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Thread: Hello, new here

  1. #1

    Default Hello, new here

    Hello I am new to this forum. Unlike another website that requires an FCC license to enroll, how can I be expected to have said license without being allowed to enroll and make posts with my questions? So here I am. The only license I have is my very old boxtop CB license before they dropped thart requirement. I still remember it: KZQ0774.
    Anyway, now at age 61 it's time to finally go for my Ham license. Lord knows I've studied radio and worked on them for many years. I could have had my Ham license years ago when they dropped the CW requirement. But I didn't want to go that way. Problem is, the rigors of life always stopped me from completing my morse studies. Now I'm determined to finally practice up and go for the test. Question is, what test level? I am not an engineer that can design circuits. But I can surely repair and troubleshoot radios--any radios. I've restored many radios in my day, from old home entertainment to sophisticated
    Ham equipment, TV's and all sorts of electronics. But I was never schooled, and cannot design circuits.
    So I guess my question is first, what are the classes of Ham license available in 2018 that require CW? I want the highest possible grade short of being an engineer.
    Honestly I am and always will be a tube man. Radios without tubes just never interested me. I can work on the solid state stuff fairly well, but it bores me. And digital makes my eyes glaze over. If I ever have a ham shack, there wont be any computerized junk in it. I am VERY good on computers, but radio will be my escape from that. I rather well fancy just me, my eqiipment, and my key.
    Thanks, fellows (and YL's).

  2. #2


    no license level requires CW. There are still a lot of guys out there doing it, in fact there has been a resurgence of CW lately, it is gaining in popularity again.
    I would suggest finding a Ham club in your area and getting with them, find an elmer. Most clubs have testing available. The highest class license now is the same as it has been for a long, long time. The Extra class. Most tube radios are becoming sort of a collectors thing now, none have been produced in years, have fun with it.

  3. #3


    You might try taking a few practice tests.

    This will help you distinguish between what you already know and what you need to know. The entry level license is Technician. CW isn't required, but you do get limited CW privileges on 10, 15, 40 and 80 meters, digital and some single-sideband voice on 10 meters and full amateur privileges above 50 MHz. The ARRL website has a exam page that will help you find a test session. Just enter your zip code, select the distance you are willing to drive in the box next to it and click "Search".


  4. #4
    K7KBN's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Bremerton WA USA


    Actually, "CW" never has been a requirement for a ham license in the USA. The requirement was that you could send and receive Morse code at specified speeds. I was first licensed as a Novice in 1959, and back then nobody referred to "learning CW" or "sending and receiving CW". You LEARN Morse code, and use it when your operating mode is CW.

    Picky little point, I know, and now that the code requirement is totally gone away there are more people than ever trying to learn it and use it!

    Welcome to the group. My high school (Las Vegas High School - go Wildcats!) had a CB transceiver in the electronics classroom lab. Old Hallicrafters unit: choice of two channels. TWO!! And the station's call sign: 11Q0082.
    Pat K7KBN
    Semper ubi sub ubi.

  5. #5


    Thank you for the replies. I first got interested in 1981 when I went to a hamfest in charlotte. I bought lots of old goodies and books. Hickok 288x 292, and 610A signal generators and other electronic goodies and a whole bunch of QST and CQ magazines from the 50's and early 60's and a 1981 ARRL Handbook. It was all so daunting. Over the years I studied all that and repaired those signal generators. Consequently I have repaired and restored tons of electronic gear. But like I say--I can only work on the stuff. I can't design or engineer it. I like that old stuff. to me, radio stood still probably about 1970 maybe. Packet radio, digital, and all that totally bores me. And as I recall, at one time there was a novice class license which was CW only.
    About 3 years ago i had to either sell or give away everything, due to a failing print shop. now i have nothing and have to start over. I'm going to finally go for my General Class license. I'll never have an advanced one. i'm too old to study all that and don't have time. And i have no interest in the new "Technician" class license so I can chatter away on modern Japanese fancy gear. There was once a time when Hams built their equipment. "Old School", all the way. Thats for me. I can tolerate a certain amount of solid state, and even work on it and understand it. But if there's not some tubes glowing in the shack, it ain't radio. Not my kind anyway. I don't know what my license number will be. I suppose they're long since all out of W's and K's. Regards. Do they still say 73?

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