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Amateur Radio Info & Exams

What is Amateur Radio?

Amateur (Ham) Radio is a diverse hobby which allows participants to experiment with radio and electronics, to chat with each other using voice or text, or even TV, and to assist with communications during disasters.

It can be a very affordable hobby, if you are willing to make your own antennas, cables, and accessories.

New rules mean learning Morse Code (CW) is no longer required to access the world-wide HF bands (but if it excites you, go right ahead, it is an important part of our history).

More here: About AR

What do I need to learn?

As a minimum, an Amateur must learn about basic electronics, such as voltage, current, power, Ohm's law, frequency & wavelength, a little about antennas, and how radio signal propagate. Some knowledge of regulations and operating procedures is also needed. After this, there is opportunity to pursue a wide variety of knowledge.

There are many learning resources, whether online, in books, or as audio CDs.

Learn more here: Learning Material

What, I need to do exams?

Yes, but licences are graded, with entry level options, and options which provide access to a wider range of frequencies and/or "modes". Most importantly, tests are multiple choice, (with the exception of one practical test it the WIA system). The maths is probably easier than calculating fuel and water requirements for a 4WD adventure.

Also, there are a range of affordable options, with those in eastern Australia have access to an alternative, low cost examination service, using the US system.

More on Exams: Exams


Written by Julian Sortland, VK2YJS & AG6LE, November 2017.