For many, the idea of obtaining an amateur radio license may appear to be a daunting endevour. However, know that anyone with a desire to do so, can obtain an amateur radio license. The hobby isn't just for "technical" people. Indeed, amateur radio is comprised of people representing a diverse cross section of humanity. There are people from all walks of life, worldwide, who are licensed amateur radio operators. Children as young as 5, and adults well into their 90s, have passed the test and now hold a valid amateur radio license. Contrary to a common sterotype, there is no such thing as a "typical" Amateur Radio operator. Amateur radio is a hobby open to everyone.
You are NEVER too young, too old, or otherwise lacking the ability to obtain an Amateur Radio License!
So put your fears aside and read on, because passing your test and obtaining your license has never been easier!
Remember, we are here to help you in your quest! Helping others getting into and enjoying the hobby is a fundamental element of what the Haualapai Radio Club is about.
Getting your amateur radio license these days is far more streamlined than in past decades. Of interest to many prospective amateurs, the Morse Code requirement has been eliminated for all classes of licenses. Morse Code, or simply CW, as it is more commonly referred to, nevertheless remains a very popular operational mode. Indeed, many members of HARC are avid CW operators.
Also of importance to prospective amateurs is the ease of taking the test. The current Technician Class test, for example, is only 35 (multiple choice) questions and focuses the rules, very basic theory, and practical aspects of amateur radio and related electronics.
Changes from the past
There once was a time when the only class license that could be administered outside of a designated FCC facility was the, now grandfathered, Novice Class. Today all classes of amateur license testing can be administered by a Volunteer Examiner, or "VE".
Another positive change is when an indivdual, for whatever reason, failed an examination, had to wait 30 days before being eligible to retest. Today one may retake the test as many times as necessary without any waiting period, even in the same testing session. Also note, those who successfully pass the examination for a given class license, may immediately test for the next class of license. It is not unheard, for example, for a highly motivated individual to go from "nothing to Extra" in a single testing session.
Among the many support resources we offer to prospective amateurs, HARC maintains a pool of volunteer examiners and provides monthly test sessions.
Amateur Radio License Stucture
As you read through the following, a helpful visual reference to amateur radio bands and license class priviledges can be found here. The link is to a pdf file which can be downloaded, if desired, simply by right clicking on the link with your mouse, and then selecting "Save Link As".
The Technican Class is the entry level license, yet still provides a lot of operating priviledges. Access to all amateur bands and operating modes from 6 Meters (50 MHz) and higher. Technician class licensee is able to operate using Data, and SSB modes on frequency segments in the 10 meter band. For those who have an interest in CW, segments of the 80, 40, 15, and 10 meter bands, offer Technician class operators the ability to "work the world".
The General Class is the next tier of amateur license. It includes all the priviledges of the Technician class, while adding substancial priviledges in the 2200, 630, 160, 60, 30, 17, and the 12 meter bands.
The Amateur Extra Class is the highest tier of amateur license. In addition to retaining all the priviledges of the Technician and General classes, the Amateur Extra receives all remaining priviledges afforded to amateur radio. Obtaining the Amateur Extra Class license is not simply a demonstration of accomplishment. It offers the licensee full access to all that amateur radio has to offer. No legal amateur frequency or mode is off limits to the Amateur Extra Class licensee.
There are numerous books and other resources, including online, which propspective amateurs can reference in preparing for the license test. Many focus on the specific class license for which one intends to test. There are also online practice tests, comprised of the actual test questions, which allow you to check your progress as you prepare for your Technician, General, or Amateur Extra test.
One series of study guides authored by Gordon West, WB6NOA, has been very popular with those preparing to test. The Technician Class guide, for example, can be found here on Amazon.
In addition to the aforementioned resources, HARC will convene a class for the Technician license when there are at least 3 participants. Additionally, many club members are happy to mentor prospective amateurs in their quest to get licensed. So no matter what resources you choose, attend one of the club meetings and ask any questions you have.
The Hualapia Amateur Radio Club provides license test sessions for all license classes. Test sessions are held on the third Saturday of each month and are held at the Hualapai Valley Fire Department Station #1 (Formerly the Northern Arizona Consolidated Fire Station), located at 2485 Northern Ave, Kingman, Az 86409.
Exam sessions are conducted by volunteers working under the direction of the FCC and a Volunteer Exam Coordinator (VEC).
The fee for each examination taken is $15.00.
Walk-ins are welcome, however, it it extremely helpful to the volunteer examiners to know how many to expect, as there are several documents required for each test taken. There are identification requirements as well, which must be met in order to take an exam. Please ensure that you have all required documents prior to your arrival at the testing location.
When you are ready to take your test, if you have questions, and/or you have special needs requirments in order to take your exam, please contact Alyce or Tom Ingle at (425) 231-9173 for further information.