End Of An Era


I have been thinking about writing this post for a couple of weeks now. How to do it justice, how to say what I think without being a total arsehole or sounding whiny. Well lets just see how it goes 😉

What do you do when your radio hero’s decides its time to pack up and end their illustrious careers in home brew? But not only retire but also rage quit and remove all their published materials? So rather than rush into things and immediately post my thoughts, I have sat on this for a while and tried to be a little more rational in my response.

I have followed Pete from almost since I became a ham in 2014. I found out about him from the Soldersmoke podcast where he was a co-host and found Pete to be very approachable, friendly and willing to share his knowledge and skill with you.

Unlike Bill who I would not piss on if he was on fire, who would not give you a smell of his shit, let along answer a question help anyone other than himself and his handful of favorites. Even now, he posts his crap in the home brew group I help moderate in facebook and when someone asks him a question you get nothing. He is all about self promotion of his site to get amazon referrals to fund his retirement rather than being about community.

Anyway, Pete always answered his emails and took an interest in what others were doing, learning or sharing. Sort of the way it should be. His blog as been on my RSS feed page for years, as seen in the image above and I have been following his various builds, rants and stuff for years. I have even build some of his projects, not in full, but in part borrowed stuff he has designed.

Pete also taught me the value of LT Spice, that simulation was a very valuable tool and skills well worth having. Just about all of his projects had oodles of simulations screens, comparing and contrasting theory with the reality of the build. Something I always appreciated, because he also explained the thought process that went into the design, the tweaking and the final execution.

Even his rants were mostly entertaining, but the amount of radio’s he built was amazing and always something different or unique in each one. He was a champion for Arduino and the SI5351A, where others moaned and groaned and begged others for code. Pete just got on with learning enough C to be able to do what he wanted. Which is an admirable trait.

I know we all get old and at some point or rather we are all going to have to make the decision about when its the right time for us to hang up the soldering iron and say my time in this part of the hobby is done. Or worse, become silent key. But that does not mean we have to like it.

So to N6QW, Pete Juliano, I wish you the best for the next chapter of your ham radio journey. While i might not like your decision I do respect it and hope that you still find enjoyment in ham radio, even if its not home brewing, but just using all those radios you have build, repaired and restored over the years.

73’s you have been an inspiration. If i can manage 1/4 of what you have done, my time in ham radio will have been a success. I hope the future is good to you. Thanks for the journey.


4 thoughts on “End Of An Era

  1. I was sad to see Pete had decided to close his blog. Happily it seems to be well backed up on the Internet Archive. One can only guess at what’s currently going on in Pete’s life – sounds like his wife is very ill.

    You’re being rather harsh about Bill. I’ve found him supportive and responsive over the years. There are costs to hosting a podcast and website and getting a commission from Amazon is a very low friction way to get some financial support.

    1. Hey Peter, yeah i know others who have said similar things, I guess he is rather hit and miss. I can only speak from my own perspective and experience though and generally I hold people in low esteem who post things to the facebook home brew group I moderate, whose entire point of the posting is to promote their own thing.

      If he responded to questions and comments posed to him it would be a different story, but its all drive by shootings and nothing more. The QSO Today guy is exactly the same. When they do not even respond to admin messages, you know they are just posting for self promotion from within their blogs and nothing more.

      I have spoken with Pete via email and know a little of whats going on behind the scenes but don’t have anything I can share here, other than to say looking after his wife is taking up all his time and from the few posts he made of late, he is a bit disillusioned with the community more generally.

      There are a lot of demanding people out there who just want want want or complain that you did not do things how they would have, same said people who never post or share anything they build, probably because they dont. Had a bloke a few weeks back now ask me if I would let him sell kits of some of my projects. Its hard to stay positive about things when you have to deal with people like that. I got a ton of stuff I have been working on and just dont want to post about it anymore because of things like this. My guess is Pete is also done with this kind of stuff also.

      1. Perhaps I’m guilty here too. Sometimes I see someone asking something I’ve answered on my blog so I post a link to that.

        I think YouTube’s reward system is leading to some undesirable behaviour. I hear Bill asking people to just leave videos running to get his hours up. Videos have gotten longer and I’m sick of all the “don’t forget to like and subscribe and click the bell” talk.

        Your blog is a good read. We have similar interests. I wish more people would make public notes on what they are doing or discovering. Several times I’ve gotten stuck, done a search, and found an old post of my own with the answer that I had forgotten.

        1. I think when people start asking to leave a video run to get their views up as well as all the like share subscribe join patrion twitter discord crap, its no longer about making quality content that people might be interested in and its all about building a following and personal brand so one can shill for shekels.

          Not sure whether that is good or bad per se, but I certainly know its not me. Because at some point it no longer becomes about having something to say, or something to share and you end up making content just for views. The internet is filled with shit already, without adding more shit people need to wade through to find the nugget they are looking for.

          Which is why I blog, I am not trying to tell anyone anything, I do not write tutorials or how to’s, its more just a public diary of what I have been doing more than anything else. The one thing I do hope is that people who stumble upon it, will find it inspiring, not helpful.

          I had encouraged Pete a couple of times to keep his blog up, not because people build his projects, but because it might inspire someone to try and build their own thing. That is the ultimate goal really, not having a mailing list like EMFRD or Bitx where people talk about how great they are and how everyone else is wrong, a couple of things he raged at LOL, or the group that formed around one of his projects and then never built anything.

          I think there is great temptation to forget what really matters and get sucked down the rabbit hole of being famous, having a following and influence. I wish more hams wrote books rather than trying to be influencers LOL

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