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This is the Discussion page for discussing improvements to the associated article.
Please place messages concerning errors or requested changes to the protected portions of the article on this Discussion page.
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Articles have been created following a common format for all Merit Badges. Please help keep these articles in this format and help us add links to related requirements for other awards and external requirement resources.
Answers, answer keys, cheat sheets, or links to them will be removed.
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    Why is the text blue? EagleForumFan 06:07, December 13, 2007 (EST)

    Blue text can be clicked as hyperlinks to other pages or sites GCW50 11:46, December 14, 2007 (EST)


    Wiki Links

    Does it make sense to link to Wikipedia? Isn't that what THIS site is for? An up-to-date wiki? I'd like to see those links removed and links to SOURCES rather than the pages that simply cite the source.

    PS It was the titles that were confusing me... they're linked rather than titles. Going to change them very soon. EagleForumFan 04:13, December 18, 2007 (EST)

    Cheat Sheets

    The Cheat Sheet text and links have been removed. We provide resources to help a Scout do his own work, not cheat. If you see cheat sheet materials or links posted, please help us remove them.

    We teach the words of the Scout Law with our words. We teach the meaning of the Scout Law with our actions. Milominderbinder2 16:13, March 28, 2008 (EDT) sysop

    Correct. But a 30 page website devoted to helping Scouts earn a Merit Badge by explaining the concepts or to help counselors teach is not a "Cheat Sheet" any more than the Merit Badge pamphlet is a "Cheat Book". The boy still needs to meet with a counselor to do the work. I've personally taught this merit badge to over 300 Scouts. Gary Wilson, 50 year Scout veteran, Wood Badge staffer, and Unit Commissioner, Mercer Area District, Central New Jersey Council. GCW50 14:30, June 12, 2008 (EDT)
    Gary, you have done a tremendous amount of work on your website to develop a perfect answer key for Radio Merit Badge. Your spectrum and block diagrams are spot on. In less than 2 minutes a Scout should be able to cut and paste your answers together and complete the merit badge. What could a Merit Badge Counselor say? The Scout would have your perfect answer key.
    Using the Radio Merit Badge Pamphlet, an older Scout should be able to read, find his answers, and make his own diagrams in three hours or so. A younger Scout might need four or five hours to find his own answers. It is slower but allows the Scout to learn by doing.
    Counselors provide guidance and encouragement but we have to let each Scout do his own work. Accordingly we removed the answer key you posted on and the link to your site with the same answer key.
    Please give the Scouts the chance to do their own work. Please let them learn by doing. As one Eagle Scout to another, I ask you, please take down your answer key. — Milominderbinder2 (Sysop) 21:42, June 15, 2008 (EDT)
    The argument is specious and the the site isn't any more of an answer key than the pamphlet. Any boy could copy the very same block diagram from page 13 or the spectrum diagram from page 17 in the Radio Merit Badge pamphlet just as easily as from the web site. Do you also propose to ban a boy from reading the pamphlet as well?
    As a MB counselor it's our job to ensure that a boy meets the requirements exactly as written; no more, no less. For most items where a boy has to draw something, they normally have to explain it as well. How they get the information to learn it and explain it is totally up to them. Pamphlets, web sites or classes are just different options they may choose to use. Learning it from a summary is not cheating as long as they learned it. And that's all the official BSA advancement literature says about the subject. In fact, pamphlets are just another aid and they didn't even exist for the first twenty years of the MB program.
    You seem to be implying here that a boy has to go to original source material to learn something for a merit badge. I disagree. If you can find it written anywhere in official BSA advancement literature that a boy has to go to original source material (which would probably also ban the MB pamphlets!) then it might make make sense to characterize my web site as an answer key. But you won't. There's an a excellent summary of all of the BSA rules relating to earning Merit Badges on this wiki site, so you might want to start your search there. BTW, I teach Counseling Merit Badges at Wood Badge. YIS, Gary Wilson GCW50 22:12, June 15, 2008 (EDT)
    Gary's Radio Merit Badge web site and our (previously agreed upon) reciprocal links remain acceptable. —RWSmith (Bureaucrat), 00:42, June 19, 2008 (EDT)

    Requirement Typos

    Requirement 2a is not a question and should end in a period. Requirement 4 is missing the word "receiver" after "transmitter". Each sub requirement in section 9 is now in parens, not period. e.g. 9 a (1) , not 9 a. 1.

    Also, someone said national allows the shortwave stations to be plotted on a map instead of a globe, but didn't prove evidence of this change. I thus removed it. A map can't show great circle distance or grey line propagation very well which is why a globe was specified when we wrote the requirement.

    Finally, I don't think these requirements came from the 2008 requirements book; they were revised in the color August 2008 edition of the Radio Merit Badge pamphlet well after the 2008 requirements book was published.

    GCW50 04:55, January 11, 2009 (EST)

    Someone got rid of the stray question mark, but requirement 4 is still wrong and differs from the August 2008 Radio Merit Badge pamphlet. It should read:
    "Explain how radio waves carry information. Include in your explanation: transceiver, transmitter, receiver, amplifier, and antenna." GCW50 08:46, January 14, 2009 (EST)

    Workbook Corrections

    For requirement 3a,the spectrum space provided is in an unusable format. There's no way a Scout can draw a spectrum chart in one single 8.5 inch space, as the necessary bandwidth for communication is logrithmic with frequency. Also, the new requirement eliminates LF and adds microwaves so it can't end at 1 GHz.

    See page 28 of the Radio MB Pamphlet or my website for how it should be laid out. That's with four horizontal lines, with the top being MF going from 0.3 to 3.0 MHz; the next being HF going from 3.0 MHz to 30 MHz; the next being VHF, going from 30 MHz to 300 MHz; and the bottom one being UHF going from 300 MHz to 3.0 GHz. Obviously the colored radio services should not be on the workbook as the that's what the Scouts need to add.

    Also, the requirement for the Shortwave option 9c(1)is quite specifically to use a globe, so please remove the map. One can't see the impact of Great Circle paths nor understand Grey Line propagation very well on a flat Mercator projection.

    The space for logging the amateur contact (9a(2))should follow the column structure and headings of a standard ham radio logbook as shown as on page 59 of the Radio Merit Badge pamphlet. The same logbook format is used for both the Broadcast station listening log(9b(2))and shortwave listening log (9c(1), except that the POWER column is omitted, The STATION WORKED becomes STATION HEARD, the two REPORT columns become one SINPO column, and the terms QTH, NAME, & QSL VIA are not used in the COMMENTS column heading. What you might want to do to save paper is make a landscape format logbook sheet of each of the two types of radio logbook as the last page of the workbook. They'll need at least fifteen lines on it for entries.

    Thanks & 73 GCW50 18:44, January 12, 2009 (EST)

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