[AMRadio] RE: Eliminate AM!

Donald Chester k4kyv at hotmail.com
Tue Sep 20 19:49:44 EDT 2005

>...The SSBers complain about bandwidth and carriers of the AM stations and 
>the AMers complain about the Quack Quack
>from SSB.  This may never ever be resolved as long as we are both trying to 
>compete for the same space on the bands....We take up a very small 
>percentage of the total available bandwidth and we actively enjoy and 
>preserve the heritage and rich history of the hobby.
>There is really room for all of us! ...

>73,  Jack, W9GT

Something that makes the situation worse is the present subband structure.  
During primetime evening hours, especially on winter weekends, the 75m phone 
band may be jam packed with signals to the point that it is difficult to  
find a frequency clear enough to fire up, whether on AM or SSB.  Of course, 
in amateur radio no-one is guaranteed a clear channel, and a certain amount 
of frequency overlap is to be expected under crowded condx.

But at the same time, try tuning down below 3700 kc/s.  Most likely, unless 
there is a major CW contest going on, there will be vast expanses of 
unoccupied frequency spectrum.  The CW activity is usually concentrated at 
the bottom end of the band, with a few clusters up past 3600 with a lot of 
empty space in between.  There are usually a few clusters of RTTY and other 
"digital" modes scattered above 3600, again with vast empty spaces in 

If we got rid of the outdated subband system that ham radio is saddled with 
here in the US, amateurs could work out voluntary band plans to make for 
more efficient use of the spectrum we do have.  If there is still a need to 
maintain a CW-only subband mandated by the FCC, it could be cut back to 
3500-3550 and more than accomodate the amount of CW that is heard on 80m 
these days, even in midwinter.

The ARRL bandwidth proposal would expand the present phone band down by only 
an additional 25 kc/s.

The present day phone band congestion is largely artificial, due to subband 

Most other countries in the world, including Canada, have abandoned subbands 
years ago, and operate entirely on the basis of voluntary band plans.

160m in this country has no subbands, and the band works just fine.

Even though I am Extra class (since 1963), I wouldn't mind seeing all 
subbands eliminated, both by emission mode and licence class.  I do think we 
should have kept the 5/13/20 wpm code tests, but that's the subject of 
another topic altogether.


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