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Author Topic: Ham Radio Wanta-be!  (Read 8060 times)

sunwalker

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Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« on: March 07, 2012, 07:59:34 PM »
 We have just within the last three week bought a new TT and plan to travel a bit this year and I would like to involve ham radio in my travels.  My question is: I have had a life time interest in amateur radio and between kids, military, and job have not had the time to get involved. I am now because of my military service almost deaf and do not want to get involved with code. So I am looking for a good group to join in the N. Dallas area to try to get licensed. Anyone have a suggestion as to a group to talk to and/or a good at home course I could enroll?

taoshum

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #1 on: March 07, 2012, 09:06:45 PM »
do a google search on "hamtestonline"... they have an online course that'll get you there.  IIRC the website is www.hamtestonline.com
07 Itasca Meridian 34SH.  '08 Jeep Sahara.
Taos, NM.

sunwalker

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #2 on: March 08, 2012, 06:28:38 PM »
thank you

Jim Godward

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #3 on: March 08, 2012, 06:46:06 PM »
« Last Edit: March 08, 2012, 08:19:10 PM by Tom »
Jim
Jim & Pat Godward
AC7PO & KD7ZDM
Hillsboro, Oregon

joelmyer

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  • Joel (W4JNM) and Camille, GA
    • The Retirement Saga
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #4 on: March 09, 2012, 05:48:30 AM »
also on the ARRL website you should be able to find a local club.  fine folks who will be happen to welcome you to the ham radio community & get started.

Joel W4JNM
Joel (W4JNM) and Camille, GA

W7NW

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  • Retired Air Force
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #5 on: June 06, 2012, 04:30:54 PM »
As you know by now there are no code requirements in any of the three levels of ham license.  Pass the written test and you are good to go.  I have found the on line reviews good, I used the free ones for my general and extra tests, passed with ease.  ARRL is an excellent resource.  You should also look for ham fests in your area.  A great place to meet folks and check out the latest in stuff--and flea markets for used gear.  Randy, W7NW
2004 Itasca Meridian 34 ft
350 HP CAT Diesel
2007 CRV (towed)
SMI Air Force One
WIT # W154776
FMCA #425518
traveling with wife and 2 Scottish Terriers
Track me with APRS: www.aprs.fi/w7nw-8

bendts

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #6 on: July 22, 2012, 01:10:43 PM »
While you are studying for the tests - And i do recommend that you buy the study books to read and not just memorize the questions/answers - Study for both the Tech & General so that you can take both tests at the same time.  They are really very close in difficulty.  And if you have any electrical/electronics background, you will pass them both with ease.

Good Luck.
1998 Fleetwood American Tradition 40
Just me & my 2 yellow labs

n7qvu

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  • '98 Bounder 34P Chevy
    • Overgaard, AZ weather
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #7 on: July 27, 2012, 05:22:50 PM »
I agree with "bendts" above.

I'm an ARRL VE, which means that my team sets up testing for others.  The ARRL current test cost is $15. and you could take all three tests for that one price at the same setting. If one is failed, you would have to pay again to re-test. So taking two tests at same setting is a good idea and deal.

Jerry Wyatt
N7QVU
Jerry Wyatt
'98 Bounder 34P, Chevy P30 7.4MPI
BU-10350, FMCA-F428025
Ham call: N7QVU - Extra/VE
US Army MP(69-71)
Home: Overgaard, AZ

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #8 on: August 06, 2012, 08:25:41 PM »
My son wants us to get into this so we can communicate while camping and hunting in mountain areas of the white mountains of AZ.  I bought a ARRL Ham Radio Technician Manual with test question and a test CD.  So far, I have managed to confuse myself pretty good. :-\

But reading the manual, going to the test questions, then going back to the manual, then the test questions, some of it is slowly sinkin in.  I'm not sure why one needs to know all the technical details of radio construction when I just want to buy a radio and be able to communicate with others.  I suspect a lot of it has to do with the proper procedures of Amateur Radio use.
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

Ned

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #9 on: August 06, 2012, 08:52:36 PM »
Lowell, the reason for the technical knowledge requirement is so you can tell when your equipment is not working correctly.  In years past, many of us built our own rigs and the technical knowledge was mandatory or you didn't get on the air.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #10 on: August 06, 2012, 09:44:22 PM »
, the reason for the technical knowledge requirement is so you can tell when your equipment is not working correctly. 

Ned, are the ham radios tempermental?  Do they require a lot of  fine tuning?  Our main reason for using them is that we want to be able to communicate in areas that don't have cell coverage. And also to keep incontact with folks at home. They are not inexpensive.

A few years ago, we were back 32 miles in a Wilderness area and experinced 2 cut tires on our truck at the same time.  We were fortunate that a National Forest worker came along and was able to use his radio to contact the Ranger's office as we would not have been able to drive out/.
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

Ned

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #11 on: August 06, 2012, 10:03:14 PM »
Although I'm still licensed, I've not been active as a ham for may years.  I'll let others with more recent experience (Jim G, where are you?) give you the details.  But, no, modern ham radios aren't temperamental, any more than any other piece of electronics, but like any device they can fail or get out of specification.  Also, the technical knowledge will let you get the best performance out of your equipment.

Being 32 miles from anywhere is no guarantee that a ham radio will work, anymore than any other radio.
-- Ned -- Fulltimer 1997-2013
1997 Holiday Rambler Endeavor LE
2007 GMC Canyon

taoshum

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #12 on: August 06, 2012, 10:33:25 PM »
  Our main reason for using them is that we want to be able to communicate in areas that don't have cell coverage. And also to keep incontact with folks at home. They are not inexpensive.

Have you considered a satellite phone?
07 Itasca Meridian 34SH.  '08 Jeep Sahara.
Taos, NM.

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #13 on: August 06, 2012, 11:02:02 PM »
I have considered renting a Satelite phone.  But I would need more than one when we are elk hunting.   But that would solve the issue I suppose.

But a big factor is my son's desire to get into ham radio and drag me along. :-\
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

SR-71

  • Posts: 2
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #14 on: November 04, 2013, 08:28:04 AM »
Ned, are the ham radios tempermental?  Do they require a lot of  fine tuning?  Our main reason for using them is that we want to be able to communicate in areas that don't have cell coverage. And also to keep incontact with folks at home. They are not inexpensive.

A few years ago, we were back 32 miles in a Wilderness area and experinced 2 cut tires on our truck at the same time.  We were fortunate that a National Forest worker came along and was able to use his radio to contact the Ranger's office as we would not have been able to drive out/.

Hello all - I'm new to this forum.  I have been active in ham radio for over 45 years.  Lowell to answer your questions, modern ham radio equipment is not tempermental and does not require a lot of tuning.  With modern ham equipment you basically just dial the frequency and mode you want, and communicate.  Of course there's a learning curve to use the radio properly, and getting a good radio and antenna installation is important, but there is plenty of hams that can assistance with those issues.  For those interested in becoming a licensed ham here is a link to a free amateur radio practice tests: http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/ 

Butch, KF4HR
'99 Discovery 37V

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #15 on: November 04, 2013, 09:56:04 AM »
This thread is a bit old.  I did get my Ham license a little over a year ago.  I have a small hand radio in 2 and 6 meter and a moble in 2 meter.  I don't use it much unless I am in the mountains camping or hunting.  Using linked repeaters, I was able to speak to my son about 220 miles away.
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

Pierat

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #16 on: November 04, 2013, 01:47:11 PM »
Hi, Lowell -

What HT did you choose? I may be in the market soon.

John, K9VVX
We Have Hung Up The Keys!
Washington State

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #17 on: November 04, 2013, 02:05:02 PM »
Hi John,

I chose the Yaesu FT-60R/E.   I have been very satisfied with it. 

For my mobile I purchased a Kenwood Tm-281.  I have been satisfied with it as well.

I purchased a PC programer for both radios with cables.  It sure makes is a lot easier to program in the frequencies. 

Lowell
KF7YET
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

cavalry6869

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #18 on: November 04, 2013, 08:44:42 PM »
Hi Lowell,  Congratulations on getting your ham license.  Unlike a lot of my ham friends I have only had my license since 1993 and in my mid 60s.  I have been active in the past doing mobile HF while doing my job.  Started out with a 10m rig and moved on to an all-band, all mode, Yaesu FT-857D.  Also run a Yaesu FT-897 at home on occasion.  Been known to pack up my FT-897 with my Outbacker/Outpost to play while in the campground SSB and digital modes.
Hope to catch you on the air.

Ed
K3CAV
Westminster, MD
2006 Rockwood 8315SS, '99 Suburban 2500 4X4
4th trailer since '86, 2nd towed for enjoyment
Maryland/ Vietnam Vet/ Ham Radio Op
So many opportunities with so little time

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #19 on: February 10, 2014, 05:06:12 PM »
I build a 2-meter J-Pole antenna with 1/2 copper pipe from plans I saw on U-tube. I installed it on my house using an old TV antenna pole.  It seems to be working very well.    Now I need to buy a power supply so I can use my mobile in the den.  My son suggested the MFJ4125 power supply.  Anyone using it?

Lowell
KF7YET
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

carson

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  • memories of yore
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #20 on: February 10, 2014, 05:28:17 PM »
Hi Lowell, I have used my 2 meter rig for years in my home.  I chose not to go the P/S route.
  Simply bought a small 12 Volt battery (lead-acid); put it into a plastic container and use an existing automotive charger to keep it up to snuff. Just another idea.

  Nice clean DC and lots of amperage, if needed.

73...VE7WCX  in Florida.
Carson, 
 West Central Florida
Ex RV'er. (1995 Winnebago Adventurer)
2007 Buick Rendezvous, SUV / CROSSOVER

...Logic works like a charm...

Lowell

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #21 on: February 10, 2014, 05:40:32 PM »
Thanks Carson,  I started out with a 12 VDC battery but the wife didn't like it.  Ok, it was the TT deep cycle battery that I keep in the garage when we aren't camping and I admit it doesn't look good in here. :-\  Did you get a motor cycle or mower battery?
Lowell

2005 Cherokee28A TT
pulled by 2009 Dodge 1500 Crew Cab 4X4
KF7YET

Tempe, Arizona

carson

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  • memories of yore
Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #22 on: February 10, 2014, 06:18:09 PM »
Lowell, buy your XYL a large bouquet of Roses for Valentine's day.  Maybe she will reconsider.

I am using a small type 24 battery. The cycle and mower batteries I considered too small and not  less in cost. have mine in my man-cave with a sign on the door   NO GIRLS ALLOWED.   ;D


Carson, 
 West Central Florida
Ex RV'er. (1995 Winnebago Adventurer)
2007 Buick Rendezvous, SUV / CROSSOVER

...Logic works like a charm...

Bill N

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Re: Ham Radio Wanta-be!
« Reply #23 on: February 10, 2014, 08:01:06 PM »
We have just within the last three week bought a new TT and plan to travel a bit this year and I would like to involve ham radio in my travels.  My question is: I have had a life time interest in amateur radio and between kids, military, and job have not had the time to get involved. I am now because of my military service almost deaf and do not want to get involved with code. 

Code is no longer required to get a Ham license.  I have been a dormant ham for the last 10 years but just renewed my license and noted the code requirement is kaput.
WB0VKI - Bill

OOPS - Sorry I did not notice this thread was so old.
« Last Edit: February 10, 2014, 08:04:09 PM by Bill N »
Bill & Joan N in Missouri
USAF (Ret)
2002 Winnebago Adventurer 35U
Workhorse W22, 8.1L Chevy V8
2013 Chevy Sonic Toad
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