WEAVER'S WORDS -- RING IN THE NEW
> [As always, send replies to k8je@.... Do not click on REPLY. The
> ARRL reflector that gets this newsletter to you is one-way, only.]
> - Morse Code License Requirement Abolised.
> - Personal Perspective about Code Testing.
> - New Voluntary Band Plan Announced.
> - Collateral Change.
> - Automatically Controlled Narrow Band Data.
> - Tentative Travel Schedule.
> - New Year's Wishes
> MORSE CODE LICENSE REQUIREMENT ABOLISHED
> By now, we all know FCC has ruled to abolish Morse code testing as part
> of any amateur license requirement. There isn't much further to be
> said. With this act, FCC has taken a few additional steps. You can
> read about these on the ARRL web site.
> Please notice the only thing abolished by FCC was the testing
> requirements. The use of Morse is still allowed and no CW privileges
> were lost by this latest Report & Order. Similarly, ARRL will continue
> with code practice, bulletins and CW operating activities. CW is not
> dead and won't die for many years, if ever.
> PERSONAL PERSPECTIVE ABOUT CODE TESTING
> First, a question: What was the code test speed Hiram Percy Maxim
> (1AW, W1AW SK) passed to become a ham? Answer later.
> As you may know, my prime operating mode on HF is CW. I enjoy it. It
> is a nice tool. For me, it helps keep my mind sharp.
> Having said this, I do not feel that the FCC sold Amateur Radio down
> the river with its Report & Order to abolish code testing as a
> requirement for obtaining a ham license. As shocking as this may sound
> to some members . . . and nonmembers, as well . . . I've never thought
> Amateur Radio was all about Morse code testing or even Morse code.
> Morse code has been -- and will remain for quite some time -- a
> valuable tool in radio, including Amateur Radio. And, contrary to an
> oft-stated popular belief, the US military has not totally abandoned
> Morse code. It is still found hiding in the nooks and crannies of
> military communication. It will continue to be a useful and well-used
> mode for many amateurs.
> Some of you may view the demise of Morse code testing as a huge mistake
> and, moreover, deaths blow to our great radio service. I respectfully
> disagree. As I mentioned in one of my newsletters a couple of years
> ago, discarding Morse testing is merely one more change in the history
> of Amateur Radio.
> Just as automobile drivers no longer need to take driving exams in cars
> equipped with manual transmissions, incoming hams will simply not need
> to pass a code test. Drivers who have passed drivers license testing
> without touching the shift lever of a manual transmission are drivers
> just as much as drivers who tested using manual transmissions. So,
> too, hams who have passed amateur license testing without touching a
> telegraph key or keyer are just as much radio amateurs as amateurs who
> passed 20 wpm exams.
> Contrary to the belief that it is Morse code that gives us qualified
> operators, it is the operator who makes a qualified ham. An unethical,
> selfish individual who becomes a ham will be an unethical, selfish ham
> regardless of whether he or she has passed a code exam.
> Don't believe me? Look around the bands and check over FCC enforcement
> records. You will see that some of the worst operators and most
> flagrant violators of FCC rules are Advanced and Extra Class licensees.
> Flip the coin to its other side and you'll see that some of the best
> and most law abiding operators are no code Techs . . . many who joined
> Amateur Radio after getting their introduction to radio through CB.
> As one of my most outspoken critics, Jim Wades, K8SIW recently wrote on
> the QMN (CW traffic net) Reflector, "We will gain nothing by creating a
> 'cast system' based on telegraph proficiency or any other standard.
> Attempts on the part of operators to belittle, isolate, or otherwise
> single-out individuals as 'no-code' licensees or by otherwise implying
> they are not 'real hams' will likely be very counterproductive." Jim
> went on to observe, "Such an approach was taken by some misguided
> individuals after the implementation of the no-code Technician license
> and it did much harm to the Amateur Service and CW in particular."
> Amen, Jim.
> Just as some world cultures relegate "undesirable" people into inferior
> classes (e.g. the unclean); many amateurs mistakenly cast other hams
> into hamdom's supposed inferior classes. To some amateurs, the real
> sinners in the world are no code Techs and 5 wpm Generals, Advanced and
> Extra Class operators and such. How many times have you heard someone
> say, "I'm a 'real' Extra." I passed 20 wpm. Or, what about an old
> time Extra who might say he is a "truly real" Extra because he had to
> draw wiring diagrams for his written exam as well as pass 20 wpm.
> You've doubtlessly heard of hams who have been cast into other versions
> of Amateur Radio's leper colony.
> Many decades ago, the argument was over spark gap. Today, many hams
> don't know what spark gap is and couldn't care less. Back then, to be
> a "real" amateur, one had to use spark gap, not the new-fangled
> continuous wave (CW) stuff. Then we "moved on" to the "you aren't a
> 'real' amateur if you 'talk' over the air" debate. Using code was "the
> only way to go." After this it became "you aren't a 'real' amateur if
> you use this noise-polluting, Donald Duck-sounding SSB garbage."
> There have been changes in Amateur Radio ever since it first came into
> existence. Change is what Amateur Radio is about. There will continue
> to be change for as long as it exists. Technology and science move on,
> even though we would be more comfortable if we could stay where things
> don't change. Humans don't like change. We like to stay in the
> comfort zone of known territory. This is where we can stay warm and
> My message is that we all are Amateur Radio operators. This applies
> whether our license is a no code Tech or a 20 wpm Extra. We all are
> hams. Moreover, we don't have such huge numbers of people in Amateur
> Radio and we haven't captivated the public imagination sufficiently
> with our miraculous deeds that we can afford to be snobbish over how
> long we each have been licensed . . . or over differences in the
> requirements that were in place when we took our exams . . . or over
> how we like to spend our time on the air. We can't afford to divide
> one ham from another.
> We need to work together to develop a great new Amateur Radio that
> recaptures and surpasses its gloried past. We will never be able to
> accomplish this task if we don't respect each other and work together.
> What do you think about all this? Let me know.
> Answer to question: Hiram Percy Maxim, a principal founder of ARRL and
> Amateur Radio, never took a code test to obtain a ham license. In
> spite of this, he was a great user of Morse and a great ham.
> NEW VOLUNTARY BAND PLAN ANNOUNCED
> Not to be confused with the band changes made in the FCC's Report &
> Order, ARRL has released suggested revisions in the Voluntary Band Plan
> that hams generally follow. This voluntary bandplan does not supersede
> the FCC's recent ruling that became effective December 15.
> The revisions in the Voluntary Band Plan were based largely on hundreds
> of suggestions and comments made in response to ARRL's request for
> input. I don't usually try to put tables in this newsletter, but I am
> going to deviate from this general rule and have placed the revisions
> below (I hope this through the reflector without becoming garbled):
> 75/80 Meters Current Band Plan New Band Plan
> 3.590 RTTY DX RTTY/Data DX
> 3.580-3.620 RTTY 3.570-3.600: RTTY/Data
> 3.620-3.635 Packet Delete
> 3.790-3.800 DX Window No change
> 3.845 SSTV No change
> 3.885 AM calling frequency No change
> 40 Meters Current Band Plan New Band Plan
> 7.040 RTTY DX RTTY/Data DX
> 7.080-7.100 RTTY 7.080-7.125: RTTY/Data
> 7.171 SSTV No change
> 7.290 AM calling frequency No change
> 15 Meters Current Band Plan New Band Plan
> 21.070-21.100 RTTY 21.070-21.110: RTTY/Data
> 21.100-21.110 Packet 21.070-21.110: RTTY/Data
> 21.340 SSTV No change
> You can see the complete story and a graphic presentation of the new
> Voluntary Band Plan by going to
> COLLATERAL CHANGE
> When the R&O that drops code test requirements becomes effective,
> current Tech licenses will receive the same CW privileges as current
> Novice licensees.
> AUTOMATICALLY CONTROLLED NARROW BAND DATA
> The new automatically controlled, narrow band digital segment on 80 M
> will be from 3585 kHz to 3600 kHz. This segment becomes official 30
> days after the Order for Reconsideration is published in the Federal
> FCC apparently had its method for correcting its error of outlawing
> automatically controlled, narrow band data from 80 M worked out even
> before ARRL submitted its request to restore these operations at
> 3600-3635 kHz. This error had occurred in the R&O it published in
> mid-November and that became effective December 15. No sooner had ARRL
> requested restoration of this form of operating to 80 M, but the FCC
> published its version of a fix. The fix was simply announced much
> too quickly for it to have been stimulated by our petition.
> FCC's fix, of course, was far from satisfactory in my opinion.
> TENTATIVE TRAVEL SCHEDULE FOR K8JE
> Jan. 9: 20/9 Meeting, Canfield, OH.
> Jan. 13: SW OH Digital Symposium, Middletown, OH.
> Jan. 18: A&F Meeting, Newington, CT.
> Jan. 19-20: Board of Directors Meeting, Newington, CT.
> Feb. 11: Mid-Winter Hamfest, Mansfield, OH.
> Mar. 12: West Chester ARA, West Chester, OH.
> Mar. 15: Bellbrook ARC Dinner Meeting, Waynesville, OH.
> Mar. 18: Toledo Hamfest, Toledo.
> Apr. 14: QCWA Meeting, Cleveland, OH.
> Apr. 20: KY Colonel ARC, Bowling Green, KY.
> Apr. 26: SUMCO ARES, Stow, OH.
> May 18-20: Dayton Hamvention, Dayton, OH.
> Jun. 17: Monroe Hamfest, Monroe, MI.
> Jul. 20-21: Board of Directors Meeting, Newington, CT.
> Aug. 18-19: ARRL National Convention, Huntsville, AL.
> Sep. 8: GRAHamfest, Grand Rapids, MI.
> Sep. 9: Findlay Hamfest, Findlay, OH.
> Sep. 22: Great Lakes Division Convention, Cleveland, OH.
> Sep. 23: Cleveland Hamfest, Cleveland, OH.
> GB to 2006. It was a very eventful year. I wish you and your family
> all the best in 2007.
> During this coming year, please think globally when thinking of Amateur
> Radio. I don't mean globally in terms of the world, but globally in
> terms of how we and our individual operating preferences fit together
> with so many thousands of other individuals and their operating
> preferences in a jigsaw puzzle. This puzzle, when put together in its
> total form, discloses the beautiful picture that is Amateur Radio.
> Jim, K8JE
> Jim Weaver, K8JE, Director
> ARRL Great Lakes Division
> 5065 Bethany Rd.
> Mason, OH 45040
> E-mail: k8je@...; Tel.: 513-459-0142
> ARRL Great Lakes Division
> Director: James Weaver, K8JE
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