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Rematzz
10 + Year member
10 +  Year  member
Rematzz


Call Sign : 26-CT-886
Posts : 3
Times Thanked : 1
Join date : 2019-07-03
QTH or Location : West Yorkshire, England
Equipment Used : Various
Age : 32

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PostSubject: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeTue Aug 22, 2023 3:28 pm

hi all, 

It's been a while since i have picked up the mic but i'm feeling the itch to get back into the hobby. i luckily still have most of my gear and have noticed that 2 metres is still very quiet in my area. i hold a foundation licence but still haven't got time to focus on the study for the intermediate exam due to work and family life.

i'm mostly hoping people can help update me a little, i have been told about DMR and looked it up but i don't think its for me. I've been away from the hobby for about 5-8 years and if i don't get back into the hobby again now i probably never will. 

thanks 

Rematzz

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Victor
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Victor


Call Sign : 26-CT-3228 / M7VIC
Posts : 5803
Times Thanked : 352
Join date : 2019-11-10
QTH or Location : Bedford
Equipment Used : Various

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeTue Aug 22, 2023 5:26 pm

Hi Matt.

I see you've been a member of the forum for some time but this is your first posting?
(Don't worry, not an inquisition, just an observation and conversational ice-breaker. Wink )

I've had my Foundation for a couple of years or so now and up to now been having too much fun with my 10W so haven't considered "moving up" as of yet. (No regrets either the "More Watts Igor" not taking my fancy.)

There's many areas of interest with the Amateur Radio hobby and often it's just a case of trying things and seeing what takes your fancy.

I know my own initial interest with DMR radio faded quickly and I don't do a lot of VHF/UHF repeater work either but each of us are different and shouldn't knock each other for it. There is a fair bit of DMR action nowadays with regular nets etc. so obviously someone's enjoying it.

What are you wanting or expecting from the hobby?

With myself I went down the digi-mode FT4/8 route and thoroughly enjoying it working the world with my 10W and homemade antennas. (My current antenna is a doublet made from an old lawnmower lead in the loft!) There's always action going on the many bands and sometimes surprisingly good contacts can be made even when conditions are less than favourable. Many people here enjoy the same interest and no one knocks each other for it either. (Well, on the whole. Wink )

Only recently have I started up some SSB action again after some very helpful members here at CT proving that not everyone on the bands is a miserable old sod denouncing Foundation holders. Rolling Eyes

Thanks to events held here at CT for the fun factor I've been making contact on other bands enthused by such action as the 10m challenge. (This year I'm not on nil-points for a change and I'm not going to "win" but enjoyed the experience of some contest contacts and gaining a few points.)

Many members here also enjoy some PMR action with great nets being held up and down the country as well as the 8@8 events. (Channel 8, 8pm.) Also many enjoy some sort of CB action too whether that be chatting to locals in their area or busting that DX with some SSB action. (Totally legal on the EU/CEPT or old mid-band frequencies nowadays too.) So there's always other radio avenues that can be explored along with Ham radio. We welcome all radio activities regardless and even have a 11m challenge coming up again.

I think we do have to enthuse ourselves at times with the hobby but it's great to be in contact with fellow radio enthusiasts on places such as this here Charlie Tango where everyone's ideas and activities come to the fore. Some of it might just take your interest and you can easily pop questions to fellow members here most of whom are wonderful people only too happy to help.


So I think you might have started in the right place, by reaching out here. coming back to the hobby 1f44d


I hope you pick up the hobby again because although sometimes it can be frustrating (lusting for expensive rigs or equipment never helps) it is something I've found to be a very enjoyable interest as do many others.

I wish you all the best with it,

Victor

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https://www.qrz.com/db/M7VIC
Rematzz
10 + Year member
10 +  Year  member
Rematzz


Call Sign : 26-CT-886
Posts : 3
Times Thanked : 1
Join date : 2019-07-03
QTH or Location : West Yorkshire, England
Equipment Used : Various
Age : 32

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeWed Aug 23, 2023 2:05 pm

Hi Victor,

Yes i became a member here a long time again and did post many times but i wasn't sure if the forum had a reset or something. I did found my Charlie Tango callsign that i had issued, but i don't remember using that call much. i hold a M6 callsign and passed it more than 10 years ago, to be honest i'm not sure how or when i starting loosing interest. i originally only wanted to step up to the  intermediate to advance myself in the hobby but my 10W has always been more than enough for me. 

Don't get me wrong i might look into getting a DMR handheld as they aren't expensive as i thought they would be. I just don't think i would us it as much as my other gear. 

I was just going to see what has changed or what is new in the hobby so i can look more into it and try a bit of everything. i have been told about FT8 and think i would like to have ago at that. 

I did do a little bit of HF before but i struggle with most antennas at my current QTH, so i have to make do with what fits and what i'm aloud. I did start doing a bit of QRP before i came away from the hobby and i have recently found my yaesu ft-817nd, so i think i might give that ago one of the evenings. 

Thankyou so much for coming back to me and giving me some much needed confidence in the hobby.

Thanks,

Matt

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Victor
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Victor


Call Sign : 26-CT-3228 / M7VIC
Posts : 5803
Times Thanked : 352
Join date : 2019-11-10
QTH or Location : Bedford
Equipment Used : Various

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeWed Aug 23, 2023 3:06 pm

Hello again Matt,

Ah, you may have been on the old forum as we moved across to here some four years or so ago. I've just had a look back at the call sign list myself and noticed that you were a member quite some time ago so with that (despite any breaks, we all have them Wink ) I am delighted to award you with a "10 + Year Member" to your new forum profile.

(We do like to see and appreciate old members here.)


I do like a bit of a 'waffle' (ask anyone here) and nothing more so than extolling the virtues of the radio interest. coming back to the hobby 1f44d 

There's a lot of M3, M6's as well as M7's rocking the world of Amateur Radio and damn good for them I say. Not everyone is up for extra exams and in reality it isn't always a necessity to enjoy the radio hobby either. I don't see too many people being bemoaned for only having a car licence and shouldn't be on the road unless they have their PSV or HGV also!

Luckily on the whole nowadays (it's taken long enough for some) there are many 'old school' Hams who welcome Foundation licence holders especially if they are active with the radio hobby and on air. A lot already did right from the start enthusing others to enjoy themselves without the unnecessary push to 'progress'. You'll still get the odd fly in the ointment as mentioned before believing you somehow 'cheated' your way into Amateur Radio but we could go back and argue unnecessarily about dropping Morse or even writing to the Postmaster General couldn't we. Wink

Luckily Amateur Radio has been evolving & moving along with the times, more recently there has been a consultation brought forward by OfCom to extend some sensible ideas to the Ham community. There has been call to up the 'limit' of 10W to 20W for Foundation (not a lot but unlicensed CB radio can use 12W legally without any sort of exam), 50W up to 100W for Intermediate and 'harmonising' to international standards by allowing Full licence holders to use up to 1kW. Along with other changes such as NoV's (notice of variation) to allow people to have a simple method of utilising a special event call sign along with other worthwhile changes it's mostly been welcomed and hopefully should go through.

They have even clarified 'IR2026' (which was nonsense if anyone bothered to read it) to allow Foundation operators to build or repair equipment to get themselves on air and extend the radio interest......not that having a Ham licence actually qualified you for such, there's a bit more electronics and knowledge required for such things!


Don't ever let so called 'limits' hold you back with the radio interest either. As I mentioned before I have a mass of wire stripped from various sources such as the aforementioned lawnmower lead all slung up in my mid terrace house attic space as I've got no where else to put it all. It certainly isn't a DX busting antenna that's for sure but with digi-modes I've worked the world even within my limited capacity. (160m to 6m no less on one antenna!)

I can't personally go mobile due to a disability (but planning on trying with my new mobility scooter!) however it's another option for those whose QTH may be lacking space or even indeed flooded with modern day QRM. Your Yaesu FT817 (a marvellous little radio) is perfect for such ventures as I'm sure you're aware.

It may well be worth giving DMR a go and seeing if you like it, as I said there's many groups and nets on there today affording some interest. I still found it a shock when I first used it that an Australian Ham came back to me whilst calling on the International channel! (Not much antenna work involved really relying on internet connectivity but rather than using a 'hotspot' I did fire off to a further afield 2m repeater to access the DMR world.)

There is literally an inexhaustible list of activities for the enthusiastic radio persuasion among us and I'm damn sure you'll find something that floats your boat Matt. So many in fact that if you ever get 'bored' with one thing, you can always try another. coming back to the hobby 1f44d 



Again, forgive my waffle but it's usually for very good reason.

Enjoy yourself with your activities and I truly hope that you find that passion again that holds so many of us dearly to the radio interest.


All the best to you and hope to 'chat' again - maybe even on the bands,

Victor

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TamGlasgow
Contributor
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Call Sign : 108-CT-370 & MM3TAM
Posts : 62
Times Thanked : 2
Join date : 2023-08-17
QTH or Location : Clydebank, Scotland
Equipment Used : Various on 2/4/10/11m and 70cm

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeWed Aug 23, 2023 8:06 pm

Victor, sorry for butting in but I have a wee question.
This famous lawnmower cable, do you strip the insulation off of it? The reason I ask is that I want to go down the homebrew route as an outside antenna is out of the question. I will start a thread with all my questions when I get going.

Tam

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Victor
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Victor


Call Sign : 26-CT-3228 / M7VIC
Posts : 5803
Times Thanked : 352
Join date : 2019-11-10
QTH or Location : Bedford
Equipment Used : Various

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeWed Aug 23, 2023 9:02 pm

Hi Tam,

No worries there, it's not butting in if anything helps. Wink
(Sorry Matt, quick deflection on your post.)

I made a posting a while back with my 'lawnmower lead' antenna :-

https://charlietangodxgroup.forumotion.com/t4296-skip-hunting-for-hunting-skip

There's been a few changes since like making it longer and modifying my homebrew ATU to tame it all but all the techniques remain the same. Feel free to post up any new posting you like with any questions you might have.

All the best,
Victor

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https://www.qrz.com/db/M7VIC
Rematzz
10 + Year member
10 +  Year  member
Rematzz


Call Sign : 26-CT-886
Posts : 3
Times Thanked : 1
Join date : 2019-07-03
QTH or Location : West Yorkshire, England
Equipment Used : Various
Age : 32

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PostSubject: Re: coming back to the hobby   coming back to the hobby Icon_minitimeTue Aug 29, 2023 3:54 pm

hi again, 

Sorry i've been quite, my attention has been needed by family and with my car battery deciding it didn't want to play game lol. 

The only chance i have had to play radio is charging my yaesu ft-817nd and one of my handhelds.

Thanks alot Victor you have given me loads of info and loads to think about, i defiantly want to have ago at building my own gear again. The only things i have built apart from the odd kits you can buy, are antennas. The ones i did build wasn't very good but they did the job, i might see what resources we have spare at work and see what i can build. 

I never mind anyone 'butting' it can help everyone out, i were interested in looking at the lawnmower lead antenna as well. 

Once i'm sorted it would be great to try a chat on the bands Victor. 

anyway thanks again and i'll update on this post how i get on.

thanks, 
Matt

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