Member Spotlight – Lex Bolkesteijn
QTH: Almelo, Netherlands JO32hi
When were you first licensed? I passed my Novice exam on 6 March, 2013 and became PD2LB. Because I wanted to experiment on more bands I took the Full exam on 6 November, 2013, passed and became PH2LB.
How did you become interested in radio? From when I was young I liked to listen to shortwave broadcasts on a old multi band shortwave receiver and especially the amateur radio transmissions. At the age of 14 I came in contact with CB radios through a few kids in my school class but due to puberty, new interests (girls and computers) got greater priority.
At age 16 I met OM Johan (PD0GFR later DO1GRF) who also shared my interest in computers and in the years to come he became one of my best friends. Sometimes we made QSO’s in his shack but most of the time we worked on computer projects. We lost track of each-other after he had moved to Germany (the change of address card had gone lost in the mail) but early 2008 we met again on a fair and made a few visits to each-other. But due to work and family obligations from both sides the contacts got lost again. Late 2009 I had found out that he lost his battle against illness and Johan went SK in mid 2009.
In 2012 I needed a new challenge to get me through the autumn and winter and decided to start learning for my amateur radio Novice license. To support the training and getting more acquainted with amateur radio communication, I also picked-up an old hobby of mine : shortwave listening.
Favorite radio activities and locations: Due to the high level of QRM in my QTH (default aprx S7) and my work as a software developer (all day indoor and sitting), I like to walk or ride my bike to get out in the field. One of my favorite locations is PAFF-0016 Sallandse Heuvelrug and a large field nearby my QTH. That field has lots of trees to hang wire antenna’s in it, but also clear areas to setup a vertical mast.
Future hobby plans or goals: Learn CW, build more QRP stuff like my ILER20MK2 and experiment with different kind of antenna’s. XYL likes space stuff so after our first contact with AO-73 we have plans to make a portable hamradio satellite antenna setup (2m/70cm) and a fixed one for our home.
Member of any radio organizations or clubs: VERON and Field Radio, but hope to add this year SOTA and WWFF to it.
Describe some of your favorite field radio experiences: I have many, but one of the best was on second Christmas day 2014.
My XYL and I did a field walk and on our favorite spot PAFF-0016 Sallandse Heuvelrug (JO32fi 52.3529 – 6.4334) we made a stop to drink our coffee without any intention to work DX, but just to listen, I setup my FT817nd with the original portable 6m/2m/70cm (matched with a LDG Z817) for listening. A few other hikers gathered and started to ask questions. After some listening I decided to give it a try to answer a CQ and put 2.5W SSB in it on 10m. To our surprise, Alex RW3RN the CQ caller, came back with a report of 55.
After our QSO I explained to the other hikers what I had achieved and we made a few other QSO’s.
That days best : Alex RW3RN (2032km), Aris SV3FUP (1954km) and Makl UR5MKB (1772km). So a nice km/watt.
Transceivers and antennas:
For fieldradio I use:
- ILER20 MK2 QRP transceiver (kit by EA3GCY)
- Yaesu FT-897D
- Yaesu FT-817 with LDG Z817
- Yaesu FT-60e
- Fuchs Antenna – based on “The Multibandfuchs by DL7AQT, Frank”
- 2m/70cm coax antenna
- Lightweight PVC tube 2m 4 element / 70cm 8 elment X Yagi
- Glassfiber 12.5 mtr telescope
- End-fed longwire box (homemade) with 10/15/20/40mtr end-fed longwire and 10, 12, 15, 17 mtr monoband end-fed wires.
- Dipole box with with 2 – 25m metal measuring tape roles.
Modes: In the field SSB but training on CW.
Other Information: I like to build a lot of things myself and write articles about that.