Posts Tagged ‘books’

Not so "oldies".

Thanks again to Mike KD5KC for posting these on QRP-L.

You may remember a few years ago (I think it was just a few years ago - maybe 10 years?, or maybe I'm having a "senior moment"?) Icom released a series of comics entitled "The Adventures of Zack and Max".  These were anime style comic books intended (I guess) to get the youngsters curious about Amateur Radio.

Max was a strange little pig companion to Zack - a boy and his pig - go figure.


Anyway, here are their links - both as comic books or as coloring books. If you have any kids or grandkids who are curious about what it is that you do - these may be helpful to explain it to them in a more contemporary fashion.

The Adventures of Zack and Max, Vol 1-7
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v1/ComicBookV1color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v2/ComicBookV2color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v3/ComicBookV3color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v4/ComicBookV4color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v5/ComicBookV5color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v6/ComicBookV6color.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v7/ComicBookV7_Color.pdf

Accompanying coloring books of The Adventures of Zack and Max.
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v1/ComicBookV1BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v2/ComicBookV2BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v3/ComicBookV3BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v4/ComicBookV4BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v5/ComicBookV5BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v6/ComicBookV6BW.pdf
http://www.icomamerica.com/en/amateur/comic_book/Books/v7/ComicBookV7_BW.pdf

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Some more oldies, but goodies

This list was posted on QRP-L by Mike Olbrisch KD5KC - The Radio Boys series.  These books are in the same genre as The Hardy Boys or Tom Swift, but these deal with "wireless" and go back to the early 1920s when Amateur Radio was still in its infancy.


For those of you with a kindle, these can be download for FREE from Amazon.

1. The Radio Boys’ First Wireless
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B008476T3S/

2. The Radio Boys at Ocean Point
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004TSAZWM/

3. The Radio Boys at the Sending Station
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004TQF6BE/

4. The Radio Boys at Mountain Pass
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B006T5TLSM/

5. The Radio Boys Trailing a Voice
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004TRF6S6/

6. The Radio Boys on the Mexican Border
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004TIJRP8/

7. The Radio Boys on Secret Service Duty
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AQMGFB0/

8. The Radio Boys in the Thousand Islands
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00AQMZS86/

9. The Radio Boys’ Search for the Inca’s Treasure
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004Z0MNBU/

10. The Radio Boys Rescue the Lost Alaska Expedition
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0058KSAW2/

11. Radio Boys Cronies
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B00848O6YQ/

12. Radio Boys Loyalty: Bill Brown Listens In
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004TRO448/

13. The Radio Boys with the Revenue Guards
https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B004UKEU2A/

So yeah, the stories are a bit campy, perhaps and the language and slang is old - but what the heck? They're free and they're almost 100 years old!

I downloaded them all to my kindle and am enjoying them. I hope you will, too!

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!



Books

Books.  I love books.  Books and reading are a love that was passed down to me from my Mom. When my sister and I were little kids, my Mom would "treat" us with a trip to the local public library. We would bring home stacks of books to read, and I loved every minute of it. A trip to the library, or even better - the book store, was always enthusiastically welcomed.

That habit stayed with me all my life. When I first became interested in Amateur Radio as a teenager in high school, my "bible" was "The Radio Amateur's Handbook" by Collins and Hertzberg. That book was my constant companion in my teen years and I must have read it, cover to cover, at least a half dozen times. It fueled my wishful dreams of becoming a Ham Radio operator, making contacts with people from all over the world.


I still have that book, and it holds a place of High Honor on my Amateur Radio book shelf.

A few weeks ago, I came home from work to see a rather large package sticking out of my mail box. As I was bringing it into the house, I noticed it was from Schiffer Publishing.  I thought that this was kind of odd, as I hadn't ordered anything from Schiffer. After dinner, I opened the package to find a most wonderful book entitled "Compendium Of Automatic Morse Code".  I couldn't believe my eyes! The book was sent for me to look over and to offer a review.  It is a wonderful piece of work by Ed Goss N3CW.  The amount of work and detail that he put into his book is phenomenal.


Granted, this is a niche book. Not every Amateur Radio operator will gravitate towards an edition like this. If you have a love for Morse Code and for the keyers, paddles and other devices that produce it, then this book is for you.

It is exhaustive in its content and detail and everything about this book screams "quality". From its size, 9 X 11 inches, to the feel of the heavy stock of the pages, to the rich and highly detailed color photography, everything about this book says, "Coffee Table Book for Ham Radio".



The table of contents includes chapters on

Chapter 1: An Overview of Telegraphy and Early Keys - History
Chapter 2 - Code Readers, Oscillators and Morse Trainers
Chapter 3 - The Electronic Keyer
Chapter 4 - The Single-Lever Paddle (Without a doubt, my favorite chapter!)
Chapter 5 - The Dual-Lever Paddle
Chapter 6 - Portable/Miniature/QRP Paddles (My second favorite chapter!)
Chapter 7: Commemorative Paddles
Chapter 8 - Combination Key and Paddles
Chapter 9 - Convertible Paddles and Paddle Modifications
Chapter 10 - Automatic Mechanical Keys
Chapter 11 - The Elements of Paddle Design
Chapter 12 - Paddle Adjustment and Maintenance
Chapter 14 - Telegraph Machines, Keyboard Keyers and Terminals
Chapter 15 - Computer Interfacing and the Internet

And various appendices and a bibliography as well as a list of recommended reading.

Pretty exhaustive, eh?  If you're thinking,"Well really, how much is there to write about on this subject?"  I'll answer that question by saying, "Over 300 pages, as a matter of fact!"

It's not hard to tell that writing this book was a labor of love for N3CW.  It's one of the best if not THE BEST book to come down the pike on the subject.  It has earned an honored place on my book shelf, right next to my beloved Hertzberg and Collins. However, I can tell you that it doesn't stay on the shelf for long. It has been in my hands a lot and will be for a long time to come.

I would highly recommend adding the "Compendium of Automatic Morse Code" to your Amateur Radio library if you're as much as a devotee of CW operating as I am. I can see this book as a golden answer to that age old question that every Ham gets asked every now and then ....... "Honey, is there any Ham stuff that you'd like for your birthday? Or Christmas, or Hanukkah, etc, etc, etc.

Thanks to Ed N3CW and Schiffer Publishing for sending me a copy!  It was a very pleasant surprise and is appreciated more deeply than you will ever know.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Dit, dit!

NPOTA: ARRL’s Best Idea?

The National Parks on the Air (NPOTA) is off and running. Making contact with a handful of stations currently operating from NPOTA locations has made me wonder if the ARRL has had a good idea with NPOTA as a way to help celebrate the anniversary of the National Park Service.

From ARRL: “Throughout 2016, Amateur Radio will be helping the National Park Service celebrate their 100th anniversary. Hams from across the country will activate NPS units, promote the National Park Service and showcase Amateur Radio to the public.”

I am a huge fan of both the National Parks and the National Park Service. Anyone who is interested in the history of our National Parks would be well rewarded to start with the Ken Burns documentary The National Parks: America’s Best Idea. Yellowstone generally gets credit for being the first National Park back in 1872. However, the National Park Service was not established until 1916. That period in between provides us a very good reason that there are times when we need a government organization to protect us from ourselves. During that in between period, the Army was given the mission of attempting to protect both Yellowstone and Yosemite. Like most missions the Army received, they were underfunded, under equipped, and undermanned. They did, however, do the best they could to protect these amazing areas. Many Americans saw these new National Parks as areas for economic exploitation. If it wasn’t for many individuals working long and hard for the establishment of the National Park Service, it is very likely we would not be able to enjoy the parks we have today. Stephen Mather and Horace Albright were the two primary individuals who secured the establishment of the National Park Service. Ken Burns talks about these two individuals in his documentary and there are also a few books that do a great job telling the story (Creating the National Park Service: The Missing Years and The Birth of the National Park Service: The Founding Years, 1913-33).

Yosemite: President Theodore Roosevelt, left, poses with John Muir for pictures on Overhanging Rock at the top of Glacier Point, near which the men camped in a hollow and awoke to five inches of snow in 1903.

The National Parks exist for our enjoyment. Generally that enjoyment manifests itself in some type of hiking, camping, fishing, watching for wildlife, or learning about history. This interaction between Park and citizen can be passionate, emotional, revitalizing, inspirational, and an educational experience.

With all that being said, I was a bit surprised to hear stations making contacts for NPOTA locations like it was a contest. Each NPOTA location is identified by a letter-number combination. No discussion of where they actually were. No description, no discussion. It is a bit sad to see there is a Leader Board – which only facilitates looking at NPOTA as a contest rather than an actual celebration.

I also wonder how these activations are impacting those non-amateur radio enthusiasts who are visiting a NPOTA site. Is this putting amateur radio in the best light?

Are these NPOTA activations promoting the National Park Service or showcasing Amateur Radio to the public?

If so, how?

What would Stephen Mather and Horace Albright think about NPOTA?

It will be interesting to see how NPOTA progresses over the coming weeks and months.

Kay Everett Calls CQ

Vanguard Press; First Edition edition (1951)

All aboard for ADVENTURE! I purchased this book a while back and I finally dug it off the shelf. Kay Everett Calls CQ, by Amelia Lobsenz, is about a young college girl who takes a summer road trip from North Carolina out to the West with three friends, a travel trailer, and ham radio. For me, this book has several things going for it: (1) strong female protagonist (I have two daughters), (2) HF mobile (I need to get my rig installed in my new vehicle), and (3) a travel trailer trip to Yellowstone National Park, Idaho, and the Colorado Rocky Mountains. The plot centers around a jewel thief, who is also roaming the West, and Kay learning about the amateur radio hobby. Ham radio plays a critical role in several places and the author has the main characters explore several aspects of the hobby (… they even go to a hamfest).

The author, Amelia Lobsenz, was an experienced ham, licensed in 1941. After a stent in publishing, she ran her own public relations firm. She based some of the characters on her actual friends, to include Theresa Korn, K7JGU. In the story, Terry, a YL and pilot, takes two of the girls flying over Idaho (aeronautical mobile, where they end up directing smokejumpers into a wildfire). The protagonist, Kay, is named after Ms. Lobsenz’s own daughter.

Ms. Lobsenz used a 1940’s trip out West to serve as inspiration for Kay’s trip. Among the many places the girls go include:
National Elk Refuge National Wildlife Refuge
Grand Teton National Park
Yellowstone National Park
Craters of the Moon National Monument
– The Great Salt Lake in Utah
Rocky Mountain National Park

Amelia became a Silent Key in 1992, but I think her written work will live on.

The Magic Word

"FREE" !

How can you pass up something for free?

You can't.

In case you are not aware, you can pick up Bill Meara's book, "Solder Smoke" for free from Amazon.com.  The actual "in your hands" paperback book is $19.99 (from Amazon), but the kindle edition is free.


You don't need to own a kindle to read this, which is the beauty of it. The kindle app is also free, and you can load it onto any Windows PC or Android device.  Sorry, I'm not up on Apple devices, but something tells me that the kindle app is probably available for them, too.

So how can you pass this up?

You can't.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP - When you care to send the very least!

Ever been to Cornbread Road?

My favorite amateur radio blog comes from Jeff Davis, KE9V. If you have been following Jeff’s blog through the years you’ll have seen a constant evolution of his site and content. In addition to his ponderings of the current state of ham radio, Jeff has produced a number of engaging podcasts. Long Delayed Echoes was Jeff’s podcast series that covered a great deal of the early history of amateur radio. It featured selections from Clinton B. DeSoto’s 200 Meters & Down as well as other significant historical sources of ham history. In addition to his written contributions to QST (see the May 2005 issue on page 56) Jeff has also shared his talent for fiction with us. He has several other ham radio related stories that he posts now and again on his blog (… it is worth checking his blog frequently because once in a blue moon he will put links up to his stories… my favorites are QRP Christmas and Tragedy on the Trail).

Besides his blog, Jeff prodigiously uses social media and you would likely enjoy his ham radio musing that can be read via Twitter and Google +.

Jeff combined his podcast talents along with his fiction writing skills with the production of Cornbread Road. All 13 episodes of the serial are currently available and on the 30th of September, Jeff has promised us a final installment. I’m looking forward to that!


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