[AMRadio] Cart and horse, chicken and egg, etc.

manualman at juno.com manualman at juno.com
Thu Oct 15 16:23:13 EDT 2015

My comments below preceded by  ***:

On Thu, 15 Oct 2015 14:46:00 -0500 "Donald Chester" <k4kyv at charter.net>
>The story I heard is that a small but vocal core of QST readers were
constantly whinging and whining to the ARRL that the articles in QST were
"too technical", so sometime about 1980, they      
>created this new publication, called QEX, that costs extra even if you
are already a paid  member, where they now pigeon-hole the in-depth
technical articles, leaving QST to be filled with "human >interest" and
other fluff and drivel.  Besides the J-pole antenna, you might find
construction articles on the order of how to build a novelty
one-transistor QRP CW transmitter in a cat-food or Altoid 
>tin, or else an LED-powered "On The Air" sign, but very  few useful
construction articles unless they have something to do with incorporating
a computer into your station.

*** By 1980, amateur radio interests were becoming more varied from the
traditional AM, CW, SSB operation. Since highly technical and
construction articles generally appeal to lesser amounts of members and
generally require more pages, which can add substantial printing and
material costs to the magazine, I believe is was of an economical
decision to move the highly technical/construction articles to a separate

>The people who REALLY got ripped off on that deal are those who, back
when they first started the program in the 1960s as I recall, took out
Life Membership with the understanding that they would >have access to
good technical and construction articles for  the rest of their life, and
then ended up having to take out an additional subscription to another
publication to maintain access to them.

*** Never heard of read of that understanding.
>As for  the physical size, nearly all other magazines went to that size
about the same time QST did.  I have never heard any real explanation
why, or what was supposed to be the advantage of the >larger size. Maybe
the Post Office gave a better bulk rate to the standard size.
*** I believe you are correct. USPS made changes to their bulk magazine
size rates plus paper manufacturers were increasing costs for that size
type of paper, and I believe some of the newer printing machines weren't
designed and/or additional cost setup for the mass printing of the
smaller paper size. It was an economical descision.

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