Boxborough Was The Best Ever!!!!

Brian Carling bcarling at CFL.RR.COM
Wed Aug 30 07:41:36 EDT 2000

Thanks for thinking of us all and passing along the excellent report Michael!

On 29 Aug 00, at 2:32, Michael Crestohl wrote:

> After sleeping for about 12 hours I have a few minutes to share some of my
> experiences of the ARRL New England Convention held at Boxborough MA over
> the weekend.
> Thinking about it this is probably the BEST ham radio event I have ever
> attended in my 30 plus years in the hobby!  I do not make this statement
> lightly as I have been to many wonderful events in the past including many
> Dayton Hamventions, Deerfields, Gaithersburgs, Boxboroughs, TRWs,
> Rochesters, et al.  But this one was absolutely outstanding from all points
> of vies.  First of all, the WX!  It was absolutely FB, OM!!!! Sunny, not to
> hot, not too humid, just perfect!  The flea market was also extremely good
> - I spotted a RCA AR-88 for $75.00 (bought by my friend AE1P), several
> R-390As priced reasonably, some nice Collins, Drakes, Heathkits, keys,
> bugs, tubes, parts,etc all available at decent prices.   There was very
> little computer swill.  Although not large in size this flea market
> reminded me of the times before eBay and had become part of
> the lingua franca.  I bought several real neat items, real keepers - like a
> beautiful Tektronix miniature battery-operated scope ($80.00), a Collins
> DL-1 dummy load (obligatory Collins content), a R-390 chassis
> ($10.00)  including a beautiful front panel and wiring harness which I need
> to restore the one I bought for $25.00 that had been stored in a barn and
> the mice had been sharpening their teeth on the wiring.  There was also the
> unbuilt Heathkit digital clock, some books and another 1967 contract EAC
> "parts radio" I picked up for $50.00 after the fest on the way home.  I am
> sure this will work after I provide the missing part - the 3TF7 regulator
> tube!  Oh yes, I had to put the knobs back on.  The best buy was made by a
> good friend of mine who shall remain nameless who snagged a Hallicrafters
> SX-88 along with the matching transmitter, a NC-300 and the VHF converter
> for $400.00!  It couldn't have happened to a nicer guy (other than me, of
> course!) and I am very happy for him.
> But there's more to Boxborough than the flea market.  There were several
> interesting forums, including the AM forum conducted by Timothy "Timtron"
> Smith WA1HLR and Allan H Weiner owner of WBCQ.  It was packed to the doors
> as usual and a great time was had by all.  The evening banquet special
> guest was Riley Hollingsworth, K4ZDH who also conducted the FCC Forum with
> Vinny Kajunski, the FCC man in charge of the New England office in Boston
> earlier in the day.  This was also a very entertaining forum, not from the
> content per se, but any of you who have seen "Uncle Vinny" in the past will
> know exactly what I mean.
> I shared a room with Tim Smith and Al Weiner which was an experience in
> itself.  Also we spent many enjoyable hours in the restaurant/bar with many
> of our fellow hams.  Riley stopped in a few times to join our group of
> miscreants for a beer and lots of yucks!  I even had a chat with the new
> ARRL President Jim Hainey whose Texas twang stood out among all the New
> England accents heard floating around the place.  He seems to be firmly
> committed to helping us hang onto our spectrum as a first priority of his
> administration and I may even (finally) join the ARRL in support.  We
> boatanchorites will have to help educate him about the pleasures of vintage
> equipment and AM, but it looks like Tim has gotten him started in the right
> direction.  I was also happy to see a couple of my CCA friends like George
> Maier K1GXT and Denis Sharon at the Fest.  Also the Wouff Hong ceremonies
> were held at Midnight and many were inducted into the ranks of this sacred
> radio society.  I wonder how many hamfests conduct this traditional ritual,
> other than Dayton?  Seems to me that nonsense of this sort is what makes
> this hobby so special.
> I have been attending the ARRL New England Convention regularly (every
> second year) for a long time, back to the days it was held at the New Ocean
> House in Swampscott MA, which unfortunately burned to the ground just
> before a convention many years ago.
> Boxborough is just the perfect size event - you get to see everybody and
> there's enough time to visit and chat.  Also you know just about everybody
> which makes for a very friendly atmosphere.  There is a lot more to it than
> the flea market, new equipment displays, forums, special events station,
> meetings, good food, beer and two days and one night to enjoy it all.  I
> was particularly pleased to see so many of the new equipment manufacturers,
> radio dealers, publishers and other venders in attendance,  Last June I was
> very disappointed at Rochester NY with the vender turnout,  It was pitiful!!!
> This kind of wonderful event does not just happen.  It's the result of many
> long hours or work by many volunteers.  I would like to thank them
> here.  Space limitations prevent me from naming them all, but I'd
> particularly like to thank Mike Raisbeck, K1TWF (who is the new General
> Chairman), Dave Foner W1TK, William K1WD, Elliot W1MJ, Ken WO1N and a lot
> more.  It's nice to see that these "younger" folks are now organizing and
> running the hamfest that we all attended as youngsters so many years
> ago.  It also strikes me as very odd that years ago we came to attend the
> forums and listen to the wisdom of the elders.  Today we are the elders (I
> don't know about the "wise" part) presenting the forums and people are
> coming to listen to us.  Also back in those days we literally lived in fear
> of the FCC and today we're friends, hanging out, drinking beer and laughing
> until we can laugh no more.
> Yes indeed, Boxborough 2000 was a wonderful hamfest/convention/flea market
> and I'll remember it always.  It shows me that hamfests are not dying off
> as so many would believe.  Boxborough was alive and well, healthy and
> vibrant.  There were even several teenagers seen sporting callsign
> nametags!  If you were there you know exactly what I mean.  If you weren't,
> you really missed something very special.  However, you can visit it
> electronically at:
> Wait a few days and the pictures from this last weekend will be
> posted.  The site has photos from two previous events in 1996 and 1998.  If
> you have any snapshots you'd like to share please send them to the
> Boxborough Webmaster K1WD at for inclusion in the permanent Web page.
> 73,
> Michael Crestohl, W1RC
> mc at

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