View Poll Results: What license level do you hold?
Extra 32 43.24%
Advanced - (No longer issued but valid) 4 5.41%
General 22 29.73%
Technician 14 18.92%
Novice - (No longer issued but valid) 1 1.35%
GMRS - ONLY 1 1.35%
Voters: 74. You may not vote on this poll

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Old 03-01-2016, 05:21 PM   #21
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Just passed the Extra exam last Saturday. Usually carry an Icom 51A with external antenna when camping. Also a Dvap for Dstar use. Don't take the HF rig camping, but it is tempting. W4GET in Florida. I like 12 and 17 meters the best. Also Reflectors 1C,30C and 37C on Dstar.
GRATZ! I studied my butt off for that test. Some answers I just had to memorize because I never could figure out what the heck they were talking about. My head was about to explode!


I got my GMRS ticket while I was at it so I could use full power on the walkie talkies. 36 mile range is pretty cool.
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Old 03-01-2016, 05:51 PM   #22
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This is interesting. Could someone explain to us non-Hams what it is that draws people to this hobby beyond the obvious joy of communication? And could you explain the basics of it? Might attract some new recruits. Thanks.
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Old 03-01-2016, 06:06 PM   #23
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WN5FDL since 1969. That is back when a ham license required you to know electronics.
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Old 03-01-2016, 06:37 PM   #24
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Neat thread. Herk, Congrats on the Extra. That takes some work. I got my Novice license at age 14 in Feb 1967, Passed general in November 1967, and advanced in January 1968. Then I had fun operating and chasing DX for a few years. In Aug, 1974, the wife and I drove to Beaumont Texas where I took the Extra one day, and back the next morning to take the commercial radio test. Passed both. Man, that was a happy day for me. We celebrated at some Italian food restaurant and drove home. The Extra license meant more fun, the commercial license meant more pay.
I used to have a blast working the contests, especially the Sweepstakes, Field day, and the DX contest.
Won the state novice sweepstakes in Texas for 1967. DXCC, WAS, WAC. Loved working CW at the low end of 15, 20, & 40 meters.
Ham Radio is a great hobby, and I have to say that it kept me out of (some) trouble as a teenager. Developed some great friendships along the way also. As the career began to take priority, I became less and less active. After moving from technical side to management, the moves were tough on the Ham hobby. I sold most of my gear, sold the tower, sold the yagi's, and became inactive thinking I would restart after life settled down a little...Ha...silly me. I did keep my old Browns Machine Shop paddle. Man, that thing was smooth to operate. Haven't been active for several years now, but still run the code through my mind from time to time...lol.
Great Hobby.
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Old 03-01-2016, 07:03 PM   #25
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WN5FDL since 1969. That is back when a ham license required you to know electronics.
This is still required. Only the Morse Code test is no longer required.

Practice tests are here for all the levels:
eHam.net Ham Radio Practice Exams
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Old 03-01-2016, 07:32 PM   #26
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WA8MRU - 1964. General
Herk, Congrats on the Extra!!

73's
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Old 03-01-2016, 07:38 PM   #27
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This is interesting. Could someone explain to us non-Hams what it is that draws people to this hobby beyond the obvious joy of communication? And could you explain the basics of it? Might attract some new recruits. Thanks.
Community Service and a desire to keep my 65 year old brain fresh.

Being able to deploy to shelters in the event of natural or man-made disasters to provide communications for emergency responders is a real plus for me.

When Sandy hit and the cell towers were either knocked out or their generators ran out of fuel, Ambulance, Police, and Fire EMS found their primary systems (cell phones) out of action. HAM operators rode along or set up shop at command centers and shelters to keep the emergency supplies and services going to where they were needed.

Being able to communicate hundreds of miles (in some cases thousands of miles) in an emergency makes it worthwhile for me.

For more information on Public Service:

ARES

https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Milita...y_Radio_System

Air Force MARS * * * * * * * Phone Patch Net: Providing RadioTelephone Service To US Military Aircraft Worldwide

The Canadians are not left out either!
https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Canadi...e_Radio_System
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Old 03-01-2016, 07:57 PM   #28
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In Canada we needed code at 30 wpm to get a Novice Licence. I was working on this with my Father when he suddenly passed away. Never went back. Do not need that any longer now and can get a technician licence.
Now I run kilowatts of power being a broadcast engineer as as often as last night had my hands in a FM transmitter to fix it and get the station back on the air.
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B&B I only had to learn CW at 10 wpm to get the basic and then 15 wpm to get advanced. I did CW about 99% of the time and could take 37 to 41 wpm. Not now as I've gotten away from the HF.
When I passed mine in the early 90's there was no WPM component for either the Basic or Advanced. This is going back some years, but I believe at the time it was something like:

a) Basic - Demonstrate knowledge of the rules, regs and educate. Allows you to operate equipment in any frequency higher than 6M (50 MHz), at a capped power (5W?, 10W?).
b) Advanced - Demonstrate a knowledge of the electronics behind the radio, antenna, wave patterns, etc... Allows you to boost your your power to a ridiculously high number (2500W?). Does not provide transmitting rights by itself, still requires Basic to transmit.
c) 5 WPM - Demonstrate the ability to transmit/received morse code at 5 WPM. Opened up the 160M and 80M bands. Does not provide transmitting rights by itself, still required a Basic. Power was restricted as per Basic/Advanced license held. I.e. a person with Basic and 5 WPM could only use 5W, though in the 80M band.
d) 12 WPM - Demonstrate the ability to transmit/receive morse code at 12 WPM. Opened up all the amateur bands. Does not provide transmitting rights by itself, still required a Basic. Power restricted as per Basic/Advanced.

Under those regs, I got my Basic and Advanced. Back then you had to renew your license every year or so, and the year I thought about letting it lapse (2000) they changed the regs and you now kept your license for life. So officially, my license is still good, but I haven't powered a rig in 10 years or so.

I do still have mine around here. A Yaesu 8900R Quad band (10M, 6M, 2M and 70cm), but it's not been hooked up in years. Don't even have a place to easily mount the antenna at this house. But I do have hopes of one day getting back into it. Especially now that I hear the regs have changed and I can (supposedly) now leverage that 10M band the radio was capable of, without needing to go get the 12 WPM first.
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Old 03-01-2016, 08:19 PM   #29
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This is interesting. Could someone explain to us non-Hams what it is that draws people to this hobby beyond the obvious joy of communication? And could you explain the basics of it? Might attract some new recruits. Thanks.
Congrats Herk. I passed my tech 2 years ago and general last year. They offered me the extra, so I took it, might as well try. They graded the first page and sent me home. A bit more study required.

Mjones, I got into ham primarily for emergency services., but it is intriguing. The main thing over CB or FRS radios is power. You can cover much wider distance, on lower frequencies around the world. There are also a range of other things you can do like email type messages, pictures, video, and auto GPS location or tracking.

As far as carrying a radio in the MH, I almost always take my 2 meter or my handheld. I have not installed HF in the MH yet but probably will after I finish getting set up at home.

73
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Old 03-01-2016, 08:24 PM   #30
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Have my technician class since 1998 I think. Have not been on the air in prob 10 years. Where I am now has no local repeaters or clubs.

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