1. Are you a current member with account or password issues?

    Please visit following page for more information

    Dismiss Notice

I think I'll start EDCing a ham radio ...

Discussion in 'Electronic Devices' started by speedmaster, Jun 24, 2011.

  1. boof

    boof Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    60
    no kidding... my biggest issue is that alot of functions are a three step process. not something you want to deal with if you are in a hurry. pre programing what you want is essential it would seem. The case was just something I stumbled upon. I don't even know the maker but it just happen to fit everything perfectly. the vx-7 and vx-8 are almost identical in size as well.
     
  2. Kripto

    Kripto Evil Sid

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,019
    Likes Received:
    7,879
    I'm guessing that in Tokyo, you're hearing the C.A.R.L.A. Repeater network, linked to either IRLP (internet radio linking project) or Echolink.. The 900MHz system is NC9RS (http://users.innercite.com/kj6ko/page8.html) but there are IRLP and Echolink repeaters on the NC9RS system.. So it very well could be.

    Send me an email (linked in my sig) and we could try and set up a sched! (or at least try and figure out if those systems are linked) .. The CARLA system is interesting in that depending on the PL tone you send, you can either talk to the local repeater, or the whole network. With IRLP, you can "dial" into a repeater by using DTMF and punching in the remote repeater you want to work.

    Another interesting thing that happened over there was that shortly after the quake, the Cesium Clock began to fail.. Either because of the ambient radiation, or the fact that they had to evacuate the site.. Either way, when the terrestrial time is unpredictable, services become more difficult to support.. Like GSM/CDMA etc, all of which rely heavily on time.
     
  3. Kripto

    Kripto Evil Sid

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,019
    Likes Received:
    7,879
    One of the greatest problems with most ham radios and especially the Yaesu radios is the difficulty in programming.. Yaesu even changed their menu system between the VX5, VX7, VX8 systems so you really need to either keep the cheat card, memorize the manual, or carry a laptop and programming cable (RT Systems makes software/cables for most radios)..

    One of the reasons I like the Kenwood and Icom radios so much is that they are simple to program, and in the case of the new TH-D72, you can use any Mini USB cable and don't need an expensive 3rd party cable (sometimes >$50 for the cable w/o the software)... Kenwood supplies the programming software free to download on their site. (Amateur is free, the commercial costs, but it fairly inexpensive)
     
  4. niagaratac

    niagaratac Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Feb 20, 2010
    Messages:
    60
    Likes Received:
    0
    What to look for in a UHF

    Apart from higher end Walkies from Motorola and my kayak VHF a Standard Horizon HX751 which I use all the time, as part of my BOB I too am interested in either a mobile CB or UHF.

    This would be a piece dropped in BOB and only out to occasionally charged.

    What is value point to spend money on this understanding its not a regular use but emergency only not EDC item?

    Is this to cheap even though its got a 5w output? I know its not bet quality I got what that is.

    http://cgi.ebay.com/TG-UV2-Dual-Band-radio-Earpiece-for-vx-8gr-TG-UV-NEW-/250837942471?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item3a671b40c7
     
  5. CatherineM
    • In Omnia Paratus

    CatherineM Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2011
    Messages:
    3,949
    Likes Received:
    8,380
    I have a handheld 40 channel CB. I got this flexible antenna thing that goes over the pull out metal one, and it really increases the range. If I want to go even farther, I pull out the 3ft. long metal antenna with the flexible still attached. It looks pretty silly, but makes for a crazy long range.
     
  6. dimeotane

    dimeotane Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jun 13, 2010
    Messages:
    210
    Likes Received:
    29
    I'd imagine that for an EDC handheld Ham radio to be really useful in a disaster you'd need to have it run on AA batteries or have a way to charge it even when the power goes out.

    Also what's the range that a 2 meter ham would have if repeaters were offline due to power outage?
     
  7. bigfoot

    bigfoot Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2006
    Messages:
    2,804
    Likes Received:
    1,311
    About line of sight, more or less...
     
  8. Kripto

    Kripto Evil Sid

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,019
    Likes Received:
    7,879
    I'd not use or rely upon AA batteries to power a Ham Radio for any length of time.. The AA packs cause the radios to reduce power to about 1W which doesn't really get you very far.. They are really best for listening only.. That being said, I've got a number of SLA (Sealed Lead Acid) batteries kicking around (12V 1.5AH, 5AH, 12AH, and 18AH) that I keep charged.. I can plug my HT into one of those, get full 5W for WEEKS :) I also have a solar panel that will charge them while in use as well.. So if the $h!t really hits the fan, I'm covered... Besides, most of the repeaters around here have massive battery banks/solar/generators to keep them running indefinitely.. (The 1989 earthquake got a lot of people thinking about that sort of thing)

    As for LOS, different bands deal with LOS differently.. For example, 2M tends to do VERY well, but 70CM doesn't... 70CM does better in cities where it can reflect off of buildings and get knife-edge propagation effects.. 1.2GHz works VERY well, and is very good for most average use because the noise floor is so low.. (Most of the noise is at 2.4 and up) ..

    I wouldn't rely upon CB for much in a city, but outside in the burbs/rural areas it's VERY useful because if nothing else the truckers still use it. (That's about all who do anymore)
     
  9. boof

    boof Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Aug 13, 2006
    Messages:
    170
    Likes Received:
    60
    still cant transmit yet. I have my tech for the US but not Japan yet. After reading the fine print so to speak I realized that I would be much better off getting my general license due to the increase in bands and modes and then apply for the Japanese license. It takes up to 2 months and it cost about 60$ a shot so I held off until I get my general license. Plan to take the next test august 13th. So it could be all the way to October before I can transmit from here. But when that time comes Ill drop you a note for sure. Hindsight being 20/20 I should have just studied for my general and tech at the same time and taken them together.
     
  10. CatherineM
    • In Omnia Paratus

    CatherineM Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Jun 24, 2011
    Messages:
    3,949
    Likes Received:
    8,380
    My dad was a radio man in WW2. He started in the Air Corps, and then went over to the OSS when they needed more radio guys. He used a collapsible antenna that was basically like a long stereo wire that got hung in the trees, and a bicycle type crank that powered the radio. He talked about how hard it was to use the telegraph key while pedaling, so usually got one of the locals to run the generator. The set up was very small because they had to move everytime they used it. I wonder how hard that would be to recreate.
     
  11. Finnigan

    Finnigan Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 20, 2009
    Messages:
    377
    Likes Received:
    48
    Actually not that difficult at all to recreate. You could easily purchase a foot crank dynamo, a small trail radio and a wire antenna, but you might pay about $1000 for the whole station. You could also make most of it yourself much cheaper with a little patience and research.

    Also, just a point of note, I have an old 2 meter HT I use to talk to my local repeater. I am probably 15 miles away from it. I run it on AA's and have it on the 5W setting. Now the repeater antenna is on a water tower which helps. I have also used the same HT hooked to a mobile antenna in my wife's car and hit the same repeater from probably more like 25 miles away.
     
  12. bigfoot

    bigfoot Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2006
    Messages:
    2,804
    Likes Received:
    1,311
    Returning to this thread as I just picked up a Yaesu VX-3R. Neat little radio, but first one had to be returned due to not powering up, even with the battery fully charged. I guess that explains why some reviews have cited poor quality control on the VX-3Rs.

    Second one seems to be working okay so far. For urban use and throwing in an EDC bag or pocket, I am impressed. Another bonus is that it takes common digital camera batteries. Saves some greenbacks over the OEM batteries for spares.

    This wouldn't be my first choice for the backcountry or serious traveling, but for around town or a disaster kit it lets you stay in touch and keep up with info in an emergency.
     
  13. chaosmagnet
    • GITD Manix 2XL Owner
    • Sponsor - Home Craftsman
    • In Omnia Paratus

    chaosmagnet Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 13, 2008
    Messages:
    1,513
    Likes Received:
    868
    I recently started becoming more active on local repeaters, and bought a new HT. I chose the Kenwood TH-F6A, in no small part due to my having some old Kenwood accessories that I wanted to continue using. The Yaesu VX-8R was a close second choice due to being rugged and waterproof, but in the end I didn't want to learn a new way to operate them. My new Kenwood works almost the same as my old Kenwood. I've had it for a week and it's been great.
     
  14. Kripto

    Kripto Evil Sid

    Joined:
    Nov 25, 2008
    Messages:
    3,019
    Likes Received:
    7,879
    The Kenwood TH-F6A is probably one of the most useful radios out there for hams. It's receive is VERY wide, the signal rejection is very good, and it's a small package. If they were to ever update it, I think the only thing they'd really have to do is add Stereo FM. (It already does AM/SW)

    I got a TH-D72 as an upgrade from the TH-D7 (still have the D7) They're great APRS radios..
     
  15. bigfoot

    bigfoot Loaded Pockets

    Joined:
    Apr 4, 2006
    Messages:
    2,804
    Likes Received:
    1,311
    Yup, great choice on that TH-F6A. Had one years ago and it's amazing that they are still selling them. Shows you what a good product they have!