No-Nonsense Study Guides

Get the latest Tech study guide!

The question pool for the Tech test changes on July 1, 2014. My No-Nonsense Technician Class License Study Guide has been updated to reflect the changes in the question pool. Make sure that  you get the latest and greatest!

I just got received a nice donation from Sam, W5KF. He writes, “Thanks for making the study guides available. Our club is making plans for some focused one-day classes.”

The No-Nonsense Technician-Class License Study Guide (for tests after July 1, 2014)

The No-Nonsense General-Class License Study Guide

The No-Nonsense Extra Class License Study Guide

In 2005, I was cooling my heels at the public-information table at our club’s Field Day site, when up walked Bruce, W8BBS. In his hand, he had a copy of his Tech license exam study guide. What he had done was take each question in the question pool, reworded them as statements, and then reorganized them into paragraphs, adding text where appropriate to tie it all together and help it read more like a book.

We talked about how several folks had successfully used the study guide to get their licenses and how much they seemed to like his approach. Then, we talked about how he might get the word out so that more people could use his study guide. After quickly paging through the study guide, I volunteered to post it on our club’s website.

In 2006, Bruce was unable to update his study guide, so he gave me permission to to do it. That version was the first issue of the No-Nonsense, Technician-Class Study Guide. In 2007, I produced the first No-Nonsense General Class Study Guide.

Last December, I produced an ePub version of the Tech study guide. It’s now available for both the Amazon Kindle and the Barnes&Noble Nook. I planned to also produce  iPhone and iPad versions, but I can’t seem to get Apple to straighten out my iTunes developer account. :( You can certainly purchase the Kindle version, though, and read it on the iPhone or iPad with the Kindle app.

In 2011, I updated the No-Nonsense, General-Class Study Guide. This study guide is also available as a free PDF, Kindle e-book, Nook e-book, and print version.

Thanks to everyone who’s supported me in this. And, for everyone who’s asked me if I’m going to do an Extra Class study guide, let me just say look for it next year when they upgrade the question pool.


  1. Dan,

    As promised, last week I handed out your Tech Study Guide to the 20 students in my Amateur Radio elective class. I am taking the class in a self-study direction with “overview” by me. With quizzes to keep them honest, I hope to cover the basics pretty quickly, thus allowing the students plenty of time to get into hands-on electronics.

    I will be using “100-in-1″ Science kits to allow the students to build basic circuits and discover how components work. Afterward, we will hopefully move toward breadboarding circuits. We’ll see how far we get…

    As for learning electronic theory, I found that the visuals and info. from the “Electronics” section at seem to be pretty good.

    I will also be using your General Study Guide, so I’ll let you know if I find any typos or portions in either of the Guides that seem to confuse teenagers. Again, thanks for taking the time to produce materials for the next generation.

    By the way, I’m passing out Morse Code CDs tomorrow. Some of the kids are psyched to learn Code. Maybe we can arrange a “final” with my students having to work you using CW and obtain some information (e.g. favorite color, name of pet, etc..).

    73 from Austin, Texas.

    Ronny, KC5EES

  2. Hi, Ronny.

    Very cool. I’m up for working your students. I think I’ll have to get my 20m vertical back up in the air first, but that shouldn’t be a problem.

    73, Dan

  3. Shawn KB8UDE says:

    Loved the General guide. Got my upgrade this summer using it. Well, mostly. Only read the first few chapters and did the rest of the test with common sense and experience. I will definitely need the guide for my Extra though, so get writing!

  4. Dan KB6NU says:

    Thanks for your comments, Shawn. Unfortunately, I don’t think there will be a No Nonsense Guide for the Extra Class license examination. There are just too many questions, and I just don’t have enough time to devote to it. The only way it might be possible is if I could enlist the help of some other folks to write some of the sections. Then, i could edit them and put it all together.

    Hmmmmmm. The more I think about this, the more I like the idea. Anyone want to volunteer??

    btw, I checked out your your picture on QRZ.Com. What a great looking station!

    • Would recommend asking WA4MOE if he would like to help. His email is Though he might be interested. If you do contact him, tell him his grandson recommended it. He is on vacation right now, so it will be a few weeks before he responds

      -Isaiah (a Future Ham)

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Despite what I said back in 2008, I do indeed have an Extra Class study guide now. See above.

  5. Jack KZ3Z says:

    Shawn KB8UDE showed me your guide, I used it to help teach a class of Boy Scouts. Three of them got licensed, and I’m starting another class next week with about ten people this time, even going to have three parents taking it. Two of the new Scout Techs want to upgrade to General when the others try for Tech so they can stay ahead of their buddies.

  6. Dan KB6NU says:

    That’s great. Thanks for the feedback. Tell the scouts to download the General Class Study Guide when they get started on that.

  7. Dan KB6NU says:

    Hi, Jack–

    Thanks for the great feedback on my study guide. fyi, it’s going to be available very soon in a printed version. The cost will be $12, plus shipping. If you think you might be interested in this, let me know, and I’ll e-mail you when it’s ready. If not, feel free to continue to use the free version on my website.

    73, Dan

  8. Jon KG4SVF (soon N0SVD) says:


    Your study guides seem to have garnered much praise. I’m starting to study for my General (so that a friend and I can study for Extra this summer while she’s off from school). I might be up for working on a rephrased-type guide such as this for Extra – we’ll see how it goes. Let me pass my General first and I’ll let you know :)

    Hopefully sometime in the next month, I’ll go /AG.

    73, Jon

  9. Ed Culbertson says:

    Thanks for the general study guide. Got it done on 6/7/08!!

  10. Dan KB6NU says:

    Excellent. Congratulations!

  11. Dan

    I would like your permission to use your “The No-Nonsense, Technician Class License study Guide” for an upcoming class this November. It looks great, just what I was looking for. I’m not sure how many people we will be having but if I could print about 10 copies at my office that would be great.

    The PDF file says to get permission and the WEB page says to just print and use it, just don’t want to step on any toes.

    I used to use the Now Your Talking book with the teaching manual, it was ok after I rewrote a good piece of the teaching manual to speed things up. I have not taught a class in 2 years and my stuff does not match there new book, so now would be a great time to change.

    Thanks again, this will save me a ton time.

    Jay Jagerson
    7620 158th Ave NW
    Ramsey, Mn 55303

  12. Dan KB6NU says:

    Of course you have my permission. As long as you’re not charging for the class, you’re free to use it.

  13. Thanks Dan

    We we give it a Whirl.

    And nope, we are not charging for the class, never have and never will.

    I’m writing up the paper work and lesson plans now, if anybody wants a look at them I would be more than happy to share when I get done.

    Thanks again,


  14. Dan,
    Thanks for all your hard work in making these 2 study guides. I just passed my Tech test a couple days ago. Not sure I could have done it without your guide. I decided to get into the Amateur radio hobby only a few days before.

    I am now studying for the General test and I am using your guide once again.


  15. Hi Dan,

    We recently held a One-Day Tech Class and gave each of the students a copy of your manual. This was our first “experiment” with this format.

    Had about 15 students signed up for the course, and sent them your manual. Several mentioned they weren’t ready and a few others didn’t show, but we ended up with 7 people at the “review” session. We went over a few of the chapters, when the students “revolted”! They wanted to skip the review and go straight to the test! So, we obliged and gave them their exams … and 6 of them passed on the first try – one aced it and none of the others missed more than 2 or 3 questions! One took another shot, and missed 4 his second go, so he passed as well!

    They stayed around after testing, and we had a great “Question and Answer” session with them!

    I had my doubts how well they’d be able to do with just that simple Tech Guide, but they erased those doubts after seeing them do as well as they did! Some of them expressed interest in getting their General license, so we provided them with that manual.

    I’ve got 10 people or so lined up (and may pick up a few others at a CERT class this week) to go through the process again in January! We’ll probably skip the review, and go straight to the testing … and do another “Q & A” session after the testing.

    Thanks for putting this together and offering it up for folks to use.

    Ron, WD4AHZ

  16. That’s interesting, Ron. I hadn’t thought about asking them if they’d like to skip the class entirely. We have had some bail at the first break and then come back later to take the test, though.

  17. The thing the folks mentioned to us, was that they didn’t want us to fill their head with more “stuff”! They already knew the material (we could tell since they knew all the review answers as far as we went), and just wanted to take the test. I guess the bottom line is, if someone wants it and studies hard enough, they CAN pass the test. They were all pleased with the material and very appreciative of the help and support we gave them along the way.

    Ron, WD4AHZ

  18. I like the idea of “not filling their heads with too much stuff.” :) Most of them will, at some point, want to know some of that stuff, but they can learn it when they need to, not when we think they need to.

  19. Robert Fridell says:

    I would like to thank you for the selfstudy guide that I downloaded…Thanks.

    I used it to study and passed the tech. class test on Friday. The VE’s shoke my hand and stated it sure was nice to find someone that was completely prepared to take the test…I aced it..

    They asked me to take the Gen. test, but I’m not ready yet..I’m reading your Gen. guide and don’t expect any problems in passing the test next month.

    Thanks again..I’ll be setting up shop soon, Bobby

  20. Hey, welcome to ham radio, Bobby. I’m glad I could help. Let us know what your callsign is when you get it, and maybe we can have a QSO sometime.

  21. Jacob KC2UFP says:

    I just used the General Class Study Guide (couldn’t get the ARRL Manual in time) to study for my General Exam. Prior to this, I had tried studying by taking the practice tests, and while they helped, when I went and took the test, I failed (22/35) when I went for the exam. What happened is I was memorizing the WRONG answers I kept on selecting when I took the test, lol. Well, I printed out KB6NU’s General Class No-Nonsense Study Guide at the recommendation of a fellow JSARS club member (who passed his exam the month before with 31/35) and re-took the test. I passed confidently with 32/35 (91.7%)! Thanks Dan, and we now have the two guides borrowed (the ones we printed) to two more members who took the test the same day I did and failed, I’ll update later with their results. Me and John (who recommended the booklet to me) are confident they’ll pass easily.

    Thanks for the study guide, and the only comment/criticism we have is … WHEN WILL THERE BE AN EXTRA GUIDE?

    Thanks again, and 73’s de KC2UFP!

  22. Dan, I haven’t taken the exams yet but ty for the study guide!!! As a computer tech I have a couple suggestions you might take or leave as suits you. First I didn’t find your site and guides when googling at all, it wasn’t until I posted on a newsgroup that a ham referred me to this page. You might consider looking into search engine optimization so more people can find this information.

    Also, you might consider converting these guides into wiki’s. I’m not sure off hand what they use for the wikibooks project but you could load it onto your webserver or just publish them as wikibooks. This way people can make corrections (I’ve noticed a number of minor errors like missing ‘it’ ‘a’ and other connector words that spellcheck doesn’t catch) and even expand on the information. You could even start a wikibook for the extra class guide, start an outline and just work on it bit by bit as you get a chance and let others fill in as well. Maybe put the extra questions the sections of the outline need to answer under the section so people know what information HAS to be there.

    With a wiki anyone can edit it as easily as they can post right here but there is a history of revisions so you can always selectively revert back anything that isn’t correct or if some mean spirited vandal comes along. Wikibooks have the advantage of being indexable by google (so you get search credit for all that content) or if you go with the wikibooks project you just credit your own site in the books and you’ll get a serious pagerank boost from being linked by wikipedia! Last but not least they can be printed.

    Anyway thanks for the guides, much appreciated!

  23. Dan KB6NU says:

    Thanks for the comments. What terms were you using to search for the study guides? I just Googled “tech class study guide” and “amateur radio tech study guide.” I ranked #5 for the first term, #1 for the second term.

    As for the wiki, I don’t think that I’ll be doing that. The biggest reason for that is that it would be yet another website to maintain, and I just don’t have the time to do that. If you could e-mail me or print out and snail mail me the errors you found, I would be happy to make the corrections to the PDF.

    Thanks, Dan

  24. Jon Slough KB9ATR says:

    The St Louis and Suburban (SLSCR) radio club held another weekend Cram Course review session that finished on Sunday. For the first time we had an Extra class course. Both participants in the Extra Class course passed, one with a perfect score!

    The extra class was in four sessions, not three like we usually have for Tech and General, because of the larger question pool. We also asked that the participants bring TWO results of on-line test that they had to have at least a 60% to take the course.

    The Tech and General Study Guide have been a great help to several of our new licensees as the other training material from other sources just did not make sense to them. Your help them pass with flying colors.

    Now for a question, when are you going to have an Extra Study Guide?

  25. Dan KB6NU says:

    Congratulations on the excellent results.

    We’ve actually started on the Extra Class Study Guide. Go to and click on “Extra Class Study Guide.” I’d love it if you could contribute a section or two.

  26. Dan, I noticed that your latest study guides have copyright notices, with the following statement on them:

    “All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, recording or otherwise, without the prior written permission of the author.”

    I like to print these out for use in some classes, as well as post them on a club website for download. Is this ok to do?


  27. Dan KB6NU says:

    Hi, John–
    Please feel free to print as many copies as you need, BUT I request that you not put it on your website. The main reason for this is that from time to time someone points out an error or a typo, which I correct and then put the corrected version on my website. If you link to my website, rather than simply posting the current version on your website, then they will always get the latest and greatest.

  28. I want to say THANK YOU for your no nonsense guide for Tech. I used it and got 100 on my tech test within 1 week. I get my call sign tomorrow and have started shopping for a radio!!!!

  29. Dan KB6NU says:

    You’re very welcome, Dave. I love getting feedback like this. :)

  30. The tech manual is great! I am new to amateur radio, so this was all new to me. I started reading it last night, finished it this morning, took the test this evening, and only missed two on the Technicians license!

    Thanks so much, I am planning to study your General manual and take the test next week.

  31. Nathan KI6UCL says:


    Thank you very much for these two study guides. I found them when I was working on my tech and it made it very easy. I had no problems with either test after going through the study guide. I recommend both study guides to anyone wanting to take the test. So far, everyone that read through them passed without any problems. Great manuals!


  32. Thanks for your guides! I passed both my tech and general exams tonight with 35 and 33 respectively. Couldn’t have done it without your guides.

  33. Dan, I have worked on radio for the past 30 years. First in the Navy as a Communications Technician and then in the Air Force as a Ground Radio Tech. I just didn’t get around to taking the exam. But your Technician Guide finally pushede me to make the effort I got a 34. I will be getting my call sign soon and have bought a 2M VX-150 to begin with. Thank you for taking the time to write this up I will be using your General and when it is done the Extra guide.


  34. Downloaded your manual two weeks ago. Printed it and read it over and over. Took my General test today at Midland Tx Hamfest. I Passed !!!! Thanks for a great manual. Im good on QRZ take a look at the mobile on top.

  35. I am Timothy J. Cregan, N2RDB, District Emergency Coordinator for Nassau County, NY ARES. I have been using your study guides to help get people ready to take their tests, with good results. Do you plan on re-writing the No-Nonsense Guide to reflect the changes in the new Technician Class question pool?

    If you do update it, rest assured that I will continue to use it as a resource to help interested people earn their licenses. We are trying to build a strong EMCOMM group here in Nassau County.

  36. Dan KB6NU says:

    Timothy, I am indeed working on the new version of the Tech study guide right now. I hope to have it done by Dayton.

  37. Luca W6LDM says:

    Thank you I got my general studying with your guide.
    Excellent. I am now studying for Extra but I need one of your guides.

    Thank you

  38. Gail N7BXX says:

    I have used your book for about 100 students and have about a 95% pass ratio. Thanx again from all my future students.

    Gail N7BXX

  39. Hi Dan-

    You don’t know me. But I just took my tech license test this morning — after reading your study guide only once. Yes, my father was a novice licensee 20 years ago… and I’ve got some training in computer network engineering… but other than that I haven’t seen this material in a LONG time. In fact, before finding your guide, I ordered a tech license manual/CD course just a few days ago. I haven’t received it yet. After doing more research and finding out it was only $15 to take the test, I just decided to go that the test as a “control”… fully intending to fail and need to go study. Like, really study, not just read a study guide once.

    To my surprise, I passed the test this morning. I guess I remembered more than I thought. Ohhh… and because I read your study guide.

    Thank you.

    -Phil Pavarini, Jr.

  40. Thanks for the great study guides, going to take my test soon Im hoping to pass.

  41. Well took the tech test yesterday and passed, Thanks for the great guides.

  42. Ronny, KC5EES says:

    Starting a new school year and have an Amateur Radio elective class in Fall/Spring. Have been using your Tech/General Study Guides for several years now. Thanks for updating the Tech Guide. Your work is being used all over the nation. I heard this summer that “After it is all said and done, there is usually more said than done,” but you have actually taken the initiative to produce something meaningful. I certainly appreciate your work. And, my students benefit, too. Just wanted you to know that your time/effort is valued.


    Ronny, KC5EES
    Trustee, LBJ High School ARC, K5LBJ
    Austin, TX

    P.S. My school club is on the cover of the September edition of “Monitoring Times.”

  43. I just wanted to thank you for your No Nonsense Technician Class study guide. Using it, I was able to pass my Technician exam today (first try). It is a well setup reference which I found very “user friendly”. A great resource which I will keep in my file.

    Now…on to General Class!

    Thanks again,

    • Thanks!

      Good luck with the General Class material. Feel free to e-mail me if you have any questions on any of the material.

  44. Dan,
    Hello. I wanted you to know that I took my Technician Class test last month and passed with a score of 100%. I was floored. Your No Nonsense Guide is the only Study Material that I used. I read it through 2 days before the test and then again the night before the test. I walked in to the EXAM nervous but comfortable. I was first done with the test, walked outside and awaited the results. The Examiner came out and asked how I’d felt I had done. I said “I’m fairly sure I passed”. He said “Passed?, you got 100%”. What a great feeling. The best score after mine was 3 wrong. I completely attribute this to your Study Guide. If you want to pass the Technician Exam, use the No Nonsense Study Guide. It is now 30 days later and Im reading the General Guide and taking the test this Saturday. Will report back

    I have wanted to have a HAM license since I was a teenager. I am now 51. What long wait, but I got it!!

    Thanks so very much for your effort in putting this guide togther and keeping this current for us.

    73 DE KB3VEW

    • Way to go, Ron! I love getting feedback like this. Now, I hope that you’ll use my General Class Study Guide to upgrade to General.

      73, Dan KB6NU

  45. I have tried reading the big book to study for my Tech. and could never get into it and always ended up putting it down. I eventually ended up using your study guide and in just a few weeks I took my test and only missed two questions. I am now studying the General Study Guide from you and have no doubt that I’ll do the same or better than I did before. Thank you so much for putting these guides together…you are a lifesaver.

  46. Hello Just wanted to say i love your study guide, ive had another one but it wasnt as updated as yours, i found this out after trying to help my xyl get her license and some questions were not on the material. I was wondering if you were going to have the general material if it changes after this June?
    Thank you

  47. I used the tech guide way back in 2008 and passed after reading it once. Then in February this year I passed the General with missing 1 question (really I knew the answer and simply chose wrong). now that I have a TS-140s rig and SignaLink with HRD I NEED MORE BAND lol Now ill be using the resource and I have no question that your guide will lead me well. In all seriousness I think you deserve “Amateur of the year” for these guides, I wish there was a way to track who passed using your guides and mark the hams on a map, I bet it would get pretty full, very fast. Again thanks a lot, you are a true credit to amateur radio. Ill be at Dayton this year ( I do live here lol) and would love to shake your hand sir. You have provided so much to so many people.

  48. Thank you SO MUCH for posting these! There is no class in my area, so I’m relying solely on these guides to pass both my Tech and General (test is Monday–EEEK!). My dad’s a General Class Ham, so he’s helping me set up my station on my sailboat–turning my dinosaur Icom radio into a PSK wizard! :) The study guides are a great resource and I’m feeling fairly confident about Monday. Wish me luck!! Sarah

  49. Thank you for the Study Guides.

    I downloaded the Technician Class guide and passed.

    I downloaded the General guide and passed.

    Please tell me the Extra Class Study Guide is coming soon!

    -Alan D.

  50. Thank you so much! I studied for five days on and off, using your guide and a few other Web resources and PASSED Tech exam this morning. I can’t say enough for your work! You put the nice name on the guide, but honestly, it’s a “NO BS” guide. I found it easier to remember the information in your guide easier to remember. No getting bored between facts.

  51. Doug KCØLGB says:

    I became a Tech ham just prior to 9-11-01. Over the years I have started studying for the General test several times and either lost interest, life got in the way, or just couldn’t “learn” the material.

    I purchased the ARRL study material in March 2010 and just couldn’t get into it.

    I recently retired & found myself with some time on my hands. A Google search revealed your study guide. I read through it once & took a practice test getting about 65%. I then went through the guide one chapter a week & practice tested again with a solid 70%. That led me to print it out and take notes as I read through it. A practice of 75% (several tests averaged over a week) let me know I was almost there.

    Another read through over the next month and I dropped guide to go with doing as many practice tests from as many websites as possible……………..

    Saturday I passed my Element 3 test with 2 wrong answers.

    Great Product

    Doug KCØLGB

  52. T. Joseph Carter says:

    Dan, I just wanted to say thanks for your wonderful study guide. A read through the guide (just once) was enough to put the questions into perspective so that I understood the questions relating to FCC rules and best practices. (I had a leg up on the electronics portion, but that too was well-written and concise!)

    I just took my element 2 exam last night and passed it with flying colors. Even better: I understood the answers, I was giving, largely due to the format of your study guide and how easy it was to look up additional details.

    I’ve started reading your general guide in preparation of element 3. I hope to be able to kick a few bucks your way in the near future—IMO you’ve earned them!

    73, and thanks!

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Thanks for the feedback. Let us know what your callsign is so that we can listen for you on the air…….73, Dan

  53. Scott Johnson says:

    Greetings, hope all is well.

    I just passed my technician licensing test missing only one question! What a great study guide! I will be using your general study guide to pass the general licensing test this October. I look forward to the day when I can print off the free version of the extra study guide. I hope you are able to use the donation that I just sent you. I look forward to sending you a donation with each test I pass.

    I’m down here in Fort Smith, Arkansas. I’ve been down here for the last 5 years after the Michigan economy tanked. Born, raised, and spent my first 36 years in Michigan (Portage/Kalamazoo, Coloma, Brethren, Grand Rapids, Traverse City, South Haven, Marshall). After getting a 15% pay cut up in Grand Rapids, I got lucky and found a great job, with the federal government, down here in Arkansas. I am happy to say that I am now making more money than I ever have and am working a job that I sincerely enjoy. I do not miss the challenges presented by Michigan winters, especially the snow. I hope to talk with you on the air some day. Thinking of you down in Arkansas. Thank you, sincerely, Scott Johnson

  54. Mike AE6ZC says:

    Hi Dan,
    I just wanted to give you an update on how the students I have been using the Technician Study Guide with.

    So far I have given out 12 copies of the sutdyt guide. Yesterday two of the women went and took the Technician exam, and both passed! They are so excited! One of them asked me for the General Class study guide, which I just emailed to her (your latest version, of course).

    I have a group of young men that have asked me to help teach them so they can take their exam. I am planning on using your study guide with them and then try to do some demonstrations to augment their studying.

    BTW, one of the other women brought to my attention that there is one question from the Technician Pool missing from the study guide. It is T1D07.

    I will let you know as more of them take their exams. Thanks for making this available.


  55. Hi

    Thanks so much for the free study guide, it’s very helpful. I wanted to also suggest that an audio version of this could be a wonderful thing.

    • Thanks for the comment, Nick.

      You know, I might give that audio version a shot. Maybe I’ll take a shot at one section and see how that goes. In addition to reading the questions and answers in that section, I could make some comments like I do when I teach the one-day Tech class.

      You didn’t mention whether or not you have a license yet. If not, what section would you like me to record first?

  56. I am confused as to if there is a charge for the study guide? I made a copy of the Technician study guide and then read it can not be reproduced without permission. I would like to share it with other members of my class. I will gladly pay for the study guide. I am taking a Technician class on Ham Radio, and at 68 years of ages I can’t remember everything that is taught at the class. I need an understandable instruction Manual to help remember. Your study guide is understandable. Thank you.

    I would really like to take the General, but thought I’d better start at the beginning. My father in law was a “Ham” from the very beginning of Amateur Radio and was good at Morse Code. He became a “silent key” in 2005 at the age of 97 and after his death, his grandson became addicted to Ham Radio and is now an active member of the local chapter. It’s a good family addiction.

    Thanks so much.

    • Bev:

      There’s no charge to download the PDF version of my study guide, but if you want an e-book version, you can purchase it from Amazon or Barnes&Noble, or if you want a printed version, I’d be happy to sell you one of those as well. To get your General Class license, you actually have to take the Technician Class test first, so you won’t be wasting any time learning the Tech material.

  57. I’m getting ready to offer a no cost class for friends who are interested in getting their technician license so that in case of an emergency they are able to make use of a ham radio.

    I noticed the use restrictions shown below. Would it be ok if I used your publication for this class? thanks very much!

    Copyright © 2010 Daniel M. Romanchik
    All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system, or
    transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, recording or otherwise, without the prior
    written permission of the autho

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      I would love for you to use my study guide for your class, Jeff, but what I would prefer is for each of the students to visit my website and download their own copies. I have two reasons for this:

      1. * I get a better count of the number of people that are actually using my study guide.
      2. * It gives them a chance to purchase either the e-book or print version.
  58. Franz Miller says:

    Dear Jeff:

    I was looking over your website and found a broken (invalid) link; I’ve included it in the body of this message. It’s a simple mistake, the link’s second period, just before “com” is a comma, which will prevent anyone clicking on it from successful access. So the comma needs to be replaced with a period. I’ve underlined the link. Great site, by the way!
    73’s, Franz

    September 9, 2007 at 10:46 pm

    As promised, last week I handed out your Tech Study Guide to the 20 students in my Amateur Radio elective class. I am taking the class in a self-study direction with “overview” by me. With quizzes to keep them honest, I hope to cover the basics pretty quickly, thus allowing the students plenty of time to get into hands-on electronics.

    I will be using “100-in-1? Science kits to allow the students to build basic circuits and discover how components work. Afterward, we will hopefully move toward breadboarding circuits. We’ll see how far we get…

    As for learning electronic theory, I found that the visuals and info. from the “Electronics” section at http://www.electronicstheory,com seem to be pretty good.

    I will also be using your General Study Guide, so I’ll let you know if I find any typos or portions in either of the Guides that seem to confuse teenagers. Again, thanks for taking the time to produce materials for the next generation.

    By the way, I’m passing out Morse Code CDs tomorrow. Some of the kids are psyched to learn Code. Maybe we can arrange a “final” with my students having to work you using CW and obtain some information (e.g. favorite color, name of pet, etc..).

    73 from Austin, Texas.

    Ronny, KC5EES

  59. Thanks for the time and effort you put into creating the tech and general study guides. I read through the tech guide once and took the test today. I passed and was complemented on my studying. I took a shot at the general test while I was there and just barely missed it. I wasn’t too upset though since I haven’t started reading the general guide. I guess that says something about the quality and easy reading of the tech guide. Thanks again! Josh

  60. Dan,

    Thank you for your study guide. I was granted my Tech License back in Feb of 2010 and was able to pass largly due to your well-written and understandable guide. Now I have the burning desire to earn my General ticket, and I know I will be able to do so wit hthe assistance of your study guide. I also agree with another poster that it would be nice to see who all you have helped in the country and have a digital map with all of our virtual pins in the map from our home areas.

    I am not computer savy enough to make the map but I will let you know that you helped me out here in Molalla, Oregon.
    Thanks again hope to be writting soon with a general upgrade.



  61. What happened to I was really hoping to get a piece of that extra study guide.

    • Unfortunately, that project didn’t work out. I will, however, be doing an Extra Class study guide next year when they update the Extra Class question pool. Watch for that.

  62. Terry KK4DQQ says:

    I really enjoyed the technician class study guide, had my license in no time. Thanks!! I would recommend this guide to anyone wanting to get their license.

  63. wurzel KJ6SUF says:

    Hey, thanks for the fantastic guide. I went to take my Tech exam two weeks ago and when I showed up they said they’d really like some more Generals in the area so they can have more VEs to help test the techs. One of them handed me a printed copy of your General guide, and right after taking the Tech I went ahead and took the general as well… and passed. I’m not even particularly good at memorizing things. But your guide was so well written and presented the information in such a “learnable” way that it made that possible, and is a good ongoing reference as well. Again, Many Thanks to you!

  64. Thank you so much for your helpful study guide! I read through your general study guide just once and got an 80% on my practice test! Good stuff.

  65. These study guides helped me pass tech, and general exams! Thank you so much, found the link on!


  66. Dave KK4GBC says:

    Thank you Dan for you wonderful study guides. I passed my Technician exam with flying colors and plan on taking the General exam very soon. Looking forward to the Extra study guide later on this year.

    – Dave

  67. Wow Dan! Your Study guide is amazing. I took a class here in Medford, Oregon with 17 others. We used the current ARRL manuel to study. Myself and several others in the class were totally new to electronics etc. We were pretty discouraged with the layout of the manuel, the question layout etc., and the tremendous amount of information to absorb. I ran across your Study Guide last week. I wish I could have had it from the beginning. It would have been so much easier to learn from the way you grouped everything together so that one could see it all at once rather than jumping back and forth and all over the place.

    We tested today and all but two in our class passed. I missed 5, but I know I could have aced it if I had your plan from the beginning. To bad your guide is not the official one and more people could be helped by it. I only have one recommendation of something to add to it. That would be the two circles from the other manuel showing an easy way to remember the Ohm’s formula. Thanks for all of your hard work and time it must have taken you to put your study guide together. It was a constant torment trying to use the other one. I wasted many hours with the jumping around and forgetting what I just read because of all the jumping around.

    Thanks again

  68. Michael E. Moore says:

    Ok Dan, I am giving your study guide a try. I have been trying to understand the ARRL book for a few days, and im just not getting some of it. But after just looking at a few of the pages in your study guide things started to make senss! I can’t wait until I take my test in April. I will get back to you when I do pass my test!

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      That’s great, Michael. Please e-mail me if you have any problems understanding any of the material.

  69. david carpenter says:

    i have read this feedback column and all i can say is thank you!
    i am waiting for your extra class manual to upgrade. this is a wonderful thing you have done, keep up the great work.

    DE W1DPC

  70. Thanks for the study guide. I passed my technician test with a score of 100%!

  71. Dan,
    I’ve used both your Technician and General guides. Love them both. I’m gonna be taking the General Class test in about 2 weeks. Gonna smoke it!


  72. I have used the arrl book and your study guide’s to help me pass the Technician and General level tests. I look forward to reading your latest Extra class study guide soon.
    Thank you

  73. Dan,

    Thank you so much for making this study guide available. It was a great help, and I successfully passed the Technician Class exam this past Monday. I appreciate the “no-nonsense” approach; it makes learning new material a lot more manageable.


  74. Keith Wood says:

    When will the Extra study guide come out?

  75. Dan,

    Would just like to echo and add my own thanks for your Tech and General guides. My son-in-law and I used them for our Tech tickets in August ’10, and he upgraded to his General(again, using your study guide) last year. I am currently studying hard to upgrade to General, hopefully before Field Day.
    Thanks, again.


  76. Mike Davis says:

    I have downloaded the pdf for the General as well as bought a copy for my kindle, I am hoping to have my General ticket by July at the latest. I’ll keep you up to date.

  77. Brian (KD8OEM) says:

    Thank you for your Technician study guide. My 12-yo son used it to study and today at Dayton, he passed the exam! Thanks for such a clear path for him to follow – he wouldn’t have done this without it.

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      That’s great, Brian! I was down there, too. It would have been nice to meet you both and shake your hands.

  78. Keith Wood says:

    Thank you for the General Study guide. I passed my General on 5/23/2012. Now I am ready and hope that you can do the Extra Study Guide please.

  79. mike k5wmg says:

    The new tests are due out. Do you have an extra guide? If so, pricing? Interested.

  80. Joe Suttie says:

    High, thanks for these study guides, I was able to brush up and pick up my general. After 2 tries my wife was able to get her Tech! That is a big win for your writing style since she is not technically inclined unless the material is present in certain ways. She was able to engage with me on some topics as I studied for my General that she had just absorbed from your tech study guide. The document has Sticking power! I was ecstatic when this happened!

  81. Jake KK4JXD says:

    Thanks so much for the study guides used the Tech for obtain my licence and now I’m using the General hope to take the test very soon!

  82. Riley W0TBW says:

    Dan, thank you so much for your guides. My wife just used it to get her Tech, and I used it to get my General. Can’t wait for a guide to go for my Extra!

    Thanks to your guide my wife (completely new to the world of ham radio and electronics) ACED her test!!

  83. Thank you for your fine study guide passed Tech and General same day. It is easy scan, read, highlight the study guide, note cards and practice tests.

  84. Dear Dan,

    Many thanks for your guides. I’ll surely be donating once I pass the test, as a thank-you token :)
    Is the Extra class guide coming anytime soon? Would be great to have it in the next few days :P

  85. These are really well written, thanks a lot!

    Looking forward to the Extra guide :)

    Will happily donate to the worthy cause.

  86. Hi Dan,

    Thanks for your books! Very helpful. I know this isn’t a study help site, but I’m stymied…I think the solution to this should be 24V, not 245: “These formulas can also be used to calculate RF power and RF voltages and currents.
    245 volts would be the voltage across a 50-ohm dummy load dissipating 1200 watts.
    (G5B12)” Why am I wrong?

    • Hi, Ben–

      The formula calculating this is P = V2/R. Solving for V, you get V = sqrt (PxR).

      V = sqrt (50 x 1200) = sqrt 60,000 = 245 V.

  87. Dan

    Thanks for letting me be one of your beta testers for your No Nonsense Guide for the Amateur Extra Exam…I studied a total of 2 1/2 weeks and PASSED the test last Saturday….I have been asked, when will this be available to the general public.



  88. Katie KD2CLT says:


    Just wanted to let you know that I used your no-nonsense General No-Nonsense Guide and the existing Extra Class Question of the Day posts to help myself jump from Tech to Extra this past weekend! Your materials were a great companion to the ARRL books for getting the questions and reasons behind them out in a compact understandable nature. Wonderful stuff, it’s great to have all my privileges now!


    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Congratulations, Katie! You might be the first to get an Extra Class license by using my study materials. :) If you ever hear me on the air, please give me a call.

  89. Katie KD2CLT says:

    Thank you! Good luck on the assembly for the Extra guide, I’m already recommending your materials to friends of mine. =) I’ll give you a call if I hear you!

    Katie KD2CLT

  90. Charles Bernholz says:

    Do you have any further information on the creation of an Extra Class study guide to add to your suite of materials? Thank you.

  91. Thanks for the No-Nonses study guides. They are wonderful. I used it to study for the Tech and General (passed both of them missing only a few questions each). After reading the guide once through for a primer I just started taking the practice tests over and over until I got things down. My wife used the tech to study as well and she passed.

  92. Thanks for the Guides, Looking for the Extra Class Guide.

  93. Vic Neshyba says:

    Dan … At long last your Extra Class Guide is available. I appreciate your commitment and effort, and look forward to digging in and studying it. I am glad to see that you recognized that a lot of time and effort went into it and deserves fair compensation. Thanks!

  94. Thanks for your kind words, Vic, and thanks for reminding me that I should have posted a comment here that the Extra Class study guide is now available. You can order it right here on the site or via Amazon or Barnes&Noble.

  95. Before I purchase your PDF version for the Extra – I just wanted to make sure it was the latest and up to date version – in reading through some area’s . . . it said you last updated something in 2011.

    • My Extra Class study guide was just published, and covers the questions in the latest question pool. All of my study guides are up-to-date. The General Class study guide was released in 2011 and covers the question pool released then, while the Tech study guide was updated in 2010 to cover that question pool.

  96. I just wanted to say thank you for the time and effort you put into these guides. I used both the tech and general guides and took both at o.e session and passed with flying colors (aced both). Again I thank you.
    Matt Kennedy

  97. I want to teach a Tech License class and I am going to direct all students to your website so they can all get their own copy of the guide.

    I plan to have a combination of lecture, whiteboard work and power point presentation. Can I use portions of your guide in the presentation?

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      For sure. What kind of class are you going to teach, a one-day class or a more traditional multi-session class?

  98. Thanks Dan, that will help a lot.

    I was leaning toward a 3 day course. Do the tech part the first day, the station operation and rules the second day and the third day have a review and the test.

    Have people been successful teaching the whole thing in one day, followed by the exam?
    What do you suggest?

    Ron, KK4HGY

  99. Thanks for the ham cram link. It answered my questions and really helped a lot.

    Ron, KK4HGY

  100. I studied the technician guide. The day before I went to take the test, I found out that I could take more than one test on the same day. I read through your general guide once the night before and was able to pass the general test too.

    I passed your site on to a girl that failed the test today and have been telling everyone about your awesome study guides.

    Your guides and the $40 radios make getting into ham really easy.



  101. Barry Brown says:

    Thanks so much for these guides! They were very helpful to me after I read through the ARRL Tech Study Guide. I probably read it for 2 weeks off and on to get familiar with the concepts and info, and then for another 2 weeks or so I read your Tech guide. I passed the test and got 33 out of 35 right this past Saturday.

    I went ahead and took the General exam in the same sitting and ALMOST passed it – I missed 2 questions too many, but I had read your General exam guide for about an hour on the Friday night before the Saturday test just in case I got ambitious. You almost got me through to General this past Saturday, so thanks for your work! I plan on using your notes in a month to actually secure the General exam.

    I do appreciate it very much,

    Barry – newly appointed KK4RXN

    Jeremiah 29:11-13 / John 3:16

  102. Keith Wood says:

    Dan, thank you so very much for the Extra Study Guide. I have been reading it off and on and I am going to get off my night stand and really start reading it and then start taking practice tests. I want to surprise my buddy in Ga, and pass it with flying colors. Thanks again, see you on twitter.

    Keith Wood

  103. Thank you very much for the free study guides. Having the free material really motivated me to study and take the test. I used the Tech and General guides and missed only 5 questions total, all on the General test. I have passed your guides on to many hopeful hams. Thanks again for all your hard work.

  104. Dan,

    Wonder full stuff you have here. Thank you for all your free study guides. I am currently studying for my extra class and when studying for General I used your guide. Thanks for your hard work


  105. Don (Passed Tech & General last night) says:

    I took both tests last night and passed both. Missed 2 questions on the Tech and 3 on the General test. I used your Tech and General guides exclusively. Studied them both for about a week in addition to taking online practice tests (2 or 3 tests per day). When I would miss a question I would look it up in the guide and re-read that paragraph. Easy-peasy. Thanks for publishing them online for FREE. Woohoo – free is good. Total cost incurred to get to the General license = $15.

  106. Hi! Great site. I’m not a ham. I want to be a ham. I hope you’ll all forgive my newbie question (I’m already imagining the people who will read this and cringe).

    I have a long remote winter ahead of me, I don’t live near any ham clubs and I don’t know any local hams. There are no nearby classes and there are no testing sessions within five hours of me. I tend to pick at least one big project each winter where I can put my focus and end the winter with an achievement. And so I would like to study to take all three tests at once next spring. Please don’t advise against this; it is a big goal to pursue, I know, and perhaps not advised by some, but I really just want the answer to my question: Is there ONE book that will prep me to take all three tests? (for instance, if I buy The ARRL Extra Class License Manual Book with CD-ROM (10th Ed, which was just published last year and appears to be the newest of all the books), will this cover the Technician and General as well?). Thank you!

    • Passing all three tests at one sitting will be a challenge, but people have done it, so I won’t try to dissuade you from going for it. Unfortunately, though, there is no single book that will prepare you to take all of the tests. Having said that, though, my Tech and General class study guides are free downloads. You could get those, then purchase one of the Extra Class study guides (not necessarily mine).

      It sounds like you have plenty of time, so you could supplement the study guides by surfing the Web for more information on particular topics. And, I’ll extend to you, the offer I make anyone who downloads my study guides. If you need help with any of the topics, e-mail me, and I’ll try to walk you through it.

  107. Robert Leonard says:


    Thank you for the exams study guides. I passed Tech last night having read thru your guide a few times and taking the online exams. I have your General and Extra guides and look forward to testing for them in the coming months.

    Our local amateur club in Naples Florida was a great help and a great group.

    Your efforts are greatly appreciated.

  108. J.B. s McCabe says:

    inactive since 1978, and let my license expire. downloaded your tech and general study guides, went through each of them twice.

    took both exams yesterday, passed both with ease, thanks for making these guides available.

    now saving for a radio, and an antenna. once on the air I will be getting your extra class study guide. do not see any sense of not getting it as I found passing both the tech and general so easy.

    thanks, again…

    JB McCabe

  109. Dan,

    I just wanted to thank you for your Technician study guide. I read through it once and took some practice exams on Took the exam last Saturday and it was a piece of cake.

    Thanks again,


  110. Hi Dan — I’m in the situation an earlier poster is — there are no nearby clubs.

    Are there any recommended sites to take the tests online?

    I did see the ham radio license exam site, but it looks like it is
    $39.95 (24.95+15) a test pass-or-fail,
    and I was hoping for alternatives.

    (If You offer testing, just let me know. I would choose that!)

  111. Hello again Dan.

    Just checking (for me and other noob readers).

    The pdfs show “2010” and “2011” dates.
    I do see new (2013) posts from folks using the material to pass tests.

    Again, just checking — are the PDFs current against the current tests?


    • Yes, the study guides are current. The dates you mention refer to when the current question pools were published. They are updated every four years. So, next year, the Tech question pool will be updated and be the 2014 question pool.

  112. Anthony KF5ZNH says:

    Thanks so much for putting the study guides together. Got 35/35 on my Tech test, and decided to try the General after looking through your guide just twice. I came within two questions (missed 11 when you can only miss 9) of getting my General ticket at the same time. I will be sending a donation your way when I can.

    Now I just have to get some gear… and upgrade to General… and file for a vanity call…

  113. Neil KF5YMG says:

    After many scheduling problems over the holiday season I passed the Extra exam comfortably. I don’t think I could have without the aid of your book and words of advice. Read the book, cover to cover, twice and took practice exams on QRZ for a week then laid off for a month. Three days before the exam I took some more practice exams with your book in hand and scored 45 or better every time. Took the exam and scored high.

    Thanks for your help.

  114. Brian Jones says:


    Used your study guide to get my Technician Class license today. Read it about 3 or 4 times, made notes in the margins and took practice test on-line. Many thanks.

  115. James Gorman says:

    What a great resource. I used your tech study guide and aced my tech test on the first try. I also took the General and was able to pass it on my first try. I am guessing some of the general knoledge was left over from my years as an ET in the Navy, but the review you put togther was exactly what I needed for the Tech test. Thanks!


  116. Dan;

    May I download your study guides and possibly print a version for my personal use to learn….I am a “novice” and just getting interested in ham radio. In April, I attended my first local meeting in Eureka Springs,AR. with the Little Switzerland Amateur Radio Club…..everyone was extremely nice and helpful, they provided me the local site of the club and stated your link was posted there.

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Of course, Lisa. That’s what they are there for!

      Not only that, you can e-mail me if you have any questions about any of the material.

  117. The Tech question pool is changing July 1, 2014, and the Tech Study Guide on this website uses the soon-to-expire pool. When will the Tech guide for the new pool be issued? Our next exam session is July 12, 2014.

  118. In your article you talk about next year but I can’t find the date of your article. When during this year will you be updating your guides? Thank you.

  119. Roger K5YKO says:


    About two weeks I commented on the “No Nonsense” Extra study guide. I stated then that “by the end of the summer” I would have my Amateur Extra license. Well, through some diligent study aided by the study guide, this morning I became Houston’s newest Amateur Extra. It is a dream come true. I became a ham in 1959 at age 13. I always wanted to obtain the “extra” ticket and now I say, “Thanks to YOU….I have attained it”. It has always been a “bucket list” for me also, so now I will have to find two more items for my list. I try to add two for every one; that way my list will never deplete and I will be around forever. I am so happy that I stumbled across your book.

    • Dan KB6NU says:

      Wow. That’s really great, Roger. It’s really gratifying for me to know that my study guides have helped folks either get their first licenses or upgrade their licenses.

  120. Andrew Koenig says:

    Hey! I just wanted to say that the Extra guide worked. I read through it once, and took half a dozen practice tests.

  121. Kevin Hooke says:

    Used your Extra guide as part of my studies for the Exam exam this weekend and passed! Thanks! Kevin KK6DCT

  122. Hey Dan, I just wanted to thank you for all your diligent effort in putting together the No-Nonsense Study Guides. I’ve been toying with the idea of getting my license for years, but I never really started studying in earnest. After finding out that an organization near me is holding tests in August, I began preparing using your guides. I was passing Technician practice exams at over 90% after one day with the guide, and I’m now passing General practice exams at the same rate after about a week of studying the material. I plan to purchase the Extra-class guide in the next few days, and my goal is to complete the three-license trifecta in one testing session. :)

    Thanks for all the hard work you put into these guides. The format is very easy to use, and I’m enjoying the process of learning. Much appreciation.

  123. Ron Kotula says:

    Used your study guides and passed the Technician class exam in May and the Extra class in June. Invaluable resource! Thanks! KC3CVI

  124. Hi Dan – Thanks for all of the work you put into the study guides. I used your guides as one of the tools in my test preparation and passed my Tech & General exams today. I haven’t purchased the Extra guide yet, but the examiners encouraged me to sit for that exam also. I falied, but am not discouraged since I know I’ll be able to pass it once I put in the effort. Now I just have to wait on the FCC to issue a callsign :)

  125. Alfredo Huerta says:

    I’m new to this and would like to get into ham radio. I’m a little confused about preparing for the technician exam. Is the No-nonsense technician class study guide PDF available on the top of this page similar to or a substitute for the paper book available from the ARRL website called Ham Radio License Manual 3rd Edition. In other words, can I just study this free PDF guide and expect to pass the exam if I’m a good learner?

    • Hello, Alfredo. My free study guide covers the same material as the ARRL’s Ham Radio License Manual, although in a somewhat different way. Many folks that are now hams have used my study guides, and only my study guides, to get their licenses. Let me know if you have other questions.

  126. Dan,
    I wanted to let you now that I mentioned your study guides in an article I wrote for my site. Thought item would be a great introduction to Amateur Radio!

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