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  • #134046

    RedJK
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    First level is Technician – this is all you need for 2m operation.
    The General and Extra classes are for HF – long distance, across the US and World communications.
    Remember the new test pool starts July 1, 2014. Most of the questions will be similar to the current test pool. Just be aware of this if you pick up a book. The books are geared to the set of test questions, but usually are general enough you can study from an older book, and take a couple of practice exams.

    Books – ARRL and HAM Whistler

    Study Guides

    http://www.kb6nu.com/tech-manual/

    Practice tests

    http://aa9pw.com/radio/technician/
    http://www.qrz.com

    Classes – Look for classes in the fall

    Test Sessions all cost $ 15.

    Voice of Idaho – first saturday of each month, at the Radio Shack near Overland and Orchard – 10 AM
    Snake River – 3rd Saturday, 300 W. Railroad in Nampa. Testing begins at 9am.
    And check out this link for many more places all over Idaho.
    http://www.idahoarrl.info/clubs.htm
    http://www.arrl.org/find-an-amateur-radio-license-exam-session

    Dave Koeger – N3SYO

    #149753
    Christian
    Christian
    Moderator
    Boise

    ID

    While we are sharing links, here are a few thoughts to add to your quandary.

    Cheap but functional CB: $36 – link – 4 watts
    Cheap but functional HAM: $30 – link – 4 watts

    Nicely priced and functional CB: $99 – link – 5 watts
    Nicely priced and amazingly powerful HAM: $168 – link – 60 watts

    Just crazy amazingly effective HAM: $212 – link – 75 watts

    Don’t forget, a key difference between CB and HAM is AM and FM. CB is like listening to your AM radio. HAM is like listening to FM. In fact, that’s how they are transmitted (on different frequency, so don’t get it confused with the range of AM versus FM).

    #149754
    Christian
    Christian
    Moderator
    Boise

    ID

    Somehow, I think my last comment might be confusing. So, here is a picture.

    Note that in AM, the amplitude (you might think of this as power) is altered to make the variances in the signal. In FM, the amplitude is constant while the gap in the wave is altered. Thus, FM has a more consistent strength, and is generally clearer.

    Thanks to our broadcast radio friends, we generally think of AM like “870 news all of the time” and FM as “102.3 where disco lives forever”. Sadly, this makes a relationship between Amplitude Modulation and 870 kHz or Frequency Modulation and 102.3 MHz. When, in reality, AM or FM can be used at any frequency. (Ok, there are rules on what you can transmit on each frequency, but AM and FM can be used on thousands of frequencies outside the AM and FM dials.)

    #149755

    BasqueMan
    Participant

    Thanks Christian.
    But… 4th and 5th “link” go to the same radio… :roll:

    #149756
    Christian
    Christian
    Moderator
    Boise

    ID

    @basqueman wrote:

    Thanks Christian.
    But… 4th and 5th “link” go to the same radio… :roll:

    Fixed

    #149757

    RedJK
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    I like your explanation of AM versus FM.

    The last link The Yaesu FT 2900 is the radio I installed in our Jeep – great radio, and simple to use and setup.
    I have easily communicated over 30 miles on it.

    BTW, and I will make a sperate posting for it, we are planning on a test session during our general meeting in October. We can test for Technicain, General and Extra.

    #149758

    jonglauser
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    ooh.. I might have to study up for the general class. I picked up a Kenwood TM-281 just recently for base and mobile use. Now time to play at making antennas! Still need an SWR meter…

    #149759
    Jeephacker
    Jeephacker
    Keymaster
    Boise

    ID

    It’s official!
    Harvey a.k.a Jeephacker a.k.a. KG7OMA.

    I may apply for a vanity call sign of K7HML since it appears to be available, but I’m not going to worry about that right now.

    #149760

    Rubicorn
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    Congrats Harvey! ” KG7OMA

    #149761
    Christian
    Christian
    Moderator
    Boise

    ID

    @jeephacker wrote:

    It’s official!
    Harvey a.k.a Jeephacker a.k.a. KG7OMA.

    Excellent! Welcome to the world of HAM.

    #149762

    RedJK
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    Congrats Harvey – welcome to the Ham community.
    Dave Koeger

    #149763
    MidnightBurn
    MidnightBurn
    Participant

    Old thread, but really good info. Ham radios appear to be getting more popular on our 4×4 runs. Some of you guys have been users for many years and have a lot of knowledge to share with us newbies. I had a chance to hear how clear the transmissions are when we were out on the trail and I was amazed. I can never hear CB’s. So, I studied and passed the Technician test. Got my call sign.. KI7ADR.

    Excited to learn more. Don and Curtis have shared a lot of info already. So much to learn.

    Picked up 2 different radios:
    1 Yaesu FT-2900r dash mount radio. Impressive radio.
    2 Baofeng UV-5R handhelds.

    I also picked up some recommended accessories:
    Tram 1185 Amateur Dual-Band Magnet Antenna
    2 Nagoya NA-771 Dual Band High Gain Antennas
    2 Car Battery Adapter Eliminators
    And of course, the USB and programming software. Although, I have since learned that there may be better software.

    Fun stuff. I hope you guys with years of experience can continue to share your knowledge with the rest of us.

    #149764

    jonglauser
    Participant
    Boise

    ID

    welcome to the HAM community! The clarity and range is impressive. Most of all you don’t always have that guy with the super-powered CB transmitter saying “HELLLLLLLLOOOOO. HELLO. HELLO. HEEEEEEELLLO” all day.

    #149765

    wingysataday
    Participant

    I just got my technician license and I am trying to find somebody who would spend a little time with me to figure this thing out. I have a radio and everything but I have no idea what I’m doing. I’m a really quick learner I’m 33 I understand electronics pretty well but this is like a foreign language it won’t take much time.

    #149766

    Tumbleweed
    Participant
    Garden City

    ID

    Feel free to contact me tmblwd@cableone.net
    I am not very knowledgeable but may be able to help you. Or steer you in a direction that might. I am available most weekends, or over the phone in the evenings. I think you came by the house one time before for something or other. Don

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