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Author Topic: Radio Merit Badge - #76 Most Popular  (Read 4485 times)
K0OD
Member

Posts: 2591




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« on: May 24, 2014, 02:51:18 PM »

BSA started its merit badge program in 1911 with 57 badges, many of which are still offered in some form. Signaling (semaphore) was on that list but Wireless (later radio) came later.  Very interesting to study the ebb and flow of popularity among badges. Note that the top 12 are required for Eagle Scout, assuring their popularity.

2012 Rank
------------------
First Aid #1 (92,312 earned)
Swimming #2 

Radio # 76 (6,957 earned)
Electronics # 68
Engineering #61

Coin Collecting #81
Stamp Collecting #126

Dead last
Bugling #130 with 613 earned

Full list for 2012
http://blog.scoutingmagazine.org/2013/04/22/mbs-2012/

A puzzle to me is the fairly high rank of Dentistry at #96. Some badges are much easier to get than others.

 
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AE5QB
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Posts: 273




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« Reply #1 on: May 24, 2014, 08:01:04 PM »

You must also look at critical mass.  I think the ham radio community has done a great job of kaing radio merit badge programs available to scouts in conjunction with hamfests.  I know the folks in the Dallas/Ft Worth area merit very large numbers of scouts each year at Hamcom.  They really have a well managed program up there.  The Jamboree on the Air program touches a large number of scouts also.  So kudos to all the hams that work so hard to make this program available to our young folks and make it interesting enough to attract them to it. A large number of seeds are being planted; hopefully a few will sprout in the future.

73,

Tom/AE5QB
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K0OD
Member

Posts: 2591




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« Reply #2 on: May 24, 2014, 09:22:47 PM »

Ham radio still figures prominently in the radio merit badge. Here are the requirements.
http://meritbadge.org/wiki/index.php/Radio
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K7KBN
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Posts: 2837




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« Reply #3 on: May 25, 2014, 10:09:27 AM »

Bugling is dead last?  I got mine in 1958.
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
KD8SZL
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #4 on: May 25, 2014, 08:41:20 PM »

One issue is the ability to read music. Another is the need to locate an instrument and practice. Bugling is a tough one. None are a cakewalk.
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K0JEG
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Posts: 679




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« Reply #5 on: May 28, 2014, 05:49:49 PM »

Bugling is easy. Grab a trumpet but don't use any valves. All the music written for bugle takes that into account.
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KI6LZ
Member

Posts: 602




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« Reply #6 on: May 28, 2014, 06:01:54 PM »

Easy? #@#$%$##@#$%$
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K7KBN
Member

Posts: 2837




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« Reply #7 on: May 28, 2014, 06:40:59 PM »

Boy Scout camp I attended provided "a bugle", so whoever was nominated as Bugler of the Week only had to provide his own mouthpiece.  A guy in my Troop was notified that he'd be the BOTW so he brought his trumpet mouthpiece and ... the bugle got severely damaged in a partial collapse of one of the storage buildings and was unplayable.

Not to worry - one of the counselors had "a horn" -- turned out to be an old E-flat Mellophone;  the horn that sort of looked like a French horn, only fingered with the right hand.  Not a proper matchup for a trumpet mouthpiece, but ol' Bob still made Reveille a despicable sound, yet oddly smoother.
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73
Pat K7KBN
CWO4 USNR Ret.
KA5PIU
Member

Posts: 446




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« Reply #8 on: June 01, 2014, 03:19:35 PM »

Hello.

I had nothing to do with the boy scouts of the US.
I was in the East German version and the Saudi Arabia version.
As a trumpet was a military signal for ages, it was in common use.
The West German government frowned on scouting as such but the East German government was full tilt.
We were trained just like any soldier, rifles and all, so signal person was not unexpected.
A signal person was taught both the bugle and flags, and if available, on a radio, or a telephone set and we simulated a radio.
In Saudi Arabia, things are different, the Signal Drum is used, in Islam there is this code one is learns to chant, 2 notes.
Going to the drum, easy.
They had radios set up for FSK, with a paddle, again,  easy.
By far, the most common radio was the AN/GRC-9 with a solid state exciter that was configured for FSK.
There was never an issue with training to learn the code, everyone knew the code, but it is not Morse code.
They had this really simple wooden computer that was used to do the frequency calculations for settings and ideal antenna length.
Yes, the kids in shop would assemble the computers.
And, in Saudi Arabia, the school and church were pretty much one.
But, except for the razor sharp daggers, pistols, rifles, and everyone having a Koran, scouting was pretty much the same.
And, yes, the kids did indeed wear the daggers in class.
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