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Ham Radio Q Codes

Updated on January 14, 2010

What are Q Codes and What do they Mean?

The Q code is a standardized collection of three-letter message encodings, all starting with the letter "Q", initially developed for commercial radiotelegraph communication, and later adopted by other radio services, especially amateur radio. Although Q codes were created when radio used Morse code exclusively, they continued to be employed after the introduction of voice transmissions. To avoid confusion, transmitter call signs have often been limited to restrict ones starting with "Q" or having an embedded three-letter Q sequence.

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Ham Radio Links - Other great amateur radio resources

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Standard Q-Signals or Codes

Day to day q-codes that hammers use.

QNC All net stations copy.

QND Net is directed.

QNE Entire net stand by.

QNF Net is free.

QNG Take over as net control station.

QNI Net stations report in.

QNM You are QRMing the net.

QNN Net control station is [call sign].

QNO Station is leaving the net.

QNP Unable to copy you.

QNS Following stations are in the net.

QNT I request permission to leave the net.

QNU The net has traffic for you.

QNX You are excused from the net

QNY Shift to another frequency.

QNZ Zero beat your signal with mine.

QRG Will you tell me my exact frequency?

QRH Does my frequency vary?

QRJ Are you receiving me badly?

QRK What is the intelligibility of my signals?

QRL Are you busy?

QRM Is my transmission being interfered with?

QRN Are you troubled by static?

QRO Shall I increase power?

QRP Shall I decrease power?

QRQ Shall I send faster?

QRS Shall I send more slowly?

Standard Q-Signals or Codes continued

QRT Shall I stop sending?

QRU Have you anything for me?

QRV Are you ready?

QRX When will you call me again?

QRY What is my turn?

QRZ Who is calling me?

QSA What is the strength of my signals?

QSB Are my signals fading?

QSD Is my keying defective?

QSG Shall I send messages?

QSK Can you hear between your signals?

QSL Can you acknowledge receipt?

QSM Shall I repeat the last message?

QSN Did you hear me?

QSO Can you communicate with me?

QSP Will you relay?

QST General call preceding a message.

QSU Shall I send or reply on this frequency?

QSW Will you send on this frequency?

QSX Will you listen?

QSY Shall I change frequency?

QSZ Shall I send each word more than once?

QTA Shall I cancel message?

QTB Do you agree with my counting of words?

QTC How many messages have you to send?

QTH What is your location?

QTR What is the correct time?

Ham on YouTube

Fun Q Codes

These are great for chatting!

OC - Old Chap

OM - Old Man

73 - Best Regards

88 - Hugs and Kisses

XYL - Wife

XL - Young Lady

Ham Shack - The room the radio is in

HI - Laugh in morse code

LID - Someone who is a poor operator

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    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Thanks! I can never remember these lol

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      The CB radios stands for citizen band radios, this is for the fact that citizen mostly used them for everyday purposes hence the name. This radio are often found in vehicles, these radios are attached to an antenna and usually powered by the vehicles battery. This is used to communicate with other vehicle which also have them installed. Usually we see this these devices on most 16 wheeler trucks.

      Caribbean Radio

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      One particular nice edge of use of a ham radio network at activities like this is that it is instantaneous several-to-various communications. If a little something comes up that Absolutely everyone may want to know about - they will - and promptly. With use of cell phones or other more compact networks (police use their frequencies, hearth works by using their frequencies, and so on.) all people may likely not get the concept at the comparable time. The drawback of a various-to-several network is that it can be disorganized. This is the place there is a acquire-acquire scenario with the ham radio community. Get radios here: cb radios for sale

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      Richard is Correct [ YL = young lady! ] why don't you change it, rather than mis-lead someone?

    • profile image

      anonymous 6 years ago

      @anonymous: You are absolutely correct. YL is young lady and XYL is an ex young lady (a wife)

    • optimus lm profile image

      optimus lm 7 years ago also has some q codes. You might want check it out to make sure you didn't miss any.

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      i'll bet most good operators were once "LID"'s but few good operators become LIDs

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      In fun Q Codes, the code for Young Lady should be YL not XL. No?.

    • profile image

      w8eeo 8 years ago

      A lot of great information about ham radio. Thank you for putting it together.

      Well done!!

    • profile image

      w8eeo 8 years ago

      Nice lens- provides a lot of information- I just started here a few days ago and thrilled to find other hams - zeke w8eeo

    • vk2dmh profile image

      vk2dmh 8 years ago

      It's a nice lens, Mandy. Its good to see more Ham Radio information here on Squidoo. There's one more abbreviation you might want to add to your list, and that is LID -- which refers to someone who is a poor operator!

    • Jonathan Jenkins profile image

      Jonathan Jenkins 8 years ago

      Good summary of the Q codes

      best wishes,

      Jon, G4LJW.

    • Jonathan Jenkins profile image

      Jonathan Jenkins 8 years ago

      Good summary of the Q codes

      best wishes,

      Jon, G4LJW.

    • PromptWriter profile image

      Moe Wood 9 years ago from Eastern Ontario

      Now I can figure out what my husband is yammering about. :) Thanks!

    • profile image

      anonymous 10 years ago

      This is great!!! I Like It!

    • dazzled lm profile image

      dazzled lm 10 years ago

      Nice lens with good information, Mandi.

    • profile image

      Cowriffic 11 years ago

      This was great, now I was able to figure out some of what my boyfriend was talking about and not look like an idiot!

    • dazzled lm profile image

      dazzled lm 11 years ago

      Great lens, Mandi! You've supplied a great deal of useful information, and your t-shirts and other ham radio stuff is great!

    • Mandi LM profile image

      Mandi LM 11 years ago

      Thanks for stopping by my lens! Hope you liked the info!