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Saturday, June 25, 2022

Australian Homebrew: Owen Duffy ex VK1OD now VK2OMD. Are Hams Makers?

This week I stumbled upon this amazing blog from Australia.  I had to check with Australian friends to find out more about the author.  Owen Duffy has for many years been a rigorous homebrewer who has documented his findings on his blog:  https://owenduffy.net/blog/

For example, Owen asks the question, "Are hams makers?" https://owenduffy.net/blog/?p=122

There is a lot of great material on this blog.  It goes back to 2013.  Peter Parker notes that an earlier version of the blog (before Owen was forced to change his callsign from VK1OD to VK2OMD) goes back even further and is accessible via the Way-Back Machine:  https://web.archive.org/web/*/vk1od.net

Check it out.  Lots of really useful and interesting material there.   Thanks Owen.  And thanks to the Australian friends who provided background info. 

1 comment:

  1. I've let this sink in for a while and I have to admit I think he's right. Because DIY in our hobby, just like in other hobbies, has been replaced by purchasing ready-made equipment.

    Only a small group of die-hards still build their own (all hail Soldersmoke)

    But I also see beautiful new trends appearing in that group: OM's that offer their designs as kits or start joint construction projects through clubs. But you will also see new tools appearing: 3D printers for making parts, CNC milling for making (prototype) printed images, a converted 3D printer for exposing photosensitive prints and much more.

    So yes: by no means all radio amateurs will be makers. But luckily they are still there.

    Personal note :

    When I started the hobby, it arose out of technological curiosity, the interest in understanding things and the will to make things myself (designing myself was not my main goal). It doesn't matter to me whether it is 100% DIY or a kit (such as HeathKit, Elecraft, QRP-Labs etc) which is modified or not after construction. Just having fun with the hobby and pushing boundaries. And yes I also have some off-the-shelf trancievers (I'm super happy with my FT817ND) and my QO-100 uplink is also a kit (which is then already soldered a little more than average). As far as new tools are concerned: here at home are 2 types of 3D printers, various tools for SMT assembly, and I have a nice workshop equipped with tools and equipment for metal / plastic / wood processing. And every day I try to learn something new, because I stand by the IBEW moto : If you know stuf, you can do stuff.

    Am I a maker then? I wouldn't call myself that. Just like I don't call myself a hacker because I'm quite handy with computers, technology and have certain skills. I'm just a hobbyist who wants to do and make things after work.


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