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 New to ham radios 
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Real Name: Steve
Honestly I got my Technician class and General class licenses just using this tool http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/

I've never felt the urge to get an Extra class.

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Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:22 pm
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Tagged. I bought one of those Baefing radios, going to want to learn and get on the 'net like the cool kids.

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Wed Apr 06, 2016 6:44 pm
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kf7mjf wrote:
Honestly I got my Technician class and General class licenses just using this tool http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/

I've never felt the urge to get an Extra class.


Will give that a try.

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 7:57 am
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I need to take my general.

Steve... Get your firearms company to merge with baofengs and then get them to build a uhf/vhf/hf rig

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 10:02 am
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kf7mjf wrote:
Honestly I got my Technician class and General class licenses just using this tool http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/

I've never felt the urge to get an Extra class.


I've studied off and on for a couple years for the Extra but can't pass the test. I'll have to sign up for a class/testing combo for get the Extra. I once read off a few of the questions to a woman I was dating that MA in Aeronautical Engineering, works for Blue Origin, literally a rocket scientist, and she got them right and said to me, "You know this is master level thesis stuff right?" Well that explained all my studying woes right there!
Soldier_Citizen wrote:
I need to take my general.

Steve... Get your firearms company to merge with baofengs and then get them to build a uhf/vhf/hf rig
You mean like a FT-857D?

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:12 pm
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Yea but I don't wanna pony up that amount of cash for a radio right now. Specially for a back pack rig

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 1:41 pm
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Soldier_Citizen wrote:
Yea but I don't wanna pony up that amount of cash for a radio right now. Specially for a back pack rig

I feel you. I wouldn't want to haul it in a backpack either. KX3 looks nice but, costs even more and no UHF.

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:46 pm
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dreadi wrote:
Soldier_Citizen wrote:
Yea but I don't wanna pony up that amount of cash for a radio right now. Specially for a back pack rig

I feel you. I wouldn't want to haul it in a backpack either. KX3 looks nice but, costs even more and no UHF.


Haven't seen that one. Yea. I'd like to have the ability to run all 3 of i can

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Thu Apr 07, 2016 2:49 pm
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I've been a ham for about 27 years. If all you need is point to point communications while in the field a Technician license will give you full access to everything you need. All frequencies above 50 MHz, full power (1500 Watts if you need it). Plus some frequencies and modes below 50 MHz. Morse code was done away with a number of years ago, so all you need to do is pass a written exam. General and Extra have more difficult written tests.

Depending on where you are located there are clubs that have license exam sessions. I studied using materials from Gordon West (WB6NOA), but that was years ago. You could get them at Radio Shack back then. HRO (Ham Radio Outlet) is a good source, both on-line and in person (if you are near one of their stores, the closest is on the south side of Portland).

Please don't operate on amateur frequencies without a license. You stand a good chance of being caught and turned in to the FCC. The folks in the FCC's Enforcement Bureau take a dim view of unlicensed operation and the fines aren't worth it.

The previous advice about antennas vs. power is correct. The difference between a 5 Watt handheld radio and an 8 Watt handheld radio isn't enough to get excited about. Put a good antenna on the radio and you'll get better performance. And 2 meters and up are line of sight. Repeaters greatly enhance your range and there are linked systems of repeaters that really increase your range. I remember years ago operating a 440 MHz handheld into a repeater and talking with a ham in Japan. The 440 MHz machine was linked to another one operating on 10 meter FM. That frequency made the hop to Japan and the JA was working through yet another repeater. Not bad for a 5 Watt handheld. :-)

Get your license and welcome to the hobby.

N6TPT


Sat Apr 16, 2016 10:02 pm
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Hi dogfish,

What kf7mjf, N6TPT, and others have advised is very correct.

Let me be the third or fourth to advise that If you're going to talk on the Ham bands, and use the repeaters, you better get a Technician's license. And that goes for the guys you might be talking to, also, btw.

Speaking of grouchy old guys, they tell me there are hams with direction finding equipment who get very upset when they hear someone who doesn't know techniques, customs, protocols, with no call sign, obviously not licensed. Yep, they'll do their best to work with the FCC to nail you. I'm told.

Passing my Technicians test took one Saturday class, followed immediately by the test. Although I studied a book for a month, almost nobody in my class had done that, and almost everybody passed anyway. The book helped me understand the concepts, while the class taught the test. But when you get that license, actually talking correctly takes more knowledge and practice, at least imho.

I got my General license about two months later, after taking a pretty dang good class, and finally I started to actually understand stuff. With your General, you can talk on HF, and what that means is you can talk to folks beyond the immediate area and beyond the repeaters, and around the world, because (essentially) HF waves bounce off the ionosphere.

Good luck!

KM7TOM

PS: The book that I recommend is, " HamRadioSchool.com' "Technician License Course" by Stu Turner, W0STU. The self test for the book is on line at Hamradioschool.com. If you read the book, take online test chapter by chapter, you could show up and take the test and pass it, no problem. It's 35 multiple choice questions, out of a universe of about 400 questions. FCC will assign you a call sign a couple weeks later and you're in business.

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Mon Apr 25, 2016 8:51 pm
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What Steve said.

Antenna. Antenna. Antenna.

If you learn HOW they work, and not just WHAT works, you can 'roll your own'....

Look into a J-pole or a folded dipole.

You can make a damn good antenna out of some spare wire that you can roll up pretty flat.

http://www.qsl.net/wb3gck/jpole.htm

http://www.rason.org/Projects/ant54/ant54.htm


Remember, high gain antennas aren't always the best.

Your radiation pattern ends up getting pushed into one direction, or being squashed.....

Sometimes a simple 1/4 wave will work better than your snazzy 5/8 wave, it all depends on where you need the energy to go.

Personally, I run a 1/2 wave on just about everything, as it's a good compromise, and works pretty well even absent a groundplane.

http://www.hamradio.in/circuits/radiation_pattern.php

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Sun May 22, 2016 2:21 pm
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tlr-boise wrote:
Speaking of grouchy old guys, they tell me there are hams with direction finding equipment who get very upset when they hear someone who doesn't know techniques, customs, protocols, with no call sign, obviously not licensed. Yep, they'll do their best to work with the FCC to nail you. I'm told.


Speaking of grouchy old guys, we have a couple of curmudgeons that sit on the repeater we operate and chastise and threaten to report people if they don't announce their call signs often enough.


Mon May 23, 2016 6:07 am
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ANZAC wrote:
tlr-boise wrote:
Speaking of grouchy old guys, they tell me there are hams with direction finding equipment who get very upset when they hear someone who doesn't know techniques, customs, protocols, with no call sign, obviously not licensed. Yep, they'll do their best to work with the FCC to nail you. I'm told.


Speaking of grouchy old guys, we have a couple of curmudgeons that sit on the repeater we operate and chastise and threaten to report people if they don't announce their call signs often enough.


That's when you identify in CW @ 5 WPM just to piss them off... :D Or you can whistle to create the tones ....

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Mon May 23, 2016 5:13 pm
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This is something I need to learn how to do as well. More knowledge is good knowledge!


Tue May 24, 2016 2:43 am
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I'm new here, (In Illinois), and pretty new to HAM, (got my tech License about three months ago). I have the Baofeng UV5-R and it works great with an upgraded antenna. I went here, https://hamstudy.org/, for the training, and got one answer wrong on the test. I still say it was rigged by the Democrats! :bigsmile:

It is legal to listen in to the local repeaters without a license as long as you don't transmit. I did that for a while as I was learning - interesting.

Best of luck to you!

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Sun Jun 26, 2016 1:33 pm
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