After more than 50 years in Ham Radio, my observations could fill this page and many more. I’ve seen many operating modes established, with many maintained. FM Repeater operation took on a solid foundation early in my Ham Radio career and remains as an entry point for many new Hams and as a gathering point and “campfire” for the more established.
Unfortunately, repeater operation to some extent, and now the digital voice modes such as DMR create a reliance on third parties, for significant portions of the communications path. Amateur radio has always and continues to be renown for self reliance and the lack of dependency on third parties. I see these newer digital modes as a deterrent, in many ways, to this self reliance and what allows us to stand apart.
I’ve also noticed two other trends which I find troubling, one is the desire to to start with a simple and inexpensive FM, handheld radio and expect that this will provide an immersion into Ham Radio. I believe, for many, this does not provide a level of satisfaction and we therefore lose or risk losing those individuals to the hobby. Members of the RF Hill ARC and established Amateurs reading my message here, should be cognizant of this, and encourage new Hams to spread their wings.
The second is related in part, to the first and that is the seemingly and overwhelming desire to upgrade one’s license, shortly after becoming initially licensed. Simply upgrading your license class, does not make you a better Ham! Take advantage of, and exercise your privileges regardless of the class of license you hold. Many of us put far more stock in the technical and operating skills of the individual Amateur, than the class of license held.
One of the things that makes the RF Hill ARC such a great organization is the diversity of activities that the members have undertaken. I think you’ll find us a welcoming organization. Please join us, and we’ll help you find a place for yourself, and build an enjoyable and lifelong experience, in Amateur Radio.
2021 President, RF Hill Amateur Radio Club
The Radio Amateur is
CONSIDERATE… He never knowingly operates in such a way as to lessen the
pleasure of others.
LOYAL… He offers loyalty, encouragement and support to other amateurs, local
clubs, the IARU Radio Society in his country, through which Amateur Radio in his
country is represented nationally and internationally.
PROGRESSIVE… He keeps his station up to date. It is well-built and efficient. His
operating practice is above reproach.
FRIENDLY… He operates slowly and patiently when requested; offers friendly
advice and counsel to the beginner; kind assistance, cooperation and consideration
for the interests of others. These are the marks of the amateur spirit.
BALANCED… Radio is a hobby, never interfering with duties owed to family, job,
school or community.
PATRIOTIC… His station and skills are always ready for service to country and
– adapted from the original Amateur’s Code, written by Paul M. Segal, W9EEA, in 1928