G'day Everyone. Wherever you may be on planet Earth, Welcome to this Australian Amateur Radio website.  vk5sw.com

My name is Rob and I was fully licensed in 1970 when I was 19. My age is now 68. As a young person, I used to rifle through a rubbish tip with my friend 'Lee' who lived across the road from us, looking for discarded radios and electronic bits and pieces. An old short wave radio, found at the tip, was eventually pressed into service with the addition of a beat frequency oscillator, 'bfo', which enabled me to listen to Radio Hams talking to each other. By slowly turning a shortened plastic knitting needle protruding from an IF can, the single sideband signals were able to be resolved. It was very exciting in those days to tune into a Ham Radio operator from overseas. I asked myself - 'how does the radio signal get here?' With my interest kindled, I pursued the hobby and have now been a Ham for nearly 50 years. While in my teenage years and beyond, I built many electronic circuits including short radio receivers, CW transmitters, a cathode ray oscilloscope, a gdo, audio amplifiers and many other circuits which I felt to be useful at the time.

These days I really like building website pages and I hope that you find some of the pages on this website to your liking. It would be about 9 years ago now, I think, when the brother in law, 'Garry', of my very good and long term friend, 'Lisette' gave me a computer program called 'Front Page' by Microsoft, which enables you to create website pages. With no idea of what I was doing, I played around with it and found out quickly that I liked trying to improve the page that I was working on. Some 9 years or so later, I quite often find my mind working unconsciously on the current page as I may be reading a book, for example, and an idea will butt in, and suggest to me a way to improve the page. I then come into this computer room, after having put the book down, and implement the idea. It nearly always improves the page, in my opinion. At first the website pages which I made were very basic, usually a little text and a picture. But as time went on, they appeared to me to be better than they used to be. So, I kept building pages and now this current website is the latest version. The reason I have spent so much effort in building this website is because I enjoy building it so much. I like the capability of using my imagination and being able to 'put it into a page' with the idea of adding enjoyment for others to it, one way or the other. The background pictures on the various pages are meant to create an appropriate atmosphere and feeling. I hope I have done a good job of that. Please rate any of the pages if you would like to. This website has been built upon the Philosophy of, 'Correction of Mistakes = More Ability'. - 'COMMA'.

HF Radio waves travel at about the speed of light, 186,000 miles per second. So, radio communication here on earth is basically instantaneous. When I think of the physical distances involved when having a conversation with you in say, North America from here in Australia, the fact that our voices are heard by each other as they are spoken, seems incredible to me. Hardly any time delay at all, even though the distance between us may be 15,000 miles, on the long way around the world, for example. Radio signals can take about 20 minutes to reach Mars, depending on our relative locations in space, which changes in time. As our reach throughout the Universe expands, our reliance on radio communications will be forever more critical. Without expansion, I don't think that we would be able to 'find our place in the Universe.' And without that broader awareness, I don't think that we can advance, neither personally nor collectively. With a more expansive and less constrictive outlook, and a feeling of greater insignificance in the scheme of things, I think would come a greater willingness of countries around the world to work together and expand our collective reach and capabilities. We might, possibly, begin to leave conflict behind. I have used some of the background pictures on this website to bring to mind the fact that we are on one planet, only one of the innumerable out there.

Ham Radio is a great hobby and my hope is that this website goes some way towards promoting it. This hobby can lead you to an exciting career in this forever evolving field of electronics and communications. Information can be found here about setting up a solar powered Ham Radio station, remotely controlling your station, constructing a 20 foot tower, putting together a Cubex quad antenna as well as building vee beam, ground plane and loop antennas. You may find the Interactive World Clock useful and you can also view videos and download Ham Radio Wallpaper. 'Amateur Radio Clip Art', 'Amateur Radio Signs', 'Armed Forces', 'DX Locations and Times' and the biography, 'VK5SW' are the latest pages to this website. The VK3MO page gives information about 'Ian', an inspiring Australian Amateur. You may also be interested

in my Youtube channel...   and books I've written...  

If you are a newcomer to Amateur Radio, here is an introduction for you...  



I purchased this large 'ZL special' antenna shortly after having come on air in 1970. I often talked to 'Les', VK5LC on the 14Mhz band. He lived on the other side of Adelaide and invited me around to meet his wife {XYL) and have lunch with them. While there, I climbed his 40 foot tower and adjusted his yagi antenna. I purchased the antenna shown above from him. It was delivered on the back of a semi trailer. I never increased the height of it as it was too heavy and cumbersome, but eventually transported and erected a windmill tower from a nearby paddock and put up a 2 element triband Quad antenna made of fibre glass spreaders. It worked very well, worldwide. Above the ZL special can be seen the first of my Hustler vertical antennas and to the left, a rotary 15mx dipole. 'Mitzie' our pet dog is shown in the foreground. My Ham shack in those days was the shed seen to the left of the picture. I would also like to mention a station whom I worked fairly often also on 14Mhz when I was first licensed, and that was VK6MO who lived in Como, Western Australia. I have forgotten his name but remember well, his 'welcoming to the bands attitude' which I very much appreciated then and still do, today.

Nowadays, nearly 50 years later, my Ham Radio station is 150 klms away from home, located on our Bush property. The radios there are remotely controlled here at home in Adelaide, via the Internet using the 'Remote Rig' system. A Wireless Internet connection (4G, 2.4Ghz) is used at the Radio End as the nearest town is about 10 klms away from the property. In my case, this has meant being able to operate remotely from the home Qth as opposed to not being able to operate at all. Thanks to the information given to me by Matt, VK5HZ, this system is once again operating properly after having been faced with what I thought at the time, was an unsolvable problem. For information about setting up remote capability, click on the 'Remote' link below. Youtube videos about the system here can be seen below too. The Internet has absolutely revolutionized and transformed our lives and our hobby. If not for the Internet, you wouldn't be reading this. I hope this website, in some way, is able to add to your enjoyment of Amateur Radio. 73, Rob, VK5SW.








Remotely controlling a Ham Radio station via the Internet is often desirable nowadays because of electromagnetic interference to radios in the cities due to power lines, TV's and many other sources. The 2 videos above show my setup using the Remote Rig system and Ham Radio Deluxe. The radio station is about 100 miles away from home out in the Bush, in the middle of nowhere, and about 10 miles away from the nearest town. The station is unattended and runs on solar power. A wireless 4G Internet connection is used between the property where the station is located and the town. A fibre optic Internet cable is used from home here in Adelaide to the town of Morgan in the Riverland district. These 2 youtube videos were recorded on my mobile phone. The 4 minute video on the left shows the reception from the IC-7300 remote radio, and the 10 minute video shows the reception from the IC-7600 remote radio at the home Qth. They were made in Dec., 2018.




This Youtube video was made in 2011 before remotely controlled. It shows the location in the Bush and the main solar system. It runs for 7 minutes.


I'm certainly no expert, but these 2 pages may help in setting up solar power / remote control,    / 




Our worldwide scientists, experimenters and radio predecessors, through creativity, perseverance, hard work and never say die attitudes, have given us a hobby which, nowadays, has capabilities beyond their wildest dreams. Amateur Radio Operators of today stand on the shoulders of those who have gone before us. Of course, those who have fought for our countries to give us our way of life, have given us freedom to follow our interests, like Amateur Radio. We are forever indebted to these great people.

We are on the forefront of expanding our reach into Space, the Unknown. In order to do that, Radio Communication is vital. Many people who are employed in the scientific, communication and various other technical industries, can trace their spark of interest to their hobby of Amateur Radio. Our hobby always has been, and always will be, I believe, an introduction to radio communication and a catalyst to careers which contribute to the advancement of Communication systems and therefore our way of life.

With the relentless march of technology, in this case the Internet, our hobby of Amateur Radio is becoming more and more sophisticated, but the fundamentals will always remain the same for us.

The wonder and excitement of radio communication.

73 from the land of the kangaroo - 'Rob', VK5SW.  QRZpage


Amateur Radio can enable you to forget about yourself and your worries and fill you with feelings of contentment, even excitement.


My Mum in the center, her parents either side and my sister and I.


'Rob'  VK5SW


Operating the Drone on the nearby Oval.

















































An  Australian  Amateur  Radio  Station