Author Topic: Ham Radio  (Read 1639 times)

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Offline Matthew

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Ham Radio
« on: November 07, 2019, 10:31:37 PM »
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  • I'm in a celebratory mood since I just passed all 3 levels of Ham Radio exam this evening:
    Technician
    General
    Amateur Extra

    So now I just need to wait for my callsign to appear in the FCC online database, and then I'm legal to go on the air!
    I've had an interest in electronics off-and-on since I was a boy. I keep coming back to it every couple years, each time going deeper into it. Ham radio is heavy on electrical engineering, but that's not exactly light-years away from my main career, which is software engineering. I guess I'm just an engineer type.

    A fellow Trad nudged me into ham radio a few weeks ago, and I decided it would be a great goal to work towards. So I've been studying hard, and tonight it all paid off.

    It's great from a prepping perspective. Unlike other modern forms of communication, ham radio requires NO infrastructure or intermediaries. You and your radio send the message to him and his radio, possibly halfway around the world. If you have spare parts and some batteries/solar power, you're completely independent -- even if the whole Internet got locked down.

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    Offline SeanJohnson

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #1 on: November 07, 2019, 10:35:58 PM »
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  • Bravo.  Its been on my bucket list for a long time.

    What kind of radio do you have?
    Romans 5:20 "But where sin increased, grace abounded all the more."

    -I retract any and all statements I have made that are incongruent with the True Faith, and apologize for ever having made them-


    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #2 on: November 07, 2019, 10:39:04 PM »
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  • Bravo.  Its been on my bucket list for a long time.

    What kind of radio do you have?
    Right now just a mobile Yaesu (gotta love that name -- you can't pronounce it anything but "Jesu" in Latin) which only does 2M band (144 MHz) which is rather short-range. Even on my wide open hill, with a nice high antenna, I can only hope for double-digit miles.

    I need to get a high frequency or HF "rig" to do the real long distance, classic "Ham" stuff.

    The Yaesu I got used for pretty cheap. HF rigs are, unfortunately, not so cheap. I'm hoping one will fall into my lap or something. If not, I'll eventually get one, probably sooner than later.
    As for antennas, those are pretty easy to build yourself with cheap parts once you know the principles and formulae. There are so many resources online.
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    Offline Maria Regina

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    Ham Radio site access restrictions in California
    « Reply #3 on: November 07, 2019, 11:12:43 PM »
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  • Congratulations. I am thinking about getting a license too, as my husband is a Ham Radio operator with an advanced and commercial license. We have a FT2000 Yaesu. My husband is typically on 75 m.

    Here in California, cities, counties, and state authorities are freezing and/or disabling repeater sites, or not rebuilding ones destroyed in the massive fires here in Northern and Southern California. With power outages, people cannot receive phone calls telling them to evacuate, so people are being killed (murdered), and now Ham Radio is being discouraged as useless. This is a stupid genocidal war on Ham Radio and the citizens of California, so we want to leave this immoral genocidal communist state of California. Most of those in California who leave the state are moving to Texas. Maybe we will soon be neighbors.

    With battery operated Ham Radio stations, communications can be continued even in fire zones to alert people or to send messages to loved ones.

    In Los Angeles City, the city and HOAs are getting onerous with new regulations that discourage the construction of ham radio towers.  In the latest November 2019 QST magazine, a ham radio operator had a steep snow roof with a good sized attic that allowed him to construct a VHF ham radio antennae that complied with his local HOA CC&Rs.

    By the way, you may want to be careful about displaying your new call sign as it can be traced back to your home phone number and address, whatever is on your license. However, it can backfire as some people put their call sign on their car license plate, so if you put a Trump/Pence 2020 bumper sticker on your car, antifa types could target your car and your home.
    Lord have mercy.

    Online Nadir

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #4 on: November 07, 2019, 11:35:26 PM »
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  • Congratulations, Matthew!

    We still have our old Realistic DX-300, sitting in a cupboard, which we used between '83 and '97 when we lived remotely with no mains power. We had no TV or radio but my husband set up shortwave, though we  only ever received. 

    It may come in handy one day.


    Offline Mark 79

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #5 on: November 08, 2019, 10:33:27 AM »
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  • Congrats.

    Probably the best value in HF radios today is the ICOM IC7300.

    https://icomamerica.com/en/products/amateur/hf/7300/default.aspx

    With an automatic tuner, a reliable power source, and a horizontal dipole antenna, you will have good reach.

    Now that we have passed solar minimum, propagation should be slowly improving.

    Offline Mark 79

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    Re: Ham Radio site access restrictions in California
    « Reply #6 on: November 08, 2019, 10:36:19 AM »
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  • …Here in California, cities, counties, and state authorities are freezing and/or disabling repeater sites, or not rebuilding ones destroyed in the massive fires here in Northern and Southern California. …
    To the best of my knowledge there was considerable misreporting on this issue. As best I know, only a single local fire district got greedy and stopped providing free access to ham club repeaters.
    If there is reliable information otherwise, I am all ears.

    Offline SimpleMan

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #7 on: November 08, 2019, 11:05:50 AM »
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  • Congratulations, I'm a ham radio operator too, though I sold my equipment some time ago (needed the money).  The Yaesu transceiver would be a nice thing to have.

    Is this one any good?  The price is certainly right.

    https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07R8PHHF3/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=390957&creativeASIN=B07R8PHHF3&linkCode=as2&tag=httpwwwchanco-20UYyUCZlbmNyeXB0ZWRBZElkPUEwNDA4MTAwMk1UMVcyNE80RFNaJndpZGdldE5hbWU9c3BfYnRmJmFjdGlvbj1jbGlja1JlZGlyZWN0JmRvTm90TG9nQ2xpY2s9dHJ1ZQ==



    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #8 on: November 08, 2019, 11:08:30 AM »
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  • Hopefully this meme answers your question:
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    Offline Maria Regina

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    Re: Ham Radio site access restrictions in California
    « Reply #9 on: November 08, 2019, 12:08:44 PM »
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  • To the best of my knowledge there was considerable misreporting on this issue. As best I know, only a single local fire district got greedy and stopped providing free access to ham club repeaters.
    If there is reliable information otherwise, I am all ears.
    This one single greedy fire district is setting a very dangerous precedent. This is where the problem lies. Funding in the bankrupt state of California is very limited with the state, municipalities, fire departments, and counties coming up with extra fees or scrapping free programs all together. People are moving from California to Texas and Florida where there is no income tax.

    In Arizona, Nevada, and Utah, there is no problem.

    California has become a rogue communist globalist state with the highest taxes in the land. There is no representation because the Demonrat-Communists have control of the entire state.
    Lord have mercy.

    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #10 on: November 08, 2019, 03:14:30 PM »
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  • Bumping this thread back to the original topic -- including renaming the thread's actual title!
    (which is how it appears in Latest Activity on homepage, Recent Topics page, etc.)

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    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #11 on: November 08, 2019, 03:16:28 PM »
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  • Congrats.

    Probably the best value in HF radios today is the ICOM IC7300.

    https://icomamerica.com/en/products/amateur/hf/7300/default.aspx

    With an automatic tuner, a reliable power source, and a horizontal dipole antenna, you will have good reach.

    Now that we have passed solar minimum, propagation should be slowly improving.
    I fully agree that this radio would be a great use of my new Amateur Extra ham license.
    It seems to be around $1100 though. 
    I've heard only good things about ICOM.
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    Offline Mark 79

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #12 on: November 08, 2019, 08:46:23 PM »
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  • I fully agree that this radio would be a great use of my new Amateur Extra ham license.
    It seems to be around $1100 though.
    I've heard only good things about ICOM.
    Or you could spend about $5k for this: https://elecraft.com/pages/k4-pre-order

    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #13 on: November 08, 2019, 08:49:29 PM »
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  • I feel like a college student right after exams -- you can kick back a bit on the studying; you can at least take a decent break.
    I was cramming and everything. It's quite satisfying having that crossed off my list.

    The exam site I found (Boerne, TX) was 1.5 hours away with traffic, but the timing was good. The next available exam in this area isn't until Nov. 16th!

    Now that I got the tests taken sooner, maybe I'll even have my call sign issued in time for my birthday! hahaha  That would be a good birthday present and all, but I hope it gets here sooner than 10 days.

    Maybe my kids can make some birthday chocolate chip cookies and arrange them in Morse code or something... (actually I still need to learn Morse code... they dropped that requirement from the ham exams back in 2004 I think)
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    Offline Matthew

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    Re: Ham Radio
    « Reply #14 on: November 08, 2019, 08:51:08 PM »
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  • Or you could spend about $5k for this: https://elecraft.com/pages/k4-pre-order
    Oh yeah! I can't afford the $1K radio, so how about a $5K one? :laugh1:
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