As a relatively green prepper (2 years, now) and a completely green Ham NuB (Tech licence in July 2012), I would appreciate (and I am sure others would as well) ANY and ALL learned advice from any Ham more experienced than I would be greatly appreciated!
As for me, I am still in the "overwhelmed" stage of prepping. As a hillbilly from WV, much that is termed "prepping" has been a way of life in the mountains for generations. And while I was fortunate to have gleaned a little from that heritage plus what I have learned as a Scouting leader, when I read the various blogs I am forced to say, "Woe is me"!
But since really getting serious, I have enlisted my wife and son-in-law and we have added to the larder. The blogs made me feel inadequate with respect to security so now I have attended an Appleseed, have a CCW permit and have purchased the necessary equipment to protect my life, that of my family and, if necessary to help defend the liberty purchased by riflemen all those years ago.
The prepper books, fiction and non-, helped me to know I needed the ability to communicate, so I studied, took the test, joined ARRL and the local club, and now am trying to decide what type of rig(s) to buy or to build. I have purchased the ARRL "Handbook" (weighs about 10 lbs) and "Ham Radio for Dummies" and am starting to relearn. When it comes to electronics, I am the radio equivalent of a special education student! Every time I came to electricity in high school and university, I gritted my teeth, learned what was absolutely necessary and then, quickly forgot it. I HAVE replaced memory on my computer, and, as a teen, outfitted my VW bug with a CB and a whip antenna as well as an 8-track tape deck and speakers (that dates me!). But that is kind of it.
So, how do I proceed?? I don't want to just read reviews and go out and buy the latest and greatest rig from HRO or some other outfit. Should I build it myself and force myself to learn electronics? Some reading I have done suggests investing in what some term "boat anchors" -- older rigs using supposedly EMP proof vacuum tubes and such. What about that idea? Should I even invest in a fixed station or should I go with a mobile platform?
To be completely honest, I really don't know what I don't know. I have only a little bit of knowledge and have been told that is a DANGEROUS thing. So if any of the above questions are not the right questions, then please tell it to me like it is!!!
In advance appreciation for your comments, I am
(PS - I keep reading in the prepper literature about "opsec". From a NuB perspective, it seems to violate "opsec" when I give out my call sign to this or any forum as it can easily be traced back to my exact address. Is that a correct perspective?