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Old 3rd September 2015, 17:02   #16
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

This is such an awesome thread. I really want to have the license so i can talk to the astronauts on-board the ISS. Please expect a lot of private messages from me because this is such a cool hobby, but i think due to its impact on security our country have stricter norms. Amazing thread and a great hobby to pursue.
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Old 3rd September 2015, 17:36   #17
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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BTW, I got licensed last year and got my call sign Victor Uniform 3 Bravo Oscar Juliet
(pretty late in the game actually, I am the 3rd gen ham in my family and I hope my next gen too take up this wonderful hobby, someday!) [/url]
Thanks for this thread bejoy, could you let me know apart from helping people during natural calamities and enjoying the status of the call sign, and forming private groups what other applications are possible.

Once one goes live on Air how does one channelize it for hobby purpose, Does he/she randomly try to tune in to a specific frequency particular to a geography and try connecting with them or is there specific channels for networking ?

I have started going through the links and honing my basic electrical engineering/electronics skills in the aim of getting this license.

Have you been Live on Air already, if so what equipment have you procured? Whom did you connect with ?
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Old 3rd September 2015, 17:44   #18
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

Good thread Bejoy. Interesting to know, teambhp did not had one exclusive thread on this topic.
I did take up my exams and got the license long ago (1996-1997 time range i guess)but post that did not purse the hobby. So it got expired. Do not remember my call sign also now :(
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Old 3rd September 2015, 19:42   #19
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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Originally Posted by Dieselritzer View Post
This is such an awesome thread. I really want to have the license so i can talk to the astronauts on-board the ISS.
Definitely possible. Need some patience and luck too.

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Originally Posted by rk_sans View Post
I did take up my exams and got the license long ago (1996-1997 time range i guess)but post that did not purse the hobby. So it got expired. Do not remember my call sign also now :(
You probably want to renew your license I know many of those who became hams in the 90's or earlier and went dormant are taking up the hobby again. The economies of scale have brought the entry barrier lower and there are a lot of folks on air to talk to. If your are interested in electronics, there are plenty of stuff that can be done.


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Originally Posted by sriramr9 View Post
Thanks for this thread bejoy, could you let me know apart from helping people during natural calamities and enjoying the status of the call sign, and forming private groups what other applications are possible.

Once one goes live on Air how does one channelize it for hobby purpose, Does he/she randomly try to tune in to a specific frequency particular to a geography and try connecting with them or is there specific channels for networking ?

I have started going through the links and honing my basic electrical engineering/electronics skills in the aim of getting this license.

Have you been Live on Air already, if so what equipment have you procured? Whom did you connect with ?
Getting license is one thing and making use of it is entirely different game. I will try to add some more information that may help.

Bands of operation:
Broadly classified into VHF/UHF and HF (Similar to FM and ShortWave on radio). VUF (and UHF) is line of sight communication, so mainly used for local communication. Range is extended by having repeaters atop hills or buildings. Most of the cities have repeaters maintained by clubs, so there will be lot of activity. There will be 'nets' conducted at fixed timings (morning/nights) where folks 'check in' and can have conversation one-one. Also, there are 'calling channels' which are monitored by most folks.

HF is used for long range communication. Due to the nature of this frequency band, the waves propagate by bouncing back and forth between sky and earth surface, resulting in signals reaching far away, and in extreme case, the other side of the earth. Since the atmosphere is involved, a lot of variables comes with it. Most important is the ionization due to sun energy, which will affect how the waves are reflected back to earth. So the propagation conditions vary drastically in 24 hours and this itself will add to the thrill of DXing. Contacting EU or far east stations are more easy, but getting to the other side needs more transmit power, luck and patience.

Both the modes has its challenges:
VHF:
If you are in a city, more likely that you will get many hams to talk to. Having repeaters is a boon and you could talk using handhelds indoors too.
VHF hand-held equipments are relatively cheap.
Setting up of outdoor antenna is also fairly easy, due to the smaller size.

HF:
Since HF consists of 6 frequency bands, this will add to the complexity of the equipment. All band transceivers are expensive to buy.
Antennas usually need a lots of space on the terrace. This is usually a problem if one lives in an apartment.
If you are away from city, especially in a rural environment, then HF is the best mode for operation. Added advantage will be the less sources of noise from electrical equipments (cable tv, household appliances, wall charges, all are sources of noise which will interfere with the radio reception.) This is prominent in the HF region.


I have so far worked only VHF. I have a hand-held as well as a base transceiver. I also have an antenna installed on the roof. There are a lot of active hams in Bangalore, so getting contacts is fairly easy.

I also do some home-brewing and is in the process of making a HF transceiver. Its a hobby, so there are no deadlines or any compulsions. Possibilities are enormous. So you build your shack capabilities at a leisurely pace. And hams do help each other a lot.

As I said, there are varied interests to choose from once you become a ham. IMO, spending a lot of money is not a good idea for start, never know you may loose the initial interest.

Some more interesting applications:
APRS
WSPR
Moon-bounce
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Old 3rd September 2015, 23:33   #20
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

Hi everybody
Great to read this thread.
Around 18 years back I inspired my son to take up this hobby.
He followed it keenly but unfortunately could not sit for the exams.
There was a 2 day picnic/camp at Matheran of ham operators and wannabees.
Was any of you there? It was around 96/97.
The morse key was not available after some years and I had a bit of a problem in giving it away( didnt want to junk it as the only manufacturer in Calcutta had stopped making it). Ultimately found somebody( one of the owners of Zend M Zend) who wanted it. He was grateful specially for the photos from the Matheran trip (i had saved them for years).
Regards

Last edited by faustus77 : 3rd September 2015 at 23:35.
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Old 4th September 2015, 09:30   #21
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

So does anyone here have setups done in their cars or know of such things? I assume for rallies and off roads this would be in use already. Apart from legal challenges, what other hassles one is expected to encounter and overcome? Any specific insights into mobile-ham setup would be great. Thanks in advance.
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Old 4th September 2015, 19:11   #22
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

If you are in Hyderabad, the Lamakaan Radio Club facilitates the HAM exam. The members meet in person on the second Sunday (3.30 PM) of every month at LaMakaan in Banjara Hills.

73s
VU2SLK
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Old 4th September 2015, 19:58   #23
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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So does anyone here have setups done in their cars or know of such things? I assume for rallies and off roads this would be in use already. Apart from legal challenges, what other hassles one is expected to encounter and overcome? Any specific insights into mobile-ham setup would be great. Thanks in advance.
Most tough part is to mount the radio without drilling any holes on the facia. I don't have a permanent mounting of the radio in the car due to this reason. (Let my car gets older, then I will think again ). Having the detachable face plate helps somehow, but it becomes an expensive affair. DC input needs to be taken directly from the battery, if its a high power radio. Its also fine to source from 12V outlet if it supports high watt load. (I have done this way, since mine supports 120W).

Next challenge is to place the antenna. The most critical component of the station setup is the Antenna, and its often compromised due to various reasons. Same applies to a mobile setup. For best performance and better range, the antenna needs to be mounted on the roof, so that it has enough ground plane. Any other location is a compromise and affects the range. And for VHF, its best to have high gain antenna (5/8th wavelength, around 1m long). I have a roof carrier so the mounting was easy. But then I have to worry about basements, so its always folded down unless required.
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Old 4th September 2015, 20:45   #24
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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Originally Posted by bejoy View Post

Next challenge is to place the antenna. The most critical component of the station setup is the Antenna, and its often compromised due to various reasons.
An option is to use magnetic-mounts. You don't really need a 5/8 in all cases, a 1/4 wavelength will be just fine. It is a little over 19 inches and with neodymium magnet base, it is very strong indeed, and you can play around with the optimal location on your car. The bonnet is a good place. But, place a handkerchief just beneath the magnet to prevent scratches.

http://www.409shop.com/409shop_product.php?id=102591

is a classic product: you cant go wrong with it...running about 5Watts from your radio! The trick is the cable entry.....

Last edited by lapis_lazuli : 4th September 2015 at 20:48.
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Old 4th September 2015, 21:01   #25
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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Originally Posted by lapis_lazuli View Post
The best option is to use magnetic-mounts. You don't really need a 5/8 in all cases, a 1/4 wavelength will be just fine. It is a little over 19 inches and with neodymium magnet base, it is very strong indeed, and you can play around with the optimal location on your car. The bonnet is a good place. But, place a handkerchief just beneath the magnet to prevent scratches.

http://www.409shop.com/409shop_product.php?id=102591

is a classic product: you cant go wrong with it...running about 5Watts from your radio! The trick is the cable entry.....
Thanks for the info. Its on my shopping list for city repeaters.

And with my 5/8 on the roof and with 5W, I was hitting repeaters 100+kms away, with good reports.
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Old 6th September 2015, 10:47   #26
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

VU3JKN reporting from New York.
Weather 5.9. Labour day weekend.

73s
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Old 6th September 2015, 12:55   #27
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

VU3BOJ this is VU3 Foxtrot Yankee Hotel Lets catch up in the qny evening net today at 8.30pm in Bangalore.

73s
Grace

Last edited by Grace : 6th September 2015 at 12:58.
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Old 7th September 2015, 14:28   #28
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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VU3JKN reporting from New York.
Weather 5.9. Labour day weekend.

73s
QSL. Any plans to take up the license from there?

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VU3BOJ this is VU3 Foxtrot Yankee Hotel Lets catch up in the qny evening net today at 8.30pm in Bangalore.

73s
Grace
I was late, due to the power cut, and had to use my hand held trx. Will catch up with you some time soon
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Old 7th September 2015, 14:44   #29
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

I got my license very long back about 25 years back and was active during those times. I am not active for quite some time (years!! ) now. Should I go through the entire test to renew the license again or is there a way I pay the fees (probably the penalty also as my license expired long back) ? I am from Bangalore. Thanks
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Old 7th September 2015, 16:24   #30
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Default Re: The Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) thread

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Originally Posted by skhendry View Post
If you are in Hyderabad, the Lamakaan Radio Club facilitates the HAM exam. The members meet in person on the second Sunday (3.30 PM) of every month at LaMakaan in Banjara Hills.

73s
VU2SLK
Hi skhendry,

May I know if they also help people prepare for license ?

Thanks
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