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Author Topic: Are there still Novice licenses?  (Read 1453 times)
KX4QP
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Posts: 367




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« on: January 27, 2019, 03:40:57 PM »

I was just looking over the ARRL frequency allocation chart (http://www.arrl.org/graphical-frequency-allocations) and noticed a bunch of reference to Novice license permitted bands or sub-bands (like the CW-only snippets of 80 m and 40 m).  There are also references to Advanced licenses.  It's been my understanding (having just come to radio after a fleeting interest that didn't go as far as passing a code test back in the early 1970s) that Novice and Advanced licenses no longer exist, having been (more or less) rolled into the Technician and Extra classes, respectively, when or after the Morse code requirement was dropped for all classes (Technician Plus is gone, too).

Is this a more recent change than I understood?  Tech Plus (the long-sought "no-code Technician" license, on the wish list even when I was trying to learn code at a useful speed the first time around 1973) has been around a long time, and the code requirement for other licenses was dropped in the 1990s, as I recall.  Are there still unexpired Novice and Advanced licenses out there, or is ARRL just slow in updating their band allocation information?
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KB2WIG
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« Reply #1 on: January 27, 2019, 04:38:04 PM »



As of Dec 2018, there are 8,410 novice licenses issued....

http://www.ah0a.org/FCC/Licenses.html


klc
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EXTRALight  1/3 less WPM than a Real EXTRA
KX4QP
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« Reply #2 on: January 28, 2019, 02:18:48 AM »

So, on the linked graphs, "Restructuring" is when Novice and Advanced stopped issuing?  That's 2000, how are there still unexpired licenses in those classes?
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W9IQ
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« Reply #3 on: January 28, 2019, 03:23:57 AM »

One of the effects of restructuring was that you could no longer apply (take the test) for a novice or advanced class license. So no new people could enter the pool. But all those who already had a Novice or Advanced class license could continue to renew them until further notice. Thus, the pool of these licensees continues to drop due to non-renewal of their legacy license because of upgrading, death, apathy, or forgetfulness.

- Glenn W9IQ
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- Glenn W9IQ

I never make a mistake. I thought I did once but I was wrong.
K7MEM
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« Reply #4 on: January 28, 2019, 06:45:07 AM »

ZEISSIKON,

The Novice and Advanced class licenses still exist. If they expire, they can be renewed. However, there is no path available for obtaining new Novice or Advanced licenses.

Some, with those class licenses, look at it like a badge of honor. A Novice license says you at least passed the 5 WPM Morse test and a Advanced license says you at least passed the 13 WPM Morse test. But the problem with those licenses is that their privileges didn't change. But, I guess it's their prerogative to keep those licenses. Who am I to judge. It's possible that, somewhere down the line, those two classes will be merged in with the other classes.

In the late 90s I had a Novice license. I worked CW 90 percent of the time, and the allocations on the bands suited me. But I saw a change coming and realized that the code requirements were going to be axed. So in about a 3 month period, in 1999, I upgraded from Novice to Extra. I could have waited a few years and just took a couple of written tests to get there. But, for me, it was important that I go through all four written tests and two code tests.

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Martin - K7MEM
http://www.k7mem.com
KE6EE
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« Reply #5 on: January 28, 2019, 10:06:09 AM »

As I recall (1957 was the year for me) the Novice license was not renewable and was
good for only one year. Thus one was motivated to take the General exam (at an official,
and intimidating downtown FCC office) or give up hamming until one could pass that test.

At 14 I found it as much of a challenge as I did any test at school. But I passed, both code
and written (and drawn--one had to draw a circuit schematic) on the first try. Lots of grownups
failed the code test that day. As did my ham friend from school--for which he never forgave me,
being totally convinced that I was an idiot.

Martin K7MEM might be considered a masochist by some, but I do understand the wish to
do things thoroughly and well. These days with rather easy exams and no code requirement,
one has to look for better ways to challenge oneself. Many Extra exam takers these days insist
on passing with no less than 100%. Which I did but without having set that standard. The secret
is no secret: all the questions and answers are available. Despite this, my examiners took a hard
look at me afterwards. I guess I still closely resemble that idiot of old.
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WA7ARK
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« Reply #6 on: January 28, 2019, 12:44:14 PM »

I went from Novice (WN7ARK) to Tech (5wpm, WA7ARK) to Advanced (13wpm) to Extra (20wpm). I just kept the same call (minus the N) I was first issued...
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Mike, WA7ARK
K3UIM
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Posts: 388




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« Reply #7 on: January 28, 2019, 12:52:04 PM »

MEM and EE: Kudos! "Back then" there was no such thing as "Entitlement"!
The love of both accomplishment and electronics gave one the incentive and willingness to actually earn the rights and privileges  associated with whatever we loved.

Today? As has been said in previous threads, "Why buy the cow when we can get the milk free?" Today's technology has everything they might desire, so why bother with tests, etc? … sigh …

Charlie, K3UIM
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Where you are: I was!
Where I am: You will be!
So be nice to us old fogies!!
W1VT
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« Reply #8 on: January 28, 2019, 12:57:31 PM »

I know someone who still holds an Advanced class license.  I wonder if anyone is friends with both a Novice and Advanced ticket holder in 2019?

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N2EY
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Posts: 5067




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« Reply #9 on: January 28, 2019, 02:05:44 PM »

The Novice and Advanced class licenses still exist. If they expire, they can be renewed. However, there is no path available for obtaining new Novice or Advanced licenses.

Some, with those class licenses, look at it like a badge of honor. A Novice license says you at least passed the 5 WPM Morse test and a Advanced license says you at least passed the 13 WPM Morse test.

But it doesn't.

In 1990, FCC created "medical waivers" for the 13 and 20 wpm Morse tests. There were no waivers for 5 wpm because of the ITU treaty.

So, for 10 years, it was possible to get any US license that required code tests with just 5 wpm code. That includes Advanced.

73 de Jim, N2EY
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W9IQ
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Posts: 3240




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« Reply #10 on: January 28, 2019, 02:50:14 PM »

The Novice and Advanced class licenses still exist. If they expire, they can be renewed. However, there is no path available for obtaining new Novice or Advanced licenses.

Some, with those class licenses, look at it like a badge of honor. A Novice license says you at least passed the 5 WPM Morse test and a Advanced license says you at least passed the 13 WPM Morse test.

But it doesn't.

In 1990, FCC created "medical waivers" for the 13 and 20 wpm Morse tests. There were no waivers for 5 wpm because of the ITU treaty.

So, for 10 years, it was possible to get any US license that required code tests with just 5 wpm code. That includes Advanced.

73 de Jim, N2EY

But at least it proves they at one time knew something that was relevant at least 20 years, or more, ago...

Hopefully these licensees have stayed up with modern technology. Is there any proof?

- Glenn W9IQ
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- Glenn W9IQ

I never make a mistake. I thought I did once but I was wrong.
KX4QP
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Posts: 367




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« Reply #11 on: January 28, 2019, 03:29:41 PM »

These days with rather easy exams and no code requirement,
one has to look for better ways to challenge oneself.

I copy that, 599!  For me, I'm learning Morse, even though it's no longer required, and although I can pass a Technician sample test with no study (based on stuff I've read, and on the first year of an EE program almost forty years ago), I plan to spend most of my on-air time, at least for the first couple years, in CW mode, working the world with homebrew equipment -- and I plan to use tubes, because I understand them better than transistors.  I do plan to study up and attempt to get my General on the first sitting, but if I don't pass that, I can do what I want to do with a Technician ticket until I'm ready to upgrade.
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KC6RWI
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Posts: 173




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« Reply #12 on: January 28, 2019, 03:39:03 PM »

I'm glad I read this thread. I was checking the arrl band plan for the general license I own. I knew that Extras had the whole band and lowest freqs.  Advanced had a little less and sadly generals had the smallest portion in many bands. To get around this road block, think I'll study for an extra license.
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WA7ARK
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« Reply #13 on: January 28, 2019, 04:38:53 PM »

...To get around this road block, think I'll study for an extra license.
That's why they call it incentive licensing...
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Mike, WA7ARK
K3UIM
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Posts: 388




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« Reply #14 on: January 28, 2019, 10:30:02 PM »

sadly generals had the smallest portion in many bands.
It didn't always be like that! What will it be like in 20 more years? Will I have any portion of the bands at all with my General ticket?? I wonder.
Charlie, K3UIM
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Where you are: I was!
Where I am: You will be!
So be nice to us old fogies!!
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