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Author Topic: When did Elmer die?  (Read 106152 times)
N7ZAL
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« Reply #60 on: June 13, 2015, 04:50:44 PM »

@ Bill, ever finish that book?

Which one?
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Later, Bill N7ZAL (ex. WA2DPB, WB3BOC, N2FWS)
VE3LYX
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« Reply #61 on: June 13, 2015, 04:58:31 PM »

"with the help of a few oldtimers."
Who are known as Elmers.
Mine was a fellow named Bill Drulak (ve3hbn) who gave me just that extra encouragement that made the difference from staying an SWL or becoming an actual Ham.
don
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N3HFS
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« Reply #62 on: June 13, 2015, 05:01:33 PM »

I believe that the Elmer died when the Internet was born.  

It's very hard for younger hams to understand that knowledge resources used to be retained either in books or in humans.  It was a lot easier to ask a question of a human than a book!  For books, you'd have to first figure out which book contained the answer, and then you'd need to obtain a copy of that book and find the answer within.

If the guy down the street, the science teacher at school, or the experienced ham at the club meeting was available, there was always a good chance that they would be able to give (or more easily find/help_find) the answers to your questions!

Today, all one needs is access to the "search" field of an appropriate internet site and perhaps a bit of culling through the results to find any answers one usually seeks!
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N7ZAL
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« Reply #63 on: June 13, 2015, 05:53:12 PM »

Just as an FYI, the term "Elmer" was only created recently...in the 1970's. It is actually a new term (ARRL created) and I never heard it as a kid in the 1950's. Hence it is a foreign sound to my ears.
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Later, Bill N7ZAL (ex. WA2DPB, WB3BOC, N2FWS)
AC2EU
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« Reply #64 on: June 13, 2015, 07:05:02 PM »

Just as an FYI, the term "Elmer" was only created recently...in the 1970's. It is actually a new term (ARRL created) and I never heard it as a kid in the 1950's. Hence it is a foreign sound to my ears.

...you mean that he's kinda like the tooth fairy and fairy godmother?
I think you are correct, sir!
Did you have any sort of mentor back then or were you left to sink or swim on your own the way it is now?
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N7ZAL
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« Reply #65 on: June 13, 2015, 08:09:50 PM »

Quote
Did you have any sort of mentor back then or were you left to sink or swim on your own the way it is now?

Really didn't have a "mentor" as such, although I would watch others and learn from them. Basically a lot of reading, tearing old radios and TVs apart, and building things was how I learned. I did join a radio club but don't recall any help from it. Ryder made a great basic electronics series that I read every night, over and over. Of course the ARRL Handbook was a great knowledge base.

Times have changed and not sure what I'd do today. Probably bypass ham radio and dive into building computers and writing software.
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Later, Bill N7ZAL (ex. WA2DPB, WB3BOC, N2FWS)
KD8ZYH
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« Reply #66 on: June 14, 2015, 07:51:42 AM »

Did you have any sort of mentor back then or were you left to sink or swim on your own the way it is now?

That's not "the way it is now" for everyone.
I've only been licensed for 6 months  and I find myself surrounded by guys willing to help with any problem I have....I've had them over to my shack to check out my grounding, another to show me how to use a antenna analyzer, another who owns the same radio I just aquired came over to ask if I had any questions on how to use it...I had plenty.
Several have sked QSOs to help me with my code...one sent me his favorite study guide that helped me pass my General exam.
I'm always getting invites to go over to check out their antenna systems.
So now I'm gonna hear about how I don't have the wherewithal to figure such things out  myself, but I know that comes with the territory here.
My point is, Elmer/mentor/ham buddy, whatever you want to call him, is alive and well in my community. I know I'm fortunate to have this help, and if that's an exception rather than the rule, I feel even more so.
« Last Edit: June 14, 2015, 08:03:28 AM by KD8ZYH » Logged
AC2EU
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« Reply #67 on: June 14, 2015, 08:28:49 AM »

Did you have any sort of mentor back then or were you left to sink or swim on your own the way it is now?

That's not "the way it is now" for everyone.
I've only been licensed for 6 months  and I find myself surrounded by guys willing to help with any problem I have....I've had them over to my shack to check out my grounding, another to show me how to use a antenna analyzer, another who owns the same radio I just aquired came over to ask if I had any questions on how to use it...I had plenty.
Several have sked QSOs to help me with my code...one sent me his favorite study guide that helped me pass my General exam.
I'm always getting invites to go over to check out their antenna systems.
So now I'm gonna hear about how I don't have the wherewithal to figure such things out  myself, but I know that comes with the territory here.
My point is, Elmer/mentor/ham buddy, whatever you want to call him, is alive and well in my community. I know I'm fortunate to have this help, and if that's an exception rather than the rule, I feel even more so.


I am happy to read about the helpful, friendly folks YOUR area. Sounds great! It should be that way everywhere, but I have seen too many newbies turned off by the "grumpy old men societies' around here. It's more like they expect you to Kow-tow to their abuse and indifference for possible acceptance in many of the clubs. Who needs that?  I tried to keep the new people with encouragement and allowing their participation while the core club members did the polar opposite. Some even resorted to sabotage. Unfortunately there are more of them than me!
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WV8RS
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« Reply #68 on: June 19, 2015, 06:11:45 AM »

 In answer to AC2EU, No Jim "Elmer" is not dead... He's just gotten older, retired and now lives way back in the hills... He can be sometimes spotted up the tower of a Brand new "Ham" showing him or her how to synchronize their rotor with a control box. Under the Desk of a new Technician with a meter helping to chase an RF Problem. He's also been sighted helping  a fellow "Ham" locate an SWR problem with his Tri-Bander... No Jim, he's not dead... He's just sometimes, real busy...  73 and hope to catch ya on the "Bands"...  One of them "Old" Guys...
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KD8TUT
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« Reply #69 on: July 26, 2015, 05:30:50 PM »

Did you have any sort of mentor back then or were you left to sink or swim on your own the way it is now?

That's not "the way it is now" for everyone.
I've only been licensed for 6 months  and I find myself surrounded by guys willing to help with any problem I have....I've had them over to my shack to check out my grounding, another to show me how to use a antenna analyzer, another who owns the same radio I just aquired came over to ask if I had any questions on how to use it...I had plenty.
Several have sked QSOs to help me with my code...one sent me his favorite study guide that helped me pass my General exam.
I'm always getting invites to go over to check out their antenna systems.
So now I'm gonna hear about how I don't have the wherewithal to figure such things out  myself, but I know that comes with the territory here.
My point is, Elmer/mentor/ham buddy, whatever you want to call him, is alive and well in my community. I know I'm fortunate to have this help, and if that's an exception rather than the rule, I feel even more so.


I am happy to read about the helpful, friendly folks YOUR area. Sounds great! It should be that way everywhere, but I have seen too many newbies turned off by the "grumpy old men societies' around here. It's more like they expect you to Kow-tow to their abuse and indifference for possible acceptance in many of the clubs. Who needs that?  I tried to keep the new people with encouragement and allowing their participation while the core club members did the polar opposite. Some even resorted to sabotage. Unfortunately there are more of them than me!

I ran into the same situation in the beginning. I just found a different club.

The clubs who do not welcome new members or young people die a slow death anyway.
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