SSB, RTTY, CW operator. Preference for RTTY. First licensed 1965 in the UK. Keen contester and founder of the Quake Contesters Group ZL3X. Participated in YJ0X Vanuatu DXped in 2014 and VK9NZ Norfolk Island 2016. Getting on in years which is one of the reasons he finds amateur radio so comforting, where at 71 he still feels like a young OM. Now mostly retired, started out in life as an electronic engineer designing HF communications equipment (including a stint at KW Electronics designing amateur radio gear) in the UK but after 20 years moved to NZ and started his own design consultancy business. Having sold that, started another and sold that too he is now he is finally retired. Following the Christchurch earthquakes he built a house in Lower Moutere near the top of the South Island on 13 acres where he now lives with XYL Maggie (see below). Maggie said with some reservations that he could have a (much) bigger aerial. He failed to explain the difference between mast and antenna to her but she knows now! Loves really good British bitter, flamenco, slow blues, cooks a fine curry and bakes brilliant Eccles cakes. Looking forward to the pile-ups but go gentle on the old fella, he ain’t as young as he thinks he is.
SSB, RTTY/Digi and CW operator. First licensed in 1995. Keen DXer and contester, member of the Quake Contesters Group ZL3X. Participated in YJ0X Vanuatu in 2014 and VK9NZ Norfolk Island 2016. He has also operated as YJ0GA each July since 2014. Geoff’s career started as an Avionics Technician in the Royal New Zealand Air Force, specialising in Radio/Radar and then Test Equipment Calibration/Repair. Since 1995, he has worked for Air New Zealand Engineering and Maintenance – Calibration Services. Geoff lives with Francie in suburban Kaiapoi, north of Christchurch where he has a modest TS-590SG/KPA500/Hex station. Achieved DXCC (321 worked) and WAS/Triple Play awards. Loves a beer, good coffee, any kind of music and good food. Geoff will happily vouch for the quality of Phil’s Eccles cakes!
I have been licensed since 1990 when I obtained the call ZL3TLL which allowed me on 6m and up. I passed my morse test in 1992 and was given the call ZL3AB. Two weeks later I left to live overseas for nearly 3 years. Upon my return and until 2003 I was not terribly active but since then I have picked up the DX bug and I obtained DXCC in 2008. The highlight of my DX career to date was being a member of the ZL7T team to the Chatham Islands in March 2009. I operate mostly CW and digital modes and use a Kenwood TS2000 and an Inverted L. The L is 12m of wire wound helically around a 10m spiderpole and about 25m in length down to a 4m pole. I use a 4 to 1 unun to match it on all bands 160m to 10m. I am a member of The Quake Contesters – ZL3X and VK9NZ Norfolk Island 2016. I also write the DX Column for “Break In” the official magazine of NZART, the ZL national amateur radio society. I am married with two teenage kids and a very tolerant wife.
SSB, RTTY, CW operator. Preference for CW. Paul celebrates his 44th anniversary of DXing this year, mostly as LW/MW/SW/FM broadcast DXer and also as a ham since 1983. He has been active on HF since 2003 (ex-ZL4PW) and enjoys contesting, chasing dxpeditions, new entities and band fillers, and is an inveterate CQer! The bigger the pile-up, the bigger the thrill. His previous DXpedition experience was as ZL4M from OC-203 Stewart Island on 2010, YJ0X Vanuatu in 2014 and VK9NZ Norfolk Island 2016. Also ran the special call ZL4RUGBY in 2011 for the Rugby World Cup which was hosted in ZL. He has lived in Oamaru all his life, is married to Linda and they have 2 young adult sons. He is an electrician by trade and loves building aerials. His other interests are cooking (spicy one-pot dinners), golf, watching cricket, rugby and league and spending time with his family.
Francie was born in Taumaranui and educated at Whangarei Girls High School. She joined the Royal New Zealand Air Force in 1983 as an Avionics Technician, gaining the New Zealand Certificate in Engineering (Telecommunications). She left the RNZAF to start a family of four children, now all in their 20s. As the children grew, Francie re-trained as a Primary School Teacher (DipEd) and then went on to further specialise in Early Childhood Education (GradDipECE) and completing a BEd. She enjoys reading , people watching, craft work and sunshine – the Pacific Islands suit her nicely!
Maggie & Phil have have 4 daughters and one son, all have left home. Since our last DXpedition to VK9NZ two girls have married and she now has three grand-daughters which has makes her very happy. She works in her own Psychology practice specializing in children and families, and education and keeps saying that she is going to retire but she is the only one who seems to believe this. She loves animals, especially her own three dogs, and will stroke anything if it has no more than 4 legs and stands still long enough. Since she moved to Lower Moutere she also has a lot of Alpacas. She thinks ham radio is a very odd pastime but is very tolerant. She has no idea why aerials need to be so big, and so high, and thinks this is probably an old wives tale propagated by Phil but is prepared to humour him on this one if he will buy her a pony. She drinks long blacks, ginger beer and really dodgy cider and is addicted to Phil’s specialty – Eccles cakes.