April 27, 2021: Lynn O'Connell KG6DNY: Collecting and operating military radios

PLEASE NOTE: Because our meeting location is unavailable due to the coronavirus situation, this presentation will be webcast on the internet. See the IMPORTANT NOTE at the top of this page.

Many ham radio operators have adapted and currently use repurposed military radio equipment. After World War II the US Government released numerous surplus radios and electronic parts to civilians. In fact, many hams got their start by using surplus ARC-5, BC-348, BC-375, ART-13, and other radio systems made available to the public. These were plentiful, and priced right, usually selling for pennies on the dollar!

As technology evolved, so did our defense force's communication systems. Vacuum tubes gave way to solid-state devices. Role-specific equipment were developed, such as the man-pack portable field sets, which gave way to the handheld radios that we’re familiar with today.

Our presentation will discuss this evolution of such communication systems and what is available and usable for amateur radio. Military commo collectors have established online communities, Facebook groups, groups.io groups; and for those who want to put their gear on the air, there are nets on HF in the AM voice and RTTY modes. Also, we’ll be exploring sources on where to purchase equipment and repair & restoration parts.

Lynn has been a licensed ham since 2000, he is involved in the installation and management of voice and data networks in commercial, industrial and residential environments. He is currently Vice-president of the Pasadena Radio Club.