Getting your Amateur (Ham) License

Why should I care? There are many means of communications available to you in the everyday world including Cellular and Landline Telephones, SMS, Instant Messaging, Instagram, etc. But these require a certain amount of infrastructure which may not always be available in a disaster.  Radio however and specifically Amateur (Ham) Radio provides that last means of contact, “When all else fails”. For some, preparing for a grid-down scenario is all they want.  For others, they find Ham Radio is a collection of different hobbies. The question is what you do want to do?  From radio and antenna building, to volunteering for your community, there are many different activities that you… Read More

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Building the Tiger Tail Antenna

“If you can make a dipole antenna, then you can make any antenna.” – NC Scout Background Your handheld radio has an antenna that is a quarter-wave “monopole”.  It’s not very efficient, but it’s a compromise for better portability and convenience. [Insert image of HT with Antenna] You can improve this by using a Tiger Tail (also known as a Rat Tail).  This is done by adding a counterpoise to your HT antenna, turning your monopole antenna to a dipole antenna.  This inexpensive and simply made extension will increase your transmission range and may increase your reception.  [Insert image of HT with Antenna with Tiger Tail] Because it is tuned… Read More

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The Good, Better, Best Approach (to radio and to life)

Research Freeze Do you have this problem? You read, watch videos, and think about what is the perfect way to do something. Or try to find the perfect bit of gear….and never get the project done. I admit. I do this….a lot! I get research freeze. Or I hesitate and don’t learn the skills because of fear or embarrassment. I’m remembering a quote, “The perfect is the enemy of the good”. How many hobbies have you started and purchased expensive gear for? Do you still have that $1500 bike? Do you ride it every day? How many good things I have missed because of waiting for the perfect? Too many.… Read More

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Get your Ham on!

I just got these in stock and am excited to offer these Ham Radio Study Guides! Other Ham study guides seem written by technical people, for technical people. They write their guide around the license test questions. Stu uses this educational background (teaching at the Air Force Academy) to organize this guide better for non-technical people. And he makes it fun! I’m impressed that every time I read it, I learn something new. Highly Recommended! Get yours today and start learning!

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