We seek to understand and document all radio transmissions, legal and otherwise, as part of the radio listening hobby. We do not encourage any radio operations contrary to regulations. Always consult with the appropriate authorities if you have questions concerning what is permissable in your locale.

Author Topic: Amateur radio  (Read 3846 times)

Offline Josh

  • DXing Phenomena
  • *******
  • Posts: 4197
    • View Profile
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #15 on: March 22, 2019, 2109 UTC »
We actually seem to have two, #ham and #hamtalk  :)   But I think #sstv might make the most sense if that's what we're doing?

Makes sense to me. I don't have my general ticket yet but should in the next couple of months, but that basically makes me a non voting member ATM. But I think it would be good because then folks can post their reception images those sending can see how they're being received.

If you already have a ticket I suspect you have enough basic HAM knowledge to pass the gen and xtra. I sat on a tech ticket for like more than 10 years till long after they dropped the cw req, and then suddenly decided I wanted all the spectrum I could get so I started taking the extra class test at qrz. When I passed every time, regardless of how many incorrect I got, I knew I was ready for the test.

I called the local ve folks and they set a date for the test.
I showed up and took the general first as you have to pass each class before you can take the higher. Passed the gen and took the xtra at the same sitting and passed both. They mixed up the answer sheet on the gen test and it looked like I failed, but someone noted the error and they applied the right answer sheet to the test and I was in like Flynn or whoever was in.

So, if I can do it, you can do it.
In one sitting.
Just start taking those tests till you pass every time, then contact your local ve team and get it all.

Notice I didn't say memorise anything, you should know these things because the knowledge will be useful if your HAM career. If something stumps you, there are books to help, I find the handbook and operating manuals from arrl to be excellent sources for radio electronics and operating procedure. I had a head start since my HAM uncle (who reminds me of Rick from Rick and Morty) sent me a radio shack 200 in 1 electronics kit when I was 13 that gave me a head start into lectronics. Just hanging around here should learn you enough to get you a tech ticket.
We do not encourage any radio operations contrary to regulations.

Offline ChrisSmolinski

  • Administrator
  • Marconi Class DXer
  • *****
  • Posts: 28918
  • Westminster, MD USA
    • View Profile
    • Black Cat Systems
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #16 on: March 22, 2019, 2133 UTC »
Yes! 40 meters is my go-to band with my current HF setup (ICOM 7300 and Alpha Loop antenna). I have both MMSSTV and EasyPal installed. If others besides myself are interested in your idea of a semi-regular SSTV net, please post dates and times and frequency and I'll most assuredly be there.

Might be easiest to coordinate this in real time on #sstv on the HFU rocketchat?  I'm usually there much of the time on weekends. Once we get a few people we can get things started.
Chris Smolinski
Westminster, MD
eQSLs appreciated! csmolinski@blackcatsystems.com
netSDR / AFE822x / AirSpy HF+ / KiwiSDR / 900 ft Horz skyloop / 500 ft NE beverage / 250 ft V Beam / 58 ft T2FD / 120 ft T2FD / 400 ft south beverage / 43m, 20m, 10m  dipoles / Crossed Parallel Loop / Discone in a tree

Offline Strange Beacons

  • Sr. Member
  • ****
  • Posts: 264
  • Naples, Florida USA
    • View Profile
    • Strange Beacons Website
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #17 on: March 22, 2019, 2135 UTC »
Yes, that sounds good to me. But, I've never used the HFU rocketchat. Please provide a link and I'll load it up and we can discuss. (I'm basically free this entire weekend, with the exception of attending the local vintage computer show tomorrow morning. But that will be early morning and only for a few hours).

Edit: Found the RocketChat link and just created an account.
« Last Edit: March 22, 2019, 2138 UTC by Strange Beacons »

Offline MDK2

  • Marconi Class DXer
  • ********
  • Posts: 5131
  • Denver, CO
    • View Profile
    • My radio reception videos
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #18 on: March 23, 2019, 1405 UTC »
If you already have a ticket I suspect you have enough basic HAM knowledge to pass the gen and xtra. I sat on a tech ticket for like more than 10 years till long after they dropped the cw req, and then suddenly decided I wanted all the spectrum I could get so I started taking the extra class test at qrz. When I passed every time, regardless of how many incorrect I got, I knew I was ready for the test.

I called the local ve folks and they set a date for the test.
I showed up and took the general first as you have to pass each class before you can take the higher. Passed the gen and took the xtra at the same sitting and passed both. They mixed up the answer sheet on the gen test and it looked like I failed, but someone noted the error and they applied the right answer sheet to the test and I was in like Flynn or whoever was in.

So, if I can do it, you can do it.
In one sitting.
Just start taking those tests till you pass every time, then contact your local ve team and get it all.

Notice I didn't say memorise anything, you should know these things because the knowledge will be useful if your HAM career. If something stumps you, there are books to help, I find the handbook and operating manuals from arrl to be excellent sources for radio electronics and operating procedure. I had a head start since my HAM uncle (who reminds me of Rick from Rick and Morty) sent me a radio shack 200 in 1 electronics kit when I was 13 that gave me a head start into lectronics. Just hanging around here should learn you enough to get you a tech ticket.

Thanks for the encouragement. I'm pretty sure I can ace the general, but I haven't even looked at extra. Math and some of the physical things are still a bit above my pay grade. It's unfortunate because when I was in 8th grade I took a yearlong electronics and electricity course that involved building a digital alarm clock from a Heathkit (nearly everyone in the class did the same thing because it was far and away the cheapest kit in their catalog). But when I tried to go on my own afterward, things didn't work out, I got frustrated and turned my attention to other things. Having to relearn some of that in middle age has been a drag and although I can't say that I regret not sticking with it (because I learned and did lots of other cool things), I wish I had stuck with it.

I think once I get my general I ought to be satisfied with that for a long while. Up to this point I haven't wanted to go out and make tons of contacts, although clearly not being proficient in CW is a barrier as long as I'm a tech only. (Local repeaters and simplex don't have that kind of appeal, although I do get on the air that way.) But things like SSTV nets sounds like big fun.
Denver, CO.
SDRPlay RSPdx & RSP2pro, Airspy Discovery HF+, Icom IC-7100, Grundig Satellit 750, Realistic DX-300, Tecsun PL-600.
MLA-30 active loop, G5RV dipole.
eQSLs appreciated wickerjennie at gmail
"Shortwave pirate radio is basically like a very expensive and unreliable way to podcast to a random audience of dozens of people around the world while also worrying that government agents might knock down the door." - Matt Blaze

Offline Josh

  • DXing Phenomena
  • *******
  • Posts: 4197
    • View Profile
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #19 on: March 23, 2019, 1733 UTC »
Learning cw can be easy or tough, depending on how you learn it and how much time you invest in it. Some teaching methods add a step in wich one translates the tones first into dots and dashes and then into morse, another method shorts  that out and simply wires the morse to your brain, taking out the extra step(s). Also, try the farnsworth method where the elements are sent at a faster rate than the spacing. Wich can lead to another hobby within the hobby, collecting (ww2 in my case) cw keys.

J36 bug page;
http://home.windstream.net/ferncity/j36project.htm
Ta.P key from Germany



First thing I learned sans elmer was cq, break, my call, then numbers wich are real easy - just remember dits before dashes - and you kinda take off from there.

Here's some help;
https://www.qsl.net/ik0ygj/enu/ZART_r20101008m.pdf
We do not encourage any radio operations contrary to regulations.

Offline Rizla

  • Full Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 222
  • Sonoran Desert, AZ
    • View Profile
Re: Amateur radio
« Reply #20 on: March 23, 2019, 1756 UTC »
Great pdf link on the CW, I'm finding it very helpful, thanks.
QTH: Sonoran Desert, AZ. Kenwood TS-820S, FT-891, Tecsun 880, neophyte in a forest of antenna wire.