License Tests/VE Session

Would you like to become a HAM?

Cherryville Repeater Association II (CRA) – Hunterdon County’s amateur radio club – is a part of emergency management.  It trains and draws upon licensed amateur radio operators to assist in times of emergencies and to help with community events.  But mostly, it is a group of folks with a common interest helping one another to learn and enjoy two-way radio technology.

Periodically, several times per year, CRA offers amateur radio licensing examinations (commonly referred to as VE sessions.  VE = volunteer examiner).  Leading up to each VE session, we offer several radio training/review sessions in the form of Q&A.  Our training is in the form of self-directed study in conjunction with opportunities to get questions you might have about concepts and lore related to radio technology and operation answered by experienced HAMs and electronics professionals.  Topics covered include radio technology, electronics circuitry and concepts, signal propagation, and FCC rules and regulations, to name a few – all relevant to the questions that will appear on the examinations. 

There are three levels of licensing classification: Technician (entry level, plus two advanced levels) General and Amateur Extra, each requiring greater technical mastery and conferring greater operating privileges.  We offer all three. 

We recommend Gordon West’s (WB6NOA) series of study guides.  He offers three books – one each for Technician class, General class and Amateur Extra class.  His books present the full question pool with answers, along with technical explanations of the material covered in the questions.  As the question pools are updated every four years, be sure to purchase the correct edition covering the date of the exam you are preparing for.  The current Technician class question pool will remain valid until June 30, 2026; the new General class question pool will remain valid until June 30, 2027; and the current  Amateur Extra class question pool will remain valid until June 30, 2024.  (If you are interested in upgrading to Amateur Extra class but will not be ready to take the exam until after June 30, 2024, be sure to study using the new Amateur Extra question pool which will be valid starting July 1, 2024.)

The full question pools with answers are also available from the ARRL website as free downloads.  Here is the link:   https://www.arrl.org/question-pools  The examinations for each licensing class typically draw a sample of 35 to 50 questions from each of these question pools.

Interactive practice exams are available at this link:   https://hamstudy.org/ 

If you do not already have one, you will need to apply for and receive an FCC Registration Number (FRN) from the FCC before you come for the examination.  This link will take you to an FCC instructional video that explains the process:         https://www.fcc.gov/rofrn

For those upgrading or renewing, if you already have an FRN, but that predates FCC CORES and have not yet set up an FCC CORES account, you will need to do so in order to upgrade or renew.  This link will take you to an instruction explaining that process:         https://www.fcc.gov/cores

Becoming a licensed amateur radio operator is an excellent opportunity to develop good radio communication skills that may be applied to service in the community.  For many of us, it has turned out to be a very interesting and rewarding hobby as well.

                                                      Our next scheduled VE session

CRA will be administering our next amateur radio licensing examination (VE session) at our HamFest, which will be held on Saturday, March 9, 2024 at North Hunterdon High School, 1445 NJ-Rt. 31, Annandale NJ.  The VE session at the HamFest will begin at 9:30am.  We offer all three elements – Tech, General and Extra.  Pre-registration is not required, however if you are planning to participate, an RSVP would be appreciated.

CRA administers additional VE sessions several times throughout the year.  We typically hold several Q&A style training sessions on several consecutive weekends prior to the exam.  –  date, times and location of those future sessions to be determined.

If you are interested, please contact gknoedl@hotmail.com for further information and to register.  If you provide your contact information we will notify you when future sessions are scheduled.