©2014 W4RAR - with permission


Kentucky CW op W4RAR asked us, in so many words, for a Full Boat Bugtussle – our term for the classic Mountain OM QSL card. Its perennial popularity probably has a lot do with the shack, along with the happy go-lucky, any lash-up-in-a-storm, off-grid rugged individualistic appeal of rural radio by the light of foxfire and circa National Barn Dance vacuum tubes. Moreover we wanted our silly FBB to keep it a little real in the field, so we added a wee ginseng patch.

Yes, we were forced to gentrify the shack with French doors so our Bugtussler could show off his station and enjoy his telegraphy 'n toot al fresco. BTW, that's Robert's Designated Security Guard, on the left under the porch.

TU OM...dit-dit!


©2014 Pizza Lovers 259 - with permission

Let Loose The Kraken!

Nothing but mass quantities of high octane pies will do for the Pizza Lovers 259 Contest Club of California's Uber Cool SI Valley. You can well imagine how chuffed we were to hold the anchovies and release our ferociously competitive iteration of the classic coaxial connector on an unsuspecting world of Radiosport.

Wanna let loose your club's Inner Kraken? Get in touch and let's create a monster logo together! Think of the T-shirts, the caps, the newsletters...Oh the Hamanity! Rates comparable to custom QSLs, big fun for your whole membership.

Click here, consults free!


K9JDP qsl

©2014 K9JDP - with permission

Tiger Ragchew.

James K9JDP AKA "PawMan" got a Teensy Tiger Thing goin' on top of his radio, so you better believe he's bigtime ALL IN when it comes to those Clemson University Tigers. Another critter card! Yeah, we love to draw creatures of all sorts in headphones. Keep 'em coming, please!



©2014 G4GXL - with permission

Ticket to Ride.

New One! Here's the completed custom QSL for our first English client, QRP ARCI's Steve Fletcher, G4GXL. It's based around a Russian cigarette tin given to Steve on his recent QRP fellowship ramble through Baba Yaga territory. We modded out the tin and placed it in a tip-o-the-headphones tribute background somewhat in the style of Russian illustrator Ivan Biliban's turn-of-the-century fairytale woodland scenes. Tucked the return British Rail ticket underneath as a stealthy bit of day-tripping fun, referencing Steve's King's Lynn QTH in Norfolk. This might well be our most visually ambitious card to date, and kudos to Steve for supporting us with outstanding supplimentary photographs from which we drew the repurposed cigarette tin, as well as the dragonfly. Credit to Steve also for the "distressed" QRP club logo sticker idea, a very clever touch. Oh yeah, in all the hurly-burly, I almost forgot Steve's hobby alter-ego as major dragonfly fancier. Gotta tell ya YLs & OMs, we get the coolest customers, bar none!



©2014 MAC-EXPERT - with permission

Portraits à la carte.

Perhaps you don't need a whole QSL design, but could use a stand-alone graphic render of yourself or another.

We do that, (sorry no public figures or copyrighted characters) working from a scan of your own photograph. We generally leave proper caricature, which is a very specialized art form, to the specialists, and shoot for a nice simple sketch of good likeness like the above created for the business website of this San Francisco Bay Area Mac IT professional.

Mind you, this is not a one-click plug-in filter job. I draw the line art in a marvelous application called Manga Studio, which simulates a variety of natural media brush and pen strokes. The line drawing is exported to Photoshop, where it's colorized and variously finished to your satisfaction. Via my file service, you receive a 300 dpi high-resolution digital art file ready for posting or printing. Sketch portrait rates begin at $90 which includes a $30 upfront starter fee.


The Designs.

portfolio splash



Our custom QSL portfolio provides a complete look at the card designs we've created for hams around the world.

What might we create for you?

Click to browse!







images ©2014 AA5D courtesy Mitch Fortner


The Details.


photo courtesy Andrew Haworth ©2013 KK4DSD

Our bespoke front-side QSL art is most often a collaborative effort with our clients, a mutual sharing and development of ideas that are translated into images. No worries if you're not yet sure what's right for your card. We'll figure it out together. Clients receive printer-ready digital art files and own the design as well as all rights to reproduce it. All images here appear by generous permission.

Read our eHam Reviews!


How does it work?

No big deal.

Start us sketching for $30 up front via PayPal, and we'll deliver an initial design proposal, reasonable back and forth included. The design mock-up includes your QSL art, callsign, simple QTH and handle text.

No surprises. The design proposal will give you a good idea how it's going to look and we'll make changes as needed.

Once you approve the final draft design, remaining work is billed at $40 per hour for finished, QSL printer-ready high resolution digital art files, plus web-resolution files for convenient posting online.


At no additional charge, you'll also receive an 8.5 x 11" signed print on 11.8mil heavyweight Epson Ultra Premium photo paper printed with genuine Epson inks, as a tangible, decorative keepsake of what we created together.


Altogether how much does a custom QSL design package typically cost?

Most designs will be $150, which covers three hours to finish the 300 dpi digital art, delivered via Hightail file service. This also includes the start-up fee and a hand-signed print of your custom QSL design inscribed with our "Dashie" mark, shipped postpaid in a stout, capped, reusable Yazoo brand heavy- duty Kraft mailing tube. Always ask for Yazoo, whenever you acquire FB ham radio art.



QSL printing is up to you.

We're happy to meet specs of your QSL printer of choice.

We're pleased to recommend Randy KB3IFH. His customers tell the story in their eHam Reviews.

Most of our clients have tapped KB3IFH QSL Cards and received the benefit of Randy's savvy advice and superior customer service. And Randy contacts me directly if he has technical questions, so you needn't sweat the details.


What about the QSO report form?

We recommend putting that on the back of your card, along with mailing info, awards, rigs, and other personal details, easily arranged with your QSL printer. Most offer a variety of reverse side formats in customizable styles. The expense is not much more than a single-sided card, and allows maximum, uncluttered space for your custom design.

Can I print your designs on my own printer?

Yes you can, but you must remember that our designs are default standard QSL size, 3.5 x 5.5" which is a bit differently proportioned than the usual 4x6" photo print format. While not wildly far off, it makes a difference.

If home printing is your plan, you're welcome to opt instead for a design that's standard 4"x6" photo paper size no extra charge. It's also possible to do a design that works in both formats, but it's easier and quicker for all concerned if I know that's your intent before I start.

Use BV7 Freeware by DF3CB to print your own QSL report labels for the back and you're good to go. Of course, your print quality will vary, depending on printer, photo paper, inks and settings. Mailing self-printed photos like postcards is risky business, so envelopes are a must. Also before buying envelopes, make sure they'll fit your 4"x6" cards.

Contact me, Jeff K1NSS, for a free consultation. I'd be delighted to discuss your ideas and answer your questions.

Still Just Looking? Click this customer blog write-up with pictures by Frank KØJQZ and have a independent look at a K1NSS Custom QSL experience. You don't buy a pig in a poke. It's plenty of back and forth with ample opportunity for feedback and mid-course corrections. It's gotta be right. It's that simple.


About us.

I'm a bona fide OM who first became airborne in his 1963 boyhood bedroom, slipping Earth's surly bonds by means of my humble Heathkit DX-20 and laughable Lafayette HE-40 , feeding a legendary Gotham Vertical.

Between me and you-know-who, our radiosportin' life is an open couple of books starring Dash! The Dog-Faced Ham. Plus my homepage of ham funnies and fun Dashtoons.com is followed by discriminating fans around the amateur world.


QSL art aside, our ham graphics clients have included RF Concepts/Alpha Amplifiers, who featured our cartoon art on their Dayton 2012 posters. For more of our work for Alpha, click here.



YASME Foundation President and ARRL Contributing Editor Ward Silver, N0AX tapped us to design the cover of his ham radio crime thriller Zone of Iniquity.



And our logo art has received international attention promoting ham radio special events for young people, sponsored by one of northern Italy's most active and forward looking amateur organizations, Insubria Radio Club.

In addition, Jeff K1NSS Design created graphics for :

    K9YA Telegraph's latest book publication
    The Art & Skill of Radio Telegraphy

    Brooklyn-Based Radio Producer David Goren
    Shortwaveology.org site graphics & Shortwave Shindig logo



First time visitor?

Safe to say that under this ionosphere, there's nothing quite like Dashtoons. So if you're new to our decidedly different take on ham radio, give 'er a click!