+1 on "Just Do It!"
A certain other person in this thread from KCUB and I had a pleasurable flight to Gastonia several years ago to take the Technician exam. We both aced the test, but he finished before I did. The ham group, Gaston County Amateur Radio Society (GCARS) was absolutely great. A fellow with the group picked us up, and took us back to the airport after the exam. Great hospitality!
It is nice to have a few folks monitoring my flight in case of emergency. I have even noted "Transmitting APRS http://aprs.fi
call sign N194MH" when filing a flight plan. The fellow on the phone first said, "Uh?" But realized what I was talking about as soon as he said that. I figure, they'd find me 1000x quicker than with the ELT.
I have found that the original antenna that came with my Byonics Micro-Trak 8000FA to work great. The unit is mounted in the right wing tip with the antenna perpendicular to the wing rib, pointing outboard. I have tried another antenna but it caused my autopilot to surge on each transmission. I have an On/Off switch on the panel in case I want to fly in stealth mode.