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Reviews Categories | Ham Radio education & exam prep materials | Extra Class Help


Reviews Summary for Extra Class
Extra Class Reviews: 13 Average rating: 4.2/5 MSRP: $14.95
Description: Exam preparation by Gordon West, WB6NOA. "Everything you need to upgrade to Amateur Extra Class the quick and easy way!"
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.w5yi.org/catalog_details.php?pid=64&sort=7
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KG4PAI Rating: 1/5 Feb 9, 2002 22:35 Send this review to a friend
wrong answers!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought the Extra Class exam study book by Gordon West, sold by Radio Shack, New 3rd Ed/. and it has at least two wrong answers. Beware! Tom Kg4pai
 
AC7LP Rating: 5/5 Jul 9, 2001 01:31 Send this review to a friend
I passed with a 48/50  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
The Gordon West W5YI/NRE learning materials are great. I've used the books,software and code tapes over the last 7 months and have passed all of the Amateur and Commercial exams except for the GMDSS which I'm taking next week. I passed he 50 question Extra test 48/50 after using this book and software. I put together a $100 Small Wonder Labs PSK31 20 Meter SSB transciever over Xmas so that and that 5 WPM code test is my only explanation as to why it took me so long to pass the general test. The GROL/RADAR 150 question test were tough and these General/Extra tests were a great help in passing it.

-December 16,2000 Amateur Technician
-February 7,2001 Amateur General
-February 28 2001. Amateur Extra
-May 1,2001 Commercial GROL with Radar
- Next week GMDSS operator & Maintainer
 
WD4FGH Rating: 5/5 Jun 11, 2001 18:08 Send this review to a friend
Good material for those with some experience.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Years ago I had an F.C.C. First Class ("first phone") license. It took lots of study and work to get it. Stupidly, I let it expire back in the 80's. Recently I decided to upgrade to Extra and I used Gordon West's book as the primary tool. A lot of the theory "came back" from my prior license training, but I needed help. So, at Dayton I bought this book and the ARRL's Extra Class manual as well.

The method used in the book is to take each of the questions in the pool (665 of them), list the four possible answers (one correct and three "distractors"), then explain the correct answer. The explanations are generally short and many assume some prior knowledge of amateur radio operations, regulation, and electronic theory.

For any ham thinking about upgrading I'd recommend this book with only one caveat: There may be some questions where you'd like more depth. Still, for experienced hams, it is easy for me to give it a 5.

If it leaves you scratching your head, use the ARRL's Extra Class Study Guide for the questions you need more depth on. That's what I did. The League's book is bulky and a bit hard to warm up to but makes a great reference.

Hint: In West's book, use two different color highlighter pens. Mark the correct answer in one color and highlight key words in the question and correct answer in the other color. This makes them jump into memory faster.

West has optional practice exam software (which comes bundled into a preparation "package") with the book for about $35. He also offers theory tapes, but I did not try them.

The combination of the book (with some background trips to the ARRL book) and the practice exam program works well. You can test section by section or (as I did) just bang away until you start passing practice exams. After you've been through all the sub-elements, try taking practice exams on e.Ham or QRZ.com for variety. This is a good confidence builder.

Net, I passed (just missed one question) thanks primarily to Gordon West's book and lots of practice exams. Its a good system for those of us with some experience. If you're starting from scratch (very little ham or electronics experience) the ARRL book may be better for you.

Good luck!
 
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