Welcome to Amateur Radio Station K4EQ


K4EQ Station - Click to Enlarge
Thanks for stopping by my Amateur Radio (also affectionately known as ham radio) website. I hope you'll find it interesting and helpful.

What is Amateur Radio?
The best definition I've found is on the website of ARRL, the national association for Amateur Radio. "Amateur Radio (ham radio) is a popular hobby and service that brings people, electronics and communication together. People use ham radio to talk across town, around the world, or even into space, all without the Internet or cell phones. It's fun, social, educational, and can be a lifeline during times of need."

Amateur Radio operators are found all over the world. Every country has its own regulatory agency which issues licenses and call signs to qualified individuals. In the United States, Amateur Radio is regulated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC).

License Classes - Currently, there are three license classes in the United States: Technician, General, and Amateur Extra. You must pass a multiple-choice exam for each license class. Material covered on the exams includes radio theory, FCC regulations, and operating practices. The Technician class is considered an entry-level license and is the least technical of the three exams. It also has the fewest operating privileges. The higher the class of license, the more difficult the exam, but the operator is rewarded with more operating privileges. Licenses are issued for a ten-year, renewable term.

Call Sign Prefixes - The prefix in a call sign (letter or letters that precede the number in a call sign) identifies the country that issued the license. All call signs in the U.S. or its territories begin with W, K, N, or AA-AL. My call sign, K4EQ, clearly identifies me as being in the U.S. Plus, I am the only person in the world with that call sign. If I am on the air and HR1DH calls me, I know immediately that station is in Honduras. I also know from the number 1 his approximate location in Honduras (likely in or near Tegucigalpa).

Call Sign Numbers - The number (Ø-9) in U.S. call signs indicates one of ten call sign areas in the country. Each area includes one or more states. Prior to March 30, 1978, when the FCC made major changes in the call sign structure, your call sign was changed when you moved from one call area to another. That is no longer a requirement and you may keep your call sign if you move to another area.

If you're new to the world of ham radio, take a look around my site and see if something sparks an interest in you. Be sure to check out the website of the ARRL for an abundance of information about this hobby.

Ham radio is an incredible hobby that is educational, challenging, and just plain fun. If you're not yet licensed, I hope you'll join the ranks soon. You'll be glad you did. If you already have your license, I hope to meet you on the air soon. 73 (ham radio jargon for best regards).

                                                                                                                  Dale Holloway, K4EQ