Advantages of having extra class?

Discussion in 'Becoming a Ham - Q&A' started by KE9RJM, Feb 26, 2018.

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  1. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    But true for many... :rolleyes:
  2. WG7X

    WG7X Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Whenever an occupation / hobby/ service has divisions (classes)of participants, some folks will be snobs and "look down" on the lower classes. That's human nature.

    These days, with Extra class being the new Novice, I don't think that there is any reason to feel all that superior. In fact, sometimes I fell that there is some kind of reverse snobbery in effect for folks who hold an Advanced or General license that was granted "back in the day". I've seen it and noted it right here on QRZ.

    It is kind of an internet thing though, since in face-to-face or on-the-air interactions with fellow hams, license class hardly ever comes up. We all just seem to get along as fellow members of a radio hobby/service.

    Speaking only for myself, I could not care less about someone's license class. Unless something really obvious makes it a problem. Only once has it been noted on the air years ago when a fellow ham was telling me how he was trying to upgrade to General from Technician... all the while when we were on 28.510 Mhz or there about. In this case, I simply asked him to move down frequency with me to a frequency more suitable. Then, I mentioned the problem to him. Of course he was apologetic, but in the overall scheme of things it was a minor transgression at best, and I am pretty sure that he was more cautious about band limits after that.

    So, lets all be mindful in our interactions with other hams. License class is only one part of the whole and should not be a determining factor in how we approach our fellow hams.

    But to the original question: Being an Extra class ham simply allows you to operate wherever you need to, using a mode appropriate for the frequency, with only worrying about upper and lower band edges and the divisions between narrow band and wide band modes.

    It's just that simple.
    KL7KN, W7UUU, WQ4G and 7 others like this.
  3. KQ4MM

    KQ4MM XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'd take the class especially if its a teacher that you like, respect, and might actually learn something from. There are many ways to learn morse to include online classes like CW Academy, websites like LCWO, etc.. the extra spectrum would not be the driving factor for me ...
  4. KE9RJM

    KE9RJM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks for the inputs...I think i am going to concentrate on learning code this year and gain another years experiance at "hands on" operating. Hopefully this will also help when i decide to go for the Extra exam. So many options, so little time, money, brains, patience, equipment, etc..... :(
    KU4X likes this.
  5. K8BZ

    K8BZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I agree with at least one earlier response. Take the Extra class and you can learn CW on your own. It is worth the effort to get the Extra class license, especially since you intend to learn and use CW. A lot of times the best and rarest DX will be in the Extra CW band. You will find that working DX on CW is much easier than on SSB or digital modes (I don't care what the FT-8 ops say, and I use FT-8 also). This is especially true with a modest station using 100 watts and wire antennas. You can start practicing CW with a code chart and straight key while you are taking the Extra class. You can do it. I can see you have the motivation. Good Luck.
    KE8KOH, WQ4G and K4AGO like this.
  6. AC0GT

    AC0GT Ham Member QRZ Page

    That's what I'd do. Taking a class from an instructor you are not fond of can make the class much less enjoyable, therefore affecting your grades and how much you learn. It sounds like you might not have much opportunity to operate a radio regardless during this time, so the order in which they are taken does not seem all that important in the long run. If by chance you do find yourself with some spare time then there is no reason you can't attempt some self study for the Extra exam, listen to some HF, or expand your knowledge in other ways.
  7. K4AGO

    K4AGO Ham Member QRZ Page

    I would do both. But, I would not do them both at the same time. Learn morse code first and then go for the Extra next year. An amateur Extra operator should know morse code. If you know CW you can REALLY look down on everyone who doesn't know CW! (I'm just kidding too)
  8. K4AGO

    K4AGO Ham Member QRZ Page

    "...Extra Class being the new Novice..." Care to explain that bit of wisdoM?
  9. K7KBN

    K7KBN Ham Member QRZ Page

    There's an online code course that requires a prospective CW operator to sign up and wait for the next available class. They seem to have a pretty good record for students actually learning code. But - lots of folks who sign up for it post on here and other forums that "I have to wait six months before I can learn code!"

    Many of us learned it well enough in two weeks or so to pass the old Novice test and build up our speed on the air. And we did it pre-Internet.
    WB5MG likes this.
  10. K8BZ

    K8BZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    You may be referring to the CW Operators Club, "CW Academy". And if so, I highly recommend it. There is a waiting period because the course is not an on-line self paced program. The7 are individual classes and lessons on line, with personal interaction and mentoring by an instructor, so they can only accommodate a limited number of students per class. You won't go wrong taking the class. And like K7KBN said, you don't have to wait for a class to begin learning CW.

    You will find info on the CW Ops CW Academy at:
    Good luck.

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