Thread: 4NEC2?
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Old October 14th 18, 06:42 PM posted to,
Jeff Liebermann[_2_] Jeff Liebermann[_2_] is offline
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First recorded activity by RadioBanter: Jun 2007
Posts: 1,332
Default 4NEC2?

On Sun, 14 Oct 2018 08:50:13 +0000, Spike
Stephen Thomas Cole, the PP, just after gaining his UK Full licence by
'acing' all three exams, appeared on a UK Amateur group asking which
sideband he should use on 40m. Thatís all you need to know about him and
and his ability with radio.

For what it's worth, I don't know which sideband to use on 40m. That's
because I don't operate much on 40m and don't have such details
memorized. I use a wall chart with the appropriate modes,
frequencies, sub-bands, and dedicated frequencies listed. Oddly, I
was able to pass the US extra-class license without knowing or
studying any of this. I believe I posted the story previously, but
it's interesting enough to repeat again.

I don't recall what year, but at the time, the FCC decided to drop the
US Morse Code requirements. Since the technician class license
consisted of the exact same technical questions as the general class
license (element 3), it was decided that one could upgrade from
technician to general without taking any additional tests and by
simply paying a nominal processing fee.

I arrived at the scheduled VEC exam session and presented my
collection of expired licenses and forms as proof that I passed the
technician class exam. Since I didn't need to pass an exam, I hadn't
studied. I was then informed that I could take the extra class exam
(element 4). If I failed, I would still get the general class
license. Seemed like a reasonable thing to do. So, I took the extra
class exam, totally and completely unprepared. I didn't even bring a

Except for some creative wording in many of the questions, the
technical parts were quite familiar and easy. However, element 4 also
included some questions that required operating experience, such as
band edges for the extra class only sub-bands, and similar questions.
I did my best by guessing and was certain that I had failed the exam.
Amazingly, I passed.

So, if anyone asks if it is possible to pass the US extra class exam
without knowing much about HF operating standards, I would answer that
it might be possible.

From my warped perspective, the ham license is NOT a demonstration of
competence. It's simply the minimum one is expected to know so that
they can operate a ham transmitter without breaking any rules,
becoming a nuisance, or otherwise making a mess of the frequencies.
One learns ham radio AFTER obtaining a license, not before.

Jeff Liebermann
150 Felker St #D
Santa Cruz CA 95060
Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558