First some background:
I grew up around HAM radio my dad W6NZX | W7KMC | W7JR (silent keys almost 10 years to this day) was a ham for almost 50 years.
For nostalgia pops in the hamshack.: http://flickr.com/photos/32162739@N00/394776877/?#comment72157594543475745
We were never very close and as such he didn't teach me much of anything to do with the hobby, though of course I picked up a lot along the way.
Well when I heard about the code requirement being dropped I decided now is finally the time so I've got a couple books the "Now your talking" and Gordon West's book.
I eventually want to do what my old-man did, DX, but to start with It's more then likely going to be just in two-meters.
So here's my question.
1. When I pass the technician exam, do I get a "default" callsign and then would have to apply to get my dads? Or can i have it straight away?
Whiskey Six November Zulu X-ray will be burned into mind for the rest of my life so it's important to me to have it.
I'm going to start with a 2-meter handi, more then likely one of the Kenwood or Icom VHF sets. Can't beat the 150.00 price tag.
2. Would it be better to get a radio that can do 2 meters, 6 meters, VHF/UHF? I've heard that you can DX at 6 meters via satellite.
3. Can I exchange QSL cards with the guy 8 blocks away or through a repeater a couple miles away?
The cards themselves always seemed a fun part of the hobby.
4. Say I get my 2-meter handi I know I can run a coax off the antenna connector (TNC?) out to a large antenna , these can be extremely basic correct? Some examples?
5. Say i go with a rig capable of 2, 6, 10, 15 meters UHF/VHF etc. Is there one "magic" antenna that would work well for all of them? By that I mean one pole with a bunch of different elements on it for different stuff maybe a 10 or 20 feet tall? I seem to remember my dad having a switch box that let him pop between different antennas.
Anyway, I've asked a million questions but I know ham radio is one big family so if anyone could tackle my questions I would be most happy.
p.s. what is the significance of saying 73 ?