There is a house in the city center right behind “Svetlana” bus stop. Huge long self-made structure rises on its roof. Its owner, without leaving his apartment, can communicate by radio with any city of the country, any continent, with polar stations and even with cosmonauts in the space orbit.
IT ALL STARTED WITH THE DRAWING IN THE NEWSPAPER
To communicate with any inhabitant of our globe nowadays, when we have Internet, is not a surprise any more. However, such communication until recently was the privilege of only radio fans. By the way, such enthusiasts still exist. Let me introduce to you Temirkhan KHAKIMOV.
He assembled the super aerial together with his friends – radio fans and enthusiasts in 2005. And he became a radio fan when he was a young boy. Once he came across one article in the newspaper, when he was in the 7th form, where was shown the drawing of a transistor radio receiver. The eyes of a little boy lit up. He bought the required parts in the local shop and those that were missing, he order from Moscow. When the receiver caught the first wave, Temirkhan realized that hamradio will be his lifelong hobby.
A bit later he received his personal call sign which he kept until today. In the air he is known as UN1O.
The walls of his room, that is used as radio cabin, are covered with diplomas and medals. It is interesting that he is not the only one in Atyrau – there are 12 more pretty advanced radio fans in our city. But Temirkhan is somewhat a senior among them. And he also the branch director of the republican federation of radio sport and he also TCO employee. He uses his time well!
– The noise of aether is like a balm to your soul, – says Amir, Temirkhan’s son who shares his father’s hobby. – Mobile phones, Internet, Skype – those are quite different things. He, who once caught a radio wave, very seldom quits this hobby.
Among the rarities of the “radio cabin” – a telegraph key.
In order to absolutely impress me, Temirkhan taps the call signs on the transmitter of radio inventor Popov’ epoch. Through the noise of radio-waves he receives the answer in the same manner.
- It’s my acquaintance from Japan, – says Temirkhan. Tap-tap-tap … tap-tap … – Hello, my friend!
– Let’s talk to spaceship?! - said I.
– Technically it is possible. But I doubt there will be a radio fan like me sitting and tapping at the space station.
– Well, could we communicate to other continents? …
Temirkhan for a few minutes uttered a real gibberish thus contacting, firstly, with Aleksei from Ukraine, then with Harutoiz from Japan, with George from Romania and as the final curtain - with Vladimir from Atyrau. There was no language barrier between radio fans. In broken English the guys were talking about weather, business, and then thanked each other for communication and said goodbye.
– What could it mean “Si cue, Si cue, Si cue, united nansy one oska?” –finally I tried to learn the meaning of a gibberish he said from time to time.
– CQ - is the general call “attention to all!”. The rest is my signal UN1O - I say in words so that everybody could understand me.
I found out that his 12 friends on a regular basis participate in the international sport competitions on radio direction-finding which in their slang is called “fox hunting”.
– In the USSR radio direction-finding was supported by the government as a military and applied kind of sport, – says Khakimov. – It was supposed that during the war “fox-hunters” will be engaged in search of raiding forces, enemy transmitters in our back front. Last time I participated in such competitions in Borovoye of Akmolinsk oblast. I had a real adrenaline rush … It is quite a difficult type of sports, except physical fitness – you need to run in the woods not only quickly, but accurately –a real fox hunter should be able to use a compass, read sports map, have an eye for the ground, know the Morse alphabet for reception and identification of call signs... Now I am impatiently waiting for the next competition which will take place in Kokshetau in 2014. Quite often I participate in the international competitions.
– Everybody knows my father’s signal, – proudly says his son Amir. – At the international competitions usually participate up to 5 000 radio fans from all over the world. UN1O took in 2009 the first place among 6 participating countries. In Kazakhstan-2009 he also took the first place. In Asian competition he got again the first place.”
There is hardly a free space on the wall – it all covered with merit certificates.
OUR MAN IN AFRICA
– Are there fans like you in the other cities of Kazakhstan?
– We are everywhere , almost in every city and every country. We are just invisible – we are on our wave. By the way, among radio fans there is a private type of competition: to contact every country in the world. The difficulty is that not in every country, e.g. in Africa, they can afford to buy equipment. But we need to communicate somehow! So, the person travels to that country, tunes a wave, and we can start communicating. And as the proof we keep special cards where the exact time and communication place, signals and other data are described. I carefully keep those cards . I have already 142 countries.
– And how many countries are there that you need to “contact”?
– About 200. Many children are interested in radio sports, and I teach them. It is so nice to see kids` eyes light up when they radio communicate. During the Soviet times, in our city we had special circles of radio fans, station of young technicians, the palace of young pioneers.Those were golden days of development of young generation. If our new Governor opens something similar, I will dedicate my time with pleasure to this activity.
– Do you remember the Soviet comedy where the radio fan intercepted confidential telegrams exchanged by the USA and Russian presidents. In reality is it possible? Is there any control?
– Certainly, there is. The international agency issues frequencies. Radio fans apply for that and get permists for various categories – from the lowest to the highest, which is assiged to the most skilled ones.
KISS IN AIR
– And what about the code of conduct of radio amateurs?
– There are certain rules of radio communication: beginners study them, pass examinations. It is not enough to get on the air , you should also know how to do it. There are rules: let’s say, you tell my call sign , I tell yours – and we start our dialogue. If line is clear, the subject of dialogue can be anything: equipment, weather, or a garden …
We also have certain codes. For example: GL (good luck) ; HW? (how?) meaning «how are you doing? Do you hear me? Roger?»; SPB – “thanks” or TKU («thank you »). You may flirt: 88 means a kiss (a joke to say to a woman), HI (laughing) – laughter. You may argue as well: 99 means – «I do not want to work with you»when you want to tell somebody to “get off”, one of rough expressions in amateur radio. Fortunately, it rarely happens.
– Well, then TKU, UN1O, and GL.
– TKU, HI.
By Anastasia PASTUKHOVA
November 30 2012, 11:58