Letter Re: How to Obtain Your Amateur Radio License, by N.M.


I recently read author N.M’s article regarding how to obtain an Amateur Radio license. The article was well-written and provided a wealth of information for prospective Hams. I have been a licensed Amateur Radio operator since the early 1990s and have seen a lot of changes in the hobby. Some were good and some not so good, but that is a discussion better left to a lazy chair and a pot of coffee. The reason I am writing is I noticed something that is potentially problematic in N.M’s article. When discussing what radio to select, N.M. mentions the Yaesu FT-8900r, which operates on the 10m/6m/2m/70cm amateur radio bands. While this would indeed be a good radio for a newly-licensed technician, it should be noted that technician class operators would not be allowed to legally use this radio on the 10m band. While technician class operators do indeed have privileges from 28.000 MHz to 28.500 MHz (voice privileges are from 28.300 MHz to 28.500 MHz), the authorized voice mode is SSB phone. The Yaesu FT-8900r is an FM only rig, and, as such, does not utilize the required mode of single sideband (SSB). Using the FM transmit mode on those frequencies could, at least, alienate you from other Ham operators and, at worst, get you a nasty letter from the FCC. – J.D.