Opinions expressed are my own. I hope they are useful, but policies and procedures vary widely from one location and group to another.

What I describe may not work for you and may even be unsafe. Always follow your local policies and procedures!

Also, unless specifically mentioned, this site is about VHF/UHF operations and not HF, which is very often different for very good reasons.

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N5FDL/CEVOL Repeaters

Stockton: 147.210 + N5FDL and 444.500 + K6TRK Both PL 114.8 (linked)

Copperopolis/Gopher Ridge: 147.015 + and 444.400 + N5FDL UHF is Yaesu System Fusion analog and digital — tone on analog only

Mt. Oso: 146.895 - N5FDL and 443.825 + PL 107.2 (not linked)

Tracy: 444.850 + KB6EMK PL 127.3

Affiliated Repeaters

Bear Mtn.: 146.090 + and 444.250 + WB6ASU Both PL 114.8 (linked)

Mt. Delux: 145.210 - PL 100.0 WA6SEK (10mi S of Tracy)

All repeaters are open to all users.

Congratulations! You’ve Passed Your Test!

Your new license becomes effective as soon as it appears online. Processing usually takes one or two weeks. Check the FCC website http://bit.ly/JByfVy or subscribe at http://bit.ly/KnMgsR to receive an email when your license appears. Upgraders may use their new privileges immediately by appending /AG for General or /AE for Extra to their current callsigns when using their new privileges.

Do not call the FCC (as suggested on the white form you received). They will not know how to help you.

Need a recommended beginner book about Amateur Radio? Visit the HamCram Bookstore at http://bit.ly/JCCCA4. The store sells the study manuals and training for the test you’ve just completed as well as for future tests.

Need a starter radio? We have prepared shopping lists for our recommended beginner radio, the Yaesu FT-60, and one other model. Our recommended dealer is Ham Radio Outlet in Oakland (510-534-5757 or Oakland@hamradio.com ). We can program these radios for you. Find the shopping lists here: http://bit.ly/T5tcjk. We do not at present recommend the $30 radios offered on Amazon or other sites. Please contact us if you are a SAR/fire/OES/CERT or police user in need of public safety radio coverage.

New: We also recommend a basic kit from Quicksilver radio for new hams (especially for CERT members) and a battery kit for those who want the radios recommended above. Learn more here.

Need help using your radio? We are happy to show you how your radio works, either one-on-one or during Saturday morning classes we hold every month or so. See contact information below.

Get on-the-air! The Tracy club net is every Wednesday at 8 p.m. on the 146.655 (San Joaquin) and 146.775 (Livermore) repeaters. Both have a down offset and a PL tone of 100 Hz. The Manteca club net is held every Thursday — except the first Thursday of the month — at 7 p.m. on the 146.985 repeater. It also has a down offset and a PL tone of 100 Hz. The Lodi club net meets every Wednesday at 7 p.m. on the 147.090 repeater. It has a positive offset and a PL of 114.8 Hz. All these nets welcome newcomers!

Want to join a club? The ARRL is the national organization for Amateur Radio and publishes QST magazine. You should join. http://arrl.org There are Amateur Radio clubs in Tracy, Manteca, and Lodi that welcome your attendance and membership. Visit n5fdl.com to learn more and sign-up for our email lists.

Want a Vanity Callsign? You may apply for a Vanity Callsign, provided it is available, by paying a fee. Contact us for more information. People generally get their initials or the callsign of a deceased relative who was a ham.

Want a HamCram for your group? Contact us for information on holding a HamCram for your community service organization, church, CERT team, etc.

Ten things you can do with your new Technician license: 1. Talk on local repeaters with your new ham friends. 2. Talk to the Space Shuttle, International Space Station, or with other hams using an Amateur Radio Satellite. 3. Use Echolink to connect a local repeater or your desktop computer with other repeaters worldwide and talk to hams everywhere. 4. Send Internet email using Packet Radio Winlink2000 software. 5. Upgrade to a General Class license and talk around the world on shortwave frequencies. 6. Use your new radio to listen to fire and EMS calls. 7. Participate in the annual Field Day emergency communications drill (every June). 8. Serve your community as a volunteer equipped with Amateur Radio. 9. Participate in on-the-air operating activities, contests, and nets. 10. Have fun.

Why upgrade? There are three levels of Amateur Radio licenses in the U.S. The entry-level Technician Class license primarily allows local communication using repeaters on VHF and UHF frequencies above 30 MHz. This is where most emergency communication takes place. The next level, General Class license, adds the ability to talk to hams worldwide on shortwave frequencies below 30 MHz. The top grade Extra Class license adds additional frequencies below 30 MHz. Morse code is no longer required, but it’s fun to learn and use. Free QRZ.com practice exams: http://www.qrz.com/hamtest/ Recommended online training: hamtestonline.com.

Have Questions? Of course, you have questions! Contact David, N5FDL, and he will forward your question to the proper person for an answer. His email address is david@coursey.com or you can call him at 209-740-7515. Visit his website at n5fdl.com to learn more about Amateur Radio in San Joaquin County. 


Sutter Tracy Community Hospital

Dameron Hospital

Bay Area Educational Amateur Radio Society (does Bay Area HamCrams)