Chapter 19

Tips for Masters

Your ham radio license is really a license to study. Take advantage of every learning opportunity, including learning from your mistakes. (You’ll have plenty!) Each problem or goof is also a lesson.

Masters got to be masters by starting as raw recruits just like you and then making one improvement at a time, day in and day out. You may think that ham radio veterans surely have stores of secret knowledge that took years and years to acquire — knowledge that makes them the masters of all they survey. Certainly, the veterans have experience and expertise, but they also rely on simple principles that work in many situations. You can use these principles, too.

Listening to Everything

Masters get more out of listening and monitoring than anyone else because they’ve learned the value of doing it. Every minute you spend listening is a minute learning and a minute closer to being a master, whether it’s as a net control, a top contest operator, setting up a balloon tracker, or just giving out directions to the club meeting. Listen and learn how.

Learning How It Works

Operating a radio and building an efficient, effective station are much easier if you know how the equipment works. Even if you’re not terribly tech-savvy, take the time to get familiar with the basics of electronics and how your equipment functions. You will be much more effective if you learn the effects of controls and their adjustments. Learn how to make simple repairs to keep your station ...

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