My way into the hobby started when I was 13 years old and was a high school student. In one of the lessons, woodwork, we had a teacher who later turned out to be a radio amateur (SM0EQK Bengt), and he started a topic called "technology" as one could sign up for - which I did.
During the lesson hours Bengt told us students about the wonderful world of radio.
Later on we visit Bengt in his home and his radio room in his basement, and if I don't remember wrong I think he had a complete set of Hallicrafter equipments. This visit was a real injection in my continuing interest in radio as a hobby.
During the lessons in school we also got a chance to build our very own and very simple radio receiver and with this, we could listen to some broadcast stations. I remember how I sat at home in my room in the evenings with the receiver and a simple wire antenna listening to some broadcasts stations such as the BBC, Radio Moscow and the Voice of America among others.
On January 11, 1980, I became a shortwavelistener (SWL) with the signal SM0-6596 and later the same year, August 14, I got my first amateur radio license and my signal was SM0LPO. Eleven days later, I turned 14 years old and nothing could be a better gift than my amataeur radio certificate.
Now I just had to try to find a radio and after a while my parents bought me a Heathkit HW-101 transceiver and after a while I also bought the Heathkit HW-9 which was a one of a kind QRP-transceiver.
On September 16, 1982, when I was 16 years old, I got my amateur radio license of the highest level.
This level was called level A and with this in my hand I could use a radio transmitter with an output of max 500 watts. To get this licence one needed approved test in technology and regulations, and an approved test in morsecode (CW) with the speed of 80 characters per minute in both sending and receiving.
I was now allowed to use amateur radio bands without restrictions such as lower license classes had and I kept my callsign SM0LPO.
As a result of the highest license class, I now changed all equipments to a new equipment from Yaesu and the model was FT-101ZD. Along with this I also bought an power amplifier of the same brand with the model type FL-2100Z, an antenna tuner and a speaker.
The amplifier was not used many times because I had huge problems with RFI. Besides disturbing neighbor's television, radio and stereo, I managed to even turn on and off their stove in the kitchen.
Eventually I realized that it was better to sell the amplifier and put an end of all the problem that I had caused. I Think my parents were very happy with my choise to sell my amplifier.
Life proceeded and I stopped with amateur radio as a hobby for many years by various causes.
However, on Wednesday, November 13, 2012 I was once again active with amateur radio. The reason why I now once again become active depended entirely on my neurological disease that I got two years earlier in 2010, and this had now deteriorated and I became totally sick from my job as a police officer in March 2012.
From this time I also had a specific contest callsign, SB0A, which I'm using during most contests. The contest on CW is a bit of a challenge for me because my callsign SB0A is often mistaken for HB0A - an active radio amateur clubstation in Liechtenstein - so because of that dilema I'm using my personal callsign SM0LPO instead in some CW contests.
My hobby became my savior in my situation, and even today it is a faithful friend in my everyday life. Because of my disease I do have seriuos problems running morse code with my key from time to time. My fine motor skills in my hands and fingers works very poorly.
I now tried once again to build up an amateur radio station. In the end I was very happy with the result (see picture to the right) and I felt that I really could enjoy the amateur radio again ...
I was now entering the world of digital modes and my power dropped from low to QRP as often I could.
The life for me was quite good at that time and I really did not had to have my desease in the center all the time. It felt good ...
In Sweden we have a saying "but tell the happiness that lasts forever ..."
When everything were about to work and I really could enjoy my hobby, I had to once again go QRT.
This time it was my landlord who suddenly said to me that I had to take down all my antennas at once. If I did not do this, it could end with eviction from my apartment. There had been complaints on my antennas and that it looked very ugly.
The argument was also that it was not allowed to have anything mounted on or from the balcony. When I then pointed out that several of the neighbors around had large parabolic antennas for satellite television mounted on their balconies my landlord became visibly annoyed and said that this was nothing I had to do with. I would only ensure that all my antennas disappeared as quickly as possible.
So now I was back to square one again and I tried to be out portable (see picture to the left which shows me in action during one of many contests) as much as I could but the disease put a stop to this - it just did not work anymore.
All things around me was against me and I had to go QRT again ...
I needed to change strategy yet again ...
Meanwhile, as I am trying to solve my situation, I will try to be active sporadically with amateur radio as often as I can and my health allows.