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Author Topic: Why Have An Extra Class?  (Read 144290 times)
N2EY
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« Reply #240 on: October 23, 2010, 07:45:16 PM »

Did The Examiner just forget to change the drive spindle? Did he want to see if I could copy 13 before bothering to try 20? Was he trying to rattle me? I'll never know.

Or maybe Mr. Squelch was like a geode (no-nonsense exterior) and liked seeing a kid in there going for the Extra. He might have seen plenty of cases of nerves and figured copying 13 wpm would put you more at ease and loosen you up.

Nope. Not a chance.

First off, he didn't do things to make the exam easier. Not for anyone. That way, nobody could say that someone else got a break they didn't get.

Second, he knew enough about the psychology of testing to know that hearing slow code and then fast code doesn't make it easier. Just the opposite, in fact. He also knew that the shock of having the test cut off like that would add to the stress level.

My best guess is that he just forgot to change the spindle, and realized it when he saw how slow I was writing.

In 1970 almost all of the code tests being given at that office were for ham tests, and almost all of them were 13 wpm. The 5 wpm test was for Novice and Technician, which were almost all done by-mail. Applicants for Extra were few and far between; the incentive licensing changes were only a year and a half old in the summer of 1970.

 or -- maybe it was just a mishap and he caught it when he looked at the player...  I do remember when I took my 13wpm code test in downtown Chicago in 1977 at age 15 -- that it seemed to be much faster than 13wpm was at home.  (I was so tense that it made it a lot more difficult).  Being at ease sure seems to help performance...

The first time I tried 13 wpm was at that same office two years earlier, when I was 14. I failed the first time because The Examiner couldn't read my Palmer Method longhand well enough to find the required 65 consecutive legible correct characters. (In those days you weren't allowed to go back and fix up your copy after the code stopped, and The Examiner would never ask you to read what you wrote. "Legible" meant "legible to the examiner without explanation".

So I went home and taught myself to block-print Signal Corps style at 30 wpm, and to copy 18 wpm W1AW bulletins solid from end to end. My second try at 13, later that summer, was no problem.

That fall I started high school.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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K9AIM
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« Reply #241 on: October 23, 2010, 08:46:54 PM »

Did The Examiner just forget to change the drive spindle? Did he want to see if I could copy 13 before bothering to try 20? Was he trying to rattle me? I'll never know.

Or maybe Mr. Squelch was like a geode (no-nonsense exterior) and liked seeing a kid in there going for the Extra. He might have seen plenty of cases of nerves and figured copying 13 wpm would put you more at ease and loosen you up.

Nope. Not a chance.

First off, he didn't do things to make the exam easier. Not for anyone. That way, nobody could say that someone else got a break they didn't get.

I thought you said you were the only one in that room?  His reputation was for being a hardliner, so there was little chance he'd be accused of trying to make it easier for you -- besides, you had to pass the real 20wpm test subsequently anyway.  Not saying that was his motive as we cannot know if it was intentional or not, let alone whether he was trying to make it harder or easier.  All I know is that for me -- if I had been given 13wpm speed test while trying to pass a 20 wpm test, it would have calmed me down.  Then, when the real 20wpm test started I'd be challenged and motivated to fight to copy it and not in such a stressed state.

Second, he knew enough about the psychology of testing to know that hearing slow code and then fast code doesn't make it easier. Just the opposite, in fact. He also knew that the shock of having the test cut off like that would add to the stress level.
 

i think one can make a case either way as to which scenario puts one in better position.  For me, some of the intial spike of nerves would have passed, and I'd be in better shape to pass.  I'd have an 'aha' moment about why the test seemed so easy, and I be getting a do-over for the real McCoy.  For me it would put me in a much better position to be ready from the get-go.  For example -- after I passed my the 13wpm test and my written General exam, the examiner suggested I take the Advanced and I did but did not pass.  I came back a month later and passed fairly easily -- my nerves were not bad the second time because it was like getting a do-over without the 'unknown' factor.  Being 15 in an FCC office in downtown Chicago trying to get the same class ham license as my Electrical Engineer 70 year old uncle made it more intimidating than it would have been in a more comfortable setting.  It sounds like it mattered little though to you that Mr. Squelch decoyed you, since you could copy 30wpm and had been awaiting that moment for almost 2 years.  



« Last Edit: October 23, 2010, 08:58:46 PM by Robert Johnston » Logged
K7KBN
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« Reply #242 on: October 23, 2010, 09:51:08 PM »


The code machine was the kind that used punched paper tape, with speed changed by using different diameter drive spindles.

73 de Jim, N2EY

I clipped quite a bit from your post, Jim, but that's exactly the kind of machine the "Boehme (pronounced either BOH-mee or BAY-mee) Keyer" is/was.  Punched with holes resembling TTY tape but with a precise spacing that forced it to send perfect code at whatever speed the capstan dictated.  Our selection of capstans was from 10 to 45 WPM.  By the time students had been through Double Basic Reels #1 through #4, they were copying anywhere from 8 to 12 WPM, usually after about 10-14 days.  That was the alphabet, numbers, period, comma and "/".  Other punctuation came later.  Except - for some reason - the semicolon.

Sailors being sailors, after we'd leave a port in WESTPAC (Hong Kong, Sasebo, Yokosuka, Kobe or some other exotic spot), the Medical Department would start bringing messages to send, titled "VD Contact Reports".  If the subject was an officer, the message would be encrypted before being sent; enlisted men's were UNCLAS all the way.  The forms on which these were delivered to Radio Central were part of a brand-new Navy Medical Reporting System, and we were among the first to use it.

These reports had to be sent EXACTLY the way they were typed up, and the format involved the use of semicolons.  I had to do a bit of WAY pre-Google research to find out how to send that little ";", finally finding that it's just the reverse of a period:  (-.-.-.) .

Well, now I could SEND it, but the guy on the other end of the circuit had gone to the same school as I had, and hadn't been taught this particular punctuation mark, and more often than not I'd get interrupted by the shore station asking me to repeat.  The operating signal ZWC, meaning "The following is intended for the operator on watch only" was very rarely used by Radiomen, but I had to use it on several occasions to explain to the other operator just what was going on.  It worked!
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Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
K7KBN
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« Reply #243 on: October 23, 2010, 10:03:07 PM »

Pat,

Thank you very much for sharing some of your early code experiences, for me -- it is some of the most enjoyable reading I have found in any forum.  I learned code in early 1976 at age 13 through tapes sent to me by my uncle.  I remember the initial resistance to learning Morse I felt because it was going to take some time and work, but fortunately I was young enough to still be pretty open to learning new tricks.  The code requirement and the fact that one had to get up to speed to get HF phone privileges sort of inclined one to look at code as work rather than fun. Isn't life strange?  After becoming somewhat code saavy and getting an Advanced, I eventually realized life had turned the tables on my preconceptions and that code is more fun than voice communication.  

Thanks again for your contributions to this discussion!  Very cool stuff hearing about J.J. Jones!

Thanks for the flowers, Bob.

Sort of reminds me of my best friend during High School (and most of grade school as well).  Ron Earl, now W6TXK.  He and I got licensed as novices about the same time.  I was KN7KBN and he was KN7MER, there in Las Vegas.  We had one year to get our code speeds up to 13 WPM and my feeling was that I was going to get the 13 (and not one dit faster!), then throw my key as far as I could toss it and invest in a good microphone.

Ron, on the other hand, planned to keep on keeping on with code.

Funny how things work out.  He had a DX-100 with the SB-10 SSB converter, and liked phone operation so much he stayed with that end of things (he did keep his code speed up, though).  My DX-100 didn't have the SB-10, and mikes were a lot more expensive than the keys I had, so I decided I'd stick with CW.

Ron moved to Southern California shortly after we graduated, and FCC being what it was at the time, had to get a W6/K6 call.  To me, anyone with a W6 call has got to be REALLY old, and Ron is a few months YOUNGER than I! 

73 and thanks again!
Pat K7KBN
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Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
K6LHA
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« Reply #244 on: October 25, 2010, 12:09:47 PM »

Are we done with NON-TOPIC chit-chat now?  Is it possible to get back to the TOPIC, which, if long memory still works, is Why Have An Extra Class?

A decade ago and before, there were two separate pass-fail tests that had to be passed in order to get an Amateur Extra class license upgrade from General class:
1.  A code cognition test at 20 WPM equivalent rate in International Morse Code.
2.  A written test of 50 multiple-choice questions, one of four answers for each.

Passing both of them meant a licensee could enjoy ALL American amateur radio privileges.

In May, 2000, FCC 99-412 went into effect and the maximum code test rate was capped a 5 WPM.  In February, 2007, FCC 06-178 went into effect and eliminated ALL code testing for any amateur
radio license class.  Note that May 2000 is over ten years ago and February 2007 is over 3 1/2 years ago.

There have been no changes in privileges allocated to USA amateur radio Amateur Extra class operating licensees in the last decade, compared to other license classes.

The logical question is then WHY have an Extra class at all?  That was the question posed by KD8HMO in the first posting in this Forum Topic.  The majority of respondents, nearly all being Extras themselves, "replied" without touching the legal part of regulations, lapsing into their own fond memories of their youth and the usual litany of "all amateurs should know morse code because it is so darn wonderful, gets through when nothing else will" but mainly because THEY are already in that license class.  It should be fairly obvious (except to them) that most of those Extras don't want to lose their rank, status, privilege and the entitlement they somehow feel they richly deserve (under old, old regulations).

The end result in this Forum Topic was an over-abundance of a combination of misdirection, obfuscation, and folksy chit-chat (more suited to a blog than any discussion of amateur radio license classes).  It reached a nadir with N2EY's rationalization that "the Extra should be kept because it
is so POPULAR!"  FWITW, as of this morning's stats (25 Oct 10) the total number of Technician class license grants represented 49.2% of ALL USA amateur radio licnese grants and the total number of Amateur Extras was only 17.2%.  Technician class outnumbers Extra by 2.85:1 and outnumbers General by 2.22:1.  "Popularity?"  I don't think so...just some clever weasel-wording to rationalize having an Extra class license (since four decades ago).

Those who bitched about the elimination of the code test for a USA amateur radio license are way out of town.  You all had your chance FIVE YEARS AGO when NPRM 05-235 was open for Comment.  If you couldn't make your case for keeping the code test 5 years ago, you are just wasting time trying to bring it back NOW.

73, Len K6LHA (always a USA Amateur Extra class licensee)
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N2EY
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« Reply #245 on: October 25, 2010, 03:41:39 PM »

Sort of reminds me of my best friend during High School (and most of grade school as well).  Ron Earl, now W6TXK.  He and I got licensed as novices about the same time.  I was KN7KBN and he was KN7MER, there in Las Vegas.  We had one year to get our code speeds up to 13 WPM and my feeling was that I was going to get the 13 (and not one dit faster!), then throw my key as far as I could toss it and invest in a good microphone.

Ron, on the other hand, planned to keep on keeping on with code.

Funny how things work out.  He had a DX-100 with the SB-10 SSB converter, and liked phone operation so much he stayed with that end of things (he did keep his code speed up, though).  My DX-100 didn't have the SB-10, and mikes were a lot more expensive than the keys I had, so I decided I'd stick with CW.

Ron moved to Southern California shortly after we graduated, and FCC being what it was at the time, had to get a W6/K6 call.  To me, anyone with a W6 call has got to be REALLY old, and Ron is a few months YOUNGER than I! 


Great story!

What got me really interested in ham radio was hearing roundtables on 75 meter AM on a homebrew 2 tube regenerative I built from reused parts. I determined to join those guys ASAP.

Which meant getting at least a General license.

So I got a Novice and worked toward upgrading. I had it pretty soft compared to pre-1967 Novices because mine was good for 2 years rather than 1, and the FCC office was just a walk/subway ride/walk away.

But by the time I had the Advanced in hand, I appreciated the advantages of CW enough to stay with it. Eventually got on 75 meter AM (NC-173, Viking 2/122 setup) but that was some years later.

CW was particularly advantageous for a kid without much radio money. I wound up homebrewing because I could build better than I could afford to buy. Here are links to a receiver I built in the early 1970s (it has since been dismantled for the parts):

http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX1.jpg
http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX2.jpg
http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX3.jpg
http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX4.jpg
http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX5.jpg
http://www.qsl.net/k5bcq/Jim/SilverRX6.jpg

Notice the homebrew dial...

Of course the license requirements have changed quite a bit over the years. For example, look at how the Extra has changed:

1951 to 1967: ~100 question written test, 20 wpm code tests (send and receive), 2 years experience as General, Conditional and/or Advanced. FCC examiners only. Advanced conveyed no additional test credit towards Extra, and Conditionals had to pass the General tests all over again before trying Extra.

In 1967, the Advanced was reopened to new issues and the Extra written split into two parts. The first part became the Advanced written, and the second part became the Extra written. So all Extras licensed in the 1967-2000 era had to first get the Advanced before trying Extra. The new exams were all multiple choice, too.

The 20 wpm code tests (send and receive) and 2 years experience as General, Conditional and/or Advanced stayed. FCC examiners only.

In the mid-1970s the experience requirement was reduced to 1 year and then eliminated. It was then possible to go from no license to Extra at a single test session by passing all the required tests.

In 1978 the sending code test was "waived", meaning the FCC assumed that if you could pass the receiving test you got credit for the sending test.

In 1984 the VEC system replaced FCC examiners.

In 1990 FCC created medical waivers for the 13 and 20 wpm code tests. Getting a waiver simply required a letter from any doctor. This effectively eliminated the need to pass any code test above 5 wpm if the person didn't want to, by simply getting a doctor to sign a form letter. No specific problem had to be identified; all that was required was a statement that the person would require more than typical time to learn the code at the higher speed. 5 wpm could not be waived because of the ITU-R treaty.

In 2000 the FCC closed the Advanced, Tech Plus and Novice to new issues, and reduced the code test requirement to 5 wpm for General and Extra. They also combined the written tests for Advanced (50 questions) and Extra (40 questions) into a single 50 question test. (Some folks forget that the changes of 2000 reduced the written testing even more than the code testing.)

And once again, having an Advanced conveyed no additional test credit.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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N2EY
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« Reply #246 on: October 25, 2010, 07:36:23 PM »

I clipped quite a bit from your post, Jim, but that's exactly the kind of machine the "Boehme (pronounced either BOH-mee or BAY-mee) Keyer" is/was.  Punched with holes resembling TTY tape but with a precise spacing that forced it to send perfect code at whatever speed the capstan dictated.  Our selection of capstans was from 10 to 45 WPM. 

This was a little thing, with a built-in oscillator. Quite new back then. But it used the same kind of tape you describe.

It was quite obvious that FCC took the whole procedure very seriously, with everything (including the machine, not just the tapes) locked up tight in special filing cabinets and only taken out for the actual tests.

Of course one big reason for all the secrecy was that there weren't that many different tapes and written tests. That was the reason for the 30 day wait to retest - if you could retest the same day, or even the same week, pretty soon you'd run through all their tests and get the same test again.


 By the time students had been through Double Basic Reels #1 through #4, they were copying anywhere from 8 to 12 WPM, usually after about 10-14 days.  That was the alphabet, numbers, period, comma and "/".  Other punctuation came later.  Except - for some reason - the semicolon.

Sailors being sailors, after we'd leave a port in WESTPAC (Hong Kong, Sasebo, Yokosuka, Kobe or some other exotic spot), the Medical Department would start bringing messages to send, titled "VD Contact Reports".  If the subject was an officer, the message would be encrypted before being sent; enlisted men's were UNCLAS all the way.  The forms on which these were delivered to Radio Central were part of a brand-new Navy Medical Reporting System, and we were among the first to use it.

These reports had to be sent EXACTLY the way they were typed up, and the format involved the use of semicolons.  I had to do a bit of WAY pre-Google research to find out how to send that little ";", finally finding that it's just the reverse of a period:  (-.-.-.) .

Well, now I could SEND it, but the guy on the other end of the circuit had gone to the same school as I had, and hadn't been taught this particular punctuation mark, and more often than not I'd get interrupted by the shore station asking me to repeat.  The operating signal ZWC, meaning "The following is intended for the operator on watch only" was very rarely used by Radiomen, but I had to use it on several occasions to explain to the other operator just what was going on.  It worked!

Another great story! Thanks again.

An historical question: It is my understanding that the various military branches gave new recruits various aptitude tests in order to find out who would be good at various tasks. And that one of those tests was about Morse Code. Those who scored highly on the test would be trained as Radiomen and those who didn't would get some other training.

Was that the case in the Navy when you were there? For recruits who didn't know the code already, that is.

---

In my case learning Morse Code was done by listening to hams on the air, using a rather simple receiver. One hand on the controls, the other on the pencil. Learned to send on a J-37 key and homebrew oscillator (still have the key).

73 de Jim, N2EY
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« Reply #247 on: October 26, 2010, 10:19:33 AM »

I asked myself the same question when I took the Extra exam in 1964.  No additional privileges over a General Class, and the questions were not easy as pie as they are today..code test was 20 wpm.  But, when they told me I could apply for a 1X2 call in 1976 I was happy to have the higher grade license.  But, you are right!  There are thousands of knuckleheads out there with Extra licenses; the only reason they passed the test is because they have good memories.  The FCC needs to come out with a higher grade license that requires more studying/learning and less memorizing....write out the solutions as I did in 1964.
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K7KBN
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« Reply #248 on: October 26, 2010, 10:52:53 AM »

An historical question: It is my understanding that the various military branches gave new recruits various aptitude tests in order to find out who would be good at various tasks. And that one of those tests was about Morse Code. Those who scored highly on the test would be trained as Radiomen and those who didn't would get some other training.

Was that the case in the Navy when you were there? For recruits who didn't know the code already, that is.

73 de Jim, N2EY

Well, I was actually USNR my entire career, enlisted and officer.  When I was in boot camp in the summer of 1961, my whole company was USNR, mostly from the Training Center in Las Vegas, but we had about a dozen other reservists from other parts of the country.  The reserve companies went through the whole 9 weeks of boot camp, but we went back to our Training Centers when we graduated.  Based on testing and questioning, most of us were Seaman Apprentices when we graduated.  There were a few Airman Apprentices, Fireman Apprentices and Construction Apprentices mixed in.  It was up to us individually to decide what rating to pursue.  After high school and a year at "Nevada Southern University" (now UNLV), I decided to get my two-year active duty obligation out of the way so I put in a dual school request:  send me either to Electronics Technician (ET) school, OR to Radioman (RM) school.  ET school was in San Francisco (12th Naval District), and RM school was in San Diego (11th Naval District).  Since Las Vegas is also in the 11th ND, the Navy didn't have to transfer funds across districts.  So off to San Diego I went.

As far as code testing in boot camp, there wasn't any - at least as far as my company was concerned.
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Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
AA4PB
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« Reply #249 on: October 26, 2010, 11:12:03 AM »

There was a battery of tests, often given by the recruiter before you entered the service, as I recall (at least in the Navy). One of those was a Morse test where they determined how long it took you to learn a few characters, indicating an aptitude for Morse code. I also started in the reserves in high school and as I recall that testing was done at the reserve center before we saw any active duty. By the time I went to boot camp I was already a designated striker (meaning my specialty was already decided and I had some electronics training). By the time I went to A school (aviation electronics), after high school, I was already a third class petty officer (AT3). Reserves in high school really gave you a head start in those days (1960's).


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K6LHA
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« Reply #250 on: October 26, 2010, 01:00:18 PM »

I asked myself the same question when I took the Extra exam in 1964.
What answer did you get?  Hint: 1964 was 46 years ago.

Quote
No additional privileges over a General Class, and the questions were not easy as pie as they are today..code test was 20 wpm.
Hint: All code testing for any USA amateur radio license was eliminated 3 1/2 years ago.

"Easy as pie"?  Cheesy

I took and passed all 120 questions on 25 February 2007 to achieve Amateur Extra. Almost on the 51st anniversary of achieving my First Class Radiotelephone (Commercial) linense in one sitting in early 1956.  Having earned my living as an electronics circuits and system design engineer since 1960, I did not find the tests "difficult" but the NCVEC QPC did write a number of distractors in answer choices which required close scrutiny of possible choices.

Quote
But, when they told me I could apply for a 1X2 call in 1976 I was happy to have the higher grade license.
I'm sure...now you were a SOMEBODY and you could flaunt it on every ID.  Cheesy

Hint: 1976 was 34 years ago. Lots of changes everywhere on everything since then.

Quote
But, you are right!
WHO is right?  [it helps to attribute who you are responding to in all Forums]

Quote
There are thousands of knuckleheads out there with Extra licenses; the only reason they passed the test is because they have good memories.
Thankyouverymuch your magnificence.  Let me throttle back on such ACCUSATORY language and just say that there are tens of thousands of "kunckleheads" who already had Amateur Extra class licenses before there was any privatization of radio operator licensing begun by the FCC.

Quote
The FCC needs to come out with a higher grade license that requires more studying/learning and less memorizing....write out the solutions as I did in 1964.

WHY?

Is amateur radio a guild, or craft, or union?  Is it really and truly a "vital part of national defense?" Or isn't it just a NON-PROFESSIONAL hobby?  By its regulatory title, it is definitely NOT a profession.

Hint: Privatizing of BOTH Commercial and Amateur radio operator licensing began a quarter-century ago.  It is illogical to expect that the FCC would change that just for the Amateur Extra class license.  Neither would they reinstate the code test, especially when the worldwide use of
"morse code" has been diminishing continually over the last half century.  In the last 5 years the FCC has granted only 99 Radiotelegraph Operator licenses, almost (but not quite) 20 per year on the average.

You could make your own case to the FCC in the form of a Petition to reinstate the code test. It would have to be a very good case presented in light of Memorandum Report and Order 06-178. 

Just because YOU had to "write out answers" long ago for YOUR amateur radio license is definitely not a good legal reason, nor a logical reason, just a personal comment of an oldster who likes to look down on "inferior" hobbyists who didn't test as YOU tested.

Do you wish me to draw diagrams and write answers for my AMATEUR test?  No sweat, I can do that since I've been doing that for a living in PROFESSIONAL electronics for a half century.  All you've explained so far is that "we" had to do things like "you" did and haven't explained WHY.

73, Len K6LHA
Amateur Extra with Vanity call, tested for the first time in amateur radio at age 74
Life Member IEEE
Former Associate Editor at Ham Radio Magazine
Volunteer US Army veteran 1952-1960 (ASN RA16408336)
Electronics hobbyist since 1947
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K6LHA
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« Reply #251 on: October 26, 2010, 01:09:10 PM »

Notice also that there's been NO SCHEMATIC given.  Those photos, at least 5 years old, are in Kees Talen's HBR section.  If this was a knock-off of one of the many HBRs - and it was a supposed transceiver - then it would be prudent to also publish a schematic of it.

K6LHA
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« Reply #252 on: October 26, 2010, 04:04:10 PM »

The FCC needs to come out with a higher grade license that requires more studying/learning and less memorizing....write out the solutions as I did in 1964.

Good idea, but I doubt it has much of a chance.

Here's why:

About 1960-61 the FCC changed over to all-multiple-choice tests for all license classes. (The Novice had always been all-multiple-choice).

But the changeover did not happen on any given date. Instead, the old test materials were to be used until they ran out, and then the new tests implemented. The most common amateur written exam given was the Technician/General/Conditional, so it was used up pretty fast. How fast depended on where you went for the test.

OTOH there were very few who tired for the Extras, so those test materials took a long time to use up. They may even have been in use right up to 1967, when the Advanced was reopened to new issues and the old Extra written split into two tests.

You passed the Extra when the testing for it was probably at its highest levels. My hat is off to you!
 
Those old-style writtens involved drawing diagrams, writing short explanatory essays, solving problems where you had to show your work, and some multiple choice. The old ARRL License Manuals give a pretty good approximation of them - except the LMs have the answers!

FCC got rid of those old-style written exams for two reasons, both of which will almost certainly prevent them from coming back:

Reason 1 is that it takes a knowledgeable person to grade them.

Reason 2 is that the grading can be perceived as subjective on many questions. For example, if the question is "Explain the reason(s) for, and methods of, neutralizing an RF power amplifier in a transmitter", how much of an answer is enough? Will all examinees be graded the same way, or might there be some discrimination - even unconscious?

With multiple-choice, the grading is completely objective. Either the person picked the right answer or not, there's no judgement involved at all.

One way to make the tests better is to simply increase the size and variety of the question pools. That way, it becomes less work to learn the material than to learn the test. Anybody can submit proposed questions to the Question Pool Committee, and there's no upper limit to the size of the pools.

73 de Jim, N2EY

(btw, I got my Extra for three reasons:

First was to have all privileges
Second was that it was cheaper than building a 25 kc. calibrator to find all the subband-edges
Third was that I figured the FCC would only make the tests harder in the future, so I might as well get one while they were easy.

Oh well, 2 out of 3 isn't bad.

73 de Jim, N2EY



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« Reply #253 on: October 27, 2010, 12:58:21 PM »

N2EY said "Reason 1 is that it takes a knowledgeable person to grade them."  You nailed it on the reason why we will never have difficult examinations ever again.  BTW, the exam I took in 1964 was what you described, a little bit of everything.  Back then they had FCC examiners who actually had engineering degrees grading your test.  Ron, W4VR
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« Reply #254 on: October 27, 2010, 05:31:14 PM »

N2EY said "Reason 1 is that it takes a knowledgeable person to grade them."  You nailed it on the reason why we will never have difficult examinations ever again.  BTW, the exam I took in 1964 was what you described, a little bit of everything.  Back then they had FCC examiners who actually had engineering degrees grading your test.  Ron, W4VR
No sweat, your Ham Radio Job is assured and the Unions won't kick you out.  Cheesy

On the other hand radio technology has been constantly increasing in the quarter century of privatized testing.  The technology has increased even more in the 46 years since your 1964 test.  Were you or the FCC prescient and could read the future?

73, Len K6LHA
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