for sharing and capturing the history, technologies, products, projects, anecdotes, and honoring the people who started a growth spurt in amateur radio and technology by introducing Frequency Modulation (FM) operations to the community and expanding capabilities, coverage and support around the world.
As much as Marconi, Edison, Bell, Faraday, Voltaire, Tesla, Hertz et al have contributed to the existence and evolution of radio technology, there are equal and greater contributors to the growth, success and positive effects of ham radio – spark gap, CW, AM, SSB, FM, ‘digital’, digital and more.
First, foremost and only I want to chronicle solutions, successes, growth, benefits, contributions specific to FM, repeaters and subsequent new FM and FM-/repeater-related technologies and systems. The core of this hobby aside from the human spirit is based on technology – science, physics, bounded and proven principles, cause and effect. We won’t argue the merits of CW, SSB, AM or whether ham radio should or should not be used for CERT, Red Cross, family events, etc.
There are a few things I want to collect information about, to be sorted and arranged to create a time and story line about the FM evolution in ham radio – statistics, details and lessons-learned:
- Who – the people who introduced and implemented new and novel FM systems, our mentors, our students
- What – the equipment used, from early Motorola and GE to Kaar to Yaesu, including radios, duplexers, control systems, antennas, creative power schemes – wind, solar…
- Where – the first FM systems went on the air – region, city, state, hilltop or rooftop
- When – date project started, date system in the air, other notable occassions
- Why – experimentation? public service need? to fill a void in communications services?
- Pictures – I want rig pics, antenna party picks, controller building pics, equipment racks then and now, novel mobile installs, novel repeater site installs (yes, there are a few in working refrigerators chained to trees on remote hilltops!), how-to, how-NOT-to
- Anecdotes – whether it is a story about mosquitoes, rodents, reptiles, humans, lightning, snow, rain, earthquake, flood, burgers and fries, coffee, 807s (beer)… whatever has made the hobby fun, essential, uniquely valuable, teachable and learn-able moments.
I do ask that you enroll, sign up, register and otherwise make yourself known to credit your contribution and follow-up with any questions.
Please, feel free to contribute, interact, share, question and help document and memorialize the past 50 or so years of amateur radio.
Thank you in advance for your contributions.
73, de Jim, NO1PC