The HAM Radio license, it appears, is one of the most significant prepping mysteries. Communications will be very necessary for any kind of calamity, be it a local disaster, a regional event like Katrina, or even an all out grid down event. I myself dropped prey to the notion that getting a license was scheduled to those who didn’t have friends and lived in their mother’s basements. Heck, the earlier requirement of understanding Morse Code has been sufficient to turn me aside. Thankfully, things have improved for the better.I’ve previously espoused understanding a subject previous to trade a great deal of money or choosing the credentials, the further I get into this hobby the more I do not agree with the emotion. There is too much to know about HAM radio. Using this approach will lead to disappointment and a failure of accomplishment No, I’ve concluded that HAM radio is best learned “on the job”.
Lots of folks have the approach that HAM radio shouldn’t require a license. True, we do not own the radio. But realize that the airwaves are broken up, by frequency, and allocated for different purposes. The improper use of this radio may cause tragic events, from a skipped call for help from a police officer to a plane crash. Also, think about Amateur radio operators are very satisfied with their hobby and personal achievements. Pirate stations are often found and completed, at that point, it can be a hefty fine and jail time. For those who believe “the Government” is going to sometimes come knocking on your door since you are an amateur radio provider, stand in line, they will be presently there to your guns, food shares, and political values first. If you make if through those rounds of confiscation your HAM radio is going to be next. Return to fact. So, how can attaining a license for HAM radio in one week be possible? Basic, the testing isn’t that hard additionally, the format in the test (multiple choice) leads to quick study. This content is designed to get you on the air in a week or less, with a radio, for about $50.
Keep Your Eye On The Prize
Since we consider an alternative strategy attaining your HAM radio license I’m preparing to suggest you first get a radio. You’ve likely seen this ad nausea in the prepper community, but the Baofeng UV-5R is likely the best beginner’s radio. Why? It’s affordable and it works sufficiently for any first-time user. After you get your license you’ll find yourself in the spiral of more capable and expensive radios, the Baofeng will always be there. You don’t concern if you drop it from the mud or forget it at a buddy’s house. It will likely be the radio you carry when you traipse off into the woods. Smashing a thirty several dollar radios is much better compared to breaking one which costs hundreds of dollars. Buying the Boafeng offers you something real, the reward if you will, when studying for the analyze. You should take the test as well, you can not properly transmit without a license. You can, however, plan and listen to radio traffic. We’ve completed several videos for this radio, here’s the one on how to program it. Check out the Baofeng here.
How and Where To Begin Attaining Your License
Once your radio is along the way you next need to find out where to obtain your license. As I mentioned earlier before, attaining the license needs you to pass an exam. Currently, there are actually 3 alternative licenses available for amateur radio operators. Our method should work well for the 1st two, the Technician and General license. The 3rd, the additional Class license is its own animal. The Technician license will get you talking regionally and will be most useful for local communications in a disaster, i.e. receiving news into and out of the region or communicating with family members or friends in a grid down situation. The General class license opens up worldwide communications. Why is this? Well, we’re not planning to re-invent the wheel here. One of our 1st bits of suggested study is our articles “A Prepper’s Help Guide To HAM Radio Basics” and “HAM Radio for Preppers Explained“, check them out.
Once we alluded, the way the exams are structured are the step to getting your license without having to spend a long time comprehending the subject. The technician test includes 35 questions from a pool of 426. Each query offers four multiple choice answers. Passing the test needs you to answer 26 of those questions correctly. All these exams are managed by Volunteer Examiners from the American Radio and Pass on League, and the ARRL. Such tests are administered across the U . S . and then you will find one near you each month. Now there is no charge for the license, but the ARRL charges $15 to cover the expense of administering the exam. That $15 and the thirty or so dollars you spent on the Baofeng gets you to the “fifty dollars or less
Step # 1: Locating an Exam in Your Area
Finding an exam in your area is quite simple. Head over to this URL at arrl.org (American Radio Relay League). enter your local zip code, and pick a location and time that are convenient. Several exams require pre-registration, a few do not. Choose an exam that is a week or more out and commit to it.
Step #2: Finding the Questions
Currently, you’ve got some skin in the game. You’ve had a radio and you’ve selected your screening date and locations. Now, what? You must find the questions which will be on the exam. Fortunately for all, there is a fantastic resource available that’ll be the crux of your study. Hamstudy.org is where I have directed (and then helped get licensed) dozens of individuals. The approach appears to work, so why not share? The website is easy to understand and contains all of the questions you will find on the all of the licensing tests. For this article, we will focus on the Technician exam. Choosing the technician portion of the site will yield three choices, “Study test questions”, “read test questions”, and “Practice Test”
Step #3: Familiarizing Yourself With The Questions
For many with just a mild electronics background, you may quickly identify the answers to the questions, for others, it could look like gibberish. I’ve individually directed people to this site for over each year. All who have committed to the test have passed using this site for a study guide. For some, it took a just a few hrs of study, for some it took up to some week (which was for the general). Supposing you may dedicate an hour or two a day for any week, spend the initial study period just reading through the questions (read question option). You will quickly ascertain whether this is easy or challenging for you to do. All of the queries are offered the answer along with the incorrect answers. You will be able to go through the all of the possible questions in the first study period.
Step #4: Flash Cards
When the first study period, move on to the ‘flash card” a part of the site. In this section, the questions will be presented to you covering the different subject areas of your test. Everyone can click the answer you think that is correct and immediately it will be rated, the correct answer shown, and if you intend to read a little about the subject of the question there’s a just right the upper right that puts the question into context.As you move along your progress is going to be shown on the right side of your page, namely the percentage of the questions that you have seen as well as your overall ability in answering the questions properly.
Remember, there are 426 total questions available. You will start to realize that a great deal of the questions falls into the “common sense” category, in most cases the correct answer is obvious, even going to a person with restricted experience of electronics and HAM radio. You may also notice that the questions that directly concern HAM radio, those covering specific regulations, frequencies, and even schematics will also include an obvious answer with three, not two possible options.
You’ll be able to cover all of the questions in the pool in your 2nd study session. If you are doing really well, meaning your entire ability is realistically high, this may be all you need and can proceed to the next session. For most, you might want to spend your next two or three sessions in the flash cards, before you can answer a high percentage of the questions correctly.
Step 5: Where the Rubber Meets the Road
On the latter study sessions before the exam, you are going to like to proceed to the “practice test” a part of the site. This is a lot identical to the flash card portion, however, the questions are specifically chosen from the pool as they may appear on the actual test. You will be presented with 35 questions, just the same as the real deal. Each real question is selected in the different sub-sections covered by the real exam, so this is more accurate than using the flash card’s aptitude calculate in predicting how we might fare in the actual test.
Each exam is scored when completed with the questions you skipped related to their subsections. You also have the choice to verify the exam. If you choose to do this after each test, the question you answered improperly will be shown as well as the correct answer.
Remember, you must answer 26 of the 35 answers correctly on the exam, back in school we called this a “C”. For the last two study sessions, take the tests over and over until you can pass 9 out of 10. I haven’t had a person who followed this method fail, yet.
Step 6: The Test
At this point, if you’ve faithfully put in 7 honest days of study, you need to recognize a great deal of the correct answers. You could have discovered that several nagging questions you can never seem to get right, but also for the most part you are able to answer a few of the questions just by seeing the first few words of the question. You will be ready to go!
Never neglect to bring your $15 in cash with you to your test. When you arrive, you’ll be greeted by 3 Volunteer Examiners. These are nothing more than three (soon to be) other amateur radio operators that have taken time out of their days to administer your test. You will be handed a booklet containing the questions then one of these sheets in which you fill out the circle for the appropriate answer.
I always suggest people take tests, particularly multiple selection tests, in this way. Take a seat, relax, and examine starting question. If your studying melded your mind from mush into an amateur radio expert, the solution must be readily apparent. If it isn’t, don’t despair, Neglect the question. Move onto question two, same here. Answer the questions for which you are Optimistic and SKIP those that you are not sure. Do this all of the way to the end of the exam. Because you are solving the queries that you know, you need to breeze through. When you get to the end, return back and count how many questions you solved. My guess is most of you answered a minimum of 26 of them. Congratulations, you’ve already passed. Go back and make you best guess on a leftover questions. Even if you weren’t POSITIVE of at least 26, you are probably close, along with logic you can get over a hump.
When you’ve answered all of the questions to the very best of your ability, turn in your test and have a seat. Your test can be graded by all the Volunteer Examiners, this can be done for accuracy. My guess is if you stick to this plan they are congratulating you and welcoming you to the hobby.
For a side note, for any really ambitious people, those who breezed through the Technician Exam at Hamstudy.org; you may take your Typical Exam on the same day if you want. Best of most, anyone should not have to pay an extra $15 to take it. In fact, during my basic exam, there was a guy that took all three in one sitting (and passed!).
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