Decades later, finally going to get license.

Discussion in 'Becoming a Ham - Q&A' started by FINALLY50, Jan 8, 2021.

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  1. FINALLY50

    FINALLY50 QRZ Member

    When I was just a little kid, my dad brought me an old military surplus radio.
    Old in as had all vacuum tubes and air-gap capacitors. Luckily, Radio Shack still had tube testers, which nobody used anymore. I got really strange looks when I brought in a box full of tubes to test!
    I got everything RX working and had a ton of fun listening in to everything from Morse code to one station I thought was Soviet, but turned out to be San Francisco in Russian.
    I never got enough money together for an antenna for TX, so I don't know if that part worked. I studied electronics a ton and learned everything I needed to know to get a license.
    Well, except for Morse code. I tried, but it was too hard without a partner to work with.

    Now I'm 50 and I have wanted to get licensed for a while, but didn't have the spare cash for a unit, plus we traveled all over Mexico and Guatemala for several years.
    Some friends in a group I'm part of all have HT's and I decided that now was a good time to finally do it.
    Surprise, looking for HT's, I found that tons of places just have them on back order. Amazon also has this problem and they have raised their prices through the roof!

    I ordered one model, but they said it was 3-4 weeks back order. I told them what I was looking for in general. So I ordered a Yaesu FT-3DR.
    Looks like it does a lot. So that's going to be interesting.
    I got some advice from a ham when asking about chirp software that he advised against getting anything like a BaoBao or TYT-TYT. He liked ICOM and a Kenwood he bought.

    I'm in Washington near Everett and Whidbey Island. Any clubs or someone to help out near here? I used to have seizures, so I'm public transportation or Lyft. No more seizures with good meds.

    I should get it in a few days, company shipped it today.
    As far as Morse code, I see that there are a variety of keys and paddles now.
    Wow were the prices I saw super expensive!
    I get the impression that maybe iambic paddles might be good. I also saw a company that gave lessons more focused on words and sentences, than just letter by letter. I really like that idea.

    Any advice or help appreciated. Yes, I am as interested in getting back on my feet with all of the technical stuff as well as using it.
  2. KE0CAA

    KE0CAA Ham Member QRZ Page

    The Yaesu FT-3DR is a great HT that will do a lot for you. Make sure you read through the manual and check the Yaesu website for additional manuals that will explain more about all of the functions that it is capable of.

    You wont need a paddle unless you have learned morse code and pick up an HF radio as that FT-3DR doesnt have a connection for keying/paddle. You also can use software on your computer connected to your radio to allow the computer to translate between morse code and english and back if you are not able to learn morse code for any reason.

    I would recommend looking up a study class to attend there are a few that start over the next ~month that will help you learn more about amateur radio and help you get past the technician exam so that you can start using your radio.
    K4YNZ likes this.

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