Amateur Radio Station KM4BA

 I've been a radio operator since 1977, and have enjoyed many aspects of the hobby.


Station Gear:

PRC-104 Military HF Manpack

The PRC-104 is a fun radio to do portable & pedestrian mobile with. While not as light as the VX-1210, it's very usable. RF characteristics are great, and and integrated autotuner works well with whips or long wires.

You won't find a more rugged radio. This Hughes design was made to last. More info on the link above.

Kenwood TS-950SDX HF Base

This Kenwood is my primary base station. While there are newer rigs available, I'm not sure I've operated one which has a better receiver. Likewise, I regularly get unsolicited "nice audio" reports in QSO's. I now use it with a Shure 550L. but the stock MC-60 also works well.

In recent years, this radio has developed a very strong following, and having used it for a while, understand why. More info on the review page

Vertex VX-1210 HF Manpack

This radio is a new favorite. It's pretty much optimal for pedestrian mobile HFPack type operation.

More info on my HF Portable page

Yaesu FT-857D HF/VHF/UHF Mobile

My mobile station probably gets more use than any of my gear. The FT-857D and it's portable twin, the FT-897D are excellent all purpose rigs, covering HF, 6m, 2m, and 70cm, plus full coverage Receive. An SG-237 autotuner mounted in the bed of my pickup allows all band instant QSY even with modes like ALE.

It's also a useful radio for HF Portable oeprations

JRC JSB-20 HF Portable

I've had more fun with this little 10w SSB portable than I can remember. It get's packed when nothing else does, and has served well on 40m, 60m, and 75m.

My JSB's were used by a treasure hunting company on the west coast of Florida in the early 80's. I bought 2 JSB's, antenna's, mobile & base power supplies, xtals, and manuals at the Orlando hamfest for probably too much money. But I've never regretted it, and have purchased another since.

While not super selective, it's very usable. Put it on a dipole, and most could not tell you are low power. The format is just handy, and it get's setup when working outside, etc.

Alda 103

Alda 103 HF Mobile/Base

This radio was one of the first compact transistorized HF Mobiles. It was a competitor to the Atlas 210, and many consider it to be a slightly better radio from an RF perspective. The 103 had 80/40/20m capability, with the 105 having the traditional 5 bands.

More info on the review page

It was my first HF rig, and I used it mobile & fixed. I still have it, should get it on the air some! 

Dentron MLX "Mini" 75m Mobile

This neat little 25w SSB rig never quite made it to the market. It's story is well documented by Bill K5DBZ at the qrp-l archives. Kaitie's Mizuhu radio page also has lot's of info on this radio and related gear.

The short version is Dentron designed this radio around a 9 mhz SSB module. From an RF perspective, it has a very usable receiver and crisp transmit audio. Very low power drain with the LED's and lights turned off.

My MLX-MINI is the 75m version, and was bought at Dayton from the individual trying to make a go at Dentron's remaining stock. I've played with a 20m version, and would love to have one on 20m. Before the days of FT-857's this was a hot setup!

More info on the review page

Up HF Portable JRC JSB-20