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This is cross-posted to the radio board, but I didn't get any responses, so I thought I'd post it here, too, in the hopes that another radio buff might provide an answer...

My husband and I are starting a class in early January for our technician class ham radio licenses, but we're concerned because our shortwave radios pick up very few signals in the apartment where we now live.

We know that technician class licensees are often assigned to higher frequencies than can be picked up on shortwave but we're wondering if the poor reception on HF should be a concern.

Thanks!
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hey kittykitty, I let my ham radio license lapse yrs. ago but I still get a ham radio magazine each month that I kinda breeze through for old times sakes.

I seem to remember there are some portable antennas you can mount to the outside of an apt window.....there's always wire you can string up....you need to balance it though. I betcha Telegraph could answer your question, he's an active ham op. Plus, you'll probably have some other apt dwellers taking that class as well.

Good luck in your classes!

73's
LD
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no....

Most apartments are not good for receiving HF signals. I don't know what type of radio you have, but you probably need better antenna to get much in the way of signals.

Technician licensees tend to use VHF and UHF frequencies, which will likely work OK from the apartment. You normally talk through repeater stations in your area.

It's great you are in a ham radio class. There's a lot of things you will learn during your classes that will help.

Perhaps you can sneak some sort of outside antenna if you wish to operate on HF, but it is a problem now on HF. Also, we are at the bottom of the sunspot cycle, and not many signals above 7 MHz (40m band) at night, and some days not many on during the day either. Lots of signals should be heard 3.8 to 4.0 MHz with a short antenna.

t. (extra class since 1969)......and started out as Novice way back when......
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I just renewed my Advanced class license. The FCC has a painless and feeless online renewal system --- a good deal simpler than in the good old days.

I got my original license circa 1970.


Seattle Pioneer
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SP:

I'll be darned! I knew T was a ham, but you, too? Been an active Extra for many years, and first licensed in 1955. Mostly DXing and contesting on c.w.

Vermonter
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t has given you some good info.

If you use any kind of outdoor antenna, by the way, beware of lightning -- especially if you're up high. I was "creamed" by a lightning hit a few years ago (destroyed a $1500 transceiver) even with the antenna disconnected.

Good luck!

Vermonter (still active after 50+ years)
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"I'll be darned! I knew T was a ham, but you, too?"
___________________

Hey guys, just wanted to remind you given the above, if you see Art coming your way with a can of Pineapple, scram!
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Hello Kitty. Congratulations to you and your husband on attending the Technician class next month. If your plan is to remain a Technician I would investigate 2 meters as communications is typically line of sight or via repeater. Depending on your community there is a lot of activity on 2 meters.

Personally I prefer HF and the sub-hobby of working DX (foreign countries). This will not help your current situation but perhaps will encourage you to continue in the hobby and seek a higher class license in the future.

Licensed since 1970 as an Extra Class.

73,

ImAGolfer
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Hey Vermonter, you escape all that ice storm up your way? Been on the news here for days with all the power outages and cold temps.

Down here, little bit of freezing rain and hundreds of accidents in Dallas area (extending up through AR, TN, KY and further northeast now.

Not going anywhere..nice to be retired.....but the radio is full of accidents just about everywhere......even sand trucks over turned in accidents.......

Time to make nice hot breakfast

t.
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Wow, thanks for all of the good info. I appreciate it!
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t:

Yeah, we were lucky. Lots of ice on everything, plus some snow UNDER that, but we had no outages (fingers crossed), just a couple of fast blinks. However, parts of the state got whacked hard and some still have no power. New Hampshire and Massachusetts got it worse, I think, and coastal Maine, too.

Enjoy down there! Winter is upon us!

Vermonter
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