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The CB Ham Radio

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DX949

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With what i am hearing these days on HF and UHF VHF,it looks like Ham radio is on the decline and will be going the way of the CB if this keeps up.

What can they do to attract people to this fine hobby,but on the other hand does it really matter.
 

Ref-Jazzy

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130
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Indianapolis Indiana
All we can do is fuel the market by buying radios and then doing what we can to interest our friends in such a thing and if they get thier friends into it and so on. Thats all we really can do.
 

n4yek

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Location
Newport, Tennessee
First off, I like CB, it is used quite a bit here locally. It does become a mess sometimes, but it isn't that different from Ham radio. Ham radio is just more disiplained with communications most of the time. Remember, the CB band was once part of the ham radio spectrum.

What can they do to attract people to this fine hobby.
That's a problem right there, you need to get involved in attracting others to the hobby.

Come Field day, set up a table in your front yard, put a radio on it, throw up an antenna so everyone can see, then call the local newpaper and ask them to come out and talk with you. Front page newpaper articles can get attention.

Just a suggestion though... :)
 
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eaf1956

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Hf

With what i am hearing these days on HF and UHF VHF,it looks like Ham radio is on the decline and will be going the way of the CB if this keeps up.

What can they do to attract people to this fine hobby,but on the other hand does it really matter.
From my experience on HF, I am tempted to sell my HF RIG. Some of these guys want 1500 Watts into a YAGI with 40+ signal before they even wanna talk to you. Some folks just wanna enjoy radio w/o sinking a years wages into a setup.

KC9LVX General Class (didn't win to LOTTO)
 

jackj

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NW Ohio
Improve the hobby

With what i am hearing these days on HF and UHF VHF,it looks like Ham radio is on the decline and will be going the way of the CB if this keeps up.

What can they do to attract people to this fine hobby,but on the other hand does it really matter.
People will only value something that they have to work to get. Ham radio began its decline when the FCC yielded to the ARRL's lobby efforts to eliminate the code requirement to earn a license. Now you can go to a short class, cram the questions and answers and get your license. You don't even have to drive to a FCC Examining Station, it's all done right there at your local ham club.

Most of you don't know what the hobby was like in the '50's and '60's but it was a pleasant way to spend a few hours a night / weekend then. You could talk to people who, for the most part, knew what they were doing. 75 meters is a high powered version of 11 meters now-a-days. My Kenwood 430 has been sitting on a shelf in the garage for the last 10 years. I doubt if it is ever turned on again.

N8BSR
 

kb2vxa

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"Come Field day, set up a table in your front yard, put a radio on it, throw up an antenna so everyone can see, then call the local newspaper and ask them to come out and talk with you. Front page newpaper articles can get attention."

Come Field day, set up a table in your front yard, put a radio on it, throw up an antenna so everyone can see, then the neighbors come out and throw rocks, bottles and rotten tomatoes at you. Front yard geeks can get attention.
There, fixed it fer ya!

"Front page newspaper articles can get attention."
Seriously, unless you murder somebody it's highly unlikely you'll make the front page even in a small town paper. I've never seen Field Day get such attention but there have been plenty of articles farther back, pictures and all. Hey, I was interviewed and got my picture in the paper once while putting up a 10M vertical looking like the flag raising on Iwo Jima, not too shabby.

While FD usually is small potatoes a major hamfest can easily get some major TV coverage and I don't mean a 30 second blurb in the fluff at the end of the broadcast. Once upon a time at the fairgrounds in Gaithersburg, Maryland they had one of the biggest blow-out festers in the East and every year it was covered by WTOP in Washington, DC. One year my friend brought his radio head son along who had his 15 minutes of fame operating the AM station while I moved out from under the trees giving the helicopter crew the Jersey Bird. I didn't get on the air, I guess they were more interested in the kid we call Tornado. (;->)

Now if you think ham radio is getting stupid like CB or in decline you may be right if all you do is hang out on 75M phone or your VFO got stuck on 14.275 and the locking tab broke off. There is SO much out there, you only have to go looking for it and whatever you're looking for I'm sure you'll find it.
 

kc2rgw

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From my experience on HF, I am tempted to sell my HF RIG. Some of these guys want 1500 Watts into a YAGI with 40+ signal before they even wanna talk to you. Some folks just wanna enjoy radio w/o sinking a years wages into a setup.

KC9LVX General Class (didn't win to LOTTO)
You just need an antenna for one and propagation...and patience.

With a decent antenna 100W will do the job no problem, if the conditions permit.

Propagation has been horrendous lately due to some solar storms, followed by no sunspots again.

If you are on the low bands and you don't have a half-wave of wire in the air for the lowest band you want to work, you won't be heard. Nobody wants to rag chew with a noisy signal. It is too annoying for that. Stick 135' of wire in the air and 100W will work quite well on 75m and up in frequency. Cost you about $20 to make if you buy the wire at a Home Depot.
 

prcguy

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Propagation has been steadily improving over the last few months and HF is getting more reilable every day. For the past few years I have been operating coast to coast with 100w on 40m while mobile in the evenings, what do you mean you won't be heard without a 135ft antenna??

I also operate most every weekend with a 25w manpack on 80 and 40m with about 30ft of wire stuck in a tree or sometimes a portable G5RV. I can talk to anyone I can hear with 25w and a modest antenna. On 20m I can use the 9ft whip that came with the manpack and talk around the world with the same 25w radio.
prcguy


You just need an antenna for one and propagation...and patience.

With a decent antenna 100W will do the job no problem, if the conditions permit.

Propagation has been horrendous lately due to some solar storms, followed by no sunspots again.

If you are on the low bands and you don't have a half-wave of wire in the air for the lowest band you want to work, you won't be heard. Nobody wants to rag chew with a noisy signal. It is too annoying for that. Stick 135' of wire in the air and 100W will work quite well on 75m and up in frequency. Cost you about $20 to make if you buy the wire at a Home Depot.
 

zz0468

QRT
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Feb 6, 2007
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6,036
With what i am hearing these days on HF and UHF VHF,it looks like Ham radio is on the decline and will be going the way of the CB if this keeps up.
What decline? I'm active on 160 meters - 24 GHz, and I see plenty of activity. If you're not on the air making noise, you're part of the problem.

What can they do to attract people to this fine hobby,but on the other hand does it really matter.
Get on the air and talk. Try new modes. Join a more active club. Show people that it's actually fun. Quit whining about it, and do what you think everyone else has stopped doing - getting on the air.
 

eaf1956

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80/75 meter dipole

You just need an antenna for one and propagation...and patience.

With a decent antenna 100W will do the job no problem, if the conditions permit.

Propagation has been horrendous lately due to some solar storms, followed by no sunspots again.

If you are on the low bands and you don't have a half-wave of wire in the air for the lowest band you want to work, you won't be heard. Nobody wants to rag chew with a noisy signal. It is too annoying for that. Stick 135' of wire in the air and 100W will work quite well on 75m and up in frequency. Cost you about $20 to make if you buy the wire at a Home Depot.
Well, I do have a 80/75 meter wire in the air. No room for a 100' tower and a triband yagi though.
 

SCPD

QRT
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We managed to get an article written about the youth in the field. I was the one they were talking about in it. Sorry that the bottom is cut off, the whole article wouldn't fit on my scanner. :(
I think what's interesting about this article is that it shows an increase in HAM licenses for 2010 compared to prior years, so I don't know why people are bemoaning the demise of amateur radio. Granted, there are some "potty mouthed" people on the amateur airwaves. We've got a group of them here in the L.A. area that monopolize a 2 meter frequency in the evenings and spew their juvenile language. Most legit operators don't even bother engaging them.

The best way to ensure professional sounding communications is to join an established club with like-minded operators. That way, you have a ready made pool of people you can talk with on simplex and on a repeater the club owns. Maybe it'll cost you member fees every year but, like any club (golf, tennis, etc.), you weed out the knuckleheads.

Dave
KA6TJF
 
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N5AMS

Member
Joined
Jan 8, 2003
Messages
199
Location
Houston,Tx.
I personally don't think its on a decline i think ham radio is on a slow incline i have been a ham for almost 4 years and have been using my license to the best of my ability take Ike for example when the FEMA pods came to the Houston area the federal government counted on use to provide communications for the pods and other information that was needing to be passed along I can't tell you how many people here in Houston studied to get their license so that the could help their community if another disaster hit take also for example the cellphone towers went into lockup if you will because FEMA took them over so the only people that were able to communicate in the disaster area was ham operators also my mother in law asked me to find the location of some of the closest FEMA pods to use and i turned to ham radio to do it and for days she was trying to get a hold of her mother when the cell towers were taken over and nothing went through on the towers second the MS150, and the Houston Chevron Marathon the staff count on ham operators to pass communications during these events there is so much you can do in this hobby besides just talking on the radio and in my personal opinion CB radio is really trashy i know in some towns it is ok but for the most part it is filled with filth ie severe cussing definitely would not recommend it for families to use

just my opinion
 

DX949

Completely Banned for the Greater Good
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I think what's interesting about this article is that it shows an increase in HAM licenses for 2010 compared to prior years, so I don't know why people are bemoaning the demise of amateur radio. Granted, there are some "potty mouthed" people on the amateur airwaves. We've got a group of them here in the L.A. area that monopolize a 2 meter frequency in the evenings and spew their juvenile language. Most legit operators don't even bother engaging them.

The best way to ensure professional sounding communications is to join an established club with like-minded operators. That way, you have a ready made pool of people you can talk with on simplex and on a repeater the club owns. Maybe it'll cost you member fees every year but, like any club (golf, tennis, etc.), you weed out the knuckleheads.

Dave
KA6TJF
This article was done in 2008

Top 25 things vanishing from America: #16 -- Ham radio
 
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DX949

Completely Banned for the Greater Good
Banned
Joined
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Messages
364
From my experience on HF, I am tempted to sell my HF RIG. Some of these guys want 1500 Watts into a YAGI with 40+ signal before they even wanna talk to you. Some folks just wanna enjoy radio w/o sinking a years wages into a setup.

KC9LVX General Class (didn't win to LOTTO)
I agree with you,1500 watts takes the fun out of making real contacts world wide in my opinion,
I personally wouldn't go up more than 100 watts on HF.
When i start HF its going to be with CW AKA Morse.................nuff said :0)
 

DX949

Completely Banned for the Greater Good
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I personally don't think its on a decline i think ham radio is on a slow incline i have been a ham for almost 4 years and have been using my license to the best of my ability take Ike for example when the FEMA pods came to the Houston area the federal government counted on use to provide communications for the pods and other information that was needing to be passed along I can't tell you how many people here in Houston studied to get their license so that the could help their community if another disaster hit take also for example the cellphone towers went into lockup if you will because FEMA took them over so the only people that were able to communicate in the disaster area was ham operators also my mother in law asked me to find the location of some of the closest FEMA pods to use and i turned to ham radio to do it and for days she was trying to get a hold of her mother when the cell towers were taken over and nothing went through on the towers second the MS150, and the Houston Chevron Marathon the staff count on ham operators to pass communications during these events there is so much you can do in this hobby besides just talking on the radio and in my personal opinion CB radio is really trashy i know in some towns it is ok but for the most part it is filled with filth ie severe cussing definitely would not recommend it for families to use

just my opinion
Ham Radio
Amateur radio operators enjoy personal (and often worldwide) wireless
communications with each other and are able to support
their communities with emergency and disaster communications if
necessary, while increasing their personal knowledge of electronics and
radio theory. However, proliferation of the Internet and its popularity
among youth has caused the decline of amateur radio. In the past five
years alone, the number of people holding active ham radio licenses has
dropped by 50,000, even though Morse Code is no longer a requirement so they say !
 

SCPD

QRT
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Messages
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Location
Virginia
Funny, but I don't see a date on this article, and they have a box with figures from the FCC showing the number of HAM operators for 2010. I can only go on what I see in the article. This said, it doesn't diminish my comments about how to maintain a professional manner on the airwaves. And let's say that HAM operators were to drop back to the 400,000 level in future years. That's still probably enough to keep Icom, Yaesu and Kenwood in business. God, everyone seems to be bemoaning the demise of some radio service or another, whether it be encryption so our scanners no longer work or HAM radio. Yet, I can still buy a new CB radio if I really want one, I can drop into my local Ham Radio Outlet for a rig, and I can drop $500 for a digital scanner. Can't we all relax people?

Dave
KA6TJF
 
K

kb0nly

Guest
I don't see any decline...

Around here i hear plenty of new hams. One nearby club has licensed so many new hams that i cant keep track of all the callsigns anymore, its a head spinner... Not to mention the new repeaters that have gone up. I have handheld coverage from my deck to three different repeaters, sometimes four depending on conditions. I remember years ago when there was ONE local repeater and a half dozen of us that got on there or .520 to chat.

Just like any hobby, membership comes and goes in spurts... Thats just the way it is, its a hobby. But to say there is a decline?? Not from my point of view, not a chance.
 
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