Thursday, January 17, 2008

Amateur Radio.

Whatever happened to them all. Remember a time where everyone and their dogs had a CB radio?

Free service everywhere, no monthly fees, no worries. You need driving advice, switch it onto 19, then cut someone off. Someone will tell ya.

It still a mainstay of communication, and information for us truckers these days, but you see less and less of the antennas on cars these days. Other then the cell phone antenna that is.

Then you have a new art I'm studying. Amateur radio. Or some know it as HAM radio. You can use these radios to talk to people literally around the world. All you need to do is buy a radio, get liscensed, and your off.

These people can contact others from around the world without much difficulty. Or in the area I am looking into. Locally. Call someone any time of the day. No fees. No waiting for 6pm. Oh wait. 8pm now..

Some radios arent the big clunkers they used to be, "boat anchors" is what they call them. The unit I'm receiving will be about the size of my hand, and can have up to a 50km range. If you have a local HAM club in the area and a repeater site set up. The distance is literally endless. By bouncing from repeater to repeater, you can easily get 200kms or more.

There are even competitions held to see who can make the most worldwide contacts in a set period of time.

Ham operators also provide emergency services with a back up. If the power goes out, what do you do? Grab your phone. Just say the disaster has caused so much phone disturbance, the lines are all plugged up. (Remember 9/11, or the Ice storm in 1998?) Amateur radio still works. And yes. People do wait on the line for the call in a disaster, helping emergency services keep going.

Personally. I think if CB and amateur radio had kept on going, we may not even have cell phones. But this is life.

Id like to thank my dad, for helping me along while learning about radios, frequencies and electronics all my life. As well. Id like to thank him for his 26+ years of service to his country. Now he just has to get back to Ontario so we can go fishing.

Id also like to thank Brodie, for introducing me to the hobby, and helping me along the way. And Id also like to thank him, and his colleagues at the Petawawa Fire Department #1 and #2 for their volunteer service in our community and keeping us safe in the community. Seldom are volunteers thanked for their deeds.

I figured after so many posts with negative attributes, it would be good to have a nice post once in a while.

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