Golden Age of Ham radio

Discussion in 'Survival Communications' started by Redneck Rebel, Nov 22, 2011.

  1. Redneck Rebel

    Redneck Rebel Monkey++

  2. DKR

    DKR Raconteur of the first stripe

    Why so many new hams

    Had this discussion with my son last night.

    NO code license structure. Having to learn the code Kept many away.

    NO cost license - our local club (AK) offers free testing and will send in the paperwork for testees. Pretty cool.

    And maybe, just maybe - folks want to communication when the cell phones/)PSTN)telephone/internet go down or are cut off....

    Nice to hear all the new voices despite the odd bit of jargon from time to time.

    Thanks for the link!
    dragonfly likes this.
  3. Gunny Highway

    Gunny Highway Hard Work and Sacrifice blessed by God's Grace

    It's no wonder with all the uncertainty in the world. I know I am planning on getting mine in the next year
    dragonfly and BTPost like this.
  4. Mechwolf

    Mechwolf Monkey+

    I have been thinking about getting mine as well. In the very least I will have a CB in the BOVs. I haven't seen allot of talk about this but I do have some cobra walkie talkies...extended mile range ones that go up to 22 miles in all of the families BOB's when the SHTF we will have 2 different vehicles. Camping gear in the wifes BOV and ammo and the majority of food stuffs in mine.
    Tully Mars, dragonfly and BTPost like this.
  5. dragonfly

    dragonfly Monkey+++

    So far I have 4 "stacks", or where I have actually made 4 "sets" of radios, that are all nestled together....They all have 2 CB's, (23 and 40 channels, plus the upper and lower sidebands) 1 digital and 1 analog scanner units, and 1- 10 meter ham unit. I have studied for awhile, but I got bored as I never knew when or where the testing was to be available here...
    I'd like to get the licensing but I figured why bother, as NOT many will have a license IF and when the SHTF.
    Just where I'm at today....
    Late edition ( it was early and I had not yet had any liquids to sustain righteous thought process')
    Anyway, we also have 4 GMRS/FRS radios, and several solar chargers for batteries and a SLEW of rechargeables! Just in case....!
  6. dystopia

    dystopia Monkey+

    Long time ago i use to be into ham radio, i remember listening to Barry Goldwater talk, a ham enthusiast.
  7. NVBeav

    NVBeav Monkey+++

    It's funny - just last week I started studying for my General (before all the hubub). Trying to get my 8 yr old interested in the "secret" code (CW) - it worked for one Saturday morning and she remembers more than me :^)

    There must be some subliminal messages telling us to get back into Ham again... Now I need to get a radio!!
  8. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    NVbeav... There are some fairly cheap Kenwood TS-430s on eBay... All SolidState... These have .5-30 Mhz Transceive capability, and can do 100 Watts CW and 120 PEP on SSB. 12 Vdc @ 20 Amps Tx... I have two of them and they are a solid Radio.... . Christmas is coming.....
  9. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    A very solid radio. I have a 440S/AT I bought new back in the day. Plus, if and when our world is chaos; a diode can be snipped on the control board.
    BTPost likes this.
  10. Idahoser

    Idahoser Monkey+++ Founding Member

    I'm not sure i see the point of both CB and 10m. They should be very similar in propogation.
    I haven't tried it yet but my idea is to try to use NVIS in the local area, and of course then all you need for long haul comm is the same radio and a different antenna. You could have an HF transceiver capable of 80m and 40m along with a NVIS setup for the base (such as a pair of low wire inverted Vee dipoles perpendicular to each other with a center support, so the wires are the guys). For a vehicle, a folded over 102" whip and a transciever with tuner.
    The NVIS thing seems to be a good solution for 'close' comms, inside 100 miles, when the infrastructure is down (so no repeaters) and terrain doesn't allow for line of sight. And, I like that the equipment is also around-the-world ready with just a different antenna arrangement.

    Also it's true that in a complete collapse there probably won't be an FCC to care about licenses, but I am not waiting til I need it before I start learning how all this stuff works. It's a hobby, after all, there's stuff to do for years.

    BTW NVIS stands for Near-Vertical Incidence Skywave. The 80m (night) and 40m (day) radiation is reflected back down from the ionosphere when launched at a very high angle. Imagine spraying a hose straight up. It rains all around you. Same thing. Over the next hill isn't line of sight, but is in range of NVIS.
    Tully Mars and BTPost like this.
  11. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator

    Idahoser, brings up some good points, in that there is little difference between CB and 10 meters, in side by side Propagation Characteristics... Where the differences come in, are in emissions allowed, and Tx Power, allowed. One wide-band HF Transceiver can cover ALL these bands (.5-30 Mhz) with 100+ Watts PEP Tx Power, and 12Vdc Car Battery type Power. You can ALWAYS cut down your Transmitted Power, but it is a lot harder to amplify it higher. By selecting the Output Power Level, you can manage your Battery longevity, between charges, and still keep the Comm Links operational.

    The other point, that he brings up and is NOT usually understood for Beginning Radio Operators, is that NVIS is a very viable solution to equipped Hams, for local and State AoO Comms, during Daylight Hours, IF, and this is an important consideration, The Connected Antenna, is designed to take advantage of this Propagation Mode. A few decades ago when Hams in Alaska provided MOST of the Iditarod Race Comms out in the bush, one fellow, (Crazy Bill KL7BB) designed a Portable Antenna setup, specifically for these remote Bush Stations. It consisted of an 80 Meter Dipole, that gets stretched as high as possible, with the Center Balun suspended from a 40 Ft Aluminum Pole. Now comes the interesting part. Bill found that by laying a single wire, who's length is cut 5% longer than the Dipole, DIRECTLY under the Dipole, on the Ground. This effectively builds a Reflector Element for that Dipole and points the Radiation Pattern, Straight UP and improves NVIS Propagation, significantly. So Simple, yet very effective. With an appropriate Antenna Tuner, this works on 80 and 40 Meters, due to thelr Harmonic relationship.

    ..... YMMV....
    Tully Mars and dataman19 like this.
  12. BTPost

    BTPost Stumpy Old Fart,Deadman Walking, Snow Monkey Moderator


    Back in the United States the number of radio amateurs in the United
    States has reached an all-time high of almost 710,000.This according
    to figures released last week by ARRL VEC Manager Maria Somma, AB1FM.
    Amateur Radio Newsline's Heather Embee, KB3TZD, has the details:


    In looking at new and upgraded licenses, as well as licensees per ARRL
    Division, VEC Manager Somma took a close look at the numbers looking
    for growth within each license class and all of Amateur Radio over the
    last 40 years.When looking at the three current license classes, the
    number of Technicians, Generals and Amateur Extras peaked in December
    at 345,369, 163,370 and 130,736, respectively.

    Somma says that the total number of US amateurs in the FCC database
    also continues to grow each year, As of December 31, 2012,the number
    of licensees reached an all-time high of 709,575 as opposed to 702,056
    at the end of 2011 and 696,041 for 2010. In other words, the number of
    United States licensed radio amateurs increased at an average rate of
    21 per day.

    Somma said that more than 3000 new licenses were issued in 2012 than in
    2011, while upgraded license activity remained steady throughout the
    year. All in all, a very good year for growth in the United States
    amateur radio ranks.
  13. Tikka

    Tikka Monkey+++

    The study materials help in many ways. First as 10 to 160 cover a lot of space, knowing here hams are located would be a good idea. Knowing how to cut antennas etc is helpful also.
    IMO, by the time one invests the time to learn what they will need in a disaster or shtf getting a license would easy.
    Tully Mars and BTPost like this.
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