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Official Colorado HAM and cheese thread

Discussion in 'Colorado' started by Stig, Apr 18, 2016.

  1. Apr 21, 2016 at 4:38 PM
    #61
    Btnewman

    Btnewman Benjamin Newman

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    Custom body work/damage ARB rear locker Bumpers Shocks Other parts Tires and Rims Air tank fully plumbed into truck "Golf ball mod"
    This little piggy needs to go to market, and get a better truck mount radio before I will be able reach across the mountains... Any recommendations for an El cheapo unit?
     
  2. Apr 21, 2016 at 5:07 PM
    #62
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    @Btnewman Icom IC-2300, or Yaesu FT-2900, or Kenwood TM-281a are all sub $200 mobile 2M rigs. They all sound great, and they're all 65w or more on high power.

    Unfortunately none of those three have a detachable face, so if that's important to you, you should look at the Yaesu FT-7900r or Icom ID-880.
     
  3. Apr 21, 2016 at 5:34 PM
    #63
    ebbs15

    ebbs15 Lord Winchester

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    When getting into mobile HAM... what are the things that really matter? for example, I know with CB 108" whip is the perfect antenna for CB, that the actual CB plays little in how much range/reception you have.

    it seems like HAM is completely different. and I see short antennas, long antennas, I'm guessing it has a lot to do with what band you use most... but is there a "jack of all trades" length?

    I see @Lars specifically mentioned those radio's are all 65W or more... so I'm assuming that's important, but when looking I see many expensive HAM's that operate at 50W... and the little HT's 5w-8w... how big a difference does 1w make?

    I've kicked my study'n into over drive (just downloaded an audiobook since I have a 30min commute to/from work... and a lot of work to do in my garage)

    I want to start small, but I also don't want to feel like I need to upgrade in a couple months.
     
    pop.tremuloides likes this.
  4. Apr 21, 2016 at 5:58 PM
    #64
    NotRed

    NotRed Well-Known Member

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    Jimbow
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    KM6ANH here in SoCal.

    Got my license back in March, now need to figure out how to program my radio. Bought a Baofeng BF-F8HP, which is the 8 watt version of the UV-5 series, along with a remote mic, 12v battery adapter and magnet mount antenna. Supposedly this model also has a better rubber ducky as well. The radio itself is like $65.00 and mag mount only about $20 if I remember right.
     
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  5. Apr 21, 2016 at 7:03 PM
    #65
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    You're exactly right about the band playing a big role in antenna length. CB is in the 11M band (11 Meters!) which is why an almost 9' long antenna (1/4 wave at 11m) is an ideal antenna. Anything with a coil is mechanically shortened, or electrically lengthened (Laymen's explanation).

    Chances are you're going to either have a 2m radio. or a dual band 2m/70cm radio in your truck. Antennas run the gambit from under 19" total length (1/4 wave on 2m) to more than 50" long. The length here is directly related to how much gain the antenna produces. Something like a comet SBB-5 is an example of what I consider a perfect "jack of all trades" antenna for 2m & 70cm. It has enough mechanical length to hear well, is a sturdy physical design, and it has a little gain, without being overly long.

    Believe it or not I spend most of the time with my radios on Low power (5w) It's when I'm way out in the middle of nowhere, not talking to people close by that I turn the power up. I admit to almost never using the middle power settings. it's either low or high. (5 or 50... 5 or 65 depending on radio.) Your studying will eventually explain s-units, but don't worry about it for now.

    Simplex (truck to truck without a repeater) power can make a big difference.


    A "good" (big three) mobile, with a good antenna will take you a LONG way.
    HTs are an inexpensive, but limited/limiting way to get into the hobby. However everyone should have at least one HT for when they're not in the truck.

    HTs also work great for spotters to communicate with each other and/or with the driver. Provided everyone is licensed. :)
     
  6. Apr 21, 2016 at 7:04 PM
    #66
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    the BF-F8HP is what I was thinking about sending to the first person to post their certificate of successful licensing. :) Accessories are on the recipient.
     
    Stig [OP] and odomandr like this.
  7. Apr 22, 2016 at 5:06 AM
    #67
    ebbs15

    ebbs15 Lord Winchester

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    Thanks for taking the time to reply, I feel like I've discovered a passion of yours! lol

    I run a 108" whip for CB, though I'll probably shorten it after I get my HAM, so I'm not overly concerned about length. course the 108" whip is inexpensive and extremely durable so I don't REALLY have to worry about hitting it on shit... other than the "DOING" sound LOL.

    Is there any concern I need to pay attention to as far as mounting? I'm looking at mounting my antennas about 2' apart side to side, but both on the front hoop of my bed rack (basically even with front of the bed side to side, and one center behind the driver, the other centered behind the passenger.)
     
  8. Apr 22, 2016 at 6:22 AM
    #68
    CO MTN Steve

    CO MTN Steve Well-Known Member

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    Lifted, Armored, needs more lights.
    Army here, Probably not an issue but you don't want to let it touch any overhead wires. Once watched fireworks display when HUMVEE in front of my contacted overhead wire and it turned into the 4th of July and that Sincgars radio was literally toasted.

    @Lars would you go NMO type for antenna? Not sure if these antennas are easier to ground then the CB ones.
     
  9. Apr 22, 2016 at 6:32 AM
    #69
    Kirov099

    Kirov099 Member

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    2m Ham Radio
    I'm not sure about mounting multiple antennas next to each other, but I know with one, you should try to place it on as large, flat, and level surface as possible (mine is on the roof) for better transmission and reception. Maybe someone with more knowledge will chip in.
     
  10. Apr 22, 2016 at 6:39 AM
    #70
    odomandr

    odomandr Well-Known Member

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    I would not put them close. If they were I sure would choose one or the other and only power one at a time.

    I run an nmo mount poorly grounded on a relentless hood hinge bracket and have not had an issue. Sure it could be better located but I think it suffices just fine
     
  11. Apr 22, 2016 at 6:49 AM
    #71
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    Try to keep similar band antennas at least 1/2 wave length apart. (the two 2m antennas for example are 38", which is too close, but the best I could do.) The 11m CB to 2m ham won't be an issue.

    [​IMG]

    I have one UHF mounted VHF/UHF antenna connected to my Icom IC-706 MK.IIG, The other three (two 1/4 wave 2m, and one 1/4 wave 70cm) are all NMO Mount.

    My HF Antenna, and CB antenna (Technically also HF...) are 3/8" 24 thread.

    See photo and explanation above.

    [​IMG]

    Top of the roof is best. Avoid long gaps between the base of the antenna, and significant steel structure. (Causes capacitance) Lots more to consider, but middle of the roof is best. If you've got a significant bed rack, that'll work. It'll work better if you connect the bed rack to the chassis with 1" wide braided copper straps at all four corners. (Making the rack part of the chassis electrically.)
     
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  12. Apr 22, 2016 at 7:12 AM
    #72
    CO MTN Steve

    CO MTN Steve Well-Known Member

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    Did you drill your roof or Antenna's are just not connected up?
     
  13. Apr 22, 2016 at 9:36 AM
    #73
    Btnewman

    Btnewman Benjamin Newman

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    Custom body work/damage ARB rear locker Bumpers Shocks Other parts Tires and Rims Air tank fully plumbed into truck "Golf ball mod"
    Thank you! A removable face is very appealing. But trying not to be too picky to start, also which frequencies are more people on for "chewing the rag" and what antennas would be a good inexpensive place to start?
     
  14. Apr 22, 2016 at 1:48 PM
    #74
    Lars

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    Yes.
    3x 3/4" holes drilled through the roof.
     
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  15. Apr 22, 2016 at 3:52 PM
    #75
    ebbs15

    ebbs15 Lord Winchester

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    So I noticed your antenna's are in a line down the middle... is there a reason behind that? my rack IS pretty substantial, and I have a metal bed, do I still need those grounding straps at all 4 corners?
    IMG_20160417_165844.jpg
     
  16. Apr 23, 2016 at 8:30 AM
    #76
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    mounting antennas near the edges changes the radiation pattern. More signal will go toward the direction with the most metal. So an antenna in the back passenger's corner will radiate far better toward the driver's nose, than toward the rear passenger's. Down the middle of the roof keeps it pretty close to even, or as good as it's going to get anyway.

    Second bonus is the touchless car wash we have out by us (I use to knock most of the crap off after wheeling, before taking my own hose to the car.) has a wand that rotates around the truck.... it doesn't go right over the middle of the roof, and as a result the antennas don't have to be removed for me to run the truck through that machine. :)
     
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  17. Apr 23, 2016 at 10:07 AM
    #77
    teamhypoxia

    teamhypoxia MichelinMan

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    Passed.

    Posted first.

    Beat Davis.
    :bananadance:
     
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  18. Apr 23, 2016 at 10:08 AM
    #78
    odomandr

    odomandr Well-Known Member

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    Gotta show the paper to prove it
     
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  19. Apr 23, 2016 at 10:28 AM
    #79
    Lars

    Lars Radio Active

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    Yes.
    congrats, but @odomandr is right, need to see the paper with a date AFTER April 18th to prove it.
     
  20. Apr 23, 2016 at 10:48 AM
    #80
    teamhypoxia

    teamhypoxia MichelinMan

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