I was born in the UK. My interest in radio goes back to 1950 when at the age of 3 I used to listen to the shipping forecast which I think came just before the BBC one o'clock news back in the UK. I was fascinated by the names of the forecast areas such as 'Shannon, Malin, Fastnet, Dogger & German Bight'. We had a radio with an aerial running round the skirting board and when no one was in the room I used to get down by it (not very far for me in those days) and shout at it, hoping to be heard by the fishermen. This was my first unsucessful attempt at working DX.
Later when I was 11 years old I discovered ham radio by listening to 40m AM stations on an old broadcst receiver and then found Pat Hawker's (G3VA) wonderful 'An Introduction to Amateur Radio' published by RSGB. I still have a copy. I must have built my first crystal set about this time and got my first soldering iron burn, first of many receivers I have since built and burns I have suffered.
At school (Nottingham High School) we had a 'Combined Cadet Force' where we played at soldiers every Wednesday afternoon. They had a signals section with lots of old WW2 radios, including 18 sets, 88 sets, field telephones and joy of joy an R107 hf Rx and matching 12 set (hf Tx with 807's in every stage except the PA!). We were part of the 'National Net' and our callsign was 43. Every lunchtine we were on the air working other schools - we had I think about 10 frequencies between 2 & 6 MHz (Mc/s in those days). I finally was issued with my own callsign - 43A - one of three personal calls in the whole country. The other two were Chris Village, G3ROH, with if I remember correctly 14C, and Tony Sugden (not sure of his amateur call) with 4A.
Finally just as I was leaving school to goto university I got my ham ticket with callsign G3UVZ. Because of ham radio I read electronics and like so many others I became an electronic engineer, working for KW Electronics (designing ham radio equipment), International Marine Radio Co, Sinclair Reasearch, FKI plc then emigrated to New Zealand where I started Holliday Electronics, later became Holliday Group Ltd and sold to iTouch plc in 2000. I am now an angel investor and VC in New Zealand though my company Holliday Corporation with my business partner Dave. We recently sold one of our angel investments to a Fortune 15 company in the US.
I became ZL3PAH in 1990 when I emigrated to New Zealand. Apart from Amateur Radio which has always played a large part in my life I play piano and other instruments badly, cook curries with panache and collect machin stamps from the UK.
Run Elecraft rigs K2 & K3 and am an enthusiastic supporter of Elecraft and all that company stands for.Plus anExpert 1K-FA linear and it makes a difference, especially since the ZL licence has been increased from 500w to 1Kw recently!. Also use a Palstar AT2K ATU.
Enjoy contesting mainly on cw and RTTY, and contesting with the Quake Contesters ZL3X beats contesting on your own by a country mile.