I started interesting in engineering sometimes in 1980 as a young boy. Something later I got my first solder iron station as a christmas present. In 1981 I particpated a hamradio course which was held in our local club. Right from the beginning I enthusiastic not only about technology and wireless communication but also in special very much about Morse telegrafy. At the end of the course I passed the official exam in summer 1982, and received my high-class callsign DL3LAR. It was just after my 15th birthday. Not beeing 18 years old, I was imposed some conditions by the proper authorities: until my 16th birthday, I was only allowed to use the station from our radio club (DL0KI) in presence of an OM; until my 18th birthday I was allowed to use the radio club station by myself at least. Nevertheless I had some capability to receive signals at home ...below is shown my radio shack from 1983.
During school years I was fascinated to contact people all over the world. In the early 80's television and multimedia entertainment was not that present as it is today - so my friends from radio club and I were doing a lot of hamradio contesting activities. We take part nearly every month in a different contest, DARC and IARU VHF contests with DL0KI (radio club callsign), CW fieldday and World-wide DX CW with DL0KF (Kiel canal activity group). My home station extended in the late 80's with VHF antennas for satellite bands and I made my first experience with Amateur radio satellites (OSCARs).
After ending military service I started to study electrical engineering in Braunschweig - what else ... I joined already in my first year the academic radio club AKAFUNK. Because I left most parts of my hamradio homestation back in Kiel, I started some of my favourite activities with AKAFUNK like contesting and OSCARs. We started participating the CW fieldday in 1994 and achieved in our first rainy year rank 7. In 2000 and 2002 we won the CW fieldday with DL0IU twice. Meanwhile I changed my place of employment, but we kept a good team with some OM from AKAFUNK even after our university years.
My absolut highlight since I started interesting in hamradio was our J75T Dominica island DXpedition together with Carsten, DL6LAU and Uli, DL8OBQ in 1997. Beeing on the other side of the pile-up was very impressive - comparable to nothing else.
Some innovations has been undertaken to my radio shack in Kiel ... but I still use it from time to time for DX hunting. Mostly it's now used by my father, Bernd, DG2LBF.
Today I'm looking back on 21 years of hamradio and it is still part of my life but not the essential. I enjoy living with my family, my interesting job and some other non technical activities.
vy 73's de Rolf Schmidt, DL3LAR