My family sure was nice to me on my birthday this past Wednesday! One of the gifts I received was something I’ve wanted, but I couldn’t bring myself to cough up the cash for it: the 2012 edition of The ARRL Handbook for Radio Communications, graciously given to me by my daughter. Since the most recent copy on my shelves was several decades old, I was glad to get my hands on it.
I can see why this is a required textbook for the classes my friend Scott has been taking. He is a Signalman with BNSF Railway and periodically travels to Kansas City for training (no pun intended). The ARRL Handbook is a great resource for more than just ham radio operators. It is well-written and comprehensive — so comprehensive that I felt like an ignoramus as I paged through it on my birthday! I may have my Amateur Extra Class, but now I see more clearly than ever how little I really know.
But don’t let that scare you away from this book, Technicians. There’s still plenty in this book that you will find accessible, and anyhow we’re never going to learn if we don’t push ourselves.
One thing that isn’t covered in this book is the topic of operating procedures. But I can see why this topic has been relegated to a book of its own. The ARRL Handbook is quite a hefty tome as it is.
As with most of the ARRL library, you’ll find this book cheaper over at Amazon.