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Poll

What is the average age of active ham radio operators?

15-21
0 (0%)
22-28
0 (0%)
29-35
0 (0%)
36-45
2 (11.1%)
46+
16 (88.9%)

Total Members Voted: 17

Voting closed: October 11, 2021, 0330 UTC

Author Topic: Age of ham radio operators  (Read 568 times)

Offline Larimar88

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Age of ham radio operators
« on: September 11, 2021, 0330 UTC »
  :)

Offline RobRich

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #1 on: September 11, 2021, 0440 UTC »
Licensed or actually active? ;) I suspect active ops skew heavily to your listed 46+ demographic.

I am not licensed. When I *rarely* do talk on air, it is usually 27.385LSB or similar.
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Offline ThaDood

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Re: Age of ham radio operators?
« Reply #2 on: September 11, 2021, 0620 UTC »
Awh yeah... I definitely fit the +46 category, but I was 22 when I was 1st licensed. Then again, it was just before the internet hit.
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Offline NJQA

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #3 on: September 11, 2021, 1224 UTC »
I had a ham license before I was old enough to get a drivers license.  I had many ham friends who were teenagers like myself….and getting a license was more difficult then, including morse code, “secret” test questions and having to go downtown to the FCC offices to take the test.  You were proud to have earned the license as it wasn’t a trivial accomplishment and you did something many adults couldn’t.

You don’t see many young hams these days despite it being easier than ever to get a license.  The kids that would have been prime candidates get distracted by other things like gaming or computers.  The mystery of talking to people hundreds or thousands of miles away seems unremarkable in the days of the internet.   FT8 takes almost all the skill out of making contacts so that it becomes little different than pinging a server somewhere.

People don’t value things that come too easy.

For a variety of reasons, including an aging ham population and new demands for RF spectrum, Ham Radio’s future doesn’t look good.  Which saddens me…


Offline Traveling Wave

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2021, 2131 UTC »
I have been to two ham swap meets in the last two months. Most if not all the attendees are in the 46+ age group.
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Offline Elf36

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #5 on: September 14, 2021, 2010 UTC »
Been licensed since 16, but I'm still in the below 46 category. There seems to be a fair amount of new hams since Covid set in. I hear a fair amount of new guys on UHF/VHF when I listen. Hopefully, they keep it going. I need people to talk to when I get old!
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Offline Elf36

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #6 on: September 14, 2021, 2040 UTC »
To comment to NJQA - I didn't have to go to an FCC site, just a local downtown club, but CW was still a requirement. I hated the thought of it at first. It was just something to suffer through in order to get on SSB. Particularly 10M at the time, because I already had the gear. I soon realized two things. One- I worked hard to learn and 2 - I wasn't getting a tower and amp any time soon. (Still waiting on that) CW is still my favorite mode, however, I guess I understand the requirement being dropped. As long as people are having fun with radio, it's their choice to what mode they want to go with.... as long as it's not ALL FT8 for god sake.
Yaesu FT-950, 135' OCF dipole @ 28', SignaLink interface, Vibroplex Square Racer paddle. RSP2 SDR with an OCF antenna and a Grundig G3 for portable.

Offline RobRich

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #7 on: September 15, 2021, 0117 UTC »
CW does not work for me, which is a primary reason I never bothered getting licensed when younger. It is not simply learning the code. It is not patience. Forget it even being another language, as you might as well be shouting absolute gibberish at me. I just do not process it for whatever reason.

Looking forward, I suspect we might see two or even just one FCC amateur license class at some point.
Tampa, FL USA | US Map Grid EL88
Airspy HF+ Discovery | Kenwood R-600 + R-2000 | 2x RTL-SDR V3 + NE602 | Si-Tex 200 | Soft66LC4 | Yaesu FRG-7
148' "Shielded" Loop-on-Ground | 18' End-Fed Vertical | 9' + 31' Verticals | 2x PA0NHC MiniWhips

Offline jta

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #8 on: September 15, 2021, 1125 UTC »
I'm really not "older than dirt", but I did get a Tech license in 1994, when I was 49. Got the General the day after code testing was eliminated in 2007, and the Extra in 2014. I still do more listening than transmitting.

I learned CW three times as a teenager (first time at age 12) but never took a test; you still had to drive to the Field Office to test and I wasn't driving. Today I can copy a few letters if sent slowly enough but can't seem to really re-learn it.

Offline Finman

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Re: Age of ham radio operators
« Reply #9 on: October 06, 2021, 1531 UTC »
Looking forward, I suspect we might see two or even just one FCC amateur license class at some point.

Ah yes.. the continued dumbing down of amateur radio. I expect the way things are going, someday we'll just fill out a form to get a license.
« Last Edit: October 06, 2021, 1627 UTC by Finman »
Right now at the temporary listening post = Icom IC-705, 130ft end fed sloping random wire into manual tuner.