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home QRZCQ - The database for radio hams 
2021-05-08 21:36:49 UTC









Active user

activity index: 1 of 5

Martin R Blustine

Hudson 03051
United States, New Hampshire

united states
image of k1fql

Call data

Last update:2021-04-13 16:49:05
QTH:North of Boston, Massachusetts
Main prefix:K
Class:Amateur Extra
Federal state:New Hampshire
US county:Hillsborough
DXCC Zone:291
ITU Zone:8
CQ Zone:5
ULS record:233442

Most used bands


Most used modes


QSL data

Last update:2019-04-06 15:20:37
Bureau QSL:YES
Direct QSL:no


31 August 2020 - Sorry, but K1FQL will be QRT for a while. We are in the process of moving back to NH after having spent the last 5 years in Florida. We'll catch up with QSLs this winter.

Please note that paper QSL cards will no longer be returned via the QSL bureau as of 1 July 2019. If you send a card via the bureau, a PDF QSL will be returned to the email address appearing on your QRZ page. If no email address has been provided on your QRZ page, no PDF QSL will be returned.

Thank you for looking me up and welcome! K1FQL was first licensed in 1962 as KN1FQL (that's me grinning, second from the left) in Agawam, Massachusetts. It was Arthur Zavarella (far left), W1MNG later W1KK (SK), who first taught me the code at his kitchen table once a week, and it was Art who administered the novice exam to me. He resided at a QTH that was across the street from Riverside Amusement Park (now Six Flags), and I would ride my bicycle to his QTH to watch him operate his station. That's Al Jackson, W1OBQ (SK), at the far right. He worked for Soundco in Springfield, MA, at the time, and he provided me with technical assistance and encouragement.

My first station transmitter was an E.F. Johnson Viking Adventurer kit that employed a single Amperex 807 as the final. A homebrew plate modulator put the transmitter on AM. The modulator called for a Thordarson modulation transformer, and I can recall taking a bus to Boston so that I could buy one at the original Radio Shack on Commonwealth Avenue. Eager to increase transmitting power, an EICO 720 transmitter kit was assembled that employed a 6146 as the final. My first station receiver was a National HRO 7T handed down from my brother, Allen, K1BWL (now W2GYD). This was an enormous receiver with manually changed band switching coils that slid into the front of the receiver and a boat anchor power supply that sat on the floor. The National Radio Company, Malden, MA, was kind enough to fabricate an additional coil for 15 meters.

The first bands that I operated were 15 meters with a homebrew 2-element beam constructed of galvanized steel electrical conduit, and spaced and supported by 2x4's and 2x6's, and 40 meters with a dipole fed with shoe-string 75 ohm twin-lead. The 2-element beam was donated by Austin Lebert, K1ETN (SK), who lived on Federal Hill just south of my QTH. Reception was greatly improved with the acquisition of an R.L. Drake 2B receiver from Bob Patten, W1GIV (now N4BP), who at the time resided in West Springfield, MA, just across the river from me. Summers and between college semesters, I worked with Bob, N4BP, and with Paul Pagel, N1FB, at WWLP-TV, Springfield, MA, with a newly acquired 1st Class Radiotelephone Certificate. During my undergraduate years at the UMASS in Amherst, MA, I maintained a home station that consisted of an R.L. Drake TR-3, and later a TR-4, until 1969 at which time I became QRT for 13 years.

In 1982, after relocating to Waltham, Massachusetts, operation resumed on 20 meters with an R.L. Drake C-line to which was added an L-4B linear. My only antenna was a 20 meter dipole. Operation ceased prior to relocation to Westford, Massachusetts in 1988. This marked the beginning of a 25-year QRT interval that ended with the acquisition of an ICOM IC-718 found on Craigslist in the fall of 2013.

All of the original station gear has accompanied me for 25 years. My favorite Vibroplex Blue Racer bug, however, was missing. It must have been sold with the TR-4 in 1969. A Vibroplex Champion bug reappeared, however. This was purchased for me by one of my work associates, Mike Scott, after a trip to Portland, Maine, and the Vibroplex factory in the early 1980's. Mike returned from Portland with a T-shirt and coffee mug. Both bore the distinctive Vibroplex logo. The conducting bars on the underside of the bug had corroded due to extended, damp storage, but the topside chrome plating survived. A Bencher BY-2 paddle, previously crowned with an MFJ-422-X keyer, survived storage in much better condition, and it was great to return it to use.

After searching for a stealthy antenna that could be employed within our restrictive homeowners association (HOA) at the Nashua, New Hampshire QTH, I discovered the HyEndFed Company. Ron, PA3RK, and Rob, PA3EKE, manufacture the HyEndFed antenna in many varieties, and their 20 meter end fed half-wave (EFHW) antenna solved the immediate problem of getting on the air in the least obtrusive manner. Ron and Rob employ very efficient antenna designs that are beautifully handmade and work very well.

Recently, a Winkeyer USB was added to the station. Inspired by OZ4UN and N4BP, remote control was added, too. N1MM+ software and a Velleman K8090 8-Channel USB Relay Board provides a means to turn the radio on and to control some of its basic functions over the Internet. Teamviewer allows me to view my desktop and to hear transceiver audio while away from home. For more information about remote operation, please refer to OZ4UN's excellent QRZ page!

After 5 years in sunny Florida, we have returned to the Granite State, New Hampshire.

Thanks for visiting and happy operating.
For more information on my recent projects, please view my QRZ page.

Thanks for visiting and happy operating.

Worked DXCCs:


Icom IC-718
Flex Radio Flex 6300
Ameritron ALS-600
End Fed Half Wave Antenna for 40m and 80m
6BTV Vertical

Other images

second pic
K1FQL / Pic 2

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