HAM Radio Prep and Testing

by Woodsbum

This is a bit of a departure from the previous (and future) posts. The reason this is getting posted is in case someone is studying for their FCC Amateur Radio (HAM) license and was not sure where to start.

Let me start with some background. Last year, I finally got off my duff and studied up for my Technician level license. This was actually a long time coming for I have been toying with the idea since I was in high school.

The ongoing increase in natural disasters along with all the “Prepper” shows is what finally got me motivated. At any rate, I took a class and began to get ready for the test.

Here is what got me: The information needed to pass the tests are actually fairly scientific. You don’t need an electronics degree, but you do need some idea of how electricity and electrical components work. Luckily I work with computers and have a fairly decent recall of the subject matter covered in my public school education.

So the real question became, “How do I eat this elephant?”

At this point I discovered the ARRL study books: The Technician Class License Manual, The Technician Q&A, The General Class License Manual, and The General Q&A are now my best friends.

All the questions are actually in the books. Literally, the questions are in the book.

Well, I have now taken the General Class test and I am not going to tell you how I did. That is on me (ok.. I passed!), but if you want to get yourself HAM licensed this is by far the easiest way. There are even CD’s in the Manuals that allow you to actually take practice tests with the same questions and answers as the real test at home.

Crazy, but I have been licensed for over a year and have yet to either talk on a radio or buy one. It is truly that easy to get your license.

If you have ever considered it, go ahead. Buying the equipment can come later. Getting over the first speed bump of licensing isn’t even that difficult or expensive.

Good luck!!!!

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