LA ham radio training, radio recs, June 27-28 Field Day

To CPGers interested in ham radio:


  1. Ham Radio Technician’s License Class, Sunday, July 19, 9 AM-4 PM, Agora


This is the one-day class ending in the test that, if passed, gets you your technician’s license. Put on by Norm & Naomi Goodkin in Agoura. Cost is $55 including continental breakfast and a quality Sharky’s Mexican Grill hot lunch. You should book now because they say the class usually fills up a month in advance. (Two Sunday follow-up classes with practical data and hands-on instruction for $10 each.)


Sign up at

Look at all the details about the class available on the site, to get your questions answered & to be properly prepared. Next class is October 18. Also see attached flier and keep it and the link for future class information.


  1. Preparation class on electricity & radio Saturday, July 18, 2-5 PM, Glendale


Our David Dewey is offering his basic Electricity and Radio class on the day before (Saturday, July 18) from 2:00 till 5 or so, so you can still get to the MV event that night. It will explain and get you mass on volts, amps, watts, resistance, radio waves etc., so you can think with the blast of data in the class.


David lives in Glendale and, when you confirm your interest, we’ll send you his address and instructions. Note, David says he will have popcorn and his “Patented  4 meat 3 cheese semi-homemade pizza” but warns there may be a surgeon general’s warning pending on that  😉 – if you are a salad type person bring one. If you have questions for David Dewey about his class, phone or text him at 818 209-4939 or email: 

  1. Some recommended ham radios, from $30 to $300+.


For those interested in buying a ham radio:


Below are some recommendations by CPGI’s Steve Szmidt and Bruce Saliga that you might want to check out (Amazon links provided for ease of reference):


A good very inexpensive starter ham radio:


iSaddle BAOFENG Dual Band UHF/VHF Radio Transceiver W/Upgrade Version 3800mah Battery With Earpiece $36 (includes extended battery & earpiece)


(above is BaoFeng UV5R Dual-Band Two-Way Radio, Black $27


Two other mentioned good inexpensive starter ham radios:


If you like to know your battery is running low rather than it just dying on you

Baofeng UV-82 (Black) Two-Way Radio (dual band) $30 (for one)

same as

2 X Pofung UV-82 (Black) Two-Way Radio(2 pack) $63

(Pofung & Baofeng are the same company.) (More data: Most of these radios have three bars to indicate battery life. Except they are not three separate bars but a single image with three bars on it. And it simply goes from three full bars to none and your radio is dead just like that. And you may not even notice when it does if it is just sitting there and you are waiting for a message to come in. The Pofung UV-82 not only give three working bars but also audible warnings in good time to take action. That is a pretty important feature in emergency conditions.)


If you like a big display or have poor eyesight, and can spend a bit more (cross-band repeat is good):

Wouxun KG-UV8D Two Way Radio (dual band, Cross-band Repeat) $124


Recommendation for a more expensive ham radio, per Jonathan Zimmerman, instructor for the Emergency Communications for CERT members class: Any dual-band mobile (portable) ham radio by a major brand such as Kenwood or Yaesu is good. Specifically mentioned was the Yaesu FT1DR for approx. $300. Two other CPG LA members have this radio, which helps in sharing knowledge on how to use. However, less expensive dual band radios would be fine.


The next step up from a hand held would be a decent radio that can be used in a car, or as a base. Steve Szmidt feels the very best choice is the Kenwood TM-V71A typically retailing around $360. It has 50W, covers both bands and is very friendly to operate, and high quality, being a Kenwood.


Keep in mind that the above are just some recommended radios. Others may work just as well or better. On the lower-end radios, the ham radio guys say it doesn’t matter which one you get as they are cheap and you can simply just buy another if you are not happy, and they actually recommend you have more than one kind. It was suggested that a group have some radios between them and let each person see what works best for them visa vie small keys, small display etc. Some hands-on learning is involved as well as frequency coordination, and while it helps if people have the same models in terms of helping one another, it doesn’t matter a whole lot which one you get.


(For more discussion from CPGI’s Steve Szmidt and Bruce Saliga, see posting on website, which also includes online links for home study for the technician & general ham radio licenses. Please read the posting before asking questions.)


FYI, a ham radio cannot talk to an FRS (family radio service) radio. So among your neighborhood friends or family, an FRS radio is useful.

  1. Ham Radio Field Day JUNE 27-28, Verdugo Park, Glendale


David says it would be great for a couple of our current ham guys to go to the field day where “we would learn a hell of a lot.” (Actually anyone can go to Field Day – its primary purpose is promotion so they’re looking for anyone who’s interested and wants to see it in action. Looks like a convenient one is the Crescenta Valley Radio Club at Verdugo Park, Glendale, CA, Contact: Mike Lichtman 818-618-4226 – see map at link and put in your location.


Data from the Goodkins:

“ARRL Field Day is June 27-28, 2015 “Please plan to visit a Field Day (FD) site on June 27th and 28th. Groups might set up on Friday, June 26, with operation from noon Saturday to noon Sunday. Your local clubs will appreciate your support and your help setting up and taking down. They also might need operators. If you need help contacting Field Day groups, reply to this email. The Topanga Disaster Radio Team operates from Summit-to-Summit Motorway (at the end of Lemans Drive), overlooking Calabasas and Topanga Canyon – it’s a model operation! Don’t know what Field Day is? Don’t know of a FD operation near you? Aren’t sure you really need to visit a FD site? Read about it here: and find a FD site using this: “73 (Best Regards), “Norm K6YXH & Naomi WB6OHW, (818) 403-5123”


Naomi Poole

For Mark Schlaich

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