Amateur Radio Operators, Beginners Advice?

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Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
9,465
2,210
McBride, BC
That's most important = learn the sound of the letters, never the printed equivalent because on radio, you will never see it anyway. Have each letter sent as a compact thing, not looooooooog and drawn out dits and dahs. Then you pick up speed by changing only the spacing.
doo-dee-doo-doo doo doo dee doo
 

Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
9,465
2,210
McBride, BC
Alas, I am not active. I've found everything. The old Yaesu FT901DM, the Bencher paddle and all. I live in a house which is incredibly inconvenient for stringing any kind of antennas except maybe 2M. I keep think about how to run a feed of RG-8. Ages ago when there was really good skip, the UK on 10 and 15 meters was as good as a land line.
 

Robson Valley

Full Member
Nov 24, 2014
9,465
2,210
McBride, BC
Most hams are quite careful about their equipment. Reliability is premium.
I expect that good used rigs are all around us. Us geezers are not getting any younger.
 

stevec

Full Member
Oct 30, 2003
496
111
Sheffield
I picked the worst time to want to buy an HF rig! Global chip shortage and all that...
Have you had a look in the back of radcom? Mine is still sat in the wrapper but there is usually something there, either people changing rigs or SK sales
 

SCOMAN

Full Member
Dec 31, 2005
2,365
335
51
Perthshire
I'm new to Amatuer radio qualifying in Feb. I'm keen on the low power (QRP and a wee bit more) to take when out walking. Indeed it's an incentive to get me out more. I have a new radio coming the Lab599 Discovery TX-500, in the next week or two. I will have an Elecraft KX3 for sale when it comes back from the engineer. I think it had a problematic ATU. An expensive piece of kit though.
 
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SaraR

Full Member
Mar 25, 2017
856
550
Ceredigion
Have you had a look in the back of radcom? Mine is still sat in the wrapper but there is usually something there, either people changing rigs or SK sales
I have been looking, but a) I'm picky :) and b) it's a lot of money to spend on something, so I'd rather get it from a proper shop with warranty and the accountability that comes with it.

Also, since electronics is not my strong point, I avoid tinkering with expensive bits of kit, so I want everything needed installed by the seller if at all possible.

Bit of a moot point though as nothing has come up even second-hand. I guess everyone is holding on to theirs. :)
 

SCOMAN

Full Member
Dec 31, 2005
2,365
335
51
Perthshire
I have been looking, but a) I'm picky :) and b) it's a lot of money to spend on something, so I'd rather get it from a proper shop with warranty and the accountability that comes with it.

Also, since electronics is not my strong point, I avoid tinkering with expensive bits of kit, so I want everything needed installed by the seller if at all possible.

Bit of a moot point though as nothing has come up even second-hand. I guess everyone is holding on to theirs. :)
I completely understand and as a non-technical guy completely see your point. My own search and advice from an experienced friend led me to the KX3. It's an excellent radio that for travel is great but can also sit happily at home expanded with a pan adaptor and amplifier. The KX3 is the widest band range 160m - 6 m out of the common bunch with options to include a 2m and 4m module. Mine has the internal battery supply and an ATU. I bought the KX3 because it gave me a wide band range and option to expand. Other popular options I was recommended was the Yaesu FT818 or the ICOM 705 each having differing limitations that I passed them by. The Discovery TX-500, which I'm waiting on, has the same band range but at this stage no internal ATU or battery although there are a number of different options. It's robustness is the appeal over the KX3. There are many other rigs made by experienced "hobbyist's" or workshop builders. I didn't go that route simply because I wanted the back up and support from a known entity. Although as I type this I reflect that the manufacturer of the TX-500 is a new company!

My own focus at the minute is whilst I know the morse characters from an earlier life I was never that good at audio morse so that's what I'm concentrating on. Good luck.
 

SaraR

Full Member
Mar 25, 2017
856
550
Ceredigion
I completely understand and as a non-technical guy completely see your point. My own search and advice from an experienced friend led me to the KX3. It's an excellent radio that for travel is great but can also sit happily at home expanded with a pan adaptor and amplifier. The KX3 is the widest band range 160m - 6 m out of the common bunch with options to include a 2m and 4m module. Mine has the internal battery supply and an ATU. I bought the KX3 because it gave me a wide band range and option to expand. Other popular options I was recommended was the Yaesu FT818 or the ICOM 705 each having differing limitations that I passed them by. The Discovery TX-500, which I'm waiting on, has the same band range but at this stage no internal ATU or battery although there are a number of different options. It's robustness is the appeal over the KX3. There are many other rigs made by experienced "hobbyist's" or workshop builders. I didn't go that route simply because I wanted the back up and support from a known entity. Although as I type this I reflect that the manufacturer of the TX-500 is a new company!

My own focus at the minute is whilst I know the morse characters from an earlier life I was never that good at audio morse so that's what I'm concentrating on. Good luck.
I've been going back and forth between the KX3 and KX2, but since I mainly want to use if for SOTA, I decided that the KX2 would be the better choice.

I'm working on my CW too at the moment. I joined the Long Island CW Club 2 months ago and that's really pushed me to improve faster. (I've done a little over 60 classes with them in that time!) Still not at the point where I could have a rag chew, but standard QSOs with some repetitions should be OK.
 
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SCOMAN

Full Member
Dec 31, 2005
2,365
335
51
Perthshire
Just got my Lab599 Discovery TX-500. Very nice, light, pretty robust. Sounds good but haven’t used it in anger yet.
 

Fadcode

Full Member
Feb 13, 2016
2,747
771
Cornwall
As a licensed Operator myself, may I suggest a couple of good sites to visit, especially if you are looking for Rigs or other equipment to buy


You have to register, and you need a callsign to do so, it isn't exactly a forum, but their is a lot of good info and help available.
WARNING>>>>>WARNING:mad2::roflmao::ban:
If you see something you are interested in buying or want more info, DO NOT answer the AD directly, you must contact the seller by PM.........if you don't you will get banned for 7 days............Don't ask me why...............:banghead::banghead:..

There is another good site, without the need to log on, register etc, and the ads are free to put on the site.
Well worth a look
73's
 

mikehill

Settler
Nov 25, 2014
754
190
Wigan
As a licensed Operator myself, may I suggest a couple of good sites to visit, especially if you are looking for Rigs or other equipment to buy


You have to register, and you need a callsign to do so, it isn't exactly a forum, but their is a lot of good info and help available.
WARNING>>>>>WARNING:mad2::roflmao::ban:
If you see something you are interested in buying or want more info, DO NOT answer the AD directly, you must contact the seller by PM.........if you don't you will get banned for 7 days............Don't ask me why...............:banghead::banghead:..

There is another good site, without the need to log on, register etc, and the ads are free to put on the site.
Well worth a look
73's
HRD soooo annoys me with that. Ignorant rules. But G3CWI is a really great site !
 

SCOMAN

Full Member
Dec 31, 2005
2,365
335
51
Perthshire
As a licensed Operator myself, may I suggest a couple of good sites to visit, especially if you are looking for Rigs or other equipment to buy


You have to register, and you need a callsign to do so, it isn't exactly a forum, but their is a lot of good info and help available.
WARNING>>>>>WARNING:mad2::roflmao::ban:
If you see something you are interested in buying or want more info, DO NOT answer the AD directly, you must contact the seller by PM.........if you don't you will get banned for 7 days............Don't ask me why...............:banghead::banghead:..

There is another good site, without the need to log on, register etc, and the ads are free to put on the site.
Well worth a look
73's
Tried to register but it didn't like my email. It said that email cannot be used. Weird. Shame really as it looks interesting.
 

Fadcode

Full Member
Feb 13, 2016
2,747
771
Cornwall
Tried to register but it didn't like my email. It said that email cannot be used. Weird. Shame really as it looks interesting.
It is a quite tightly run site, very Victorian in value, I am sure if they used cameras to see you, and you didn't have a dinner jacket and bow tie on they wouldn't let you in.
Regarding email addresses they are quite tight on that too, I use a Gmail address no problem, so i would suggest going onto Google mail and making one just for this site, it is despite the problems with mods etc a very good site and well worth being a member of, Good Luck
 

ONE

Full Member
Nov 21, 2019
73
21
51
N. Ireland
Very rigid joining and conduct rules seem quite common in amateur groups. Along with a dislike of web based e-mail addresses.
 

Fadcode

Full Member
Feb 13, 2016
2,747
771
Cornwall
Just another tip, especially if you want too use DMR, Dstar, Fusion etc, you can now buy a USB dongle to put on your PC which turns your PC into a transceiver , the only other thing you need is a microphone, if your PC doesn't have one, this is far cheaper than buying a radio to cover these modes, info on Youtube so do a bit of research.
the item is DVMEGA-DVSTICK 30 cost just under £100 new, cheaper second hand obviously, the software is free to, (BlueDV), but you do need to obtain a DMR registration Number(again free) but you will have to prove you have a callsign for Ham Radio. Something to get involved in during the cold winter months.
 

Fadcode

Full Member
Feb 13, 2016
2,747
771
Cornwall
Very rigid joining and conduct rules seem quite common in amateur groups. Along with a dislike of web based e-mail addresses.
They are quite rightly scared of scammers and the likes, especially in relation to sales of gear etc.
 
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