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Old 11-14-2010, 09:34 PM   #1
bjmoose [OP] bjmoose is offline
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HAM study session(s)?

I have to bone up to take the tech license so I can put a 2M in my truck.

Anyone interested in having one or a couple study sessions? I could host at my house. It would be more fun with a few folks together.

I was figuring on self-study using AARL materials, but if enough folks were interested I might be able to get a bona-fide ham to come and talk to us.
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Old 11-15-2010, 06:15 AM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjmoose View Post
I have to bone up to take the tech license so I can put a 2M in my truck.

Anyone interested in having one or a couple study sessions? I could host at my house. It would be more fun with a few folks together.

I was figuring on self-study using AARL materials, but if enough folks were interested I might be able to get a bona-fide ham to come and talk to us.
If no one is interested I would suggest hamtestonline.com. IIRC it was $20 for their Tech test prep, I studied for 3-4 hours before taking the exam & only missed 2 questions.
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Old 11-15-2010, 07:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjmoose View Post
I have to bone up to take the tech license so I can put a 2M in my truck.

Anyone interested in having one or a couple study sessions? I could host at my house. It would be more fun with a few folks together.

I was figuring on self-study using AARL materials, but if enough folks were interested I might be able to get a bona-fide ham to come and talk to us.
Let me know if you end up doing this. if it works with my schedule i could come explain some of the stuff.
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Old 11-15-2010, 08:11 AM   #4
bjmoose [OP] bjmoose is offline
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That would be cool, but it's a long drive for you. (Some would say we're on a truck enthusiast site because we like driving however.)

Anyhow, I hope some others will come out of the woodwork.

I know some guys already have CBs installed, but lots of other folks have no radio yet, and 2M is a better technological choice for several reasons if you're just willing to spend a little time to get licensed.

Thinking out loud: might even be an excuse for more off-roading expeditions to some remote places we don't usually go if we hook up with an Amateur Radio club that maintain some repeaters in some remote locations.
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Old 11-16-2010, 06:04 PM   #5
bjmoose [OP] bjmoose is offline
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crickets....
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Old 11-16-2010, 06:13 PM   #6
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.

Good luck ... I have always wanted to get my 2 meter license.
.
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Old 11-16-2010, 09:19 PM   #7
bjmoose [OP] bjmoose is offline
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Really, it doesn't look that hard. I've spent this evening reading sample questions.

I bought my radio (Yaesu FT2900R) at the Ham Radio Outlet in Sunnyvale on the way home from work. So I'm now motivated to get it done quickly, so I can play with my new toy.

I'm just going to bone up on it evenings after work this week and then take the test this Saturday morning.

There are many free resources on the web that will show the 400 questions. If you've ever made even a casual study of radio or electronics, the stuff comes pretty fast. Basically, each sample question and given answer is a chance to learn something you didn't know, and commonplace practices on Amateur radio.

Test locations given at:
http://www.arrl.org/find-an-amateur-...e-exam-session
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Old 11-17-2010, 08:58 AM   #8
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Its really not that hard. I used hamtestonline.com and studied for 2 days and took my tech and general at the same time and passed both.
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Old 11-21-2010, 10:02 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjmoose View Post
Really, it doesn't look that hard. I've spent this evening reading sample questions.

I bought my radio (Yaesu FT2900R) at the Ham Radio Outlet in Sunnyvale on the way home from work. So I'm now motivated to get it done quickly, so I can play with my new toy.

I'm just going to bone up on it evenings after work this week and then take the test this Saturday morning.

There are many free resources on the web that will show the 400 questions. If you've ever made even a casual study of radio or electronics, the stuff comes pretty fast. Basically, each sample question and given answer is a chance to learn something you didn't know, and commonplace practices on Amateur radio.

Test locations given at:
http://www.arrl.org/find-an-amateur-...e-exam-session
Hey Steve. I didn't know there was a Ham store in Sunnyvale. I gotta check that out. I gotta make time to study and take the test as well. So how'd the test go?
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Old 11-21-2010, 11:11 PM   #10
bjmoose [OP] bjmoose is offline
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Thanks for asking. Yeah, I just figured I needed to do everything mail order, but there they are: 510 Lawrence Expy in Sunnyvale. 408-736-9496.

I've been there twice now. Once on a weekday afternoon, - they have time on their hands and they're quite solicitous. I've also now been there on a Saturday morning - and it seems to be pretty much a zoo. On the one hand, it's hard to get a staffer's time. On the other hand - you can talk to lots of practicing hams! You'll need to, while passing the time waiting for your turn.

Anyhow, I passed the test on Sat AM, missing three out of 35. You have to score 75% I think. I ended up clocking about 4 to 6 hours of study time, I think. YMMV.

The best prep online prep site I found is this one: It's 49 pages of very dense material - only the stuff that's actually on potential test questions, plus maybe a sentence or two to put it into context.

http://www.kb6nu.com/wp-content/uplo...tudy_Guide.pdf

Then you can burn through sample tests from QRZ.com. I took 10 sample tests on Friday evening, and passed them all - ranging from perfect to something like high 70/low 80%, figured I was good to go.

You can take the test at the Saratoga Fire Station roughly every other Saturday morning. To get more info here: http://www.arrl.org/finding-an-exam-session and enter San Jose.

Big accomplishment for the weekend was installing my new radio.

I initially settled on a Yaesu FT2900R. It's a 2m only rig that's powerful, inexpensive, simple, bulletproof, and talks and receives well.

The hangup was, I wanted a "well integrated" install in the dash, and when I took out the center console to reveal the space I planned to install it - the space I thought would be empty is filled with the air-bag-controller unit. Having no desire to mess with that or try to relocate it, I went back to HRO to select a unit with a detachable face, so I could mount the main unit on the rear of the cab, and just mount the faceplate in the little sunglasses-holder opening in the middle of the console.

Since I was going to have to spend more coin to get a fancier unit with detachable face, I ended up picking up a Yaesu FT 8900R. In addition to the usual 2m and 70cm, it also broadcasts on 6 and 10m. That's actually great, since it allows the possibility of contact from Outer East Bumfuckistan if there's no repeater in Line-Of-Sight. So I'm real happy about my choice. That takes a taller antenna, but I don't mind *carrying* a taller antenna for use while stationary, while keeping the 19" spring mounted whip mounted and active for most driving and wheeling purposes.

So Sat was burned on round trips to exchange the radio (forgot wallet on first trip doh)

Today was install. It's cool, but kind of a hassle, to do an NMO roof mount antenna. You end up having to drop the headliner, which is a fair amount of work. After that, it was just the usual grind of running power wires, drilling holes to mount the unit, etc... Got everything working about 9:30PM.

I still don't have the faceplate mounted. It's just sitting there. I want to get the best "built in" look I can. This guy's my hero: http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/2nd...ml#post1429365 - but I'm definitely not going for a headliner install.
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Old 11-22-2010, 07:18 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bjmoose View Post
Thanks for asking. Yeah, I just figured I needed to do everything mail order, but there they are: 510 Lawrence Expy in Sunnyvale. 408-736-9496.

I've been there twice now. Once on a weekday afternoon, - they have time on their hands and they're quite solicitous. I've also now been there on a Saturday morning - and it seems to be pretty much a zoo. On the one hand, it's hard to get a staffer's time. On the other hand - you can talk to lots of practicing hams! You'll need to, while passing the time waiting for your turn.

Anyhow, I passed the test on Sat AM, missing three out of 35. You have to score 75% I think. I ended up clocking about 4 to 6 hours of study time, I think. YMMV.

The best prep online prep site I found is this one: It's 49 pages of very dense material - only the stuff that's actually on potential test questions, plus maybe a sentence or two to put it into context.

http://www.kb6nu.com/wp-content/uplo...tudy_Guide.pdf

Then you can burn through sample tests from QRZ.com. I took 10 sample tests on Friday evening, and passed them all - ranging from perfect to something like high 70/low 80%, figured I was good to go.

You can take the test at the Saratoga Fire Station roughly every other Saturday morning. To get more info here: http://www.arrl.org/finding-an-exam-session and enter San Jose.

Big accomplishment for the weekend was installing my new radio.

I initially settled on a Yaesu FT2900R. It's a 2m only rig that's powerful, inexpensive, simple, bulletproof, and talks and receives well.

The hangup was, I wanted a "well integrated" install in the dash, and when I took out the center console to reveal the space I planned to install it - the space I thought would be empty is filled with the air-bag-controller unit. Having no desire to mess with that or try to relocate it, I went back to HRO to select a unit with a detachable face, so I could mount the main unit on the rear of the cab, and just mount the faceplate in the little sunglasses-holder opening in the middle of the console.

Since I was going to have to spend more coin to get a fancier unit with detachable face, I ended up picking up a Yaesu FT 8900R. In addition to the usual 2m and 70cm, it also broadcasts on 6 and 10m. That's actually great, since it allows the possibility of contact from Outer East Bumfuckistan if there's no repeater in Line-Of-Sight. So I'm real happy about my choice. That takes a taller antenna, but I don't mind *carrying* a taller antenna for use while stationary, while keeping the 19" spring mounted whip mounted and active for most driving and wheeling purposes.

So Sat was burned on round trips to exchange the radio (forgot wallet on first trip doh)

Today was install. It's cool, but kind of a hassle, to do an NMO roof mount antenna. You end up having to drop the headliner, which is a fair amount of work. After that, it was just the usual grind of running power wires, drilling holes to mount the unit, etc... Got everything working about 9:30PM.

I still don't have the faceplate mounted. It's just sitting there. I want to get the best "built in" look I can. This guy's my hero: http://www.tacomaworld.com/forum/2nd...ml#post1429365 - but I'm definitely not going for a headliner install.
Congrats!... you never ever want to mount a ham radio in a confined space. Remember these rigs do 50-75W. CBs only do 4W. thats why they can get away with mounting them in confined spots.
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