1950's and 60's Ham Radio Gear at K4NYW

1970-71 - HB 6146 6m xmtr, NC-300 w/ Ameco 6m converter, R-390A
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I got my Novice ham license KN4NYW around 1960. I built a Knight-kit SpanMaster regen receiver and a homebrew 6L6 transmitter - results were pretty pitiful! I later built a Knight R-55 receiver kit and homebrew 6 meter transmitter (6146 modulated by 6L6s). Six meters was fun! At some point I also acquired a BC-348 and Ameco 6m converter. I was active on 6 meters AM before college and afterward, but I dropped out when I went back to grad school in 1972 and discovered the intriguing world of computer graphics.

I got active again around 1990 as KD4CPL (General, Advanced, & then Extra Class)

In Jan 2009 I finally "upgraded" my call to K4NYW (which had never been issued to anyone). 

 Starting around 1990 I had great fun collecting, repairing, and operating gear I just read about and lusted after in earlier days. I was particularly interested in kit gear and at one time had one of every tube-type ham radio kit  made by Heath, Knight, Eico, Johnson, Hallicrafters, WRL/Globe, & Lafayette - See photos below. 

Here's a list of post-war tube-type ham radio kits

Here are photos of my Heathkit Apache/Mohawk era collection - one of everything
See also more vintage shack photos here

Also see my Unbuilt Kits and more Unbuilt Kits - all these are gone to new homes now.

The earliest Heathkit I have is a Transmitter Power Supply with assembly instructions dated Jan 1948.

Bob AF6C has written a lot of great articles on early Heathkit gear.

In 2007 I got REALLY interested in Navy Radio and now all of my vintage ham gear has been replaced by 1950's-60's Navy gear.  

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Station photos from around 1998-2001 - More vintage shack photos here
- All this has now gone to new owners and been replaced by Navy radio gear

This was my main vintage operating position - Desks #1 and #2
bottom row: Mohawk, NC-303, SX-101, SX-88, HQ-170, NC-300 receivers
middle row: Apache, Ranger II, Valiant II, Valiant I, DX-100B transmitters
top row: Drake 2B, SX-117, R-388A, SX-62 receivers.
speakers: Hammarlund S-200, Heath AK-5, National NTS-2, NC-300TS,
                Hallicrafters R-48A, R-46, R-46A, R-46B, Collins 270G-2

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Another view of Desks #1 and #2 with some different gear in place. Desk #3 is to the right with a Drake C-Line, Ten-Tec Omni VI and various  VHF and ATV gear.

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 Johnson Desk Kilowatt, found in a warehouse along with the Ranger and Valiant. It took about four rolls of paper towels and a gallon of Windex to clean off all the accumulated grime. 

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Here is a later photo with Johnson 500 and Matchbox added to the desk KW.


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Desk #4 with SX-115, CR-88A, HQ-170, HQ-180 and Globe Champion


This was my Hallicrafters heavy metal setup on Desk #2 - SX-88 receiver, HT-20 transmitter, & HT-18 VFO
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  More vintage shack photos here

My hamfest vehicle back then
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My Desk KW set-up is pictured in the 1998 CQ Vintage Radio Calendar posed to match the Johnson advertisement below.

And here was some of the pile in the basement awaiting its turn on the workbench.
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Some "boatanchor" info I have collected

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Burstein-Applebee - Radio gear suppliers 1927-80




More Links

 Links to more Vintage Ham Radio Siteskwikette-01.jpg (49075 bytes)

Local Ham Radio Activity

Here is a page full of Research Triangle Ham Info.
Clubs, repeater frequencies, packet info, classes, etc.

What can I say? It is all fun and relatively harmless.

mail nick@virhistory.com

Nick England - home page
Last modified:  02 Sep 2023