1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

Who are the HAMs out there?

Discussion in 'Electronic Devices' started by Mr. Gadget, May 30, 2014.

  1. Vulcan

    Vulcan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    5
  2. dml24

    dml24 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Messages:
    752
    Likes Received:
    513
    I finally got around to look into get a Technician class license.

    I just need to decide the best method of studying, online class or local instruction.
     
  3. edjo69

    edjo69 EDC Junkie

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    Messages:
    1,705
    Likes Received:
    5,269
    I bought the Gordon books (Read them and fore brush up) and took the free online tests till I was passing 95-100% of the time and then signed up for a real test.
     
    dml24 likes this.
  4. dml24

    dml24 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Messages:
    752
    Likes Received:
    513
    Thanks for the advice. I'll look into the Gordon books.
     
  5. edjo69

    edjo69 EDC Junkie

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    Messages:
    1,705
    Likes Received:
    5,269
    yeah its the best way, I had My tech knocked out in just about a month. The books are by Gordon West
     
    dml24 likes this.
  6. Ataki

    Ataki Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 6, 2010
    Messages:
    111
    Likes Received:
    280
    KF5UHG here, although right now I only have a Baofeng uv-82
     
  7. Jag-Stang

    Jag-Stang Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 29, 2012
    Messages:
    122
    Likes Received:
    266
    KE7ZMC here
     
  8. jryan06

    jryan06 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 11, 2009
    Messages:
    40
    Likes Received:
    10
  9. dml24

    dml24 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Sep 5, 2013
    Messages:
    752
    Likes Received:
    513
    Just ordered West Technician class. Need to keep the aging neurons active and not let them whither away from lack of use. Studying is a great way to promote neurologic health.
    Then I just might find a ham radio the next item on my EDC list.
     
    Justinicus likes this.
  10. jtcannonball

    jtcannonball Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    345
    Finally taking me exam on 12/13/2014. Looking forward to getting my license and then getting some gear. Any good recommendations for a good radio/setup that can reliably communicate 30-40 miles? Want to be able to communicate with family if we lose power.
     
  11. echo victor

    echo victor Previously "YankeeHotelFoxtrot"

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2010
    Messages:
    712
    Likes Received:
    484
    I suggest any decent VHF radio and the use of the local repeater(s). That would give you the adequate range and not have to get into HF.
     
    jtcannonball likes this.
  12. jtcannonball

    jtcannonball Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    May 19, 2014
    Messages:
    218
    Likes Received:
    345
    Ok, now does this also work over longer distances say 100-200 miles? I've been studying up on it but I presume it will click when I see it in action at a club meeting after I take my test. I'm a hands on/visual kind of learner.
     
  13. Vulcan

    Vulcan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    5
    You can link repeaters together to be able to communicate over vast distances. Some repeaters are cross band ie they let you use a VHF radio to the repeater then they have an HF radio on the repeater that will let you link across the country. There is also some that take your VHF signal and sent it over the internet to a node that comes out somewhere else in the world. I have used a 2 m VHF handheld radio to talk from North America to Australia. If you are looking to get into Ham radio on the cheap the Chinese Baofeng radios are around $40. Nowhere near as good as a Yaseu/Icom/Kenwood but good enough. Get the programming cable and software for any radio you buy to save yourself a ton of pain. If you are looking for a better radio you can buy a good mobile VHF radio for around $200 plus the cost of the antenna. It will give you much better range and a clearer signal. I can normally get 30 - 40 mile range with my mobile VHF with a perfectly clear signal due to the better antenna while with a handheld 5 - 10 miles is more like it.
     
  14. Skunk Ape

    Skunk Ape Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    May 13, 2010
    Messages:
    485
    Likes Received:
    608
    Doing my technicians exam Saturday.
     
  15. baccar-3

    baccar-3 Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 26, 2014
    Messages:
    1,489
    Likes Received:
    7,613
    Not yet but researching:
    I was told that a guy in a chopper flying over the central highlands was able to get bleed off or something on his chopper radio from a ham operator in the states who dialed his wife and he was able to talk to her while flying a hot mission in a war zone.
    Can this be done or was this just heresay?
     
    edjo69 likes this.
  16. Vulcan

    Vulcan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    5
    With a radio on the HF bands you can talk around the world on a 1/4 watt of power if the conditions are rights (solar activity etc). As a general rule the lower the frequency the greater the range. The right antenna and atmospheric conditions play a big part in it.
     
    tooiewah and rongallant like this.
  17. edjo69

    edjo69 EDC Junkie

    Joined:
    Jan 12, 2013
    Messages:
    1,705
    Likes Received:
    5,269
    30-40 miles is a challenging distance with out a repeater. UHF/VHF simplex depending on wattage, antenna, mode and geography 0-20 miles pretty easy, flat land, 5-60 watts, FM. But if you jump up to 100w with a pointable beam and run SSB 2m easy depending on conditions. Then HF bands for longer distances. Like said above for that distance local repeaters will make it much easier. Once you get on the air you will quickly understand what your limits will be based on repeaters in your area and what the local Hams are doing in your neck of the woods. Also make sure if you get a single band radio you get it for the most common (closest) repeaters to your house. Out here in N.CO, we have it all, 2m, 440, 220, 900, 1.2, DMR UHF, DMR VHF and D-Star
     
    tooiewah likes this.
  18. Vulcan

    Vulcan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    5
    I run a 5/8 wave antenna and have good coverage around my area out to 40 miles but I live on the bald prairie. Not a lot of difference if I run the radio at 5 watts or 50. If you are looking at a vehicle mounted radio you can get a multi band radio for just a little more money that a single band radio but it does make the antenna options more expensive.
     
    tooiewah likes this.
  19. Vulcan

    Vulcan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2009
    Messages:
    50
    Likes Received:
    5
    I should add that I am going from my VHF radio to the local repeater to get the 40 mile range. The repeater is mounted high on a tower with a decent antenna (high gain and tuned to a specific frequency). When the repeater is transmitting to me it is through this high mounted antenna with a 200 watt amp so it is under ideal conditions. I have never tried the limits of straight simplex radio to radio as around here 99% of the radio traffic is through one of the local repeaters.
     
    edjo69 and tooiewah like this.
  20. echo victor

    echo victor Previously "YankeeHotelFoxtrot"

    Joined:
    Mar 16, 2010
    Messages:
    712
    Likes Received:
    484
    I mentioned VHF because the Tech license allowed frequencies (for phone) are plentiful when compared with the HF freqs allowed for phone (aka voice) (28.3-28.5 MHz). And, since a tech license is easier to obtain ( it doesn't require as much electronics theory as do the General and Extra), more people can become hams without having to learn code and a lot of theory. In a :censored: scenario, VHF and repeaters are a tough combination to beat. With respect to a large scale event, however, prolonged power outages would exhaust any repeater backup generator power and all bets are off.
     
    Justinicus and tooiewah like this.