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Joel Gambino

OK. Well that worked. I guess it doesn’t like me cut and pasting. Bummer.

Anyway here is the rest of the reply:

2) HF refers to High Frequency. The amateur radio spectrum has frequency bands from 135.7 kHz to 1.3 GHz. See the band chart linked above to better understand the frequency spectrum.

HF, Very High Frequency (VHF), Ultra High Frequency (UHF), Medium Frequency (MF) all refer to various frequency groups that have similar propagation characteristics. VHF and UHF (28 MHz and above) are basically “line of sight” bands. As a Technician, you would have privileges on these bands. These bands are limited to local communications. Maybe 20-30 miles radio to radio or “simplex” or up to 100 miles or more through a repeater.

The fun, for me anyway, is with the HF bands (3.5 MHz to 25 MHz). These bands bounce of the Ionosphere and, depending on atmospheric conditions, can get you around the world. I regularly talk to Europe and South America and have made contacts as far as Siberia with a 100 watt transceiver and a homemade wire antenna. You’ll need a General class license to access these bands. It’s a little more involved, but not too bad to pass the test. The online resources are a big help in preparing for the test. If you want to reliably be able to make contacts from remote locations where you don’t have cell service and can’t get out with VHF or UHF, you’ll need access to the HF bands and therefore a General class or above license.

I hope I have answered your questions. Let me know if you would like any clarification or if I have spawned additional questions.