My Technical Background
I’ve been involved in technology since an early age. I was in an electronics of the month club when I was 9 years old and each month you got a different electronic kit that you used a soldering iron to assemble the kit. This was when they still had tubes in the electronics! I was also getting involved in aviation as my gather was a pilot and worked in aviation. I started flying when I was 9 or 10 and flew a V-Tail Bonanza, by instruments as I couldn’t see over the instrument panel. I had an advantage though, my father was selling flight simulators at the time and we had one at home, so I had a lot of “table” time flying at home! I flew around with my father quite a bit and went with him on business trips and always got to fly when with him. As you can guess I was gravitated to aviation and flying. I was a natural pilot and learned easily.
My early technical experience started while working at Radio Shack and also doing repairs on stereos, small appliances and sewing machines. I had a small business during my last year in school and shortly after and would work on anything that was electronic. I decided I wanted a career that involved electronics and as I was also heavily invested into aviation, I decided Avionics was a good career choice. The only complication was my parents couldn’t afford to send both my sister and I to school at the same time. I figured a good alternative was to join the military and get my training that way. I went to the recruiter and took their entry exam and basically aced it, they said I could have my pick as to what I wanted to do. I figured communications would give me a good foundation that I could turn into a career. I went to technical school at Keesler AFB in Missouri and I graduated from tech school with honors.
With the foundation set by my military training and experience I had no problem getting a job after the military. I continued learning and expanding my capabilities in General Aviation and became a very proficient Avionics Tech and I specialized in autopilots which got me a lot more time flying. Along the way I had a couple excursions from avionics and expanded my knowledge and capability by getting experience in the IMTS (Improved Mobile Telephone System), the precursor to cell phones. We took Uniden under dash half duplex radios and converted them into mobile phones. We also took full duplex Pace radios and converted them into full duplex mobile phones. That was an interesting experience that gave me more experience with electronics theory and design which was fun.
During my stint with the mobile phones I got involved in satellite TV also. The company I worked for was a distributor for Uniden and they were getting involved in satellite TV. They sent me to the Uniden factory in Indianapolis where I was trained as one of the first Uniden Satellite warranty technicians. With that job I had the benefit of a large screen TV in my office so I could check out and work on the satellite boxes.
These side experiences were good learning experiences and a change of pace, but they didn’t pay enough for what I was accomplishing. So after a short diversion I was back in aviation. I continued my aviation career and after about 20 years all together, I became ill and was put on disability and no longer able to work. My body was not cooperating but my mind still worked so I had to find something to keep my mind active.
What’s next? Check back for the next phase in my technical development!
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