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   Home   Help Search  
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Author Topic: FCC Radiotelegraph Operator License  (Read 6212 times)
WB0IXV
Member

Posts: 12




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« on: January 12, 2018, 10:39:17 AM »

I recently took and passed the Written and Morse Code elements for the FCC Radiotelegraph Operator License.
I now hold License #T 97.  Less than 100 have been issued!

I took the exam through the National Radio Examiners, they have test sessions around the U.S.:
http://www.w5yi.org/exam_locations_com.php

For the Radiotelegraph license you need:
Written Elements:
Element 1: Basic radio law and operating practice.
Element 6: Advanced Radiotelegraph
and
Telegraphy Examination Elements:
Element 1 – 16 code groups per minute.
Element 2 – 20 words per minute.

73,
Dave
WBØIXV


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W4KYR
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Posts: 1734




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« Reply #1 on: January 12, 2018, 12:26:04 PM »

Congratulations.



Does the license look like this?

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The internet and cellphone networks are great until they go down, what then? Find out here. 
https://www.eham.net/ehamforum/smf/index.php/topic,111948.0.html

Using Windows 98 For Packet...
WB9LUR
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Posts: 229


WWW

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« Reply #2 on: January 12, 2018, 01:24:39 PM »

I recently took and passed the Written and Morse Code elements for the FCC Radiotelegraph Operator License.
I now hold License #T 97.  Less than 100 have been issued!

I took the exam through the National Radio Examiners, they have test sessions around the U.S.:
http://www.w5yi.org/exam_locations_com.php

For the Radiotelegraph license you need:
Written Elements:
Element 1: Basic radio law and operating practice.
Element 6: Advanced Radiotelegraph
and
Telegraphy Examination Elements:
Element 1 – 16 code groups per minute.
Element 2 – 20 words per minute.

73,
Dave
WBØIXV




Congrats! I only need to take Element 6 - written - everything else is covered by 20WPM Extra and GROL - don't need it for anything - just a cool thing to have...

Randy
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. .

73, Randy / WB9LUR - http://www.CallingDX.com

. .
KENNETH
Member

Posts: 105




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« Reply #3 on: January 12, 2018, 04:49:13 PM »

Amazing Dave thanks for sharing congrats!  There is thread here on page two of the cw threads. A good article posted there too. Do you know how big the question pool is for element 1 and 6? I could not find the answer. I do know the extra class pool is a 712 question pool
« Last Edit: January 12, 2018, 04:56:28 PM by KENNETH » Logged
WB0IXV
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #4 on: January 13, 2018, 04:48:07 AM »

The Element 1 Question Pool is 144 questions.
The Element 6 Question Pool is 616 questions.
The questions and official answers (not necessary the correct answers) can be found on the FCC website.
https://www.fcc.gov/wireless/bureau-divisions/mobility-division/commercial-radio-operator-license-program/examinations

The Telegraphy Tests:
T1 - 16 wpm 5 character word groups.  Numbers, punctuation, prosigns count as 2 characters.
       Need at least 80 characters in a row for 1 minute.  It seemed like 16 wpm character speed to me, no Farnsworth.
T2 - 20 wpm plain text. Numbers, punctuation, prosigns count as 2 characters.
       Need at least 100 characters in a row for 1 minute.  Again, seemed like 20 wpm character speed to me, no Farnsworth.
       The copy was a marine weather report.  They gave me a minute or two to clean up my copy, correct spelling, etc.

The actual license looks just like your Amateur Radio license, except instead of AMATEUR RADIO LICENSE is says RADIOTELEGRAPH OPERATOR LICENSE.

Another good source of information I found useful is the Marine Radio Historical Society:
http://members.aceweb.com/royh/
and their comments on Element 6:
http://members.aceweb.com/royh/Element_6_Errata.pdf

Take the test, maybe you can receive license #T100!

73,
Dave
WB0IXV


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KC8Y
Member

Posts: 509




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« Reply #5 on: January 13, 2018, 07:15:04 AM »

I was looking for the FCC website; just what I needed.

Thank you,  73

Ken KC8Y
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KENNETH
Member

Posts: 105




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« Reply #6 on: January 16, 2018, 05:30:35 PM »

Did you have to travel to take your testing? Denver or luck out at a closer place like Boulder?
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SM0AOM
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Posts: 206




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« Reply #7 on: January 17, 2018, 12:15:22 PM »

I find it interesting that the FCC still grants a licence which the shipping industry went to large extents to eliminate.

To my knowledge, there are no current employment opportunities in first-world merchant marines or coast stations that require a radiotelegraph certificate/licence.

The exam question pools are also remarkably dated. Both Element 1 and 6 contain technical material that was current in the 50/60s. In comparison, the material that I came across in the mid-70s when I sat the First Class certificate exams during my military service was quite current, and even had questions about SSB and solid-state electronics.

The textbook used was from the late 60s and was written by three Norwegian ship's radio engineers and translated into Swedish. Some additional material was also contained in two, quite thin, compediums.

I could not have been employed as an R/O even having my certificate, as I had not been examined in the administrative and clerical matters that formed the majority of the R/O on-board duties, and also lacked the required sea practice term.

Possible civilian employments may have been as a coast station operator or as a SIGINT intercept operator.

However, it turned out that I became a coast radio and ship's radio engineer after University some years later.

In more recent times, my present employer wanted me to get the GOC so I would be able to conduct radio surveys onboard naval GMDSS vessels.

The GOC study content turned out to be much more applied and practically oriented than the old Radiotelegraph certificate syllabus.
« Last Edit: January 17, 2018, 12:28:32 PM by SM0AOM » Logged
KB4MNG
Member

Posts: 316




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« Reply #8 on: January 18, 2018, 11:17:25 AM »

I have my GROL. Got it back in the 90s when they allowed VEs to administer it. I work for a state agency that certifies radars used in law enforcement vehicles. Believe it or not, the state still requires the techs to have a GROL for employment. Is there any other employments that require the GROL anymore?
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KA4GFY
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2018, 06:44:19 AM »

You need the GROL to repair marine radios and aircraft radios.  You may also need it to install them as well.

73,
Rich, KA4GFY

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WB0IXV
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #10 on: January 22, 2018, 09:23:52 AM »

Did you have to travel to take your testing? Denver or luck out at a closer place like Boulder?

The SouthMetro VE team:
http://southmetroveteam.org/commercial-testing-requirements/
Is affiliated with the National Radio Examiners (COLEM).  It's the only one listed for Colorado.
For other states see: http://www.w5yi.org/exam_locations_com.php

I believe that they may be the only COLEM that offers the Morse Code exams.  Other FCC exam locations may only offer the written exams.
73
Dave
WB0IXV
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WB0IXV
Member

Posts: 12




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« Reply #11 on: January 22, 2018, 09:30:31 AM »

I find it interesting that the FCC still grants a licence which the shipping industry went to large extents to eliminate.

To my knowledge, there are no current employment opportunities in first-world merchant marines or coast stations that require a radiotelegraph certificate/licence.

=====================


I received this reply from another T license holder:
==============BEGIN QUOTE ===================

Now, the big question.  What is this license really good for, and who cares? 
Got a surprise for you.  Is still used in a few foreign countries.  And, also is carried in CFR with respect to USCG licensing of Radio Officers. 

I am probably the newest member of ARA (American Radio Association) - a union that provides operators to select US flag cargo ships (certain specific lines).  The qualifications required are lengthy - and the pay can approach $20K/month, at top level, with six months work at sea considered full time.  Includes 6 month’s paid vacation. 

The union requires a Radio Officer’s License (which requires FCC T ticket, USCG physical exam, first aid/CPR/AED training, drug test, and a TWIC card).  Used to accept USCG Electrotechnical Officer (ETO) as well, but now RO License is required. Some members are working on the transition.  Not easy! 

They look for ten years marine experience; USCG RO License; Ship Radar Endorsement; GMDSS Operator/Maintainer License; USCG 70 hour STCW GMDSS Operator class; STCW Basic Training (BT) - first aid/CPR/AED, personal safety (life jackets, signals, life rafts, social responsibility - includes work in pool), plus firefighter training (putting out real fires, handling fire hoses, etc.).   Also, VPDSD (Vessel Personnel with Designated Security Duties) - mainly rules and regs/legal stuff.  And, ability to successfully engage in electronic troubleshooting. 

You also need drug test; physical exam; and TWIC card.  Think that covers most of it, maybe not 100%.  But, enough to give you the general flavor. 

BTW, the STCW portions are required by international law (IMO regulations). 

They also want you to have Comptia A+ and Network+ certs (help desk and basic networking); a customer requirement!  A class in analog electronics, and one in digital/microprocessors.  Preferably, some engine room experience, involving PM practices, motor controls, and PLC’s. 

Why all this?  You take care off all electronics on the ship.  Comm, nav, controls, computers, networking gear, entertainment systems (think stuff downloaded via satellite).  Maybe engine room controls. 

There may be a few more things, but you get the picture.  This is more maintenance than operating.  I understand the usual route is via Navy ET “A” school - but those guys no longer get Morse training, either.   

With emphasis on the T ticket, there now are people who must learn International Morse at 20 WPM level, who then can work on getting through that screwed up FCC written exam! 

So, strange as it may seem, the T ticket now is becoming mandatory again for people in those positions.  Most (but not all) had a T ticket at the beginning.  Little did you (or most anyone else!) know. 

================= END QUOTE ============
So you may still need the T ticket if you want to ship out!

73,
Dave
WB0IXV


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KW6LA
Member

Posts: 114




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« Reply #12 on: January 22, 2018, 09:48:56 PM »

Passed the T-2 back in 2008 and never renewed it!! I will stay young forever, with the photo attached to the license.
Good for you passing, and a milestone for sure. Congrats!
 Wink
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SM0AOM
Member

Posts: 206




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« Reply #13 on: January 23, 2018, 07:18:11 AM »

This was quite interesting.

It appears that this Union had managed to keep most of the privileges that once was part of being an R/O, but which
the GMDSS had the intent to eliminate. It further appears that there is no "off-shore competition" in these areas.

I would say that $20K/month (240K/yr) as pay would price such an R/O out of the competition in all of the merchant marines I know of.
It also appears that these positions are some amalgamation of the REO and other ship's crew functions into one member.

Something that puzzles me is why the USCG and ARA insist of keeping the radiotelegraph licence requirement.

The "old 500 kHz system" (1912-1999) is dead and buried in the industrialised world, and the chance of someone listening or replying to a 500 kHz call
anywhere in the world are minute to say the least.

One of the driving forces behind the introduction of the GMDSS was personnel costs.

The bean-counters at the ship-owner's offices made calculations about the operating costs of a crew-member that only was used for one purpose (with some exceptions)
and found that a lot of equipment could be depreciated in trade of the elimination of this person.

Exceptions were the merchant marines where the R/O primarily was an office clerk.

Starting in the late 60's, there were exemption schemes fielded where the First Mate took over the tasks of the R/O,
using bridge-mounted MF and VHF equipment, in addition to automatic radiotelex as the primary commercial communication means.
Crew calls most often were handled by using radiotelex to set up HF SSB calls.

Initially, this was restricted to certain routes and sea areas, but were gradually expanded for world-wide routes.
These exemptions pre-empted the GMDSS and gave the shipping industries using them some crew-cost competitive advantage.

Some R/O:s retrained as REO:s or to clerical functions.

The same reasoning was applied at the coast stations.
Pre-1995, the coast stations and MRCC:s here were co-located and were staffed and operated by the Telecom Administration.

Staff requirements were that the Watch R/O /Duty SAR Coordination Officer and one assistant should have a radiotelegraph licence, as the 500 kHz Morse watch still was required.
The rest of the coast station/MRCC staff held a spectrum of qualifications ranging from International Telephone operators to Master Mariners.
A common qualification for permanently hired staff was however that they had been trained and examined by the Maritime Administration as suitable for MRCC duty.

When there were no on-going SAR operations, the coast station staff was kept busy with commercial traffic.

After the 1995 split, when the MRCC became staffed and operated by the Maritime Administration, the requirement for MRCC senior staff to have radiotelegraph licences was
abolished, and other categories gradually took their places. Some staff backgrounds today include Air Traffic Controllers, naval officers and mariners of different kinds.
Senior staff are required to hold a GOC, while other staff are examined for an internal certificate of competence.
 
Up to the final abolisment of the 500 kHz coast station watch on 1 February 2002, the Morse watch-keeping was contracted out to the remaining commercial coast station,
which had kept most of the staff having R/O qualifications. Long before this date or even 1 February 1999, the first-world merchant marines had ceased to use 500 kHz.
The remaining traffic had been generated by the occasional freighter coming from some third-world country.

Similar actions were taken in most European countries where coast radio and some or all of the MRCC functions were been combined.

This, with few exceptions, spelled the end of commercial coast radio as the traffic revenue could not cover even a small fraction of the operating costs, and
the deregulated and privatised telecom companies did not want to subsidise the operations.





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