The original K6JSS

Harry Blomquist K6JSS - QRP ARCI #0001

I had a great time working lots of stations last night on 40 and 80 meters.

Lots of QSB made conditions tough on 40m but I avoided the usual QRM by operating up on 7110 kHz. Among others, I finally ran into Larry W2LJ between deep fades of the ionosphere. Nice to get you in the log, Larry!

80 meters continually surprises me with conditions better than on 40 – less QRN, less QSB and consequently longer paths. This has been true DX-wise this season and as well as proving true during K6JSS/5 operation.

I’ve got to say, this has been an interesting week so far with some great QSOs and a re-connection of those I haven’t worked in a while.

One particularly interesting QSO on 80m last night was with Don K8MFO. Don’s QRP ARCI number is 243 – the lowest I’ve ever heard. I told him that and then he mentioned that he had a QSL card from the original K6JSS, Harry Blomquist, and that he would scan and email it to me. Don also told me that it was nice to hear the callsign activated again.

This morning’s email contained the image, front & back, which Don said that I’m free to post here. As he said, “Those scans are for you to use as you see fit — maybe others might enjoy looking at them.  Too much ham radio history has lived in desk drawers, and was subsequently thrown away by disinterested family members!”

Ain’t that the truth. As cost-effective as LoTW is, it will never replace the nostalgia-evoking power of an actual, tangible card in hand from the old days.

Thanks for the scans, Don.



AE5X log as K6JSS/5:



  10 comments for “The original K6JSS

  1. January 27, 2011 at 10:34 am

    Thanks for the QSO last night, John – your ears are incerdible! And thanks for posting the scans! So much for Altoids tins, eh? :)

    73 de Larry W2LJ

    • January 27, 2011 at 10:39 am

      Good to get you in the log Larry despite band conditions contriving against us! Good ears…right back atcha!

  2. W1FMR
    January 27, 2011 at 11:33 am

    Really surprised to work you on 80m from NH. Thank you for
    posting the QSL from K6JSS and I will try to forward it to
    K6MDJ who was instrumental in getting K6JSS on the QRPARCI
    Jim / W1FMR

    • January 27, 2011 at 12:50 pm

      Same here Jim – even as I worked you I was wondering what rig & antenna you were using to make QRP on 80m possible for that distance – and you were fairly easy to copy too. K3 & dipole up 65′ here.

  3. Larry W2LJ
    January 27, 2011 at 7:15 pm

    Hey John, are you able to zoom into that QRP certificate/award that’s above Harry’s desk? Any idea of what it says?

    Larry W2LJ

    • January 27, 2011 at 7:32 pm

      No, the resolution is too low – just gets pixelated…

  4. Danny
    January 29, 2011 at 7:02 pm


    I can’t recall ever blushing during a QSO—but I did 10 minutes ago when I wrapped up a very clumsy QSO (my end only) with you as K6JSS/5.

    I had been calling CQ up and down the band for a while with no results–then I heard you. The NR01 threw me, then I realized I didn’t give my half of an exchange—so I threw a BK at you. If there’s a contest, I try to contribute.

    I’m not an idiot, though I sure sent like one for a little bit. Sorry about the confusion—I’ve read your blog for a while and when I realized K6JSS/5 was you, that’s when I felt my cheeks get flush. D’oh.

    QRP here in Milwaukee–an HB1A and normally competent op.


    • January 29, 2011 at 10:24 pm

      Danny, no worries – most stations aren’t sending a number anyway. And you certainly aren’t the first to get flustered at an unexpected exchange!

  5. paul blomquist
    August 17, 2013 at 1:03 am

    I am Harry Blomquist’s son. The picture in the photograph was taken in our living room before dad built his “shop” and moved his ham set there. My brother still has his hand set which was a German “SS” set he brought back from Europe after WW2. I remember all of the items on the bulletin board and he had a much larger collection of “cards” from other ham operators from around the world. Very cool to see this site.

    Paul Blomquist

    • August 17, 2013 at 7:17 am

      Thanks for the info, Paul – very good to hear from you!

      As you know, your Dad had a major hand in inspiring the QRP aspect of our hobby and a large number of us commemorated his contribution two years ago with stations in all 50 states taking turns operating with his callsign for that year.

      Best wishes to you,

      John AE5X (and K6JSS for a week!)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.