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Old 07-16-2012, 02:55 AM   #11
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When SHTF and the Gov. cronies start to come, your Ham Lic. will be a bullseye on your location. I personally would not want to be licensed when SHTF. I do have my communication abilities though. It's called underground radio.

Jim
Jim,
With all due respect, you already have a bullseye on your location, as do I, for man other reasons (probably for being active on this and other forums). You are actually more likely to come under greater scrutiny undergrounding than you would becoming licensed and it doesn't have to be SHTF. Just yesterday there was a guy on the local repeater who had "butt-keyed" his microphone and was jabbering away unaware of the fact that he was effectively jamming the repeater. It only took about 15 minutes before a bunch of the Hams zeroed in on the guy using the output repeater freq and found him. Its like Foxhunting (using the Ham radio term). The FCC has much better ability to zero in on people operating illegally. They usually get called in if the amateurs fail to do so themselves. You see, amateur radio is self-policed. That is one of the great things about it. Can you imagine if firearms owners were self policed without government interference unless it was requested? That's how amateur radio works.
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Old 07-16-2012, 03:08 AM   #12
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We have a CB base station in the house, and a mobile unit rigged up in our farm truck we use to haul firewood / trash / feed / etc. around on our property. My parents, and brothers all own property within a 5 mile radius of us. We can usually talk to them, and a few other people on neighboring property's. Kind of like a neighborhood channel,that stays fairly active. Not nearly as powerful as a HAM radio. But we use it alot.
CB works well for short range communications (generally within 20 miles with unmodified equipment). We use CB for some comms. My wife is not licensed to operate Ham radio so if she is to be transmitting at all it can only be on CB.

If you have a properly tuned CB rig 5 miles should be a piece of cake, tuning your antenna is of paramount importance (actually this is true of any radio tranceiver).
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Old 07-16-2012, 05:37 AM   #13
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I would love to get a ham radio but funds won't allow it right now
The exam fee for Technician class should only be about $10.
And a little Wouxun handheld can be had for about $120
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Old 07-16-2012, 06:13 AM   #14
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The exam fee for Technician class should only be about $10.
And a little Wouxun handheld can be had for about $120
The test is $10, you can study for free online at any of a number of websites. I used http://qrz.com/ht/ to take free online practice tests and study guides are available at the library. If you go to http://www.arrl.org/courses-training you can find more resources. Free "Ham Cram" classes are available through local radio clubs (sometimes they charge a nominal amount for study materials). One bit of advice though is to study for the Technician class license and the General class as well. if you pass the Tech exam then you can take the General and it doesn't cost you any more if you do it that same day. The Extra class is a bit more challenging though. I'm still working on that one.

As far as radios, you can find deals on them online or through local clubs. If you are really lucky you can find an "Elmer" (radio name for a radio geek who has been licensed since Marconi developed the first radios) who will loan you some gear indefinitely. I have also made many antennas using scrap parts, wire and such. I've been able to talk to people in New Zealand, Australia and Africa using not much more than an old boat anchor HF radio and some wire strung through the trees.
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Old 07-16-2012, 09:42 AM   #15
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In a disaster where you need to communicate, the licensing requirements are waived. Anyone can purchase HAM equipment without a license.

What I'm looking for is reliable direct point-to-point communication out 10 miles or so without the need for any infrastructure, including repeaters. If HAM can do that (again, RELIABLY, not dependent on certain atmospheric conditions or time of day and without the need for repeaters) then I'll give getting my Tech license more consideration.

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Old 07-16-2012, 01:51 PM   #16
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I have a cobra 29 classic CB in my truck never needed much more then that. Thing will save your life in a traffic jam truckers can tell you haow to get around it all and if not its always fun to listen to them BS bout everything.

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Old 07-16-2012, 04:06 PM   #17
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check me out on qrz.com.....ki4jdx

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Old 07-16-2012, 04:10 PM   #18
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In a disaster where you need to communicate, the licensing requirements are waived. Anyone can purchase HAM equipment without a license.

What I'm looking for is reliable direct point-to-point communication out 10 miles or so without the need for any infrastructure, including repeaters. If HAM can do that (again, RELIABLY, not dependent on certain atmospheric conditions or time of day and without the need for repeaters) then I'll give getting my Tech license more consideration.
While it is true that you can communicate using any means at your disposal during an emergency (including over police radio frequencies), without the training on how to use the radio and being able to effectively execute a communications link with whomever it is that you need to talk to it is a useless tool. You can use GMRS or FRS radios (the GMRS require a registration, but it is not enforced as far as I know. You can get the radios anywhere.) for short-distance communications maybe as far as 10 miles. These radios are very simple, having set "channels", much like the 40 channel CB radios, rather than being programmable like Ham radios. Properly tuned CB radios will get you out up to 20 miles (all of this is more or less line-of-sight without obstructions).

Ham radios are much more versatile, I have talked to people in the High Sierra from here in the Coast Range of California, a distance of well over 100 miles, without the aid of repeaters on the 2 meter band. I frequently will talk to my sons on 2 meters simplex (no repeaters) from well over 20 miles away. While they are more versatile, they are also infinitely more complex and do take quite a bit of training in order to operate them. Simply having one in your BOB is not going to work. A friend of mine who recently passed away was a hardcore Prepper, at least he had all of the necessary gear, including GMRS radios and several handheld Ham radios. But he never learned how to use the Ham radios, so they were effectively useless to him. The GMRS radios are so simple a child can operate them without any training.

In any case, i would strongly suggest that you at least study the material out there on what ham radio is and how it can be used and strongly consider getting licensed. Heck, there are a lot of gun guys on the air these days (mainly on the HF bands where you would need General priveliges) that talk once a week or even every night. I've gotten some great reloading tips on the radio.
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Old 07-16-2012, 04:28 PM   #19
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check me out on qrz.com.....ki4jdx
I've had my Tech ticket since 2002, upgraded to General in 2011 when my sons got their tickets. I mainly stick to UHF/VHF and I'm working on my HF station (I have the tower with a 40/60/80 beam as well as several long-wire antennas, the Kenwood TS430S tranciever is giving me fits though). Since you operate via IRLP, have you linked into the WIN System? http://www.winsystem.org/System_Information/FAQs/Toys/IRLP/irlp.html

I have talked to people all over the world using the WIN Sys, there is a guy near Victoria Australia who gets on in the early hours of the AM (local time in AU) after he has hit the pubs and talk a bit. Also another guy in Tokyo who you can pick up pretty often. I don't keep a log so I forget their calls, but you get the idea.

anyhow, 73s for now. KG6TJU
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Old 07-16-2012, 07:45 PM   #20
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I've had my Tech ticket since 2002, upgraded to General in 2011 when my sons got their tickets. I mainly stick to UHF/VHF and I'm working on my HF station (I have the tower with a 40/60/80 beam as well as several long-wire antennas, the Kenwood TS430S tranciever is giving me fits though). Since you operate via IRLP, have you linked into the WIN System? http://www.winsystem.org/System_Information/FAQs/Toys/IRLP/irlp.html

I have talked to people all over the world using the WIN Sys, there is a guy near Victoria Australia who gets on in the early hours of the AM (local time in AU) after he has hit the pubs and talk a bit. Also another guy in Tokyo who you can pick up pretty often. I don't keep a log so I forget their calls, but you get the idea.

anyhow, 73s for now. KG6TJU
I can do that in my peterbilt, i run a galaxy dx 99, with a texas star kicker pushin 1,150watts sending the trend through a 11ft frame mounted monkey made antenna, ill hit you up on your channel
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