[AMRadio] Your recent comments on AM (Tannehill)

Bob Bruhns bbruhns at erols.com
Thu Jan 12 15:48:28 EST 2006

It might be a better idea to simply reply to the FCC on
rulemaking proposals. This is making it a personal

   Bacon, WA3WDR

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Ben Dover" <quixote2 at ix.netcom.com>
To: <amradio at mailman.qth.net>
Sent: Thursday, January 12, 2006 3:25 PM
Subject: [AMRadio] Your recent comments on AM

> >Date: Thu, 12 Jan 2006 13:55:50 -0600
> >To: <w7rt at arrl.net>
> >From: Ben Dover <quixote2 at ix.netcom.com>
> >Subject: Your recent comments on AM (Tannehill)
> >
> >Greetings.
> >
> >By this time you've no doubt gotten your E-mail
boxes well and truly
> >filled with howls of outrage from AM operators
because of your comments.
> >If not, consider this to be the FIRST of the coming
> >
> >I'll address said comments one point at a time;
interestingly, starting
> >with the LAST:
> >
> >
> >>> Richard L. Tannehill P.E. - W7RT
> >
> >ARRL Life Member
> >(45-years amateur licensed)<<
> >
> >
> >
> >First off...  your four plus decades as a licensee
don't impress
> >me in the least; I've held an EXTRA for four plus
decades (and
> >remember that back then you had to hold a General,
> >or the then defunct/ grandfathered Advanced for a
> >TWO YEARS before you could even APPLY for an Extra).
> >
> >Next...  holding the license of Professional
Engineer doesn't
> >impress me either. I've known a number of PEs over
the years,
> >and at one time toyed with the idea of apply for one
> >Most PEs are level headed, competent engineering
types, but
> >in my line of work (broadcasting) I've ALSO run into
a number
> >of them who got the license by the means of weekend
"cram courses"
> >taken so that the PE behind thier names would
hopefully make
> >them more convincing as salesmen of broadcasting
equipment. A lot
> >of these so-called "engineers" quite frankly didn't
know which
> >end of the hot soldering iron you're supposed to
grab until they
> >got a PRACTICAL lesson on that subject!
> >
> >Attempting to bolster one's credibility and personal
prestige by
> >waving irrelevant certification around is, to say
the least, pompous
> >and arrogant. It's common practice among broadcast
> >to do so. The Society of Broadcast Engineers, among
others, has it's
> >own program of ego boosting "certification" tests,
and the wild
> >proliferation of letters routinely placed behind
names in E-mails and
> >on business cards is tiresome, at best. To point it
out, a colleague
> >of mine has taken to adding ONLY the letters CMM
behind his name
> >in E-mails regarding engineering subjects. When
someone bites and asks
> >what the hell a "CMM" is, he tells them... Certified
Motorcycle Mechanic,
> >a certificate (which he DOES INDEED hold), and which
is just as relevant
> >to the subject at hand as the certifications
everyone ELSE is tossing
> >around with such gay abandon.
> >
> >
> >>>The League claims that their plan does not favor
one mode over
> >another. Not true. It favors AM-DSB operators. It
would allow for
> >9 KHz AM modulation, in bands which otherwise are
limited to 3.5 KHz.
> >These include the lower HF bands, which are quite
crowded at times.<<
> >
> >If you'll think back a little over your 45 years of
hamming, you'll
> >recall that from the beginning of that period the #1
complaint of
> >EVERYONE has been "the bands are too crowded...
> >be done!". Digging a little bit deeper in old issues
of QST, you'll
> >find that Hiram Percy Maxim himself, writing as
T.O.M. (The Old Man),
> >was complaining that the bands were too crowded
> >
> >The defnition of "too crowded" seems to be "I can't
get on the frequency
> >that I want whenever I want to do it, because some
*^%&$%$@ is already
> >there!". I'm sure you'll agree that this definition
is specious at best.
> >
> >Once again, turning to your PERSONAL experience,
you'll no doubt recall
> >the incredibly vicious on the air battles between
the then dominant AM
> >operators and the newfangled "Slop Buckets". I can
sure as hell remember
> >them...   wall to wall deliberate QRM, and name
calling that fell just
> >short of open obscenities (unlike today, hams back
then DID respect that
> >particular part of the regulations).
> >
> >Going back a bit farther... there was the long
standing animosity between
> >CW operators and AM people; there was simmering
resentment from the CW camp
> >when a phone band was added to 40 meters.
> >
> >Behind both of these battles was the usually bogus
claim that spectrum
> >space was being wasted.
> >
> >That argument is no more valid in the current case
as it was in the past.
> >Amateur radio isn't about cramming the ultimate
signal capacity into the
> >given bandwidth...  it's about ENJOYING yourself,
and having some flex in
> >the rules to experiment.
> >
> >
> >>> The solution is simply to restrict AM-DSB to
above 28.5 MHz. (10 meters
> >& above) <<
> >
> >Actually, a BETTER solution would be to restrict ALL
digital modes to 10
> >meters and above, and for some solid engineering
reasons. MANY digital
> >modes are essentially PULSE transmissions, and as
anyone who has dealt with
> >pulse knows the generation of spurious, out of band
products is INEVITABLE.
> >Just ask any broadcaster who is wrestling with an
addition of the IBOC system
> >about that one... which points out something else.
Newer modulation schemes,
> >in order to work at all, usually DEMAND inherently
wider spectrum slices.
> Were
> >that not the case, my employer would not be spending
tens of thousands of
> >dollars for new antenna systems and tower crew costs
to install them.
> >
> >Given the wildly variable levels of amateur
expertise, plus a "why should I
> >give a damn as long as MY system works" attitude,
sending the more modern
> >modes of transmission to the Siberia of VHF / UHF
makes a whole lot MORE
> >sense.
> >
> >
> >>> Amateurs and the league have been upset in the
past over wide-SSB
> >modulation, meant to improve audio quality. AM is no
different from
> >this. <<
> >
> >This is your only valid point, IMHO. Narrow minded
amateurs who whine
> >"the bands are too crowded", and an ARRL that is
usually for sale to the
> >highest bidding equipment manufacturer should NOT
have opposed high
> >quality SSB transmission by a few forward thinking
> >
> >
> >>> It is an old modulation that adds nothing to
advancing the technological
> >art, and should be confined to bands where there is
ample spectrum
> >available. <<
> >
> >Yes, amplitude modulation IS an old modulation
scheme, which does little to
> >advance the technology. But...  making that argument
shows that you haven't
> >been looking at the big picture over the years.
> >
> >The last time that individual innnovators advanced
technology was before
> >WW1. Lee Deforest went BROKE, numerous times, by
clinging to the concept of
> >independent inventors being the main driving force
in the technological
> >advancement of this country. These days, innovation
comes from INDUSTRIAL,
> >
> >Can you imagine what the result would have been had
an individual inventor
> >come to General Leslie Groves and said "I have this
GREAT idea for a weapon.
> >You smack two hunks of uranium together and there's
a hell of an explosion.
> >Just give me a few billion dollars and we can get
started building it"?
> >
> >Groves would have had the MPs toss this guy out on
his ass, and then chewed
> >a few butts for even allowing such NUTS in the front
door to bother him!
> >
> >These days, sad to say, hams aren't even on the
front lines of technological
> >advancement anymore. Nowadays, we don't even have
the Defense Department as a
> >watchdog over our spectrum anymore...  the 220 MHz
ham band used to be under
> >DoD protection because it was spectrum that they
could expand into in time
> >of war and severe need for spectrum.
> >
> >Guess what? UPS trucks are on 220 now!
> >
> >I've heard from DoD folks that the general attitude
there is to regard hams
> >as IRRELEVANT. We simply don't fit into thier
planning or consideration any
> >more, and we haven't for at least a decade...  just
look at the current state
> >of the MARS program if you need proof of the truth
of that statement.
> >
> >
> >I'm sure that on this we'll just have to "agree to
disagree", but I found it
> >to be quite ungenerous to post your comments simply
because YOU aren't an
> >AM operator.
> >
> >AM has a LONG tradition as a viable and useful mode
of emission in MANY radio
> >service, not just on the ham bands. To exile it to
VHF at this point in
> history
> >is a ridiculous proposal, IMHO.
> >
> >
> >73's,
> >
> >Tom Adams, W9LBB
> >
> >
> >
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