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Take Me to School - HAM Radio

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#81
RedRover

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I got my radio and supplies today! Yay! I will know tomorrow if I am able to goto South Cow Mountain... If not, maybe we can plan the antenna install at Tom's place? Sorry for being up in the air, but I won't know if my UT family is coming for the weekend until tomorrow.


No worries, David -- nice of Tom to offer up his space if SCM is a no-go for you.

-Jared

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#82
DavidW

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No worries, David -- nice of Tom to offer up his space if SCM is a no-go for you.

-Jared


For sure - Tom is the best! :)

I have the radio, antenna, GPS pack, and the microphone piece. Anything else I need? I'm not in a hurry if I can't goto SCM, just maybe sometime before the next outing? Whatever works best for you guys.
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2013 LR4 (Discovery 4)
Full-sized Baja roof rack, ladder, front skid plate, tail lamp guards, 18" Compomotive PD1880 wheels with 265/65R18 BF Goodrich A/T KO2 tires, Tactical 4x4 rock sliders with steps, gas tank and transfer case skid plates, ARB front bumper with WARN XD9000 winch, RIGID Dually off-road lights, Kaymar rear bumper with custom tire swing-away, and a bunch of other stuff.

#83
RedRover

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Jares i kinda figured. I had a couple thoughts/questions.. so if the antenna is bumper mounted but the highest point is say 6' above the roof is it any better/worse than a 6' antenna mounted to the roof at the back of the rig (same overall height above truck).

Second i was thinking of building a mastlike the one kaymar makes for my bumper when it arrives. I could then use it to raise the starting point of the antenna to a place closer to the top of the vehicle..

I just dont know if the starting point matters or just the overall max height above vehicle.


Hi Nick;

It's a fair question that I have never tested, but I would think that, by mounting an antenna that clears the roofline by 6 feet but is actually longer (length from bumper to roof+6ft.) you would be sending a huge portion of your radiated signal through the vehicle as an obstruction, whereas a 6 foot antenna with full clearance is able to radiate the maximum power you are providing it in a totally omnidirectional pattern over that smaller length of antenna.

Whether in real-world conditions it matters? I'd love to test it out sometime but I'll make my bets on the above.

-Jared

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#84
ndamico

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Jared your logic makes sense to me.

Since trail comms are often on on hilly terrain wouldnt 10 or 6 meter work better than 2?

Nick

2010 LR4 HSE-Lux/HD. Compos w/ Toyo Open County AT2 265/65R18, IIDTool, Baja Rack.

1995 RRC LWB.  3" RTE Lift/Bumpers, 7100SB Shocks, 255x85R16 Toyo MT's, Mantec Snorkel, Ashcroft Lockers/Axles/CV's/4.12 Gears, GBR Driveshafts & Thrust Bolts, LT230, QT Diff Guards, Voyager Rack, Winch, Sliders, Dual Batteries, ARB Twin Compressor, Kenwood D710G HAM Radio, Xantrex Inverter, Swing Away & Sliders.

 

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#85
TomOwen

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Higher the better. And if below the roofline, and now that you have a rack, all of that structure not only impedes the performance of the antenna, depending on proximity to the truck, can actually damage the output finals in the radio.
I had my HAM antenna (Diamond CR-27xx) mounted in the standard "rear tire carrier" location with the wind about midd window and the tip about 8" above the rack. Thinking this was suboptimal, I had it check by a few friends who do radio and related work for police cars etc... (needles to add they are HAMs) and he illustrated how this would potentially damage my radio. (antenna 4-6" from rack). I went with a Comet SB-1 18" rubber antenna on a mount I made along the side of my rack. It's a little more vulnerable (non-folding) but is fairly rugged and works perfectly. Given the close proximity of a convoy on the trail it is over-kill and when I need longer range (spaced out convoy on freeways or reaching from pits to net-control on Cow mountain, I can swap out the Comet for the Diamond.
While sometimes hilly, proximity is usually pretty close and 2m is a popular band departure beyond CB so integrating into other groups of HAMs (SCLR, etc...) is easier. my $.02 It's been a while since I originally tested for my license, are those bands covered in Technician license?


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#86
AdvRovr

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Bumping this since the Ham Cram is this Saturday. Does anyone want to play in the dirt afterwards? If not I think I'll ride up to save some gas. 


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#87
JFuller

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I do but I can't. Offered to help my brother in law with his trees after the class. Plus most of the good spots that were close to that location have been closed by the state. Super lame. See ya there. By the way. Who's bringing the doughnuts?

Edited by JFuller, 17 March 2015 - 11:22 AM.


#88
ndamico

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i have too much going on to play afterwards but i will be there.  got my VX-8DR the other day too


Nick

2010 LR4 HSE-Lux/HD. Compos w/ Toyo Open County AT2 265/65R18, IIDTool, Baja Rack.

1995 RRC LWB.  3" RTE Lift/Bumpers, 7100SB Shocks, 255x85R16 Toyo MT's, Mantec Snorkel, Ashcroft Lockers/Axles/CV's/4.12 Gears, GBR Driveshafts & Thrust Bolts, LT230, QT Diff Guards, Voyager Rack, Winch, Sliders, Dual Batteries, ARB Twin Compressor, Kenwood D710G HAM Radio, Xantrex Inverter, Swing Away & Sliders.

 

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#89
DHappel

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I'll be there but probably still jet lagged.
No new radios for me yet. I've sworn I won't buy anything until I've passed the test.


So....time to start shopping I guess. :)

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#90
RedRover

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I do but I can't. Offered to help my brother in law with his trees after the class. Plus most of the good spots that were close to that location have been closed by the state. Super lame. See ya there. By the way. Who's bringing the doughnuts?

 

Don't leave it up to Justin...  :rolleyes:   We were doughnut-less at Frank Raines last time... 

 

-Jared


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#91
GraemeWare

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Don't leave it up to Justin...  :rolleyes:   We were doughnut-less at Frank Raines last time... 

 

 

Jared,

 

Last time I think we'd eaten them by the time you got there ....

 

Graeme


  • erinw.rrc likes this

Graeme Ware -- San Carlos, CA

1990 Range Rover Classic - LT230 Transfer box, Warn winch, 2" lift, 235/85-16 Dunlop MUD Rovers, "Blue Submarine"
1996 Discovery 1 (R380 Manual Transmission, Ashcroft under-drive, RoverWare rear bumper, 33x12.5-15 BFG ATs) -- we call her "Katrina" -- Fordyce 7.5 mile survivor
1999 Discovery 2 (D1 CDL Linkage, 265/75-16 BFG A/T KO, RoverWare front and rear bumper)
1993 Jaguar XJS convertible; 1971 Triumph GT6; 1959 Morris Minor convertible
other assorted British pot metal ...


#92
DHappel

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Reviving this thread to talk mobile units.

 

Seems like the Yaesu FT-8800R is getting a lot of love.  However at almost $500 (plus whatever I spend on an antenna, mount, etc) I wonder if it isn't overkill for what I want/need.

 

Priorities as I see them (comments welcome)

remote mount option - I want to stash the radio under a seat or elsewhere and only have the mic and face plate to deal with at the dash

ease of use - I'm barely competent enough to turn the thing on much less use any of the features

cross band repeat - this seems like a great idea for when you're out of the truck using a HT and the driving motivator for the FT8800

 

Honestly, I don't think I'll ever do any actual radio stuff.  I'm not interested in anything but trail coms.  I know the cheapest route would simply be putting an external antenna on my Baufeng UV82, but I already have a space issue with where to put it when I'm on the trail and adding extra cabling to that (battery eliminator, antenna) would only complicate it so I'm leaning toward a permanent mount option. 

 

I'm not against spending the $$ on the FT8800 and I'm sure it would offer everything I could ever want should I eventually decide to get more into the radio thing.  I just wonder if I'm not going waaay overkill for my rudimentary needs.

 

I haven't done anything with my existing UV82...haven't even programed anything in memory.   I only ever use one channel, so what's to program?  I don't listen to anybody else, so no need to scan.  Really I'm using it as little more than an FRS radio.  Other than the cross band repeat function I don't even know what other features exist or could be desirable down the road.

 

Discuss...


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Don
'07 LR3 HSE/HD - slightly non-stock

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#93
GraemeWare

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Reviving this thread to talk mobile units.

 

Seems like the Yaesu FT-8800R is getting a lot of love.  However at almost $500 (plus whatever I spend on an antenna, mount, etc) I wonder if it isn't overkill for what I want/need.

 

Priorities as I see them (comments welcome)

remote mount option - I want to stash the radio under a seat or elsewhere and only have the mic and face plate to deal with at the dash

ease of use - I'm barely competent enough to turn the thing on much less use any of the features

cross band repeat - this seems like a great idea for when you're out of the truck using a HT and the driving motivator for the FT8800

 

Honestly, I don't think I'll ever do any actual radio stuff.  I'm not interested in anything but trail coms.  I know the cheapest route would simply be putting an external antenna on my Baufeng UV82, but I already have a space issue with where to put it when I'm on the trail and adding extra cabling to that (battery eliminator, antenna) would only complicate it so I'm leaning toward a permanent mount option. 

 

I'm not against spending the $$ on the FT8800 and I'm sure it would offer everything I could ever want should I eventually decide to get more into the radio thing.  I just wonder if I'm not going waaay overkill for my rudimentary needs.

 

I haven't done anything with my existing UV82...haven't even programed anything in memory.   I only ever use one channel, so what's to program?  I don't listen to anybody else, so no need to scan.  Really I'm using it as little more than an FRS radio.  Other than the cross band repeat function I don't even know what other features exist or could be desirable down the road.

 

Discuss...

 

Don,

 

I was in the same situation.  The FT2900 was what I came up with.  Has a lot of stuff on the mic to change functions (but no display).  Since I, like you, really only use it for NCLR stuff, 2M was all I needed.  After finding that I could reach from my dining room to various members in Oakland using just my Wouxun handheld connected to a good mag mount antenna on a cookie tray, I realized that the only thing I was missing was a little bit more power (like 75W of power for the FT2900).

 

I hunted for an offer on the FT2900 and got it when Yaesu had a mail-in rebate of (I think) $60.  They have a $40 offer currently.  With a list of $250, you can normally find it for $190, or even less.  Mine ended up costing me $130, but that would be $150 at the moment.

 

I could have paid more, but it didn't seem worthwhile for what I needed, and if I leave it in the truck and it gets stolen I'm not going to be crying myself to sleep.

 

(one more thing is you might find an old stock FT2800 which has almost all the same features, minus a few.  That would be sub $100 I expect)

 

Regards,

 

Graeme


Edited by GraemeWare, 22 March 2015 - 09:21 AM.

Graeme Ware -- San Carlos, CA

1990 Range Rover Classic - LT230 Transfer box, Warn winch, 2" lift, 235/85-16 Dunlop MUD Rovers, "Blue Submarine"
1996 Discovery 1 (R380 Manual Transmission, Ashcroft under-drive, RoverWare rear bumper, 33x12.5-15 BFG ATs) -- we call her "Katrina" -- Fordyce 7.5 mile survivor
1999 Discovery 2 (D1 CDL Linkage, 265/75-16 BFG A/T KO, RoverWare front and rear bumper)
1993 Jaguar XJS convertible; 1971 Triumph GT6; 1959 Morris Minor convertible
other assorted British pot metal ...


#94
psykokid

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I was just going to suggest the same thing.. A good single band radio like a Yaesu FT-2900R or an Icom IC-2300H would be great for trail comms. Plus they both have more output power than the FT-8800R on 2M.

 

The main reason why I got my ticket was for trail comms. Sure when you first get your radio you monitor all the local repeaters and see what you can hear. After the honeymoon was over though the only time I use my radio is when on trail with the group..



#95
RedRover

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Reviving this thread to talk mobile units.

 

Seems like the Yaesu FT-8800R is getting a lot of love.  However at almost $500 (plus whatever I spend on an antenna, mount, etc) I wonder if it isn't overkill for what I want/need.

 

Priorities as I see them (comments welcome)

remote mount option - I want to stash the radio under a seat or elsewhere and only have the mic and face plate to deal with at the dash

ease of use - I'm barely competent enough to turn the thing on much less use any of the features

cross band repeat - this seems like a great idea for when you're out of the truck using a HT and the driving motivator for the FT8800

 

Honestly, I don't think I'll ever do any actual radio stuff.  I'm not interested in anything but trail coms.  I know the cheapest route would simply be putting an external antenna on my Baufeng UV82, but I already have a space issue with where to put it when I'm on the trail and adding extra cabling to that (battery eliminator, antenna) would only complicate it so I'm leaning toward a permanent mount option. 

 

I'm not against spending the $$ on the FT8800 and I'm sure it would offer everything I could ever want should I eventually decide to get more into the radio thing.  I just wonder if I'm not going waaay overkill for my rudimentary needs.

 

I haven't done anything with my existing UV82...haven't even programed anything in memory.   I only ever use one channel, so what's to program?  I don't listen to anybody else, so no need to scan.  Really I'm using it as little more than an FRS radio.  Other than the cross band repeat function I don't even know what other features exist or could be desirable down the road.

 

Discuss...

 

Hm... I am not the guy to discuss managing overkill, since I have a TS-2000X mounted in the rear of RedRover.

 

There are a ton of great mobile radios -- best thing to do is browse Ham Radio Outlet's site, then go look up the radio over in eHam.net reviews.  Look for radios that have the feature set you want.  

 

The only comment I'll make about getting a radio that other rigs have, like the FT-8800R (and I've probably mentioned it before on the forum) -- people are likely to be able to help troubleshoot, reset/restart, reload the repeater database, carry spare parts, etc...

 

Other option is just become proficient with whatever radio you get.   ;)


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Jared (KJ6MQI)
1992 Range Rover Classic - Portofino Red
2012 Range Rover HSE - Santorini Black

 


#96
TomOwen

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Another option that may fit the needs expressed is the DavidW route. A good HT (Yaesu, Icon... NOT baofeng, woxun) is a good tool to have in your bag. 5w HT on external 12v power. With an external antenna and extension MIC is more than enough for 99% of trail comm scenarios...

See what you like, see what you use, see what falls short, etc... And decide if you want/need to upgrade to a mobile rig. If you do, then you have a great HT, that you are familiar with using, for your go-bag or on your hip when out I truck.

Either way you should learn to use it and program it in the field... As for standardizing on 8800 or something else, there are guys and gals in the group that can help

My $0.02

:lr:
Tom Owen
NCLR Vice President

__________________________________________________________________________
'96 Discovery I, 122k, 5sp, RoverWare Bumper, Winch, ARB, BFGs, LEDs, OMEs, SD, etc...

On a slow transition from Carpool to Trail with the help of this Club

Y2K Toyota Land Cruiser Series 100
; Cooper A/T3s, PacaSport, glitter, hair-bows, jolly ranchers and juice box stains...

@TomOwen


#97
ndamico

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Im in the same boat.. i see yaesu doesnt make a 2m 75w unit with cross band. They sre 50w max. Assuming you have equally good antennas hoq much more distance will that extra 25w buy you?

I was also looking at the ftm400dr. I like the aprs for the wife but i dont know if it will work reliably in the hills. I see you can also use it to locate other aprs yaesu guys while out on the trail. That sounds cool but i dont know how many other guys have radios that support that feature.

Edited by ndamico, 23 March 2015 - 10:54 AM.

Nick

2010 LR4 HSE-Lux/HD. Compos w/ Toyo Open County AT2 265/65R18, IIDTool, Baja Rack.

1995 RRC LWB.  3" RTE Lift/Bumpers, 7100SB Shocks, 255x85R16 Toyo MT's, Mantec Snorkel, Ashcroft Lockers/Axles/CV's/4.12 Gears, GBR Driveshafts & Thrust Bolts, LT230, QT Diff Guards, Voyager Rack, Winch, Sliders, Dual Batteries, ARB Twin Compressor, Kenwood D710G HAM Radio, Xantrex Inverter, Swing Away & Sliders.

 

My Rover Pics


#98
RedRover

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Im in the same boat.. i see yaesu doesnt make a 2m 75w unit with cross band. They sre 50w max. Assuming you have equally good antennas hoq much more distance will that extra 25w buy you?

I was also looking at the ftm400dr. I like the aprs for the wife but i dont know if it will work reliably in the hills. I see you can also use it to locate other aprs yaesu guys while out on the trail. That sounds cool but i dont know how many other guys have radios that support that feature.

 

Hey Nick -- the extra 25W is not going to be audibly discernible via the human ear... it's only a ∆ of about 1.3dB.

 

I've not used that radio (FTM400DR) but I have seen it at HRO... the touch screen looked interesting.  That radio has only been out since Dayton 2013/2014 (I think), which is somewhat unusual, since most amateur radios have a long lifespan before they revamp the model (the current TS-2000X that I use was released in 2001!!)

 

Jared


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#99
DHappel

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Hmmmm....I might have to stop by the HRO in Oakland this week and just sort of window-shop.  My biggest issue right now is figuring out how I want to mount the thing.  While I think I'd be fine with just a 2m, the idea of a remote face plate is appealing and those seem to only be available on dual band radios.  And of course having the same unit others are running could be handy given I doubt I'll ever use it enough to really get proficient.


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Don
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'96 D1 - even more non-stock


#100
GraemeWare

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... the extra 25W is not going to be audibly discernible via the human ear... it's only a ∆ of about 1.3dB.

 

Jared,

 

This is FM, so the human ear won't hear any difference between one power and another as long as the modulation depth is the same .... we're not using SSB here ....

 

Graeme


Graeme Ware -- San Carlos, CA

1990 Range Rover Classic - LT230 Transfer box, Warn winch, 2" lift, 235/85-16 Dunlop MUD Rovers, "Blue Submarine"
1996 Discovery 1 (R380 Manual Transmission, Ashcroft under-drive, RoverWare rear bumper, 33x12.5-15 BFG ATs) -- we call her "Katrina" -- Fordyce 7.5 mile survivor
1999 Discovery 2 (D1 CDL Linkage, 265/75-16 BFG A/T KO, RoverWare front and rear bumper)
1993 Jaguar XJS convertible; 1971 Triumph GT6; 1959 Morris Minor convertible
other assorted British pot metal ...





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