The year continued pretty much started as 1979 ended: as a Novice class operator. Here is the front and back of one of my QSL cards sent to J7DD from a January 1980 QSO.
Later that year, I took a study class at Bryant College, studying for my General Class license. I took the exam at the FCC Field Office in Boston, Mass. at 1600 Custom House (pictured left), back in the days before volunteer examiners. I passed the exam, a 13 word per minute code test as well as the Technician written test, on July 9, 1980. So my callsign was KA1CCA/BS, or "interim BS". The "interim" designation was required in those days. Pictured left is the interim ticket. When I took the test, I applied for a new call sign. I received my license with new callsign N1BCV on August 11, 1980 (pictured left)
Once I got my General ticket, Nelson, the fellow whose QSLs I featured in a previous year, encouraged me to be an active Ten-Ten International number chaser. He was a sort of "Elmer" for me at the time. I put the 10X logo and 10X # 29622 on a QSL card (pictured below). During 1980, I was quite active with 10X, collecting several certificates and 10X #s on the 10 meter band. I received a membership certificate for the Ocean State chapter of 10X, issued to me August 1980 courtesy of WB1CRR, Nelson Hayward. I had also become interested in collecting call sign prefixes, and on October 11, 1980, CQ Magazine's WPX program awarded me the WPNX for 100 prefixes
I continued using the Tempo One transceiver (pictured here in November 1980) and dipole antenna, until finally putting up a ground mounted 5-band vertical antenna.
I eventually changed transceivers to a Yaesu FT101ZD in December 1980 (pictured here) with the accessories I purchased: the FC901 antenna tuner & FV101Z external VFO.