This website, HamCalendar.com (linked: Ham.info) is personal endeavor to provide Amateur Radio information such as a Memphis repeater list, local clubs and nets list.  It has a calendar that shows meeting dates, ham assisted service events and other activities.  This site also has a little radio and antenna information.  It has a Morse code squeeze paddles instructions sheet, a PicCon Instruction Sheet for fox transmitter hunts, and a few radio cheat sheets.

This site definitely has imperfections and errors.  Please let me know if you see repeater data or anything else that needs to be fixed or added.

Thanks  AA4UK  Ray@hamcalendar.com                
Terms of Use

What is Ham Radio ?

Per the Federal Communications Commission,  Amateur Radio is a personal (like a hobby, not for profit) use of 27 authorized frequency bands of the radio spectrum for any age person to investigate, train, and converse. To learn about Amateur Radio and get started, it's a matter of studying and remembering just a moderate amount of information and taking a 35 question multiple choice test to get your first privilege which is a Technician License.  With the Technician you can mainly operate the higher frequencies, which is usually local communications - but you could stretch it out and talk hundreds of miles. Then you may advance and take the more difficult General exam which gives many low-band privileges. The low band's longer-slower frequencies can bounce/skip between land/oceans and the sky's ionosphere and travel great distances, even to other countries. The 50 question Extra Class is the icing on the cake and you are allow all privileges that the FCC grants the Amateur Radio Service. Like CB or a personal service radio you talk on - it's still "radio", but with more possible power and modes like FM, SSB, AM, CW, digital, etc. You can communicate across town, to the other side of the earth, to satellites, and even bounce signals off the moon. Lately, some communications are even mixed in with the internet, if you desire, you can buy radios with these internet linked capabilities. Another internet example is to use a computer or cell phone app to link to a repeater somewhere on earth which will then allow for a communication via a radio signal.

Overall it's more than just buying a radio and antenna, it can also be an endless hobby that can challenge your technical and operating skills/abilities, or you can settle into your own plateau which is fine also.  Currently with the advent of micro processors and the internet, amateur radio now has new transmissions modes, smaller and more capable equipment. Stuff that can spark your interest, where you want to learn, communicate, make long term friends and even be a service to your community. Nets or check-in's are still very common where hams stand-by at a certain time and give a report/comment or just say hi, some nets may have just a few to 30 or more check-in's in larger areas. Nets are a way to get some on-the-air practice and see who's being active out there in radio land. Overall ham radio is like taking an interest in technology and public service, instead of letting the technology of others consume your time. After you have operated and have been a ham for a while, it feels like your amateur call sign letters becomes who you are, like a second identity. It gets in your bones and you want to participate when you can.

Here are some possible things Amateur Radio Operators do:

Advancing the hobby by upgrading their license, teaching and testing others

Helping with community service and fund raising events

Having the ability to help in times of disasters and emergencies

Learning new communication technologies, and preserving old ways as well

Building electronic gadgets and antennas projects

Attending meetings, hamfests, communicating locally, and visiting others

Meeting new friends over the air - at any distance, verbally or digitally

Participating with old friends on nets from near to hundreds of miles away

It doesn't really cost that much to get started with your Novice FCC license, and itís only a multiple choice test. Morse code was discontinued from the test several years ago, but itís still alive and well around the world Ė if you want to take that challenge later on. The last few years some economy handy-talkies have become available and with simple materials you can make a better performing full size antenna. You can spend a little or a lot as you become more experienced. Many seasoned hams just use wire antennas and avoid the big towers / antennas, and do just fine.

Many Hams hang in with the hobby for their entire lives, while many hams start out strong and fizzle out rapidly, never to be heard again. If you enjoy people, building things, and want to spend some of your spare time learning about radio, antennas, interacting and making friends with other hams - then amateur radio may be a good way of life for you.    73  Ray


The ARRL, National Association for Amateur Radio (Amateur Radio Relay League) also has a good definition of "what ham radio is" on their site at  http://www.arrl.org/what-is-ham-radio .

The ARRL www.arrl.org  is the largest informative, supporting, and defending organization of ham radio - Investigate their website, and see what they have to offer.