Recent Updates

My Novice Memories

An old email I wrote to my friends on the QRP List after entering all my Novice ham radio contacts into a new electronic logbook. More…

Chasing States

My quest to earn the ARRL's Triple Play Award. More…

QSOs with Hell

No, I haven't been making radio contacts with the devil. I've been playing with an intruiging mode known as "Feld Hellschreiber," "Feld Hell," or just plain "Hell." More…

NDB Hunting

It might sound terribly boring, but I've actually found it a lot of fun listening for airport beacons and seeing how many I could copy. I've set up a whole web page for the topic. More…

Other items of interest...

Tom's Running Page

Back in 2002, I started running again after a long hiatus. Since then I've run the Chicago Marathon 7 times!. Read more about the running exploits of an old, slow geezer. More…

Old Radio Restorations

I've had a lot of fun restoring old tube radios the last few years. More…

Frisz Family History

My family came from Northeastern France back in th e 1840's. Read more about the Frisz family's history here. More…

Shortwave QSL Card Gallery

As a young teen I discovered Short Wave listening and started sending reception reports to get QSL cards from the stations I heard. You can see images of my collection on my SWBC QSL page. More…

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My "Worked All DDs" Quest

In the beginning...

My original callsign, issued by the FCC, was WN9IUQ. When I upgraded from Novice to Advanced Class, my callsign was changed to WB9IUQ. I thought my call had a nice swing to it on CW, but it sure was long. On phone, it was tough to get through, especially with my usual weak signal.

Back in the mid-70's, the FCC was allowing Extra Class hams (of which by then, I was one) to choose their own callsign. It was the first "vanity" call program the FCC had ever tried. Although I was well aware of the program and the idea of a new, shorter call was appealing, I had resisted. I didn't think it would be very nice to fool others into believing that I was an "old timer" with a 1X2 call when I wasn't. After all, I was only 22 and had been a ham for less than 4 years!

An N Call???

On the day before Christmas in 1976 I was listening to a conversation on 40 meter SSB between a couple of stations. One of them was using the call N4AA. An "N" call?? It was the first I had heard. All other US callsigns started with a W or a K. Apparently, the vanity call program was so succesful that the FCC had quickly run out of W and K 2-letter suffix calls and had decided to open a new block of callsigns with an N prefix. My mind began to race. If I got an N call for myself, I wouldn't be fooling anyone, but I'd have something really neat and could choose a nice, snappy suffix to go along with it. I just had to do it.

After deciding to take the plunge and apply for a new, short call. I thought long and hard about which suffix to choose. It had to sound good on CW and have some decent phonetics on phone. If I could make up some fun ones, that would be great too. I thought that N9AA would be nice. It might be considered the first Ninth District N call - at least alphabetically. So I put that as my number one choice on the allowed list of 10 requested calls.

_ .   _ _ _ _ .   _ . .   _ . .

Next on my list was serious business though. I didn't really expect to get the N9AA call because, I figured, someone else would grab it before me. My next choice just might be the one I'd get. I settled on N9DD. November 9 Delta Delta. Oh, it sounded great! It was short and snappy on CW. I loved it. N 9 Donald Duck. Now that would be fun. Droopy Drawers, Dirty Diapers, Deputy Dog... I couldn't wait. The other calls on my list were N9ND, N9AD, etc. Mostly they were calls that I thought would be good on CW. Having an E or I in my call would make it shorter, but harder to copy I thought.

So, after sending my list to the FCC and waiting anxiously for a reply, sure enough, I was finally awarded the new callsign N9DD, and have worn it proudly ever since.

Other DDs?

I soon became aware of "other" DDs. At that time I was checking into the GERATOL net on 75 meters. My new "Double D" call was sought after for one of their endorsements and I was kept busy. Also on the net were a K8DD and N5DD. Neat! I quickly sent for their QSLs.

Worked All DDs

Since then, I've always taken note of other "DD" calls, I always try to work them and get a QSL if I can. Since getting my DD call I've worked the following other DDs!


...and then there's the DX:


My "Worked All DDs" quest has been great fun. Here are a few QSLs from my collection!

Sadly, Hank Kohl, K8DD left us in November of 2010. I was in Hank's presence fewer than a few dozen times, but I considered Hank a good friend. That is the kind of impression he made with most people. He is missed.

Gerald Woodworth
Now living in Boxford, MA

Phil Ashcraft - Dallas, TX
Sadly, another silent key
N5DD is now Donald Daze in Houston, TX

Larry Pace - Tucson, AZ
Larry is a great operator
I've worked him many times in contests

Bruce Roberts - Quincy, IL
What was wrong with the DD call Bruce? :-)

Daniel Dekkers
St. Willebrord - Netherlands

Konstantin (Ken) Vershkov
Istra, Russia

Feridun Kalfa
Bursa, Turkey

Doug Card
Hearts Delight, Newfoundland

David Davis (K9UK)
DXpedition to Antigua

Next up... The WAA-ZZ challenge

(Yes, I'm a little crazy)