The phone network is down and the internet is inaccessible. Power is out. How do you communicate when all else fails? Ham radio. As recent disasters have shown, you simply cannot rely on mobile phones or the internet to communicate in an emergency, because these communication channels depend on the electrical and data grid. You can think of countless situations where communication could make the difference between life and death on an individual level, too.
The itch struck me in the middle of and I learned a lot since then. People often ask me questions about all kinds of amateur radio topics and I decided to compile all of the answers into a big page that I can update over time. Keep in mind that the vast majority of the topics presented here will be applicable to amateur radio all over the world, but much of the discussion around licensing and rules is very specific to the United States. As with anything else, everyone has their own opinions about what makes a hobby special. As long as you enjoy your time working with a hobby, it does not matter what anyone else says, so long as you avoid getting in the way of their enjoyment. More on that later.
Beginner’s guide to amateur (ham) radio for preppers
While listening to the 2-meter ham band you can expect to hear normal conversations or "rag chew" as the hams call it. You may also hear a ham operator on his way home from work asking his wife if she needs anything from the store. You may hear a ham operator reporting a traffic accident and requesting emergency services. You may also hear ham radio operators providing on the scene emergency communications during times of disaster.
The History of Amateur Radio. In January a group of californian amateurs published Pacific Radio News, a new magazine dealing with amateur radio activities. In , it will merge with other publications to became the famous CQ magazine. We will come back on the activities of its ancestor in the '30s.