A Recent Course Review

Every class I run is as much a learning experience for me as it is the attendees- I’m training with you while I’m instructing. With every question or additional requests for information, I’m learning how to deliver the very best information in the most relevant way possible. There’s a significant challenge in taking what is essentially a military course of instruction and distill it to the needs of prepper groups on my end. It is a humbling opportunity to train those seeking to learn, always being rewarding to see great people that get something out of it. That said, here’s a recent review that was left on the training courses page for a private RTO Course hosted:

I recently attended a private class offering of the RTO course conducted by NC Scout. I can’t overstate the quality of this training. NC Scout is both tactically and technically proficient and has the advantage of having “been there done that” when it comes to tactical communications under austere conditions.
The course is pretty much as advertised on his Brushbeater blog. What isn’t discussed are the “extras” you receive. “Extras” in the form of class discussion of particular issues and solutions related to communications planning, radio operation, and capabilities. This course is definitely planned and presented as a “prepper” course. It presents a solution set (although not necessarily universal) to operating a TOC integrating a “retreats” various nodes such as patrols, LP/OP’s, QRF, and admin/log nets.

The course description clearly stated this wasn’t a Ham Radio course and it wasn’t. It was very basic instruction that even the most novice among us could understand. The students in my class had a wide range of knowledge and skills, but NC Scout moderated the technical aspects to that of the lowest common denominator, but would elevate the discussion as the students grasped the concept, moving onto a higher technical level. I never once felt the instruction was above my head or that I was just accepting my own ignorance and not taking up class time at the expense of others.

From an equipment aspect, there was a lot of “gear” brought by participants for show and tell purposes. However, the instruction focuses on handheld radios with frequencies in the 2 meter and 70 cm range. There were enough licensed Ham’s in the class to keep it all legal so that wasn’t a problem. While NC Scout isn’t a fan of Baofeng radios, he recognizes they are extremely popular with the prepper community. They are pretty much the “lowest common denominator” for radios. However, you run what you “brung”, when it came to the radios and there were no equipment failures at all, that I am aware of.

Training started with an explanation of Signal Operating Instructions (SOI). I think many think of this in terms of a long complex document along the lines of military use or that published by the AmRRON project. While the military SOI is too complex for prepper use and the AmRRON version is really intended more as a standing SOI transitioning from normalcy to SHTF, NC Scout’s distills the SOI down into what is practical for a retreats use. NC Scout’s presents a simpler view of an SOI that changes daily, is briefed on a white board at shift change or OP Order brief. It includes all the essential elements of an SOI, but without the complexity.

Training continued on Day 1 with presentation of several “reporting formats”. I won’t list these, you have to take the course, but these formats are relevant to the tactical security of a retreat and support the signal’s security principles of uniformity and brevity. Training continued on with presentations on antenna theory and the construction of expedient antennas. However, as the course description emphasizes, this is not a Ham radio course and NC Scout “dummies this down” for even the most technically challenged of us can “get it”. There followed a “arts and crafts” project, the construction of a jungle antenna for UHF/VHF as well as several long wire HF antennas conducted as a practical exercise/lab for this class.
Day 1 included a practical exercise utilizing all the morning’s instruction to include the constructed “jungle antenna” and use of all the reporting formats. This exercise consisted of the establishment of a “TOC” and a remote station exchanging communications traffic utilizing each of the reporting templates.
Day 2 focused on the conduct of a reconnaissance patrol establishing a patrol base, running up the “jungle antenna” and observing an OPFOR again providing information utilizing reporting templates.
In summary, this was a great class, presented by a knowledgeable/proficient instructor with not only the technical expertise, but also real world experience. I wouldn’t hesitate to take additional classes from NC Scout.

Again, I thank you very much for the opportunity and for the kind words. I have two (2) spots left in the Open Enrollment class for 3-4 March 2018, email me at [email protected] for details. There’s a second open enrollment date for 14-15 April 18 and then all operations on my end will be on hiatus until late May-early June. Private training for groups is available also per request after 1 June 18 and I’m open to travel on a case-by-case basis.

As anyone that has trained with me can attest, the RTO course (and the others) are unlike anything offered to the Prepper community, at any cost. You will walk away from this course knowing how to properly employ (and build) bare-bones or improvised equipment for creating local and regional infrastructure and how to maximize what equipment you may already have. You might even pick up some patrolling pointers or field tips and tricks while you’re at it. But in any case, my lone goal is to make you better today than you were yesterday. Because as I learned the hard way long ago, if you can master what’s basic, you’re 90% there.

13 thoughts on “A Recent Course Review

  1. Pingback: NC Scout Announces Radiotelephone Operator Course – Lower Valley Assembly

      1. Scott B Freah

        Will be upgrading to General this weekend. Thanks for all you do. You are an Elmer to a lot of new hams in this area. 7th Light Fighters rule the night. All the way.

  2. Pingback: Brushbeater: A Recent Course Review | Western Rifle Shooters Association

    1. Not at this time. However I’m open to travel for groups large enough. Shoot me an email for more details, but if you want to put something together I’ll certainly come out.

  3. LodeRunner

    It doesn’t make sense to waste money on gear until you know how to use it. This is a particularly important consideration when you’re looking at $800~$1500+ HF radio setups. “You don’t know what you don’t know” is a particularly salient warning where commo is concerned. Ignore ALL the advertising – “independent reviews” included – it is all worthless marketing BS intended to separate you from your hard-earned $$. Period.

    You’re not going to get better training than NC Scout offers – he trained and was field deployed with the best. Once you learn and understand the requirements of field commo, you are in a position to make informed gear choices. Not until. With what you will save on wrong/frivolous equipment purchases, the training pays for itself and then some.

  4. Pingback: Open Enrollment Dates – brushbeater

Comments are closed.