How I became a radio amateur

I started with amateur radio very early. In 1958 I enrolled in a course at the pioneer home in Tarnovo to study radiotelegraphy. During our training we had the opportunity to visit the pioneering radio station LZ2KBS and see how shortwave radio connections are established. This interested me a lot, even though at that time only telegraphy was used. The radio station had a small power of 25 watts and then radio communications could be made only within Bulgaria. Since then, I decided to continue my amateur radio career and later enrolled in the radio club in Tarnovo. At that time the chief was Kiril Nestorov (Mr. Kircho). There I continued to study and later passed the exam for amateur radio class “C” Since then I had the right to work at the radio station LZ2KAC, where I went every day to make radio communications. I also sat all night with other members to make radio calls and participate in competitions. At that time, due to our great interest, the radio station worked almost continuously and we made a very large number of radio communications. In 1965 I passed the exam for amateur radio class “B” and in 1972 and class “A”

In the same 1965 I participated together with two other radio amateurs Nick Pisarov (LZ2JF) and Angel Lichev (LZ2UG) in the republican championship for establishing radio communications in radiotelegraphy. At this championship we won first place in Bulgaria with LZ2KBA and according to the rules of the competition then we received the three titles “MASTER OF AMATEUR SPORTS”

After graduating from high school in 1962, like everyone else then, I had to go to the barracks. I was assigned to the town of Kardzhali in a liaison platoon. From the very beginning, after checking me as a radio operator, the platoon commander assigned me the task of training young and old soldiers in radio telegraphy, in addition, I had to start working at the radio station and maintain radio contact with the division in Haskovo. After returning from the barracks in 1964, I started working in the radio factory in Veliko Tarnovo and it was completely clear to me that radio engineering would be my profession in life. One year later I enrolled to study radio engineering at the V. Lomonosov Technical School in G. Oryahovitsa.

After completing my radio engineering education in 1968, I was entrusted with the training of future workers for the radio plant in Veliko Tarnovo in the radio club. In the meantime, I received a permit to build a radio station, and in 1971 I began building a Transceiver in my spare time at the radio club, which lasted until 1972. At this point I must say that I was given a little material help from the radio club for the construction of my transceiver. At the same time, I married a German citizen and had to go permanently to live in Germany (at that time it was the GDR). In the summer of 1972, my transceiver was exhibited at TNTM in Plovdiv, where it was awarded, and I received a Soviet watch and a diploma. This was the third transceiver made in Bulgaria. The first transceiver in Bulgaria was made then by Kiril Drandarov (LZ2ZK) also from the radio club in Veliko Tarnovo. The second transceiver was made at the same time in Kazanlak by Nikolay S. Pastermov (LZ1YI) and was also presented at TNTM.

This is a picture of my transceiver from that time.

In 1972, we built a small house in the Kartala area “to take out” the radio station during competitions. Later, in early December, I left with my transceiver for the GDR and after great difficulties and delays in the border for Romania, due to which I arrived in Leipzig a day late for my wife’s disappointment and anxiety in Germany.I later received in the GDR, then my first German initial DM9BJM, and after the official change of all initials I received the second initial Y29JM with which I worked until 1988. In 1973, I presented my transceiver at the amateur meeting of all radio amateurs from the GDR in Leipzig, and then my transceiver was awarded a diploma for the second time and printed in the German magazine Funkamateur1974.

This is Funkamateur 4/1974 magazine front and back original where my transceiver was published at the time.

In Germany, this transceiver was ranked fourth of all German exhibits, for me it was a great prize. Of course, I also received a German diploma (GDR), which I unfortunately no longer have. In the summer of 1988, I moved with my whole family to West Germany-Bavaria, and my transceiver had to stay in Leipzig. An export from the GDR was absolutely impossible. So I parted with my transceiver, which I built for almost a year in Veliko Tarnovo. After we settled in Nuremberg later, I got a new initial DJ0GB which I still work with. All this was then very difficult according to the political conditions at the time. In the GDR, I worked as an electronics engineer at the Karl Marx-University in Leipzig and later as a tour guide-translator into Russian with Soviet groups who came to the GDR on excursions. This job was very interesting and I worked for exactly 10 years until the “perestroika” came, and then I started working in the computer industry as a computer station maintenance technician in a company in Leipzig until 1988.

Here is a picture of my shack with all my 22 diplomas in Nuremberg

I am currently working with a YAESU FT-767GX transceiver (100 watts.) Antenna FB4-41

And here are my latest PC developments for QSL-Cards:



Finally a photo with my XYL during a vacation in Turkey

Best 73 to all HAMS in Bulgaria from DJ0GB – Niko (ex. LZ2DJ)
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