I can haz radio?

Now that I have my amateur radio license, I needed a radio to play with. After browsing a few catalogs, checking out some reviews and some websites, I settled on a Yaesu VX-8DR which arrived today.

It’s got a lot of buttons, a lot of capabilities and will take me a while to figure it out. It seems like a pretty decent radio that I’ll be able to grow into as I learn more about amateur radio. I’m looking forward to playing with it.

So far I’ve managed to catch some activity on one of the local repeaters. Just lurking for now learning how radio people talk and announce themselves.

Newly minted ham

The Atlanta Hamfest today was pretty cool. A pretty decent number of people, and lots of radio related gear up for sale. So many gadgets. I’ve always wanted an oscilloscope to play with, and there were lots of them up for sale.

Sat in on Connie’s forum on the social side of ham radio, which went pretty well. Some pretty good discussion and participation from the people that attended.

After that it was ham licensing exam time. I managed to pass the General exam so now I am a licensed ham radio guy (once it goes through the FCC). I took the Extra exam because I could, but didn’t really expect to pass it since I went into it pretty much cold and with no prep. I figured I was prepared enough to get General, and that’s what I ended up with so I’m pretty pleased with that.

Connie took this picture of me with my CSCE (Certificate of Successful Completion of Exam) showing that I passed the General test.

Me posing with my CSCE (Certificate of Successful Completion of Exam)
Me with my CSCE

Now to see if some of my ham radio friends will let me hang out with them and see how it works. Will probably find out sometime next week what my call sign is. If there are enough examiners at Southeast Linuxfest next weekend, I’ll try to do the Extra exam there (and hopefully be more prepared for it).

Ham radioing

A new hobby is probably the last thing i need to get into right now, with all the PhD work I’ve been procrastinating on.

That’s never stopped me before though.

Decided to make a trip out to the Atlanta Hamfest where I’ll meet up with a road-tripping ham radio friend and most likely take the ham licensing tests.

I’ve had a passing interest in amateur radio for a while now and ever since I pushed it as a Barcamp topic a few years ago, I’ve had a few people “encouraging” me to get my license.

So now I’m finally going to do it and enter the world of amateur radio. This should be interesting and fun.