ARRL Seeks Opinions Concerning Possible New Entry Level License

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This topic contains 3 replies, has 3 voices, and was last updated by Fred Kemmerer Fred Kemmerer 1 year, 1 month ago.

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  • #10920
    Layne AE1N
    Layne AE1N
    Participant

    ARRL Seeks Opinions Concerning Possible New Entry Level License

    If you are an ARRL member, they want your opinion:

    http://www.arrl.org/news/arrl-seeks-opinions-concerning-possible-new-entry-level-license

    Layne AE1N

    Attachments:
    #10935
    Fred Kemmerer
    Fred Kemmerer
    Keymaster

    Hello Everyone,

    Several members of our instructor team have discussed this and we do not support what the ARRL is doing for several reasons:

    1) We do not see the current Tech class license as being too difficult for new HAMs to earn. We have provided Tech class trying over 50 folks in the last 2 years and we have not had a single person fail to earn a Tech license. This is also true for several young people. With over 100 students taught in our class and a 98% success rate, we believe that what is really need is for HAMs to do more in terms of elmering and youth outreach.

    2) The ARRL is in the process of revising the current Tech license question pool and could easily address any perceived difficulty problems that don’t effect a HAM’s ability to build and operate a their station with the FCC rules with appropriate adjustments in the question pool.

    3) What is really needed is for the Amateur community to do a better job with youth outreach and particularly elmering. We already have a problem with many folks getting Tech licenses and never becoming active. Adding a simpler, entry level license will simply make these problems worse while wasting time and resources that could be better utilized elsewhere.

    Many countries have only two license classes these days – some sort of beginner level license and an “expert” level. Creating a 4th license class in the US is also out of step in this fashion.

    We are fortunate to have members in our club who are very dedicated to helping folks to become licensed through classes and then providing lots of training and other opportunities to get on the air and to build a first station. We are also doing great work on youth outreach with the goal of getting young people interested in our hobby. We believe that that ARRL should focus its energy and resources to get more clubs and independent Amateurs involved in these sorts of activities instead.

    I wanted to take a moment to let everyone know how we are feeling about this topic. We encourage all of our members to respond to the ARRL’s request for feedback in whatever way you best see fit.

    73,

    - Fred (AB1OC)
    President, Nashua Area Radio Society

    ab1oc@arrl.net
    Visit us on the web at - https://www.n1fd.org

    #11135

    Hamilton
    Participant

    Lowering the bar to get a license will have a long term negative impact. The preveliges that are granted with a licenses are considerable. We operate in un-channeled bands with various modulation types, we can use high power homebrew transmitters that are not type certified, remove the covers and modify our purchased equipment, and can transmit over 15kW ERIP (includes antenna gain) in the public air space. All for $15 and awswering 35 questions. I’m concerned if we lower the bar,  the incidences of  interference to other services and other Hams will increase, and our current preveliges rolled back as a result as it is nearly impossible to revert to a more exclusionary condition these days. Also current Hams will leave the hobby.

    The one change that makes some sense to me would be to add limited HF QRP privileges to the Technician license. A couple of bands and some narrow segments and a cap of 10 watts. With 10w they would have to gain the skills to field a good antenna and CW would be their friend for long haul DX.

    There are currently QRP rigs available at various price points and we would see more offered. We would have a inventory of used lower cost rigs for the next wave of Technicians, as these folks moved on to General Class privileges. I remember the shelves of used novice gear in the late 1960s, that’s where I shopped as a kid.

    Today right at 50% of all license are Technician Class. Many get the license, sample the local repeater for a while and then move on to a new hobby. I believe with a taste of HF a lot more of them would be back for their  General. After stringing a few dipoles, using a radio in the HF band, and hearing traffic they can’t reach they will have a headstart to passing the General test.

    Hamilton (K1HMS)
    Amherst, NH

    #11148
    Fred Kemmerer
    Fred Kemmerer
    Keymaster

    All great points Hamilton, thank you for sharing your thoughts. Hope that you’ll respond to the ARRL’s survey with these ideas.

    73,

    - Fred (AB1OC)
    President, Nashua Area Radio Society

    ab1oc@arrl.net
    Visit us on the web at - https://www.n1fd.org

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