TSA and Ham Radio

Discussion in 'On the Road' started by KW6MOT, Apr 16, 2016.

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  1. KC0W

    KC0W Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Absolutely true.................I have NEVER made it thru a TSA checkpoint without a paddle raising big time suspicion. I had the following happen at the Minneapolis airport a few years ago while I was on my way to the Caribbean:

    TSA Goofball: "Please open your bag for me sir".

    Me: "OK, it's probably my Morse code paddle". "I never make it thru a checkpoint without it causing interest".

    (I take the paddle out of the bubble wrap & show it to him)

    TSA Goofball: (while simulating tapping on a CW key) "Hello cavalry, hello cavalry, the Indians are attacking the white man".

    Your tax dollars hard at work. :eek:

    Tom KH8/KC0W
    KG7OTL likes this.
  2. W7DKK

    W7DKK Ham Member QRZ Page

    One problem: I had removed the antenna from my HT and put it in a PVC tube for protection. The TSA seemed to think it was a pipe bomb and called in an expert, closing down the security line. After a long wait the expert arrived, I opened the tube and showed her the rubber duck. She bent it sharply to see if it could be a weapon. It still has a dog-leg.
  3. KC9UDX

    KC9UDX Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    But you were proven innocent after being presumed guilty. That's the important thing. :rolleyes:
  4. W7CJD

    W7CJD Ham Member QRZ Page

    There are no circumstances I would take anything of value.

    I am convinced TSA is a complete fraud.

    I would like to see who TSA apprehended, or stopped, per dollar for the entire TSA budget.

    I think the money for the entire TSA could be better spent elsewhere.

    My dad, a highly honored police officer, said any criminal that was wanted was caught.

    Instead, law enforcement insures their jobs and pay, and benefits, by keeping actual violent offenders and key drug production and distribution and many other criminals untouched.

    They walk thru.

    I had that, believed I was at-one with that.

    I did not wait in line.

    I walked thru a gate turned off.

    There was a nod made to the personnel at the luggage xray machine.

    I had nothing, but I saw that done.
    K6CLS likes this.
  5. WB4WHJ

    WB4WHJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yep! I am glad I don't fly anymore. I know people that do. They have told me a few stories about the TSA. People have to fly for various reasons. The TSA is not going away. I am glad I don't have to worry about flying and the hassles involved. I feel for those who do.
    Curmudgeon & old crow
    KG7OTL and KC9UDX like this.
  6. KB5ZCR

    KB5ZCR Ham Member QRZ Page

    Are TSA hams welcome here?
  7. N6TPT

    N6TPT Ham Member QRZ Page

    I stopped a TSA drone's dumb questions one day at SEA. "So, what are you doing today?" he asked. I replied, "I doing my imitation of self loading cargo on a pressurized aluminum mailing tube." That shut him down cold.

    I travel too much. I'm a stay-at-home compared with some people I can think of, but 50,000 miles a year would be a nice reduction. TSA is a total waste of time. Security in other countries is far more professional. How many terrorists has TSA caught? None. Zip. Zilch. Nada. How do I know? If they ever caught one it would be all over the news. And that hasn't happened.

    Oh well...
  8. K0UO

    K0UO Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Go get a customs declaration form filled out for on your equipment. It will have the equipment name and serial number on it , then carry it with you even for Stateside travel, it's an official document.
  9. KO4LZ

    KO4LZ XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I fly on a regular basis and always have at least an HT and often my FT817 (and accessories) with me. The HT's never get noticed, although in the immediate post-9/11 days the rubber-ducky antenna got flagged more than once. Nowadays the FT817 almost always gets flagged, but I think that's because it's really dense and not a shape they're used to seeing.

    I should probably also point out that I often travel with various pieces of my comapny's test equipment (monitoring receivers, spectrum analyzers, direction-finding gear), and these almost always get flagged : I have a small pile of the "We inspected your checked luggage" slips from TSA. My subjective feeling (having gone through post-9/11 security several hundred times), is that if it's an "unfamiliar" object to the X-ray machine operator, it gets flagged.

    TSA doesn't usually seem to want an explanation of what I'm carrying -- they just swab the "suspicious" item down and check for explosives. Occasionally someone will ask, but I think they're really just making conversation: it gets swabbed no matter what the answer is.

    My suggestion: you can save yourself some time (and avoid having a TSA officer paw through your bags) by putting any "unfamiliar" devices in a tray by itself.
  10. N3VEM

    N3VEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I know this thread is old, but if anyone stumbles across it, or is looking back at it, I wote a blog post on flying with ham gear. As far as flying goes, its really a rather painless experience.


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