U.S. CitiesCity-Data Forum Index
Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Hobbies and Recreation
 [Register]
Please register to participate in our discussions with 2 million other members - it's free and quick! Some forums can only be seen by registered members. After you create your account, you'll be able to customize options and access all our 15,000 new posts/day with fewer ads.
View detailed profile (Advanced) or search
site with Google Custom Search

Search Forums  (Advanced)
Reply Start New Thread
 
Old 10-27-2012, 11:36 PM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 20,289,944 times
Reputation: 2209

Advertisements

Quote:
Originally Posted by asitshouldbe View Post
My grandpa used to have a ham radio, why do you need one nowadays?
Who do you talk to and what can you do with them, that the internet or cell phones don't cover?
Just wondering?
Truthfully, you don't need one today anymore than you needed one 60 years ago. They're a hobby with a twist; when a natural disaster happens, and the cell towers/phone lines go down, and the electricity goes out, your ham radio will still be operatable from a battery pack, and you will find it to be a vital asset in emergency communications. (provided it's VHF)

That's not saying everyone should go out and become a ham. Personally I find it a real asset especially when I'm out in the sticks and my cell phone doesn't work. But I wouldn't hesitate to jump in and use it for emergency communications if I ever needed to.

Also as for who do you talk to...anyone else that has a ham radio. It may not sound fascinating to you, but some find it fascinating when they can work someone half a world away thru HF electromagnetic waves. It's playing a game of chance, for the most part.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message

 
Old 10-31-2012, 08:50 PM
 
Location: Billings, MT
8,992 posts, read 7,083,311 times
Reputation: 12448
Who do you talk to?
Well, a couple months ago, I talked to a guy who was sitting in the radio room of the Queen Mary.
I have talked to people all across the United States.
On the 2-meter band, using local repeaters, I talk to people locally. We have one ham who lives 90 miles West of here, one who lives over 50 miles East of here, one who lives on a ranch nearly 100 miles North.
Our linked repeaters have a coverage area of nearly 100 mile radius. In much of that area, cell phones are completely useless!
I presently have 4 mobile/base radios (Two all-band, all-mode, One 2 meter mobile, and one HF base station) and three hand held transceivers.
One of the all-band rigs is in my Jeep, one moves back and forth between the radio shack and the motorhome, the HF rig is in the radio shack all the time, and the 2 meter mobile is mounted on the dash of the motorhome.
When you become a member of the Ham Radio community, going to Hamfests can be a lot of fun, and educational as well. Most Hamfests have a tailgate sale or flea market where some great buys can be made.
I have been licensed (General) about three years. I have a "vanity call sign"; I am one of the few Hams who can put their first initial and last name in a call, so I did!
I find the hobby very enjoyable, and, if I choose to, I can be a great help to the community. If I don't wish to participate in such projects, I don't have to.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 11-03-2012, 07:38 AM
 
3,252 posts, read 6,062,430 times
Reputation: 1589
Quote:
Originally Posted by keninaz View Post
Far from a rookie, but you cannot operate with an S9+ noise level from power lines 10-80 meters every effectively so I jus shut the station down.
Been doing radio communications for over 40 years.
Only been doing it here for 26 years, and only do CW, but with a really tight notch filter, you can get through just about anything... the only thing that was annoying was the guys that used really old rigs, and you had to chase them down the band as they drifted out of the notch.... 80M at night (from New England to CA) was cake, even with operators stacked up on each other. 15M was a joy until about 4PM there, and then it shut down like turning off a light.
Not sure about the modern technology, as we did all home-brew (well, and an SB102 and HW8 and a few others for field work), but I think the (now-not-so) modern DSP filtering (used a TMS320C40 for the final project) worked fine. Could probably fire up a Jacob's ladder in the room, and still get through.

(As I usually digress, first keep one hand in your pocket when playing with 3kV at an amp, and second, vacuum variable caps have gotten really expensive).
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 03-31-2013, 11:33 PM
 
Location: Norfolk
1,574 posts, read 1,978,911 times
Reputation: 5073
Default Update...

Well, it's been two years since I first posted this.

Since then, I upgraded to General (six months ago) and then last month I upgraded to Extra.

I had to study about 40 hours for the Extra exam, but I passed with flying colors. It's not *that* big a bugaboo.

Now I'm in the process of becoming a Volunteer Examiner.

Ham Radio is a LOT of fun, and yet it's a "hobby" where you don't see many women.

I wish I knew why that was.

Rose
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-01-2013, 04:36 AM
 
Location: Earth
4,227 posts, read 20,289,944 times
Reputation: 2209
Great to hear of your progress. I just picked up general last month, and have yet still to get the dipole built to try out 20 meters. I think the reason why you don't see many women on ham radio is because for most it's not something of interest.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-02-2013, 07:25 AM
 
3,252 posts, read 6,062,430 times
Reputation: 1589
Quote:
Originally Posted by RosemaryT View Post
Well, it's been two years since I first posted this.

Since then, I upgraded to General (six months ago) and then last month I upgraded to Extra.

I had to study about 40 hours for the Extra exam, but I passed with flying colors. It's not *that* big a bugaboo.

Now I'm in the process of becoming a Volunteer Examiner.

Ham Radio is a LOT of fun, and yet it's a "hobby" where you don't see many women.

I wish I knew why that was.

Rose
I think it has always been that way... don't know why either, on this end.
You are out of my league.... congrats!!!
As a hobby I build the amps, trans-matches and all the other stuff, but I am rarely on.... technology has changed a lot... I still put together the old-school things my dad taught me. Right now I am in the middle of building a killer amp... not legal, but I will keep it within legal ranges.... I have had my license since I was a little kid... if you want a DX, I can do a QRP from the other side of the planet.... (just need to find the rig... an oldie HW-8). The SB-102 is somewhere in the house, and we threw out all the 3-element quads and towers... oops.... Been researching a 'beverage antennas' recently.... interesting.

dah-dit-dah-dit dah dah dit dah... ;-)
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2013, 04:05 PM
Status: "Not politically correct" (set 4 hours ago)
 
Location: Western Colorado
10,535 posts, read 11,632,560 times
Reputation: 24188
Quote:
Originally Posted by asitshouldbe View Post
My grandpa used to have a ham radio, why do you need one nowadays?
Who do you talk to and what can you do with them, that the internet or cell phones don't cover?
Just wondering?
Let's see I talked to an astronaut on the International Space Station on my patio one morning with a walkie talkie and a handheld antenna pointed at the sky. Try that on the internet or a cell phone.

Oh and when the power goes out and your internet and cell phones don't work, guess what DOES work? Ham radio.

It's a fun hobby too.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2013, 08:39 PM
 
2,025 posts, read 2,753,882 times
Reputation: 2503
I've been licensed since 1994 or so, presently as an extra, and although I haven't been active for ages I still took the time to renew that license. I had to learn morse code for it back then and I'll be darned if I would let that slide!

So what good is a license in the age of the internet and cell phones? It can be a fun technical challenge, it can expand your horizons, and it's very useful in an emergency. Here in Alaska, it has been a backbone of the emergency services communication system since the days of the 1964 earthquake. In recent memory, ham radio worked when the cell phone system collapsed during the Miller's Reach forest fire. The Red Cross uses ham radio. The Iditarod sled dog race uses ham radio. They tried using the iridium phones and found that while they did work, one has to stand outside to find a bird....where the ham radio guys are warm and cozy by the wood stove.
So, without a internet connection I've talked to McMurdo base in Antarctica, South Africa, Austrailia and New Zealand, oceanographers from the Woods Hole research center, airline pilots flying across the Atlantic and Pacific, Russian astronauts from Mir, everyday folk from all regions of the US, Canada and Europe. I've used satellites and the aurora to make contacts. Pretty much one can get as involved as you want, from a HT all the way to the very large log periodic antennas erected by the state of Alaska as a permanent part of the emergency response system.

I would caution folks against putting their actual call sign out there these days, too many forum wierdos and the call sign database is public record. It's the reason I took my call sign plates off the rig once my daughter started using it.
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-03-2013, 09:03 PM
 
Location: Raleigh
8,007 posts, read 5,293,755 times
Reputation: 9647
You are unusual but not abnormal. Keep on keeping on ! <3
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
 
Old 04-22-2013, 12:05 PM
 
Location: Somewhere out there
9,616 posts, read 11,064,818 times
Reputation: 3717
Default Lots of fun. Congrats!

Q: I had a license many years go up in Manitoba, Canada: VE4 AIJ. Back then it required a Morse Code test, but I understand now there's no need for that skill anywhere. Is that true?

Even though I have some still- unbuilt Heathkit stuff (a 100W "solid-state" [woo-hooo!] transceiver) and and some of it also built, like a Hot Water {HW-} 8, and a Heathkit electronic keyer I love playing with, I'd really like to make up one of these:

Elecraft® Hands-On Ham Radio™

from:

elecraft.com
Reply With Quote Quick reply to this message
Please register to post and access all features of our very popular forum. It is free and quick. Over $68,000 in prizes has already been given out to active posters on our forum. Additional giveaways are planned.

Detailed information about all U.S. cities, counties, and zip codes on our site: City-data.com.


Reply
Please update this thread with any new information or opinions. This open thread is still read by thousands of people, so we encourage all additional points of view.

Quick Reply
Message:

Over $104,000 in prizes was already given out to active posters on our forum and additional giveaways are planned!

Go Back   City-Data Forum > General Forums > Hobbies and Recreation
Follow City-Data.com founder on our Forum or

All times are GMT -6.

© 2005-2018, Advameg, Inc.

City-Data.com - Archive 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22, 23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33, 34, 35 - Top