Emergency Comms

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    It is a big concern! We live in texas but DH works in Alaska. they have sat phones but If I dont have a shortwave or other comm. then we wont know what is going on between us. I dont think a visual would help me much….. Just sayin’ :'(


    Always remember, all the license does is to give you the right to use the airwaves in “”peace”” times there is a good chance that post TEOTWAWKI or other similar happenings the license and the privilege to use ham radio equipment will be suspended. Moreover, having a license just put you on the radar of Federal and Local government. If past wars and world events are any indication, there will be a chance that any ham Radio operator will get a visit that will result in his/her equipent being either confiscated or destroyed.

    In todays world, NOBODY needs a license to buy ham radio equipment, it is NOT illegal to own it. It is however illegal to operate it. After TEOTWAWKI or a similar event most people will not care if they have a license and use the equipment.
    If you buy radios, even as a licensed Ham and you want them to be secure from .gov agents buy them with cash, at the local swap meet or from a fellow ham, do NOT sent in the warranty card…you do not want any paper trail connecting you to that piece of equipment. People always underestimate the resolve and the resources that the government has….and for one thing do NOT underestimate the people that will be willingly or unwillingly colaborate with the government or thugs and gangs.


    I’m sorry John this is fundamentally not the best advise. for several reasons:

    1) FIRST and FOREMOST, there is much more to being a HAM than having a license. The license just gives you the legal right to use the spectrum, being and OPERATOR means knowing HOW, which requires a lot of EXPERIENCE, which you can’t get if you don’t play with your toys, and get help from other HAM’s. For example, “A GREAT radio with a mediocre antenna is a mediocre rig; a mediocre radio with GREAT antenna is a GREAT rig.” Do you know why? Do you know what constitutes a good or bad antenna? Do you know how to fix a bad antenna? What if you don’t have an antenna? Can you build one? These are questions that you can only answer if you are not just licensed, but have learned to be a OPERATOR.

    These are all things that you learn AFTER you get your license but only if you ACTUALLY use your license and get on the air.

    2)As far as being “on their Radar” goes, a lot of what HAMS do is work with local EOCs to provide emergency communications for local and regional disasters. This allows you to build relationships that may be very useful in troubled times.

    3) Even when the FCC orders HAM’s off the air, there will be other parts of the EMS that will be uncontrolled/uncontrollable that HAM skills will allow you to get away with using. But you have to be an ACTIVE HAM to know what they are, and learn how to use them.

    4) Buying equipment with cash is not a bad idea per se, but from the stand point of “hiding” your radios from the FCC goon squads it’s a wasted effort. It’s not like with guns, and a very good reason why we DON’T want gun ownership registered; they can simply go down the list of licensed HAM’s and go door to door, looking for radios. Most Operators with in a few years wind up with a couple of SETS of radios, so hide your old radios in a grounded metal box, and let the goons have what they see. If they ask about the old stuff, you sold it to finance the new stuff. You start off with an HT, then get a 2m mobile rig for the car, then a second one for a base unit in the house, then you upgrade them to dual band, and get the MRS. to get her license, and get her a new HT, and put a dual band rig in her car and get yourself one as well. Next thing you know in about 4 years, you have 3 (2 cars, and one in the house) mono-band 2M rigs, 3 dual band 144/440 rigs, 2-2M HTs and 2 dual band HTs. While the old stuff isn’t as capable as the new stuff, it will still get you on the air.


    5) For HAM radio to do you any good at all you need (just like here) to be part of the local HAM community. They will be the resource you need to teach you the practical side of being a HAM, as well as building local relationships that will help see you though the tough times ahead. (if you get a heads up from you EOC friends that the FCC is looking to collect up radios, you might have time to swap out your old radios, and hide the good stuff till after they are gone)

    There are lots of ways to skin a dead cat, trying to hide from it won’t help

    Just the 2 cents of an Operator in training. (you never know it all)


    I have been a ham for some time and hold a general class lic. I have rigs built and packed with everything I need to get on the air on 440/2/6&HF. Small antennas that work! I have used them talking to local hams and hams all around the world. Practical practice to work out any issues that might come up. I have a written comms plan for my wife and I. Based on where we are that day the distance from each other and they type of situation tells us what FRQ to tune to.

    I did hear a story when I first became a ham about a man that lived in Iraq during the first war who built a false wall and had his ham radio set in it. He used it to send US troops info via packet bursts. Quick burst that the Iraq army was not able to pin point. Anyone know if this story is fact? I know u can send messages this way even tweets and emails with the right setup.

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