Sunday, February 26, 2006

"CB'ers Guide To Ham Radio"
I have tons of books in my collection, and thought I'd seen most of everything until I ran across this great find on EBay not too long ago!
Sure, my intent in purchasing it was to stick it on the shelf with all of the others, for the "Collection", and perhaps to flip through it when I had some spare time. I didn't actually think I would like it, just because most books dealing with CB and HAM seem to "Moronasize" being a CBer. I'm very happy to say not so with this book! [note to self - add moronasize to my official dictionary].
The "CB'ers Guide to Ham Radio" was written by George W. McCarthy, and published in 1979. While some of the data (dealing with FCC testing, requirements,etc) have changed, the bulk of the information is still accurate today.
As mentioned earlier, his attitude towards CB'ers is non-combative, but that's not the only unusual aspect of the book - the entire book is written in a question/answer format which comes as close as possible to imitate an actual sit down, face-to-face conversation between a CBer and an "Elmer" Ham Operator. At first I found the format a bit strange, but after the first chapter I was "INTO" the book (much like going to see a foreign film with subtitles: at first it's weird, but before you know it, you've forgotten they were there).
Chapters include:
  1. CBers and Hams
  2. The Numbers Game
  3. Do I really need a license?
  4. The Code Test
  5. The written exam
  6. Short history of Ham Radio
  7. Skip Propagation
  8. Various Licenses
  9. The Various Ham Bands
  10. The Cost of Equipment
  11. Antennas for Ham Radio
  12. Radio Paths

And much more!The book is 304 pages, hardcover, and to be completely honest: If Ham operators acted the way he does in his book, their numbers wouldn't be declining.


So, to CB'ers I say: It makes good reading, and you'll probably learn more from this than if you actually came up to a Ham operator, identified yourself as a CBer and asked the same questions. To Ham operators I say: It makes good reading and might make you reflect on things you said about CB'ers, and how you can correct that path and perhaps, help in increasing the ranks of Amateur Radio Operators.


4 out of 5 stars



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