Anybody obtain their Radiotelegraph Operator License Lately?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KK5JY, May 17, 2019.

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  1. AE8I

    AE8I QRZ Lifetime Member #32 Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    The above page should have all the information you need, including links to download the complete question pools for the elements you'll be tested on.

    I'd also advise you to take a look at these pages:
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
    W7UUU likes this.
  2. KK5JY

    KK5JY Ham Member QRZ Page

  3. W7UUU

    W7UUU Principal Moderator Lifetime Member 133 Administrator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

  4. W7UUU

    W7UUU Principal Moderator Lifetime Member 133 Administrator Volunteer Moderator Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

  5. W9BRD

    W9BRD Ham Member QRZ Page

    If you can find a copy of Ed Noll's Marine Radiotelegraph Operator License Handbook for a price that's not ridiculous, that's one way.
    K8PG likes this.
  6. W9BRD

    W9BRD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Now: Anyone on the wire also happen to have taken Element 7 of the telegraphy exams? That was the Aircraft Radiotelegraph element, long since obsolete, and discontinued, only a few weeks before I sat for the T2 in 1983.

    If you can find an Element 7 study guide (one by an author named Kaufman comes to mind) you'll find the topics that it covers to be a fascinating look at the state of aircraft comms before the advent of modern navaids and standardization on voice comms and at VHF (and HF, for intercontinental flights) -- including how to take running compass bearings, the use of radio ranges, and an additional set of aero-use-only Q signals, the most fascinating (and frightening of which) I think is QAK -- "collision imminent"!!

    When you're searching for crystals on Ebay or elsewhere and keep running into commercial-quality rocks for 3105 and 6210, you're in the Ancient Aero Comms zone. (The term twilight zone is a term of art from four-course radio range days, as is -- Agent 86 and the Chief shouting at each other inside a big plexi dome notwithstanding -- the cone of silence.)
    WA1GXC and AE8I like this.
  7. K3RU

    K3RU Ham Member QRZ Page

    Kaufman's ( Milton Kaufman) book was "Radio Operator's Q & A Manual". The Sixth Edition contained Elements 1 to 8 inclusive, was printed in 1964 by John F Rider Publisher, Inc., New York.

    By 1975 Element 7 and others (5 and 6) are gone from the Kaufman Q & A Manual. Hayden Book Company, Inc. was then the publisher of the "Radio Operator's Q & A Manual REVISED EIGHTH EDITION which contained Elements 1, 2, 3, 4, 8 and also 9 "Basic Broadcast".

    Yes these books are an interesting glimpse into "the old days". They contain much interesting information beyond the question pools.

    I bought my copies new in 1966 and 1975. That was a very long time ago.
    Last edited: May 18, 2019
    K8PG likes this.
  8. W3WN

    W3WN Ham Member QRZ Page

    Good to know! Thanks!

    I wouldn’t at all mind earning the Commercial Telegraph ticket, just for it’s own sake. Just no opportunity around at present to take the test.
  9. AE8I

    AE8I QRZ Lifetime Member #32 Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    For those that can rightly claim the code credit through the Extra Class exemption, finding and taking the remaining written elements should not be a huge problem, as I believe a number of COLEMs will administer them. For those needing the code elements also, your only viable choice now may well be testing in support of the Maritime Radio Historical Society in the San Francisco area: and

    130 new Radiotelegraph Operator Licenses (ROLs) have been issued in the last six years (fewer than two per month, on average), with only 784 now currently active throughout the US. The 784 number includes the new 130, as well as First, Second and Third Class Certificate holders who were converted to the ROL upon renewal of their certificate, in a license consolidation that began in May of 2013. After that time, new licensees and those renewing their existing certificates received a license that no longer needed to be renewed every five years, and the requirement for the holder's photo to appear on the license was also dropped.
    W9BRD likes this.
  10. SM0AOM

    SM0AOM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I worked in coast radio engineering for many years, and witnessed the end of commercial Morse.
    (for an account, see )

    To fill a vacancy as shift manager at SDJ in 2000, the internal recruitment notice stated the requirement for a First Class Radiotelegraph certificate.

    This was probably one of the very last commercial Morse employment opportunities.

    When viewing the question pool for Element 6, it is striking how archaic the material is.

    It roughly corresponds to the contents of the study material used during the 50s at the Nordic merchant mariner colleges. When I studied for my own First Class exam in 1975 while in Army signals school, the books used were a translation of a late 60s Norwegian textbook with supplements covering SSB and solid-state techniques.

    Another aeronautical Q-code which also is quite nice is:

    QAZ "I am experiencing communication difficulties through flying in a storm."

    Last edited: May 18, 2019
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