In the Philippines the NTC (National Telecommunications Council) is the body that grants you the priveledge to operate as a radio-amateur.
Depending on the class of licence which are roughly
- VHF Only
- Limited HF
- More Bands, Power 500w
- More Bands
- More Power
- Nicer callsign
As I already hold a UK, HK, Oman and South African Class 'A' licence I was rather hoping I could just be given priveledges... But as this has to be a two-way street, and I suspect UK, Oman etc do not return the favour I needed to take an exam.
Yes, back to Circuits, Propogation and some other fun stuff that I had forgotten about. So Exam plus a Morse test....
Did I say 5 WPM morse test... Umm, I have never learnt morse at 5 wpm (words per minute) (I started at 12 WPM with bigger gaps in between letters: The Koch method), I can send/receive at 20-24 wpm on a good day....
Words per minute ... This is the speed at which someone can send morse code. Sending is easier than receiving, but sending nice morse still requires time, practice and patience.
The official word that sets the speed is the word PARIS, if you can send this word 5 times in a minute, you are sending at 5 words per minute.
A bit of revision, 90% same as the other collection of countries where I have been licenced, and 10% new/different take.
I passed first time, all 3 modules I was required to sit.
After the theory, we had a 10 minute break, and then we sat down for the test. The test format is 5 groups of 5 ENGLISH words, five times...
On your test paper write something like this
----- ----- ----- ----- ----- AA ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- AA ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- AA ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- AA ----- ----- ----- ----- ----- AA
Each set of ----- will be a word like zorro, But these words will not make sense, or make a sentance.
place queen misty doggy plant
At the end of each line there will be an 'AA' transmitted.
I failed (I later found out by only one or two letters) - I just could not adjust to the speed of the morse.... It was 100% my problem, and so I decided to do some homework, and to do some practising.
I wrote a nice and simple python module, that generates tests which are as close to the real test as I can make.
My NTC Morse Simulator
If you are a programmer, computer person then you can download this to a laptop/desktop (sorry no smart phones). The code is available from https://github.com/timseed/NTCCW.git
I have generated 20 tests, they are available as a wav file (so you can play them on anything).
When you listen to the Exam, please write down using a pen/paper (or computer) - and then you can check your answers with the words I sent.
This is the only magic way that you will become proficient at morse.
I personally would suggest you listen to 12 wpm
NTC Test Files
For more tests please go to "Morse Test 2".