Just to illustrate how much variation there is: I just went to 3 different
stores looking for a copy of the Advanced license study guide. 1st (Waupaca,
WI) had an expired copy (in date on others) and will reorder-they are
generally helpful with connectors/coax etc since some hams work there but
they don't have ham radios (its a small town of 5000 so I don't blame them).
2nd (Appleton, WI-Valley Fair mall) had only 1 General that expires end of
June. They did have 2M HT's. The clerk there said "Radio Shack is getting
out of the radio business, it's just not that popular anymore". Maybe that
will be their new slogan?? This was especially dissappointing since years
earlier before I became a ham or had any radio knowledge I bought a CB and
was trying to figure out what antenna to get and how to mount it on my
truck. A young ham there helped me decide on a full length whip (and
explained why) and found a way to mount it. I was not sure about the
mounting and since his shift was almost over he invited me over to his house
and helped to install the antenna (I payed him $10 for his time but he
didn't ask for it). 3rd location (Appleton, WI-Fox River Mall) had all exam
books (in date) and code tapes. Clerk there said his boss was big into ham
radio so I guess that explains it. This location also had both 2M HT's and
mobile rigs/amps. I think that location is basically as far into amateur
radio as Tandy Corp can/will support.
73 de Eric KB9QAI/AG
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