Welcome to my web site, my name is Ray Goff.
I was brought up in Farnborough, Hampshire and first became interested in radio at the tender age of eight while staying with my older cousin for a weekend and we built a crystal set together. This interest developed throughout my teenage years, to the extent that in my late teens I was running a lucrative business mending all the neighbourhood TV's and Radios.
At the same time I became interested in short wave listening after my father produced an old German Torn Eb TRF receiver, which he soon augmented with an R1155 set. This was the end of the 1960's and I had already joined the local Farnborough and District Amateur Radio Society.
In 1969 I started evening classes to pass my RAE exam. The course was held in a local school under the tutelage of John Hardy, G3KND. I passed the exam at the first attempt in May 1970, but was determined to hold out the for the 12 WPM Morse test and a full license.
By 1973, while at university, it became clear that despite my best efforts, including help from another student, G3VMO, I was not going to pass the test in the foreseeable future, so I applied for a Class B, VHF only privileges license and received the callsign G8HMH.
Briefly back in Farnborough again, I joined another evening class led by Colin, G3XUU, to learn Morse code and in November 1976, finally passed the Morse test at a coastal radio station in Southampton and upgraded to my Class A license, G4FON.
From 1981 to 1984 I was G4FON/W9 while living in Chicago and then G4FON/W1 until 1989 while living in the Boston area.
In 1989 I returned to the UK and now live in the centre of Oxford which presents problems for HF operation. After a number of years of inactivity, I can now be found on 20, 30 and 40 metres CW, usually in the QRP section of the band.
This website reflects my main interests; QRP CW operating, homebrew construction and the contesting. You are encouraged to look around and make use of anything you find. I would love to hear about anything you find useful, so drop me an
On this website you will find a CW trainer which I wrote to build my CW speed back up, construction notes for homebrew equipment and aerials and a logging programme for the Palm OS. You will also find my latest programme, a Windows based CW Contest trainer.
More recently, I visited the Farnborough and District Amateur Radio Society for a meeting and renewed some old friendships and I am an active member of both the Oxford and District Amateur Radio Society and the Newbury and District Amateur Radio Society.
In October 2005, at the RSGB HF Convention, I sat the US license exams and passed the Extra paper. Initially, I was issued with a systematic callsign, but I have now obtained the Vanity callsign N4FON!
Breaking News! November 2006: I have been invited to join the First Class CW Operator's Club, FOC, and have received the membership number 1874.