1911Forum banner

1 - 20 of 30 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Okay, I've been on sabbatical from forums. I admit it. That said, after thinking about and threatening to do so for nearly 40 years I finally took the Technician test last night. I missed one question. Now just waiting for my call sign and to show up in the FCC database.

I'm planning on going for my General next month at the next club meeting. Oh yeah, I joined the local club. Not a lot of folks and we all have grey hair. LOL.

I got my GMRS license 22 AUG 2017. Unfortunately just before they changed the time period from 5 to 10 years before renewal. Since my wife doesn't have any interest in getting her amateur license I'll keep the GMRS since my license covers the family and we can talk off that with up to 50 Watts and I already have two Part 95 certified HTs with 5 watts and external antenna capable.

Now to mount antennas (after local architectural/planning committee blessings) and use the stuff I already have and lust for new gear.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,331 Posts
AIW - good to see you post here again, and congrats on your HAM license! A lot of folks really don't realize the vital role that HAM's play in disaster and emergency situations, and it is no surprise that your local club is "mostly gray haired"; I suspect most of them are.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,606 Posts
Back in the day my dad mounted a yagi on our new house. Neighbors complained. Luckily the township considered anything within 20 feet of the roof to be a tv antenna. Not as high up as he would have liked but life is compromise.

Lots of good memories with my dad and ham radio. Enjoy your new hobby. If you ever come to the Ohio ham fest let me know. I'm not far and I have a backyard range.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #8 (Edited)

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,157 Posts
For HF, do yourself a favor and become well versed in "NVIS". Once you get your General, and if you want to be involved in emergency comm, NVIS is much more useful than regular skywave propagation in many situations.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #10
For HF, do yourself a favor and become well versed in "NVIS". Once you get your General, and if you want to be involved in emergency comm, NVIS is much more useful than regular skywave propagation in many situations.
Appreciate the info. Might take a bit before I'm actually doing HF, but it's definitely a direction I want to go in. Emergency comms is one area that I'm really interested in. I joined the local club the night I tested. They talked a little about how emergency readiness activity and coordination here has kind of fallen away and there was some interest in getting back into it more from the HAM side. I am up for that.

Thanks again for the NVIS suggestion. Will research it more.
 

·
Super Moderator
Joined
·
14,331 Posts
AIW, my oldest brother lived with my aunt and uncle in Oklahoma City back in the 60's, and spent many hours with my uncle on HAM radio. My uncle's call sign was W5VCJ, and after he passed away, his call sign was transferred to my brother, who is now disabled and no longer on HAM - sad, because I remember many hours visiting my uncle and talking to folks all over the world, very enjoyable for a kid in the late 50's and early 60's that was 7 - 10 years old. Carry on, and enjoy.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
817 Posts
Sounds like you've done your research, knowing the gear you want and what to do with it.
I didn't have a clue about gear, I just knew I wanted to get back into CW again, which is about all I do. 73..K8PRG
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8,191 Posts
Discussion Starter #17
Appreciate it.

50AE, I like that the FCC will let people put in for legacy call signs. A way of keeping some tradition and memory of someone who mattered to you.

NG, go for your Technician. As many here have said to many of us in the past, it's pretty doable. I used Hamstudy.org and basically just learn the test. I'm usually not a fan of that kind of thing, but in this case get the ticket and consider it a license to learn. I've been in and out learning about and interested in various electronic/commo things for decades but never really settled down on it other than CB back in the days when you actually got a license and a call sign. I was toward the end on that.

I had already acquired a few Baofeng UV-5Rs and had programmed them with CHIRP originally for listening then reprogrammed for HAM now. They're extras and backup now. I picked up a TYT UV8000E handheld. Still a Chinese handheld, dual band radio, but 10 Watts with crossband repeat capability. With the whip it's pretty impressive for an $80 radio. Good reach, good reports on receive by others off our repeater. I've been asked if I was using a mobile or a base station. So you can get talking on something a little better than the basic Baofeng and still cost less than a box of .338 Lapua ammo.

Anyone out here running on Echolink? With things quiet most of the time on our local repeater I've taken to venturing out on it via the iPad. Sat in a couple of nets held each night by some fellows (on actual radios) from the Black Valley River Club up in Booneville, NY, and chatted with a couple of fellows that are the key guys on the White Mountain Range in AZ.

One thing I am wanting to mess with is data over the radios. RTTY, SSTV, satellite/ISS downloads, and similar that can be done with just a few simple radios (simplex) and apps on Android and iPad(iPhone) (no internet or cell service needed once you have the apps downloaded). Seems like a handy skill and capability to have for sending messages and images when net/cell is down or out in radio only territory.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
6,348 Posts
I'm sure with all things technical and communications related things have changed a lot since I went "quiet" 15 years ago.

I too was introduced to "HAM" radio as a youngster in 1958 at the "MARS" station at Ft. Meade, Maryland. Talking to people in Australia was really amazing to a 12 year old!

Got my Tech about 25 years ago, KE6RIF. Living at 6,200 feet elevation in SoCal gave me a real advantage on just a J-pole for general signal hunting and family communications. Wife was KE6 also. My neighbor had a repeater for county emergency comm's. and general use. The elevation allowed a 200+ mile radius!

I found a repeater in San Diego that was linked via the internet that connected to a network throughout Europe. Really weird sitting at home talking to guys half a world away on an HT!

There was also a network that went up the central valley of CA. linking repeaters expanding almost limitless access all the way up to OR.

Some day I might get back into it for general and emergency communications but for now the internet provides all the comm. I can handle! :)

73's from the Beautiful Pacific Northwest
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,430 Posts
A buddy I use to drag race with back in south florida in the '70's . He was also heavily into HAM at the time and had several radios set up and other black boxes and had a tower out back that had a main section that was hinged and had a few other sections that elevated and I remember him saying could reach to 60 feet on the tower plus a the antenna with a large flat directional antenna , may 12 to 20 feet on the tips across . He got into this enough that he ended up servicing towers for swfl area radio stations for some years then got in to charter boat fishing and had a heart attack maybe 6 years ago and passed away . Good guy . For some of the old timers see if anyone remembers a Jeff Player - Naples Fl
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
8 Posts
Congratulations! Never ending fun to be had! I've been licensed over 25 plus years, been involved in ECOM and Skywarn off and on all that time, pretty quiet now, use it more for local comms back and forth to work (80 mile trek).

Enjoy!
 
1 - 20 of 30 Posts
Top