Photo by Dave Warner – Hank Crofoot takes a seat in his travel trailer and starts to call for contacts.

Educational Committee Chairman for the Fort Herkimer Amateur Radio Association, Inc. Chris Bouck, amateur radio callsign KB4CMF, announces that the association will be teaching an entry-level Technician Class licensing course from September 12th through December 12th, 2022. Classes are scheduled to be taught at the Town of German Flatts building on Route 5S adjacent to the old Fort Herkimer Church between Herkimer and Little Falls. Classes will run each Tuesday night for 13 weeks. Classes will be from 6:00 PM until 9:00 PM. Classes will not meet if any Tuesday is a holiday or there is inclement weather that day.

The cost of the course is $40.00 and includes the book. The instructors can order the book from the ARRL at cost – which is usually less than the commercial price. The class is open to all ages. Each student will be provided the book “The Ham Radio License Manual – Everything You Need To Get Your First Ham Radio License!” published by the American Radio Relay League (ARRL) 5th Edition. If students already have the book, then the price of the book will be deducted from the fee. Subjects include; welcome to amateur radio, radio and electronics fundamentals, operating station equipment, communicating with other hams, Federal Communication Commission rules and regulations, operating an amateur radio station, radio wave propagation, antennas, and transmission lines, repeaters, radio safety, and many helpful hints and tips. The book is easy to understand and has “bite-sized” sections. It includes the latest question pool with an answer key. It is designed for self-study or for classroom use and now includes a guide for choosing the right radio. Many tips and practical demonstrations will be included giving the students hands-on experience. Classes will follow the chapters and format of the book and is a valuable resource for later reference after the class. The book contains the entire question pool, and answers candidates will see on the FCC exam.

The FCC has recently restructured the licensing requirements for all Amateur Radio licenses, and there are now only three classes of license. They no longer require Morse code for any license class.
Each student will be given an “Elmer” list at the end of the course. An Elmer is an experienced ham who has volunteered to assist new hams, so they can get their station up and running after they become licensed. All students that complete the course, and receive their license, will receive a free one-year membership in the Fort Herkimer Amateur Radio Association, Inc.

The Technician Class license now allows privileges for voice communications almost immediately. With higher class licenses come more frequencies and modes for operation, such as voice (Phone), radio teletype (RTTY), expanded high frequency (HF) privileges, digital modes, packet radio, and APRS. Tests are conducted at various locations in the area. Students can take the exam at any time they feel they are ready to try for their license. A special test session will be scheduled after the course is completed. Test scores are now processed electronically, so the successful candidate can obtain his/her FCC callsign and be on the air in a very short time.

For more information or to sign up, please contact Chris Bouck (KB4CMF), Educational Committee Chairman of the Ft. Herkimer Amateur Radio Association, Inc., at (315) 429-3927 or email at or Don Peterson (KD2ILO) President of the Fort Herkimer Amateur Radio Association, Inc. at (315) 868-3283.