Tokyo Ham Fair 2015

It was Tokyo Ham Fair held at Tokyo Big Site yesterday. I am rather reluctant to go somewhere for social activities. But while I have been at home with routine chores, I felt I should make myself public to the others. It has been months since I went to Tokyo. There were still crowds of people. I felt it was tough for me even to walk straight at train stations etc. My young days when I went around in this big city has clearly been over. I noticed there were conversations in Chinese heard quite often as well.

Quite some people were at the site. They said even more were attending there yesterday.

I haven't visited the booths of ham radio equipment makers etc. It was my intention to see old friends of mine at some club booths.

Atsu JE1TRV was tending at the booth of A1Club, which he had established by himself years ago. It has grown to be a big CW club in Japan now mostly thanks to his eager efforts.

This is the bug key planned by his club and manufactured by GHD. The base is coarsely shaved brass. It is sold in kit to the club members. The finished product plated with chrome was sold at GHD booth at the cost of about 230USD. The club kit was much cheaper than that. A pretty small bug. Stable with the brass base. The weight was pretty big, so that it sent out very slow to medium fast dots. The dots did not sound perfect to me but practically good enough for use in QSO.

At FIST East Asia booth, two young fellows...young among CW operators society...were sitting. Sugi JK7UST, right on the photo, and Taro JR0QWW, left. They were making QSO simulation with another guy at CWops booth showing the text with a decoder. I encouraged them to enjoy QSOs with oversea on CW. It was my honest opinion it had been a bit waste of good conditions to have a regular on air meeting among the members on every Sunday morning. Though imaybe I should not have told that to them, in my view, they need to spend the time for QSO with the states etc at that time in a week. They are still very enthusiastic CW operators already representating the CW world in Japan. At the boot, I have met JQ1BWT who is good at designing circuits and manufacturing devices etc

Across the aisle from the FIST booth, there was the booth of CWops. Aki JL1GEL, right on the photo, has come to say hello to me. I have worked him many times on 40m for the past years. He seemed busy at work, which made him a bit less active than before these days. Another brilliant star in the CW world in Japan. Sorry but the guy on the left is unkown to me.

I talked to one of a couple of guys from the US at Dayton Hamvention booth by Dayton Amateur Radio Assoc. Both of them were explaining about it. They seemed to be here only to attend this event. I should have joined DARA. I was given only some gifts like a ball point pencil etc. Flying from Narita to Chicago and then to Dayton. I would visit there someday.

It was already the time for me to see the old gang and to have lunch together with them. It was the main event for me. Before the JARL booth, all of them except for me have already gathered. They have gathered at this event for the past 3 years. I have missed last time.

From left to right, Hiro JA7WTH, Shun JJ1RZG and JA1AGG whom I met first this time.

From left to right, Taka JA1KIH, Shun, JA1COR another person I met first, JA1AGG and me.

We met at noon and, while having lunch, beer and coffee, went on talking for 5 hours! What have we talked about? I wonder if we have had so many topics to discuss for that long time. Yes, we have. About good old days. Equipments, old and new. Taka told us he was interested in the new SDR gear from Icom, IC7300, making debut at this event. Old friends and visitiors to our country from abroad. Old famous hams. DXing. There have been a gradation of interest in that field of activity. Some are still enjoying it while the others have graduated from it, "an evil road" as they say.

It was a remarkable point that Hiro, Shun and I had worked as pediatiricians, even though it was only me who already retired. Shun told me he was just diagnosing the kids and scarcely prescribing medicine. I agreed with him in that way of practice. Most illnesses with children are etiologically viral and won't require any medicine except for some like flu or herpes viruses. We have also had the same opinion quite some patients have rhinitis/sinusitis which requires some management, especially for toddler cases. It deteriorates the quality of life for those small children. This important finding has been ignored or neglected in the medical school and/or academic society. It was a small medical convention as well! It is amazing he was still doing with his practice at age 78 years. It was impressive to me he would retire when he won't care for those children.

We have mostly spent the time at a cafe outdoor. Comfortalbe breeze was blowing across the area. When sun was starting to set, we decided to finish it. Promising seeing next summer again, we aprted at the station.  

On the way to Tokyo station, where we took the train bound forTochigi and Miyagi, respectively, I talked to Hiro a lot. He got the ham licence in his thirties. But it was at the age of 71 years, 3 years ago, when he started working on CW. I have worked him on that mode from time to time. I have noticed of his steady progress especially in reception. As a pediatrician, he might have had good background in English. But his effort to learn CW reception has been really excellent featuring iPad etc. He has recorded QSOs on CW of others received in the US through the internet and has repeatedly practising copying them by head. I told him to write a paper regarding his way of training. It might be valuable since he was not very young when he started the training and he has concentrated on head copy. In 3 hours since we parted at a station, we ran across on 40m! He told me he had been a bit tired but was still feeling good after meeting with us. What a great CW operator!


  1. Thank You for the Nice Report! Happy you had a Good Time!

    1. Yes, it was fun. It is necessary for me to have such social activity. Thanks for the comment.

  2. An excellent and interesting post Shin.
    Atsu is doing a great job for Japanese CW. He recently translated a CW Ops manual into Japanese for that club.
    I really think CW Ops is a great club doing real work to get more hams into CW. I would like to volunteer as a CW insstructor for their academy, but wire antennas in Asia are no help to USA ops trying to learn Morse! Conditions are too poor.
    All the best,

    1. Yes, he has done an excellent job for the CW society in Japan. I would see what fruit would be brought with the new training system of CWops he is engaged in now. I believe, however, something should be added to it if we would become elmer for the beginners to be CW ragchewer. There are barriers of language and of head copy. I am interested in what their method does as for those points. Anyway, if I would question about these points, their efforts are meaningful to increase CW operators at least. it might be much better than just criticizing their method like I am haha.