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Thread: New Ham Here

  1. #1

    Wink New Ham Here

    Hello HRF! I live in KY, USA, and passed my Tech exam on 12/31 and wow, the whole process was a blast! Starting in November, I studied W4EEY's videos on YouTube and tested my knowledge with James Thomas' iPhone app called Ham Tech. I haven't ever enjoyed learning something as much as I enjoyed learning this topic. When I sat for my exam, I was pretty nervous but the hams at the EMS building were welcoming and encouraging.

    Now, I'm studying W4EEY's General Class videos, Buck's "Easy Way" book, and the General version of the same app for the iPhone. I could probably get by with one of these three things, but I usually listen to the videos when I'm driving, read the book when I'm at home, and fill in the gaps (and check my comprehension) with the questions on the iPhone app.

    I'm not sure exactly where to go after this. Hams- what did you do first after getting your ticket? What about when you got your General? Extra seems like a far-off dream for me, so I'm not sure what to even ask about that one.

    The ham community seems to be an encouraging and helpful body of enthusiasts and I'm excited to join the club.

  2. #2
    K7KBN's Avatar
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    Jul 2008
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    When I got my novice ticket back in 1959, I had NO HF voice privileges, and small chunks out of 80M, 40M and 15M for CW. Since I'd just passed a FIVE words per minute test, my first several thousand QSOs were on CW. Even though I got my Conditional* ticket in March of 1960 I stayed on CW: (1) It worked for me. (2) My transmitter was CW only, and crystal controlled.

    I upgraded to a Heathkit DX-100B which weighed as much as I did. Now I had a VFO and AM capability as well as CW.

    Digital was hardly a glimmer in most ham minds back then.

    Do a little operating on modes and bands your license allows. Get your feet wet by learning on the air, not from an "app".

    *The Conditional class license was administered by one volunteer examiner who had to be over 21 and had to hold a General or better. On a family vacation down near Los Angeles I visited the FCC office and got the Conditional changed to a General. Had to retake both the code and written tests, but I think I aced them both. The experience of operating under real-world conditions for a week is better than cramming through a book for a month.
    73
    Pat K7KBN
    Semper ubi sub ubi.

  3. #3

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    Thank you for sharing your experience. My father and grandfather operated CB only so I donít have any point of reference or perspective like yours on ham. What antennas did you first put up to operate CW?


    Sent from my iPad using Tapatalk

  4. #4

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    Welcome from UK.

    I sat the exams in the 90s. Radios have been in their boxes for a few years. But l renewed my license every 5yrs as l didn't want the hassle of resitting another full licence exam.
    We have 3 stages over here. Novice, intermediate & full. Our full is equiv to your extra.

    In the early 90s there was no YouTube or Google.
    So the only way was many night school sessions & a pile of books. I recall the 2nd exam was the most difficult by far. Many guys failed it.
    After the exam came the very very long wait for the results to come in the mail. Old hams told us if it's a thin envelope it's a pass. If it's thick it's a fail as it will contain the papers to apply for a re-sit.
    That envelope looked very thick to me when it came through the letter box. Very relieved to discover that was due to the cardboard to prevent the certificates from being folded in the mail, phew.

    Now we are all locked down it may be a good time to set up the station.

    Hope to hear you on the air soon.

    73 Jim

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