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k7ex

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Everything posted by k7ex

  1. We also have a daily VHF traffic net here in the Portland OR area. Not much real traffic, mostly spam/junk mail messages from a couple of stations back east (license renewals, welcome to ham radio, that sort of thing). The traffic comes in on HF, and there are multiple daily HF traffic nets, both voice and CW. As for packet, VHF packet is pretty widespread out here. Not used a lot for NTS traffic, but definitely emphasized for the emcomm folks. cul es 73, Wayne K7EX
  2. We have a very active CERT in our area (Hillsboro, OR). It also does a lot in the way of joint training, exercises, etc, with the local ARES group. It has been my experience that folks that go through the CERT training gain more of an interest in amateur radio, and we have had several go on to get their licences. CERT was one of the things that finally pushed me over the edge to getting mine last year. Not everyone in CERT is a ham, of course. When we have a big event like our annual CERT refresher or providing help at the annual air show, we usually have a ham running net control and listening to both FRS and 2m. Or if we have enough hams, we pair up so there is at least one ham in each team. Try to get your local ARES involved. Invite them to your CERT training. CERT and ham radio appeal to a lot of the same people. Use who you get and keep at it. Good luck! - waynem
  3. Here's a good web page that talks more about the OEM modules for APRS: GPSs for APRS. - wayne KD7SWM
  4. k7ex

    Ham Radio

    quote:Originally posted by Desert_Warrior:Short answer. _NOTHING._ On the surface, maybe not. However, I see their similarity in that they both open a door to a world of fun. The amount of fun you get out of each is in proportion to how much you put into it. Both encourage exploration, trying new things, going where you've never been before, etc. I think that is why each activity seems to attract people from the other. I was a geocacher first. Got into ham radio for a couple of reasons: 1) the interesting discussions in this forum, 2) the ability to add to my safety when I go caching alone on some of the more "interesting" hunts, 3) an interest in being an emergency resource for my community. - waynem
  5. k7ex

    Thanks, Mike

    That's a great way to start - passing the first three elements. There are many, many fun directions to go. The problem is to decide where to start! quote:Now, if I can just talk the wife into letting me spend a couple thousand on radios and antennas... Not necessary! I started the same way as you last October. I strongly encourage you to look for some good used stuff. It's out there, and a lot cheaper than buying new. I had good luck with Ebay, QTH.com, and got on a Kenwood reflector. I was also frequently visiting the swap areas on QRZ and Eham a lot also. Lots of good user reviews of all kinds of gear on eham. For less than a thousand, I was able to get a solid Kenwood TS-830 HF rig for home, a Kenwood dual-band mobile, and a Yaesu VX-5R HT for geocaching. The HT was the only item purchased new. Good luck and have fun! - Wayne KD7SWM
  6. Welcome to the hobby! When I got my ticket last October, I spent a lot of time reading product reviews on eham.net. I also spent a bit of time watching used gear on ebay and the QTH swap net. I bought used gear from both sites that I'm very pleased with. Good luck, get on the air and try it out. Have fun! 73 de Wayne KD7SWM
  7. k7ex

    PDX hams/cachers

    quote:Originally posted by makaio:I have the G4FON software loaded .... I'll put in a plug for the G4FON software here. That's what I practiced with before I passed my Tech and General. I spent about 4 weeks with it at a pretty leisurely pace, and I couldn't say I was relaxed at the exam, but I came close to copying 100%. It's a good trainer. I know there are other good training tools out there too, but I can recommend this one. Oh, and congrats to Nate KD7THZ/AE from me also on the upgrade to extra! - Wayne KD7SWM
  8. Matt, While scanning last night, I discovered another IRLP node that you should be able to hear. It is node #3420 on the 440.450 repeater in the west hills. From looking at their web page, they have access codes for members only, but someone else should be able to call you on it. Check out their web site for more info. - Wayne KD7SWM
  9. k7ex

    PDX hams/cachers

    quote:Originally posted by makaio:Matt K7MTO - I didn't realize you had received a vanity call sign. Have been listening for you on the air. Will start listening for your new call. - Wayne KD7SWM
  10. k7ex

    PDX hams/cachers

    It seems like there has been a little burst of PDX cachers getting their ham licenses these past few months. Which is a good thing! Do we have any *seasoned* hams caching around here? - waynem
  11. k7ex

    I passed!

    quote:Originally posted by makaio:So, wayne, now that I've got my license and have a Yaesu sitting beside me - do you monitor any 2m frequencies? I've been listening on the Portland and South Saddle repeaters but have yet to transmit (other than checking into the net on 147.320 this evening). KD7TGI - I really haven't developed any kind of routine yet. I have spent more time listening than talking so far. I went to the hamfest at Rickreal in October and a friend introduced me to a bunch of guys that hang out on 147.04, so it seems like I listen to that one and 147.32 mostly. And by the way (as I'm sure you are aware by now) the VX5R is also a tri band, not a dual as others have mentioned. It includes 6m, whereas the THF6 includes 220. The new Yaesu VX7R is a quad band. I figure what the heck. Any one of these radios is a fine rig and will give you a lot of good use. In my looking, it seems like the differences boil down to ease of programming and personal preferences. I hope you didn't buy the last VX5R, I plan to pick one up this week so I can take something with me to Denver next weekend. 73, - waynem KD7SWM
  12. k7ex

    I passed!

    Wow, your call sign came through fast! Mine took about a week and a half. I'll be listening for you on the air. By the way, your choice of the VX-5R seems like a good one. I kind of like the Kenwood TH-F6 also, but the price makes the Yaesu a pretty clear winner to me. I haven't popped for one yet, but that's the one I plan to buy when I do (soon hopefully). - wayne KD7SWM
  13. k7ex

    I passed!

    Kudos to both of you on passing the exams! And go for the code! I just received an HF rig that I bought, and tonight I was listening to some CW on the air. Can't wait until I get an antenna up and I can try this out. Oh, and now that I have blown my wad on an HT and an HF rig, I am having trouble locating my GPS . If it's not one thing it's another. - waynem
  14. k7ex

    I passed!

    I know there are lots of ways out there to learn CW. Here's the one I used: G4FON CW Trainer. It starts you out with 2 characters, and sends CW for those characters in random order. Once you have those down, you add a character, until you have covered all the basics (alpha, numeric, and punctuation). Then you can switch from random characters to sample QSOs that are included in the zip file. You can also adjust the speed, add noise, chirp, etc. It worked for me! And makaio, you don't need to wait for your extra to spend $$$ on a nice base . Your general gives you lots of HF priveledges. Again, good luck on your test. I know you must be taking it from a different VE than I did, because I took it at the RA fire station, and their next one is December. So I can't tell you exactly to what to expect. But I'm sure you'll do fine. - waynem
  15. k7ex

    I passed!

    quote:Originally posted by makaio:I'm taking the test(s) next weekend. I've been consistently passing the Technician test on hamstuff.net with scores of 33-35 correct, so the confidence level is up there. Looking forward to gettin on the air. - Good luck on the test makaio. Since you say tests, you must be going for the code? Way to go. At 5 WPM it's definitely achievable. I know you must live close by, maybe I'll see you on the air. - waynem KD7SWM
  16. k7ex

    I passed!

    From another new ham. Took my test on the 5th, it took about a week and a half for my call to show up on the FCC web site. (KD7SWM) Just won an auction for a nice affordable dual-band mobile (Kenwood 733) on ebay today, now I just need an HT so I can take it geocaching with me. Don't know about the rest of you new hams, but geocaching was definitely a motivator to getting into ham radio. Going on some of these neat hikes in some out of the way places, it's nice to know I will have emergency communications with me now! 73, - waynem
  17. The upside: after having my long-time interest in ham radio rekindled by, in part, reading this forum, I decided to go for my license. Passed the Technician, General, and code elements last weekend. New call finally showed up today: KD7SWM! The downside: after taking a break from geocaching for the last month, I went to load some new waypoints in my GPS a couple of days ago and: WHERE IS MY GPS??? Can't find it anywhere... So now, I am wanting to buy my first ham radio, but am looking at having to replace my GPS to continue to enjoy caching. ARRGGHH! Anyway, sooner or (probably) later, I'll be back on the trails and in the parks. Maybe catch you on the air. 73! - waynem
  18. Okay. Due, in a large part to some of the discussions in this forum, my long-time interest in amateur radio has been rekindled. I made the "mistake" of going into my local HRO last week. "Just to look." Came out with a study handbook for the Tech license. Planning to take the exam early October. Also planning to go for the code as well, although that's not going as easy. I also am considering an HT for my first rig. A guy I work with really likes his Yaesu VX-5R, but I also think the Kenwood TH-F6 looks like a nice one. With the Yaesu being $70 cheaper right now, is there any big advantage to the Kenwood? Any big differences between the two other than the choice of 6m or 220? - waynem
  19. Okay. Due, in a large part to some of the discussions in this forum, my long-time interest in amateur radio has been rekindled. I made the "mistake" of going into my local HRO last week. "Just to look." Came out with a study handbook for the Tech license. Planning to take the exam early October. Also planning to go for the code as well, although that's not going as easy. I also am considering an HT for my first rig. A guy I work with really likes his Yaesu VX-5R, but I also think the Kenwood TH-F6 looks like a nice one. With the Yaesu being $70 cheaper right now, is there any big advantage to the Kenwood? Any big differences between the two other than the choice of 6m or 220? - waynem
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