Portable radio setup (1 Viewer)

retrofive

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Short story; don't currently have a truck and just driving a company car I can't really modify.

I have a Yaesu 8800 I pulled from the 80 when I sold it. My thoughts are getting a Pelican case (or likewise). Mounting the radio in there with a foldable/collapsible antenna, external Anderson type connector to plug into a car/truck battery and possibly a small battery inside the case for short run time if not plugged in.

I know I have seen similar but my search-foo is weak today.

Thoughts on a setup like this? Additional components needed in said case? Basically a tidy bug out radio setup. (Yes I have several mobile handhelds but reaching out would be nice in remote areas)
 

e9999

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I did test some batteries for a planned setup like that. To my surprise, some LiFeP ones (from a well known maker), did shut down when emitting, likely due to the BMS not handling the sudden draw. That was not good and disappointing for my plans.
 

retrofive

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I did test some batteries for a planned setup like that. To my surprise, some LiFeP ones (from a well known maker), did shut down when emitting, likely due to the BMS not handling the sudden draw. That was not good and disappointing for my plans.
I was wondering about that. I figured transmit could/would have a good draw.

Side comment:
I have a couple ammo cans; but think some type of poly may be lighter. I don't need bullet proof and or water proof. More along the lines toss in the car like a suite case and use at base camp type scenario.
 

e9999

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and those were good size batteries that could nominally handle more current than I would expect. Had something to do with a foible of the BMS I think. Anyway, you may want to check any battery you plan to use for issues like that.

I have a poly ammo can with all battery connectors, voltmeter etc built-in. I thought I'd add a radio in there too, but was concerned about heat with a battery crammed in there and no air circulation, so I think I'd want to build something where the radio is stored in the can for transport but placed outside for use. I'm doing something similar with a charge controller for a solar panel actually.
 

retrofive

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Ya, as far as heat, the close setup would be for transport. During operation lid open type dealio.

Although like some radios the 8800 has a detachable face; could easily hard mount the head unit inside and make a quick little jack external so it could be closed minus the antenna, power and face unit. :hmm:

Sorry for the lack of direction. Sort of just talking this through in my head and typing here.

I would love to do solar at some point. Figure I would start with the base setup and functionality before stepping into that.
 
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So, back of the envelope calc... the 8800 is 50W TX, so ~5A at 12V with 100% efficiency; at a more realistic 40% efficiency it'll be probably a draw somewhere between 12.5A and 15A. Cig lighter would be close, but probably to enough for extended TX. What's the fuse rating for that radio? That'd be probably a good guidance for the power needed to run that radio.
 

retrofive

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So, back of the envelope calc... the 8800 is 50W TX, so ~5A at 12V with 100% efficiency; at a more realistic 40% efficiency it'll be probably a draw somewhere between 12.5A and 15A. Cig lighter would be close, but probably to enough for extended TX. What's the fuse rating for that radio? That'd be probably a good guidance for the power needed to run that radio.
Good call. I need to dig it up out of storage. Easy enough to look at white papers for it.
I’m just musing in my head what have around in bins I could put to a fun use.
Need to dig through my electric stuff.
 
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RC car battery packs are rated for high current withdraw. A 14.4V pack and a charger that runs off of 12V DC and 120V AC . This and your radio can be set up in a backpack with appropriate antennas/wires. When you are monitoring the radio your charger will provide plenty of current to keep up/ahead of the draw. When you transmit and more curren is needed it will draw from the battery. Cigarette lighter in the car can run a charger, but will not provide a good stable connection or current amount to support a HAM radio. If you try to plug into cigarrette lighter without a battery inline/backup the plug will come loose and cut your radio/reboot reset to defaults etc. at the worst moment.
 

retrofive

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RC car battery packs are rated for high current withdraw. A 14.4V pack and a charger that runs off of 12V DC and 120V AC . This and your radio can be set up in a backpack with appropriate antennas/wires. When you are monitoring the radio your charger will provide plenty of current to keep up/ahead of the draw. When you transmit and more curren is needed it will draw from the battery. Cigarette lighter in the car can run a charger, but will not provide a good stable connection or current amount to support a HAM radio. If you try to plug into cigarrette lighter without a battery inline/backup the plug will come loose and cut your radio/reboot reset to defaults etc. at the worst moment.
Good info! I actually do have a nice multi type battery RC charger that can be ran off the battery terminals or 120.
 
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How much do you need? Not much, if you're willing to put alligator clips on it and simplify the antenna. This is a Kenwood TM-281a 65watt, 2m mobile radio and 5/8 wave whip that I've used to talk across Phoenix on various repeaters. The radio eventually made it into a HAMmo-can radio box, and when I want to use it, I pull the 12v leads out and clip them to a car battery. The whole concept of small batteries within the case doesn't work out well in reality.

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Also, recognize that a full power mobile rig will buzz a lot of electronics in your home; the first time you key up, you'll get a sense of what's shielded and what's not. I was surprised, to be honest. Mobile radio can be a lot of fun, but I still have a blast with a 5.5w radio and a home made J-pole when I hike. You don't need much, just stuff that works well together.
 

e9999

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^ well, I would not call a LA car battery a portable system exactly. This is the sort of application where a LiFeP battery does wonders OTOH. Something like a 30Ah would last for quite a while for typical ham use, and is a breeze to move around. (As long as the BMS doesn't mess with you, as stated above.)
 
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If you are talking CB or higher frequency you can put your small battery pack and charger in a book back with a 6' cigarette lighter plug to keep it charged Perhaps 10feet of Coax and magnet mount antenna. It's easy to throw it on the passenger floor, plug in the cigarette lider and put your magnet mount on the roof. If you are UHF or can find a telescoping antenna you can do VHF and have it all fit in the bag. Hard to do CB or HF and have your antenna fit in a bag. Telescoping antennas are not really durable.
 

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