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ARRL Handbook Reference

2018 Edition

  • Overview and Directions

    This web page is for information that extends or supports the ARRL Handbook.  The section for each edition contains links to software referenced in the book, supplemental information and links, and errata and corrections. 


    To purchase the book, click here or browse to the ARRL Store where you can also find numerous other technical publications supporting Amateur Radio.


    Supplemental information is available as a downloadable package beginning with this edition.  You will find an access code on a sheet inside the front cover with complete instructions.  Once installed, use Adobe Reader to access the PDF files. 

    Some readers report that the version Adobe Reader Touch, provided with Microsoft Apps, does not support all of the PDF features.  If this is a problem, download the free Adobe Reader DC from the Adobe website at which does support the necessary elements, such as bookmarks.  Note that the website for downloads will also download a Google Chrome extension and two McAfee security applications unless you opt out by unchecking the necessary boxes.


    Joe Eisenberg, KØNEB, was mistakenly left off the title page's list of contributors to this edition. Joe updated material in Chapter 23 - Construction Techniques and has made regular improvements to the chapter over the past few editions. Earl McCune, WA6SUH, who updated material in the Oscillators chapter, is mistakenly given a new last name of McClure on the same page. Ken Cechura KC9UMR's name was also misspelt Apologies from the editor, Joe, Earl, and Ken!


    Information in support of previous editions can be found at
    ARRL Handbook - 2010-2017 Editions.


    Printed-circuit boards for many current and previous Handbook projects are available from FAR Circuits.

  • Software Utilities

    This section is for software utilities and other programsreferenced in the Handbook or which support the Handbook material and are not included in the main download package.  Check the web page for earlier editions for other software.

    Software by Phil Karn, KA9Q


    The package of software routines by Phil Karn, KA9Q, are available from his GIT repository at The packages are organized in several compressed tar files and there are packages specifically to support the funcube dongle SDR. He has also created a WWV emulator which is available at  The software and associated documentation will be updated by KA9Q as time and other interests permit.


    Chapter 21 - Antennas


    Bill Wortman, N6MW has contributed GAMMAMW4 to correct an error in the previous version of GAMMA in which the software failed to find solutions to the calculations when the combination of the desired feed line impedance exceeds the product of the raw antenna resistance and the gamma step-up value.  The new code fixes that problem.


    Click on the program name to download the new program as a zip file, GAMMAMW4.  It is a simple text-based application that runs in a command prompt (C:\) window and does not require a full Windows installation procedure.  Unzip (extract) the program and double-click it to launch it.


    To use the program, you will need to know:
    - frequency of operation in MHz
    - feed point impedance of the antenna's driven element in R + jX form
    - feed line characteristic impedance
    - the driven element diameter (D)*
    - the gamma rod diameter (d)*
    - spacing between the outer surfaces of the driven element and the gamma rod (S)*

    Enter these values and the program will provide complete outputs including supporting parameters.  * - all dimensions must be in the same units, typically inches or cm.


    The ARRL extends its thanks to N6WM for his contribution, as well as to Greg Ordy W8WWV for making some tests of the code.

  • Supplemental Information, Files, and Links

    Chapter 2 - Electrical Fundamentals


    This downloadable Radio Mathematics document includes a discussion of decibels and coordinates, along with a list of online tutorials on a variety of subjects that may be encountered when working with radio circuits and equipment.


    Chapter 5 - RF Techniques


    The supplemental article "The Galactic Background in the Upper HF Band" by Dave Typinski AJ4CO was omitted from the download package.  It can be downloaded here.


    Chapter 10 - Analog and Digital Filtering


    Section 10.10.5, "Diplexer Filter" - the W4ENE program DIPLEXER makes short work of designing this type of filter. It is included in the downloadable supplemental material for the Handbook.


    Chapter 14 - Transceiver Design Topics


    The GNU Radio community has developed an extensive set of video tutorials and presentations on GNU Radio in various ways.  They are available on the GNU Radio YouTube channel.


    Chapter 22 - Component Data and References


    Guy K2AV contributes the following information about powdered-iron toroids from various sources to supplement the information in Table 22.16:


    8 Mix    (Yel/Red)      1-50 MHz, u=35 replaces mix #6
    18 Mix  (Grn/Red)    1-50 MHz, u=55, low core loss, similar to mix #8
    40 Mix  (Grn/Yel)       Power conversion similar to mix #26
    52 Mix  (Grn/Blu)      dc-1 MHz, u=75, high permeability


    Chapter 29 - Space Communications


    See the Chapter 5 entry above regarding the paper on Galactic Noise by AJ4CO.


  • Errata and Corrections - 2018 Edition

    Chapter 10 - Analog and Digital Filtering


    Figures 10.61 and 10.62 are reversed.  In the passive filter, C3 is 1.7883 uF, should be 2.5702 uF.  C4 is 3.7834 uF, should be 5.8786 uF.  C5 is 1.7883 uF, should be 2.5702 uF.(If you have W4ENE's article from Mar/Apr 2017 QEX, the values in that article's Figure 18 are correct.  The correct schematic is downloadable as a JPEG file here.)


    Chapter 11 - Modulation

    The equation on page 11.3 should read


    Csin(2πfCt) + ((C*M)/2)sin((2π(fC + fM)t) + ((C*M)/2)sin((2π(fC - fM)t)


    Chapter 13 - Transmitting


    Page 13.32 - in the section "Preamplifier" - the first paragraph's reference to R3 should be to R4 and the reference to R11 should be to R12. (Both components are properly labeled in the schematic.) It should be noted that the "flat response out to 3 kHz" includes a peak of several dB at 2500 Hz mentioned later in the section.

    Figure 13.51 - the caption should read "Frequency response at various points within the speech amplifier."

    Figure 13.52 - R12 is shown as 29k but should be 20k.

    Figure 13.52 - the unlabeled dual photodiode block should be labeled "D2R2".  R8A and R8B are actually a 5k pot with the midpoint connected to the wiper contact, similarly to R7.



    Chapter 17 - RF Power Amplifiers

    The figures 17.A2 and 17.A3 on page 17.13 are switched. Also, the Smith chart figure, which is printed as A3, but should be A2, is in some print copies missing the thin dashed line referred to in the 4th paragraph. The figure is available here.


    Chapter 21 - Antennas


    Table 21.1A - the 60 meter dipole total length should be 87 ft, not 7, and the frequency is 5.37 MHz.

    Table 21.1B - the 80 meter dipole data is shifted right one column and the leg lengths are 66 ft 1 in and 20.8 meters.


    Chapter 24 - Station Construction


    Figure 24.16 - the photo credit should go to Bob Lee, WØGXA, and the shelving is actually at the station of Toni Radebaugh, NØNI.