I recently received an offer to remove a tower/antenna system and a collection of amateur radio gear from a ham in my old hometown of Indianapolis. Actually, he’s the father of a high school classmate of mine and his wife is a former co-worker of my mom. Mark N9EKG and his wife Susie got in touch with my mom to see if I was interested. This was an offer too good to refuse for a cheapo like me. Sometimes telling everyone you’re a ham can pay off. I did a little Google Map recon and determined that it was a little more than I might want to tackle alone. So, I enlisted the help of Nick N9SJA and also my trusty Old Man. There was a narrow window of opportunity to pull all this off so we hit it hard and managed to knock it all out in one long day.
Originally, I’d hoped to save the tower but it was not in very good shape. At least it was safe enough to climb on. It did have a nice tribander on it and a Cushcraft R7 vertical. The beam will need a little refurbishing but the vertical looks great. I think it might be fun to try it out and see how it compares to my hexbeam. It might be nice to have a multi-band omnidirectional antenna for listening and the switch to the beam if there’s a station I want to work. We were actually able to dig a little around the base and pull the whole thing down while pulling the concrete base out. My Old Man working the saws-all made short work of the tower and it can now be scrapped out.
After lunch we headed to the attic. There were boxes full of treasures and some of the older radio gear. This had been the original station while the kids were growing up. He build a custom bench with many electrical outlets and a panel to fish the wires through. He’d even had an air conditioner up there to keep it comfortable. Unfortunately, that A/C was long gone. We put some real sweat equity into retrieving that gear and hauling it down the spiral staircase. Especially the Viking Valiant transmitter!
When the kids got older he was able to move his operation into a spare room on the main floor. I bet that was a welcome treat! He had a nice Kenwood TS-450 and TS-930 down there. There was also an Amp Supply LK-500NT no tune amp. This must’ve been a nice little station as he was able to work over 300 dxcc entities operating cw and phone.
It was a lot of work, but we still had fun. I always enjoy visiting with another ham. Thanks go out to Nick and my dad. I also have to thank our hosts Mark N9EKG and Susie for their generosity and hospitality. They provided some tasty sandwiches and chips and refreshing iced tea. I hope to get as much enjoyment from the gear as Mark did.