How To Get Your Amateure Radio License

by Tri blades | July 16, 2015 | (6) Posted in How To

Some people think that getting a amateur radio license requires learning Morse code.  Well they're wrong. The FCC dropped code in 2007.  It’s so easy that a 6 year old got their license.  So let’s get started

Step 1 Learning Materials 

You need to learn the ways of ham radio.  There are many ways to learn it there is the book way I highly suggest arrls book but there is ham test online here is the link.

There is also classes you can take now if you can take one do it it will help you will still have to buy a book at the end of the class there is a test to find classes go to.

There’s also YouTube if you don’t understands topic.

I did not make this video but I think it helps.

Step 2 Studying

Okay you have red the book now or took the cores now you need to study now there is many ways to do that but the best way to study is to take a practice test.  There are many web sites you can use here is a couple.

There are many more web sites that you can find.  There are also apps for on the go one for IOS is ham radio exam tech

I used the app a lot.  Any time I had free time I was taking practice test.  You can't miss more than 9 or you fail. Keep studying and taking the practice test in till your consistently over 80% every time.

Step 3 Taking The Exam

Okay so you have learned the material and studied and passing the test consistently with 80% or above you're ready to take the exam.  Usually your local club have a monthly exam but there is also ham fest were you can take it.  To find a testing area near you use:

You will need money for a small fee its usaly $15 dollars and you also will need social security number for the government and also some type of identification device like drivers licenses.  You can also bring in a calculator but most of the math questions are really easy.  If you pass which you will since you used this article to help, you have a chance to take the next exam for free.  Now I do suggest taking that to see the test and be able to know what it looks like I didn’t so it’s a option.  If you fail you can take the test over the same day you just have to pay another $15.

Step 4 Waiting Period

There is a waiting period that you have to wait until you get your call sign.  It is the government so it takes about a week.  You can check to see if your name is in the database with a call sign at  change call sign in to name)

You also need to know the phonetic alphabet but it’s not required.


Step 5 Choosing A Radio 

Okay you got your license and you want to get a radio. well there are many different types of radios do you want one that sits on you desk or one that fits in your car or do you want a hand held or you’re in to the hobby and want to talk long distance a hf rig.

desk radio

hand held radio

mobile car mount radio

hf radio

Now a thing to consider is that you also have to make or buy a antenna for them if you get a hf rig its going to need a big antenna if you get a 2meter rig (vhf and uhf) they don’t require as big as antenna. You also got to look in to that where you live let you to put antennas up. You can put antennas in your house but they don't work as well as on you roof for beginners I suggest getting a 2 meter 440 cm rig it can be a handheld or a desk radio and could be mounted in your car.

 Step 6 Transmitting

Okay you got you license you got your radio now you want to transmit well 2 meters can only go 4 or so miles so clubs put these things called repeater they relay what you saying at a higher output rating than you. Now you could talk to a guy 20 miles away if the club has a good repeater. so now you want to make your first contact so let me tell you how its done.

First make sure the repeater frequencies are set up right in your radio and no one is talking also make sure you have antenna on your radio if you don’t it can hurt the transmitting transistors. The antenna acts like a resistor

Again this is not me that made this video                                                                                           

Step 7 Enjoy Your License

Congatulation on your license.  This hobby is almost as cool as rc planes.  If this helped you get your licence please let me know in the comments.  I read all of them I will respond to any questions you have about the hobby If your already a ham radio operator let me know your call sign.  I hope to catch you guys on the air some day so 73s and enjoy your license.

Here is just a cool video



Stenberg^ on July 25, 2015
Nice job! I'm gonna get it for myself sometime as well, here in Norway
Log In to reply
Tri blades on July 25, 2015
do it. it is definitely worth it
Log In to reply
Flymann on July 24, 2015
Nice job on article! I am currently working on license.
Log In to reply
Tri blades on July 25, 2015
Tank you keep at it that's the only way
Log In to reply
Mostly Harmless on July 27, 2015
Good overview...

I'll add a few thoughts:

1) Find a local ham radio operator to guide you. We hams are a gregarious bunch (mostly), and are anxious to have new blood entering the hobby. Like the r/c business, it helps to have occasional mentoring. And if you can find a ham who's also an r/c enthusiast, you get a double bonus. Yeah, you might find a few "old heads" who think that if you don't get your license and/or operate the way they did, you're not a "real" ham. Just smile and pass them by -- they don't know what they're missing.

2) While waiting to get your license after passing your test, spend time listening to whatever bands you want to use -- whether high frequency (HF) for long distance comms or VHF/UHF for local comms. You'll pick up some good habits even before you pick up your mic for the first time.

3) Pick a particular part of the hobby to concentrate on at first (HF Morse code, VHF/UHF voice, digital modes, satellite communications, slow-scan TV, conventional TV, software defined radio, etc.). There are so many facets to amateur radio (as in r/c aircraft), that you overwhelm yourself trying to do too much at first.

4) Don't be afraid to pick up a soldering iron. While it may be better to buy an off-the-shelf radio (at least at first), a home-brew antenna can't be beat by anything store-bought. And there are quite a few quality kits on the market if you get the itch to build.

Good luck and hope to hear you on the airwaves!

Log In to reply
makattack on July 30, 2015
For that soldering iron you have for putting wires on ESC's/motors, etc., you can also build a CW radio for under $10 in parts!

Here's one:
Log In to reply
pkertt on July 24, 2015
Not a bad article....ham radio is really fun..used to be the real fliers got ham licences and used 6 meters for airplane use...
Log In to reply
Tri blades on July 24, 2015
Yep 6 meter is also fun to talk on because it is a magic bad there could be a bunch of people on the band or it could be died it depends on the day
Log In to reply
rockyboy on July 28, 2015
Great article! I'm studying away - found which is a great free online flash card study site too.
Log In to reply

You need to log-in to comment on articles.

How To Get Your Amateure Radio License