Something To Look Forward To… Ham Radio Callsign Search

So recently, I wanted to start making some changes to the BBS and one of those was, I wanted to be able to do an FCC callsign lookup. I didn’t see any doors I could use, but then again, I wasn’t looking too hard. But I decided to do some research and here’s some info I discovered.

In order for me to be able to pull callsign lookup info from, I had to be a paid subscriber. OK, I can understand that. They get a ton of call sign requests from logging programs and other sites, as well as apps! And that is bandwidth and that costs money. So I get it.

So I looked at setting up my own database. I mean, the FCC Amateur Radio database is publicly available on the ULS website. I downloaded it. I started looking at it, and I whipped up some basic code to search the full database. But I still need to be able to get the updates and apply them to the full database. And there are about 5 different databases that make the complete database for lookups. Vanity calls, deaths and so forth. So that means a few more pieces of code.

But in the mean time, it IS working for basic lookups. There are a few hiccups, such as silent keys, Hams who have passed away, are not removed from the full database, so my code doesn’t take that into account. I learned this when I did a test search for a local ham and his name and another name popped up. As I dived into it, that’s when I discovered the original callsign’s owner, had passed and the 2nd person had applied for it as a vanity call.  OK, so I still have some work to do.

But as for right now, it works in a very simple way. I’ll post more on usage anything else that should be known, after I get it on the BBS and working. Expect to see it up and going in a few days. I still need to make screens and what not, and tweak the code to work within the Mystic BBS software.

I also will be trying to figure out a way to add foreign callsigns as well. I don’t know if that info is publicly available anywhere, but I guess, making it possible to have foreign hams who connect to the BBS, have a way to add themselves, then sure! It works for!

73. Rich, KB2MOB

2 thoughts on “Something To Look Forward To… Ham Radio Callsign Search”

  1. You mention applying periodic DB updates. Maybe it’s easier to re-pull and overwrite the entire data set on a cadence like once per month? Just an idea…

    1. I thought about that. But it still doesn’t take care of silent keys. And I’m not sure about vanity calls. I need to go through the rest of the files and see. But I put the finishing touches on the script so it runs in Mystic. Now I need to make it look nice to users. Some ANSI and such.

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