Episode 445 – Nick Tusa – K5EF


Nick Tusa, K5EF, embarked on his ham radio journey as a teenager in a New Orleans Jesuit high school, where he was introduced to the cutting-edge technology of a Central Electronics 10A SSB Exciter at the school’s ham radio station. This early fascination sparked a lifelong friendship between Nick and Wes Schum, W9DYB, the co-founder and chief engineer of Central Electronics. Over the course of their 50-year friendship, Nick not only built a successful career in radio and communications but also became Schum’s biographer. K5EF is my QSO today.



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Hometown: New Orleans

First License:  Novice, 1965, WN5NID, Age 13
General Class, 1965, WA5RMC

First Rig:
Drake 2A General Coverage Receiver
Eico 720 Transmitter
General Class Upgrade Transceiver:
Swan 350 Transceiver

Electric Substation
Electric Power Line
Vehicle Starter Motor
Vehicle Alternator
Shortwave Listening
Hallicrafters S-119 General Coverage Receiver
Jesuit High School, New Orleans
Central Electronics 10A Exciter
Collins 75A1 Receiver
SSB Phasing Modulation Method
Zenith owned Central Electronics
Karl Hassel, Co-Founder of Zenith 
Tulane University, BSEE
Exxon Communications Staff Engineer
Receiver Voting System
Trunked Radio System
P25 Digital Modulation
AMBE Digital Vocoder
Wes Schum W9DYB
EH Scott Radio Labs, Chicago
Good Housekeeping Magazine
Covidual Signal Corporation (Call Boxes) need reference
Paravane Technology towed behind minesweepers
54Khz the frequency of torpedo propellers
Higgins Craft Landing Craft
SSB developed during WW2 for multichannel teletype
California Kilowatt
General Electric, Syracuse, NY – made first SSB radios used by the military
General Electric Single Sideband Junior Exciter
Central Electronics 600L Linear Amplifier
Central Electronics Model 100V
Central Electronics Model 200V
Zenith Color Television 1961
Proximity Fuze
JL1 Language Lab Equipment
Western Electric
Carterfone Act
ADC Jack Fields
Broadband Output Coupler HF
History of Radio Paging
Beepers of New Orleans
Zetron Paging Terminals
Most Challenging Restoration:  Collins URC32
Cosmophone 35 Bi-Latteral Transceiver, 1958
Technical Material Corporation GPT-750 Transmitter
Eimac 4-400 Tube
Eisenhower’s Rail Car
Sunspot Cycle 25

Excited most by: phasing techniques, in remembering, Central Electronic,  SDRs are software equivalents of phasing technology

Advice to new or returning hams: Get on the “HF” air!  “HF is the glue”​

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Wes Schum W9DYB and Nick Tusa K5EF

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