UK amateur radio callsigns

Icom ID-51E

UK amateur radio callsigns.

Amateur radio callsigns issued in the UK to individual operators, with class of licence and dates issued alongside, are listed in the table below. For simplicity, these UK amateur radio callsigns are categorised against the current Foundation, Intermediate, and Full classes.

CallsignClass of licenceDates issued
M7 + 3 letterFoundation2018 - onwards
M6 + 3 lettersFoundation2008 - 2018
M3 + 3 lettersFoundation2002 - 2008
M5 + 3 lettersFull1999 - 2000
M0 + 3 lettersFull1996 - onwards
M1 + 3 lettersFull1996 - 2000
2x0 + 3 lettersIntermediate1991 - onwards
2x1 + 3 lettersIntermediate1991 - 2000
G7 + 3 lettersFull1988 - 1996
G0 + 3 lettersFull1985 - 1995
G1 + 3 lettersFull1983 - 1987
G6 + 3 lettersFull1981 - 1982
G4 + 3 lettersFull1971 - 1984
G8 + 3 lettersFull1964 - 1981
G3 + 3 lettersFull1946 - 1971
G2/3/4/5/6/8 + 2 lettersFull1920 - 1939
G2 + 3 lettersFull1920 - 1939

The dates shown have been obtained by researching the RSGB Yearbook and therefore presumed to be correct. Some dates shown on other websites may differ from those shown here.


What is amateur radio?

Amateur radio is a popular technical hobby and volunteer public service. As a licensed amateur radio operator, you are permitted to transmit and receive radio signals on frequency bands allocated for use by amateur radio amateurs. Amateur radio operators use these designated bands of radio frequencies for non-commercial exchange of messages, wireless experimentation, self-training, and emergency communications. A 1910 announcement by the then HM Postmaster General licensed “experimental wireless”, which still uniquely gives radio amateurs the ability to innovate without commercial or statutory controls even in the closely regulated environment of the 21st century. Amateur radio is the only hobby governed by international treaty.

Amateur radio operators use the amateur radio bands for a variety of purposes:

  • Contacting people all over the world by radio which often leads to developing international friendships,
  • Competing in international competitions to test the effectiveness of their equipment and their skill as a radio operator,
  • Technical experimentation — many of the leaps forward in radio technology have been initiated by radio amateurs,
  • Communication through amateur space satellites or with the International Space Station (which carries an amateur radio station),
  • Providing communications at times of emergencies and undertaking exercises to maintain that capability.

There is no better way to explore the fascinating world of radio communications than by becoming a radio amateur.


You can also find out more through the Radio Society of Great Britian (RSGB) https://rsgb.org/



qrz.com

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What is qrz.com ?

Commonly just referred to as QRZ, this is the directory of amateur radio operators around the world. If you hear a callsign and want to know more about that operator, qrz.com is the website to visit. Not all callsigns are registered with an individual person – some are special events callsigns associated with a particular event, an incident in history, or an amateur radio club.

Should I register on qrz.com ?

Of course, there is no easier way to find out more about other amateur radio stations and for others to find out about you and your interests than to look each other up on the directory.

This means that irrespective of whether you are a recently licensed amateur radio operator or more established in the hobby, you should get your callsign on qrz.com

You can find out more on Wikipedia at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/QRZ.com

Registering on qrz.com

There is some good support on the internet to help you get established on qrz.com

The Essex Ham website https://www.essexham.co.uk/qrz-basics provides a step by step guide to setting up your entry.

There are all sorts of unexpected benefits from being on the directory – I recently joined some amateur radio groups on the forum website groups.io where the moderators confirm that you are a ham operator on qrz.com

So there you have it – get on https://www.qrz.com now!

qrz.com showing details of GB2RS
qrz.com showing details of GB2RS

What is amateur radio?

Amateur radio is a popular technical hobby and volunteer public service. As a licensed amateur radio operator, you are permitted to transmit and receive radio signals on frequency bands allocated for use by amateur radio amateurs. Amateur radio operators use these designated bands of radio frequencies for non-commercial exchange of messages, wireless experimentation, self-training, and emergency communications. A 1910 announcement by the then HM Postmaster General licensed “experimental wireless”, which still uniquely gives radio amateurs the ability to innovate without commercial or statutory controls even in the closely regulated environment of the 21st century. Amateur radio is the only hobby governed by international treaty.

Amateur radio operators use the amateur radio bands for a variety of purposes:

  • Contacting people all over the world by radio which often leads to developing international friendships,
  • Competing in international competitions to test the effectiveness of their equipment and their skill as a radio operator,
  • Technical experimentation — many of the leaps forward in radio technology have been initiated by radio amateurs,
  • Communication through amateur space satellites or with the International Space Station (which carries an amateur radio station),
  • Providing communications at times of emergencies and undertaking exercises to maintain that capability.

There is no better way to explore the fascinating world of radio communications than by becoming a radio amateur.

Groups.io is proving ideal social media for amateur radio

Alinco DJ-G7 handheld transceiver

Groups.io is proving ideal social media for amateur radio

Groups.io seems to becoming increasingly popular with amateur radio enthusiasts as a friendly and safe form of social media. I think a lot of people have become quite disillusioned with some forms of social media. Although it is possible to join Facebook ‘Groups’ on specific topics and escape to some extent, all the screaming and shouting on the Facebook ‘Home’ page, Facebook can be very annoying. It is distracting and there is always the temptation to get drawn into distracting arguments. Similarly, Twitter can seem like shouting in an echo chamber, although Twitter ‘Lists’ can be used as a kind of group for messages.

Why You'll Love Groups.io - home page
Why You’ll Love Groups.io – home page

However, one form of social media that seems to be become increasingly poplar is ‘groups.io’. The popularity of ‘groups.io’ came out of the demise of ‘Yahoo! Groups’. A major software change to ‘Yahoo! Groups’ in 2010 was denounced by users. There was also allegedly some controversy about illegal use without government regulation. ‘Yahoo! Groups’ blocked new content in 2019 and deleted existing content in January 2020. Out of this shadow stepped ‘groups.io’.

Signing up for groups.io couldn’t be easier

It is easy to sign up for a ‘groups.io’ account. Once signed up and logged in, the toolbar at the top of the page gives you the option examine ‘Your Groups’ or ‘Find or Create a Group’. You might want to search for ‘Amateur Radio’ or ‘Ham Radio’ groups, and from there join groups that interest you. I have listed below, some groups that I found interesting and have joined.

  • BITX20 – This group exists for constructors of the various BITX projects, to discuss all aspects of the design and construction including problems, components, modifications and experiences using the rigs. I recently built one of the uBitx V6 transceiver kits.
  • Yaesu FT-817 Owners Group – Dedicated to owners and operators of the Yaesu FT-817 all-mode, all-band wonder rig. I have one of these transceivers.
  • GQRP Club – The GQRP Club is a non profit organisation run entirely by volunteers to promote Low Power Radio.  I am a member of the club.
  • QCX – This group is for those constructing the QCX QRP radio. I recently built the QCX+ transceiver.
  • RSGBTech – an independent group  open to ALL radio amateurs to discuss amateur radio related technical matters, be it a technical query or area of interest.
  • RSGBForum – The Group was formed following suggestions on RSGBTech for a “Sister Group” to discuss general, radio related, topics.

It is very easy log in to groups.io, select a group you have joined, and browse the topics. However, it is also very easy to browse through posts sent by email to your email account. I use ‘mailbox.org’, the secure email provider, for most of my emails, and this email provider gives excellent rule based email sorting and transfer into sub-folders. As each ‘groups.io’ group is also associated with an email address of the same name (e.g. XXX@groups.io ), rule based sorting into email sub-folders suits me best.

Some words from groups.io

Here are a few words from ‘groups.io’ and how it describes its services:-

  • Groups.io supports all the options you’d expect in a modern groups service.
  • Create an announcement, moderated, or restricted group.
  • Customize the various welcome, goodbye, monthly, and pending subscription messages.
  • Then define multiple owners and moderators, using our full permissions system.
  • Monitor the group through the activity log, and track email delivery to members.
  • Approve messages from moderated users either through the website or via email.
  • Automatically moderate or lock individual group topics after a set number of days.
  • Relax knowing that Groups.io handles bounces and autoresponders automatically, and that we’re DMARC compatible.

Some of these words from ‘groups.io’ will only be applicable if you want to create your own groups. However, I think you can see that ‘groups.io’ is trying to provide, or perhaps I should have said, is providing, a very professional service. Go to https://groups.io

Enjoy.

Best YouTube videos about radios and amateur radio – updated 21st August 2021

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Best YouTube videos about radios and amateur radio

YouTube videos

There are absolutely loads of YouTube videos about radios and amateur radio. Here are links to some of the best YouTube videos that I have come across. Many of these videos are by hobbyists working with radio and others are specifically about amateur radio. I guess, if a fellow radio enthusiast can go to all the effort necessary to publish a YouTube video, then they must have something interest to say. Perhaps I should let you decide. Some of these videos were published by people who call themselves vloggers and they upload new video content on a regular basis. You can subscribe to their channels and receive notifications when new content is uploaded.


Adam R Kimmerly, K6ARK Portable Radio

K6ARK, Portable Radio is a great YouTube channel for seeing QRP from summits in practice. Visit Adam’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/c/K6ARKPortableRadio/featured

Antenna Showdown – New Packable Yagi vs Vertical in the 6m Sprint

Billy’s DIY Dreamshop

Billy Cheung has the channel, Billy’s DIY Dreamshop, currently dedicated to crystal sets and simple radios. Visit Billy’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCoM0yWN-iyPmrj9Jm4VJZIA

Adding a Meter and a Speaker to my Antique Crystal Radio

Bolton Wireless Club

Bolton Wireless Club now meets at Ladybridge Community Centre, Beaumont Drive, BOLTON, BL3 4RZ. Visit Bolton Club’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5gC62AO5qyR-AwMRgsaQyg

MMDVM with G4KLX at the Bolton Wireless Club

Bury Radio G3BRS

The Bury Radio Society was formed in 1938 and is affiliated with the Radio Society of Great Britain. Visit Bury Radio’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UC5DXBYuE5bAoV-gofaR6Z3Q

We love construction!

Carl Plant M0SZT, in Stoke-on-Trent

Visit Carl’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCtX8PCgk0UHQRUqROCtPM4g

Hammock camp in the rain with ham radio | Military whip antenna

Dave Casler KE0OG

Dave CaslerKE0OG, creates ham radio YouTube videos from the Western Slope of Colorado to educate and inform his ham radio audience. Visit Dave’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCaBtYooQdmNzq63eID8RaLQ

Ground Rod Options

Peter Parker VK3YE, in Melbourne Australia

Visit Peter’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCPhfct0hwCpv_q6_BVSFsRA

7 courtyard or balcony HF antenna ideas

QRP-Labs

QRP-Labs is the home of Hans Summers G0UPL for your QRP kits and components. Visit the QRP-Labs YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/c/QRPLabs/featured

QCX-mini update and test jig

Radio Society of Great Britain, RSGB

Visit the RSGB’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCp6pw3esqmVaFkpdZvFbj1g

Assessing your station against ICNIRP EMF levels

Weekly YouTube videos by TamithaSkov, the Space Weather Woman

Tamitha Skov brings Space Weather news with forecasts for amateur radio users and people who photograph the sky at night. Visit the Space Weather Woman’s YouTube channel at:- https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkXjdDQ-db0xz8f4PKgKsag

The First X-Flare of Solar Cycle 25 | Space Weather News 07.06.2021

I hope you enjoyed at least some of these vloggers publishing YouTube videos.


Amateur radio events now that lockdown eases

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Amateur radio events – updated 13th August

Amateur radio events are set to take place now that lockdown eases. There are all sorts of events to see. No doubt there are going to be events that we would like to attend that will clash in our diaries. So it is definitely worth making a note in your calendar of events that interest you. Of course, in addition to all those amateur radio activities that we long to attend once again, there are national and international sporting events and also Bank holidays. Whether it is an amateur radio rally or another event you are looking for, I hope you find something of interest below.

Amateur radio events for your diary as lockdown eases

Saturday 21st August 2021 to Sunday 22nd August 2021 – International Lighthouse Lightship Weekend – ILLW https://illw.net/

Monday 30th August 2021 – Summer Bank Holiday

Now a virtual event – Saturday 4th September 2021 – Virtual GQRP Convention 2021

Sunday 5th September 2021 – Telford Hamfest http://www.telfordhamfest.org.uk/

Saturday 4th September to Sunday 5th September 2021 – RSGB Field Day HF SSB https://www.rsgbcc.org/hf/rules/2021/rnfd.shtml

Saturday 11th September 2021 – Churches and Chapels On The Air https://www.wacral.org/chota-2021-2/

Cancelled – Friday 24th September 2021 to Saturday 25th September 2021 – National Hamfest Newark

Saturday 25th September 2021 to Sunday 26th September 2021 – Railways on the Air https://rota.barac.org.uk/

Sunday 17th October 2021 – Hack Green Radio Surplus Hangar Sale https://www.facebook.com/HGsecretbunker/

Saturday 25th December 2021 – Christmas Day

Sunday 26th December 2021 – Boxing Day

Monday 27th December 2021 – Christmas Day substitute Bank Holiday

Tuesday 28th December 2021 – Boxing Day substitute Bank Holiday

Saturday 1st January 2022 – New Years Day

Monday 3rd January 2022 – New Years Day substitute Bank Holiday

Friday 4th January to Sunday 20th February 2022 – Winter Olympics Beijing China

Sunday 6th February 2022 – Red Rose Rally provisional date http://wmrc.co.uk/index.htm

Sunday 20th February 2022 – RadioActive Rally https://midcars.org/

Saturday 9th April 2022 – Grand National Day Aintree Racecourse

Sunday 10th April 2022 – NARSA – Northern Amateur Radio Societies Association, Blackpool rally

Amateur radio event - the NARSA Rally at the Norbreck Hotel, Blackpool on Sunday 10th April 2022

Friday 15th April 2022 – Good Friday

Monday 18th April 2022 – Easter Monday

Monday 2nd May 2022 – Early May Bank Holiday

Thursday 2nd June 2022 – Spring Bank Holiday

Friday 3rd June 2022 – Platinum Jubilee Bank Holiday

Saturday 11th June 2022
ROCHDALE & DISTRICT AMATEUR RADIO SOCIETY SUMMER RALLY
St Vincent de Paul’s, Caldershaw Road, off Edenfield Road (A680), Norden, Rochdale OL12 7QR.
Doors open to the public at 10:15 am with disabled visitors gaining access 15 minutes earlier. Further details: Robert, M0NVQ, m0nvq@outlook.com, 0777 811 3333.

Sunday 26th June 2022 – Newbury Rally, Newbury Showground

Thursday 28th July 2022 to Monday 8th August 2022 – Commonwealth Games Birmingham

Monday 15th August 2022 to Sunday 21st August 2022 – European Athletic Championships Munich

Monday 29th August 2022 – Summer Bank Holiday

Monday 21st November 2022 to Sunday 18th December 2022 Qatar

Sunday 25th December 2022 – Christmas Day

Monday 26th December 2022 – Boxing Day Bank Holiday

Tuesday 27th December 2022 – Christmas Day substitute Bank Holiday


Events – colour code

Bank holidays in England

Radio events

Sport events that might class with radio events


Whilst it is good news that lockdown eases and there are events to see, please check with organisers that events are going ahead before travelling.

The information above is also contained in the site calendar: https://m0nvq.me/rallies-calendar/

Number One Riverside

Alinco DJ-G7 handheld transceiver

Number One Riverside Rochdale – a time-lapse video of its construction

Number One Riverside is the new multi-use public building in Rochdale. On 15th June 2012, I published my time-lapse video on YouTube detailing the construction of this building. Number One Riverside formally opened to the public in March 2013.

At the time I was producing this video I was also studying for my amateur radio examinations whilst also working for J21, the Oldham and Rochdale local authority construction initiative, helping local people in to jobs on Oldham and Rochdale.

The building incorporates Rochdale Metropolitan Borough Council civic offices and customer service centre, Rochdale Central Library as well as conference facilities for community use, and office space for third parties. The time-lapsed images were taken from the top of the old municipal office, known locally as The Black Box, which was then demolished in 2014.

You will be able to see in the video that the main structure of the building was constructed using slip form technology. Slip form is a method of construction in which concrete is poured into the top of a continuously moving formwork. You will see in the video that concrete, pumped under high pressure, is dispensed into the slip form moving formwork through long articulated metal tubes. This facilitates rapid and economic construction. However, where slip form technology is to be used, the design must feature regular vertical elements. The primary structural strength of Number One Riverside is achieved through the two slip form towers which are subsequently surrounded by office space made from concrete deck floors to the point where the two towers are barely visible. Number One Riverside featured in the Architect, the journal of the American Institute of Architects in February 2017.

A final note: at 41 seconds in, you might notice a big fat pigeon jumps in front of the camera in its bid for stardom!

20-meter band frequencies

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20-meter band frequencies

This is my interpretation of the 20-meter band frequencies. I thought this would be of interest to readers. Other than the military, amateur radio operators are the only users of the radio spectrum that are permitted to change frequency. This means that as licensed amateur radio operators, we do not have to restrict ourselves to stipulated channels. Having said that, the 20-meter band covers a wide range of frequencies and many applications for amateur radio in the band involve automated equipment such as repeaters, satellites, and beacons. For these reasons it has become general practice to specify frequencies as if they were channels.

Continue reading “20-meter band frequencies”

70-centimeter band frequencies

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70-centimeter band frequencies.

This is my interpretation of the 70-centimeter band frequencies. I thought this would be of interest to readers. Other than the military, amateur radio operators are the only users of the radio spectrum that are permitted to change frequency. This means that as licensed amateur radio operators, we do not have to restrict ourselves to stipulated channels. Having said that, the 70-centimeter band covers a wide range of frequencies and many applications for amateur radio in the band involve automated equipment such as repeaters, satellites, and beacons. For these reasons it has become general practice to specify frequencies as if they were channels.

Continue reading “70-centimeter band frequencies”