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Ham Radio
Resumes Life as Pumpkin

Ah mes amis.

Though it was some years ago that Dash! and I ruefully returned from the City Of Light, our way forward is finally clear.

When life turns one back into a pumpkin, there is nothing else to do but make pie – and create custom QSL cards.

Like Sebastien's, for instance. His custom QSL represents one of a growing number of international operators who picked up on our designs for hams across America.

Yeah sure, you might say our QSLs are a little different. Nouveau Old School? You tell us.

All we know is, we love to have a good time with bold, heartfelt designs. Most of all, our biggest kick is translating a part of your story into a killer QSL card, which may well be the next best thing to a new radio in the mailbox.

C'est ci bon, eh?



L’expérience nous montre qu’aimer ce n’est point nous regarder l’un l’autre mais regarder ensemble dans la même direction.

Antoine de Saint Exupéry,
French writer, poet and aviator.




Seems like only yesterday I was sketching that little volcano logo on my drawing board.

Suddenly, My Little Volcano is surrounded by gathering 2015 Heard Island DXpeditionary Team Members – scientists, extreme adventurers, and hotshot ham operators signed up for a swashbuckling voyage to a lost world between the Outback and the South Pole.

Huh. Like, I was wicked chuffed when I drew it, but now that VKØEK is getting all very real in the field, hoo boy! Since Dash! and I were kids we dreamed about being just a small part of something this far out and look at us lucky dogs now.

Of course, Dash! The Dog-Faced Ham and I know all about these things. We saw a video at a local club meeting and everything. Dash! told me that he planned to stowaway on the Heard expedition and asked me not to tell, so like I had to promise. Nevertheless, Dash! wasn't specific, so I'm not telling the Dalai Lama, but otherwise, the Heard Island Team has been fully informed and given a complete description, in addition to a bag of candy corn to distract Dash! long enough to cast-off.

Stay tuned. While generally inept, Dash! is capable of anything rash.

ThanksRandy KB3IFH

Randy Dorman, KB3IFH has been our K1NSS Custom QSL printer of choice for some time now and Dash! and I thank him for delighting so many of our customers with super work and spot-on service.

Of course, Randy prints much more than most of our custom designs. KB3IFH QSL Cards offers a marvelous selection of ready-to-go QSL designs and flipside formats. He'll create custom QSLs from your photos. Plus he features neat little eyeball QSO cards and nifty ham trading cards as well.

So click on over here whenever you need to replenish your supply or start your ham career with a bang-up first QSL card done-up just the way you want.

PS: A little insight into the ham behind the business. We had the pleasure of sitting-in with Randy at his Dayton 2014 booth. When weather made our business tough outside at the flea market, Randy generously offered us table space in his booth and helped rescue our cold wet enterprise. Trust us hams, Randy is the real deal.


Little Match Girl

Dear Readers...
If it seems like we're devoting a lot of space to self- promotion these days, well, it's like this. Dash! and I not a couple of golden-parachuted ham retirees doing this for twilight years giggles. No kidding, this monkey business is what puts beans on our table and you know we're far too pure & proud to beg contributions, stage some cockamamie Pledge Week, or Crowd-Source our way into a zippy little replacement for our long-in-the-tooth 4Runner. Yeah, the card biz seems to have picked up a tad and we're pleased as punch about that. Frankly, the two us are just too old to keep whatever niche appeal we might have under a bushel basket, so we're kickin' out the jams and lettin' er rip. So what's up with the bearded Little Match Girl ham? Beats us. She just shows up around here from time to time, especially during the holiday season. Kind of pathetic, huh? We try not to feed her but every so often we spring for a match or two so she doesn't start keening. Aye-yi-yi, like fingernails on a blackboard. Like, not for nothing, ya know?


WRTC drawings

2014 WRTC/volunteer.images used with permission ©2014

Super Fun

They're awarded, they now have homes, and at last we can reveal our secret summer project undertaken in a clandestine semi-cloak-and-dagger cartoon conspiracy with organizers of the World Radiosport Team Championship 2014.


In recognition of eight supporting "Super Volunteers," we were commissioned to created a series of lighthearted portraits celebrating the volunteers' contributions to WRTC 2014, as well as their passions inside and out of their shacks.

During the process, we got to know something about some real hams' hams and document a bit of their part in amateur radio history, and we felt honored for that opportunity.zoning

So if you ever wondered if we'd draw custom fun stuff like this for club activities or some special ham of your acquaintance, by golly yes we would! And we have, in a pretty big way.

The rate and the way it works is pretty much the same as a custom QSL. CLICK HERE and check that out.

We create the image and send you the printer-ready, high-resolution art file. It's up to you to have the image printed and framed, but if you're not sure where to get that done, we'll do our best to help you identify an appropriate local digital art printer and framing options, for best presentation.

For reference down the road, please tuck it away, eh?


Any club that would have Dash! and I as members we would normally eschew.

However, the Clippers have proved very good to us and by golly its great to be rounding the Horn once again with the YCCC. Up to now, K1NSS has not kicked in an excessive number of points, but this contest season, we're looking back for competitive inspiration to Eleanor and Josiah Creesy, married navigator and skipper of the fastest clipper ship of all, the Flying Cloud.Creesy

The Creesys pulled together and set sailing records that stood well into the 20th century. Daughter of a Cape Ann captain, Eleanor Creesy made her own mark, proving game-changer navigational methodology pioneered by Matthew Fontaine Maury, known as the "Father of Oceanography and Modern Naval Meteorology."

Smart Cookies, the Creesys – same as those Yankee Clippers! Aye-Aye, this season, the ol' Sea Dog-Faced Ham and I vow to spend more seat time on deck.

PS: Intrigued by Eleanor The Navigator? This 19th century Wonder Woman of singular note figures in nifty Steam Punk tales drawn by hotshot animator Sydney Padua.

Creesy ahoyCheck out her brilliant ongoing 2D Goggles webcomix HERE for past episodes featuring fiery Eleanor Creesy, in the fictional company of just as real Digerati Ada Lovelace (yes, Lord Byron's daughter of mad math skills) Charles Babbage (yes, the Difference Engine Guy) and Isambard Kingdom Brunel, who artist Padua describes as "The Wolverine" of mid-Victorian structural engineering. If you're a cool geek who doesn't know 2D better, you bet!


QSL for Christmas










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Short Wave, Long Term.

Calling all Friends of the Short Waves!

We're spreading the word about Ears To Our World, a charity founded by Dash!Chum Thomas Witherspoon, K4SWL.

ETOW distributes wind-up radios to isolated villages around the world, an effort inspired by the beguiling radio magic about which we're all mad as hatters.

Here at Dashtoons, we kid radio because we love radio, make no mistake about that. So smitten, we support Ears To Our World as a vital 21st century force for public education and personal liberation. Plain and simple, radio is all about becoming airborne – that's what it was to us and remains so in this digital age, especially in remote and developing areas beyond the internet, cell phones and electric power.

Featured in Wall Street Journal magazine, ETOW makes it very easy to contribute whatever you can to foster communications where it's needed most.

Check out the Ears To Our World site now and join us in supporting a good thing for a better world.

Just between you and me and Dash!, it's personal.