The 2020 shack was quite basic, really.  In 2021 I’ve added a Gemini DX 1200 amplifier and now using an EFHW for 80m up.  I still have a huge amount of stuff in storage.

In September 2020 I set up the station to one side of my office work area: a Sun SDRPro2 transceiver, an old amplifier and an LDG 600 autotuner with a doublet antenna.

Now an end-fed half wave an/tenna – about 39m of wire – is giving much better results.

I also now have an Icom IC-705.

The transceiver in everyday use is now a Flex Radio 6400

G5VZ - November 2020
G5VZ – Station in November 2020

FOC Logo
On 1. July 2022 I became FOC member 2191.  I was nominated by the club’s President, Pete, G0PNM and following six months on the list of nominees, I was notified at the start of July.

FOC is, I guess, much misunderstood.  It started out as a very British group just before the outbreak of World War II.

Illuminated G5VZ sign
In the immediate post-war years the club began a new chapter in its life, supported by Short Wave Magazine and its editor, Austin Forsyth, G6FO.  The club’s name changed from First Class Operators Club to First Class CW Operators Club – still retaining the acronym, FOC – and it opened to international membership.  The Club’s motto is taken from a quote dated 1755, of Samuel Johnson: “A man should keep his friendship in constant repair” 

Its aims are to promote good CW operating, activity on the air, friendship and also socialising through its worldwide membership of approximately 500.  Members are active on all HF bands. 

The character of FOC is prbably best expressed in its motto.  Its members also adhere to a code of conduct which itself promotes using the amateur bands, enjoying the hobby of amamteur radio and combiningthe traditions and standards of amateur radio with the opportunities of the twentyfirst century.

Logo of DX code of conduct
DX Code of conduct

I support the

DX Code of Conduct

visit www.dx-code.org

I am a great fan of Palm Radio keys.  It’s such a shame that they are no longer being made.  The Palm Single is a real favourite!  The tiny Pico keys are great, too.
Palm Single and keyer
Palm Single side-swiper, here alongside an MX‑K2 CW Keyer



J38 key
J38 straight key mounted on an oak base
However, on Christmas Eve this white box appeared on my desk…
Packaging of Begali Sculpture Mono Key As it was, I was unable to wait until Christmas morning and opened it then and there.
It took no time at all to adjust the settings and, just to be on the safe side, put a Material 31 ferrite on the lead.

I then enjoyed a very comfortable QSO on 80m with G4LHI, using the key on the air for the first time.

Both Sun SDR2 Pro and IC-705 are so good with the Gemini amplifier which has the 10W drive option.

The Palm Single is taking a well-earned rest just now!

In March 2021 Duncan, G3WZD nominated me for membership of CWops and I am now proud to be CWops member 2877.

Logo of CWops

Sculpture in use with IC-705
Begali Sculpture key and IC-705 transceiver
A history of my QSL cards is here
 I’ve scanned QSL cards received and these can be viewed here