New hobby on the horizon

It looks like I am about to engage in a new hobby – HAM or Amateur radio.

I’ve been reading up about it for the last few days and the more I read the more I find it fascinating. It also appears that there are a lot of people in Cyprus who are into HAM. Surprisingly, I even know few of them pretty good. I just never new that they were into it.

I talked on the phone to one guy, here in Limassol, and he was very helpful and showing me the way. Basically, I need to ask for an application form from the Ministry of Telecommunications. (I am planning to do just that on coming Monday.) The application will cost about 10 CYP. It’ll take about a month for the Ministry to respond. Usually they say ‘yes’ to everyone.

To get the license, there is an exam. Ministry holds the exam twice a year, so it can be anywhere from 4 to 6 month until the next one. This will give me enough time to study. I was told that if it was 10 years ago, I would have to buy a few books. But these days, all the information is availble on the Web.

Another good thing is that until August of this year, there were two levels of certification. One was for the beginners and was rather limiting in frequencies and actiosn that were allowed. Another one was for advanced hobbiests and professionals and required passing the Morse code exam. In August though, the law was changed and now there is only one exam that, when passed, gives access to everything there is.

The license costs 30 CYP for the first year, and 15 CYP for all consecutive years. Beginner’s equipment costs are somewhere around 100-150 CYP. Sound affordable to me.

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Shared bookmarks for user tvset on 2005-11-22