I got interested in Amateur Radio as a teenager through a friend of the family. I was fascinated how you could speak to other people in different countries and started studying for the RAE.
Problem is as a 12-year-old, it was a bit difficult to understand Thevenin’s theory and Kirchhoff’s laws, so it scared me off.
This did not totally dissuade me, and I started buying Maplin kits and designing little electronics projects. It was the main reason I did GCSE electronics.
Growing up I read Physics at university (where I was involved in engineering three RSL FM broadcasts with the Student Radio Station) and spent time as a Sound Engineer, before moving onto my current work in Scientific instrumentation. It was at this point that I realised I could do the science now…
However, it wasn’t for a long time that I decided to rekindle my interest in the Hobby.
I brought a cheap Chinese radio in 2022 and after listening a lot, I decided to study for the foundation exam and passed it remotely, becoming M7FTC in August of 2022 and the day I received my licence I was on the air. In November of 2022 I passed my intermediate licence becoming 2E0SUG.
I intend to continue studying and take my full license towards the end of the year.
With no HF radio at the start, I got interested in APRS and started some projects using LORA technology. I also improved my home setup to make the best of my cheap handheld.
As I have telephone cables at the back of my home, I took some advice from club members and bought my first HF radio in late December 2022, with a Rybakov 806 setup as a compromise in the eaves of my home.
I am currently a member of: –
The Radio Society of Great Britain (RSGB),
Stockport Radio Society.
I made my first HF QSO with a F5FCH on 11 December 2022. With hideous QRN making SSB challenging, my furthest phone contact at the time was in Bulgaria.
I took an interest in digital operations and quickly started working states outside Europe initially North, then South America and as I continued to improve my home station, I started making QSO’s into Asia and Africa. I finally made an Australian contact in March, giving me contacts on all continents. In a relatively short time since then, I have attained my CQ WPX mixed and digital awards, both with Europe endorsements. I achieved DXCC in mixed and digital in July 2023.
I fitted a 6m Halo antenna in June and have had some success on the magic band. I took part in the IOTA 2023 contest, mostly to teach me about the failings of my home station to improve it. As such, I am about to start experimenting with Ham-stick antennas, to see if I can boost performance, whilst still having the limitations with the setup at my QTH.
My Future plans
I plan on continuing my HF experimentation, to see if I can make more SSB QSO’s outside of Europe and further digital contacts to more elusive areas in the Pacific.
I also have an Arrow II 2/70 Yagi so that I can work stations via Satellite.
Once I manage to attain the full licence, I intend to invest in some portable HF equipment, so that I can exploit the CEPT licence for potential DXpeditions.
I wouldn’t have made the advances I have without the support of Stockport Radio Society, and I’ve already given knowledge back through presentations and involvement in the club’s knowledge-based activities.
In October 2023 Stephen was nominated for this prestigious award based upon his exploits in the world of DX which he has described above and we here at SRS were very pleased to learn of Stephen’s success especially as Ian M0RNH had secured the award just 12 months earlier. Stephen is pictured above receiving the award from RSGB President John McCullagh MBE, GI4BWM.
Stephen is pictured above with fellow SRS members (left) Roy Anstee G6RSU holding the Bristol Trophy and Ian Justice M0RNH (right) the 2022 winner of the G5RP Award.