Some of you might remember I started down the path to get a Full UK license a few months back.
Unfortunately the USA isn’t a CEPT member I therefore wasn’t eligible for a reciprocal UK Full license (or even a Foundation). For reasons that seemed very sound at the start of the year but more questionable as I progressed I decided to sit the entire UK exam suite.
I thought the Full/Advanced exam wasn’t particularly easy and infact thought it hard in some ways so much so I wasn’t entirely sure how I fared after the 120 minutes and 62 questions.
Well, miracles do happen and now it’s time to leave behind slashes, strokes, vagules and whatever in my M/W6PNG and apply for my first UK callsign ever!
Now that’s nice, I’ve never seen one of those before - when I passed my exam umpty years ago I just got a flimsy little strip of yellow paper (and I’ve still got it!) Congratulations, you are twice a ham!
I’m surprised that you couldn’t apply for a reciprocal licence under CEPT 61-02 but as you say the US is not a full member of CEPT and perhaps unless you were going to live permanently in the UK, it wouldn’t apply.
In any case, you can now have radio holidays longer than 3 months (the limit on the method you’ve been using with the M/) and now will have a fresh new UK call sign. If you are given any choice - see if you can get an M5 or a released/available “G” callsign. It seems OFCom are open to such requests nowadays.
Thanks Ed and in my excitement i’ve already wandered around the Ofcom site and selected M0SNA as I thought this might be a little easier in CW (my next goal is to become a CW activator and chaser) than M0YPG which I thought had a nice twist for this Anglo American.
A G style would have been nice given the nostalgia associated with it.
Things like DDL (dah-di-dit dah-di-dit di-dah-di-dit) where the chars are the same then similar with an extra bita bit sound good. But SNA (di-di-dit dah-dit di-dah) sounds OK. The M(M)0 bit is the rubbish part of modern calls in the UK.
Well done. Didn’t think you’d fail by the way with your background and the people running the courses etc.!
Congratulations Paul, for someone who has your previous experience as a US Amateur Extra, it must have required some persistence and dedication coming from W6 land to have to endure all of the process to obtain a full UK license. Anyhow I would be pleased to buy you a pint or even a dram to celebrate perhaps in the Salmon Inn or some other local establishment when I am there. Maybe find SNA on BT sometime?
Many congratulations Paul. I look forward to working you with the new call in due course. In addition to the comments already made in relation to its CW character, to my aesthetic orientated mind, M0SNA also looks good.
Catch up with you soon to set up the joint activation we talked about.
If you’re ever in this neck of the woods, you might like to try the German Advanced Exam, with 119 questions (51 on technical, 34 on operating and 34 on the law as pertains to ham radio), to be done in 3 1/2 hours. A 73.5% minimum in each of the three sections gets you a pass.
Mike Jones, the ex-YOTA RSGB rep, has just got an M5 callsign a couple of weeks back, but that could be as he used the HAREC compatible South African full exam pass not a UK one, he took the exam at YOTA in South Africa to apply for it. Not sure whether that was the reason or he just got lucky with the person in Ofcom that he asked…
If correct, that is quite remarkable! M5 has never been used as a prefix for reciprocal licences in the UK. At one time - many years ago - G5xxx calls were allocated for reciprocal licences.
M5xxx calls were called Class AB licences. For a few years, in the late 1990s and very early 2000s, Class AB licences were issued to people who had passed the Full RAE and a 5 wpm Morse test. They had the same privileges as a Full licence, but a power limit of 100 watts instead of 400 watts. They were discontinued when the Morse requirement was removed completely in the UK. The couple of hundred licensees with M5xxx callsigns were allowed to keep them, but no new ones were issued.
So why an M5xxx callsign has suddenly been issued to someone now is a mystery. Of course, up to 26 M5 callsigns with a single letter suffix are available as Short Contest Calls.
Hi Walt - that’s exactly my thinking (but I have no confirmation), that the M5 three letter that was originally for the 5wpm A/B licence “may” now be being used as the G5 three letters used to be - for a full time licence issued for someone living in the UK based on a qualification from another coutry (in todays terms a non-CEPT country).
Then again - it could just be that Mike asked the right person at the right time and got his request, and he may have been issued M5PMJ based on a UK Full licence exam pass as well.