2 meter handheld in car?

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by K4YND, Jan 7, 2010.

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  1. K4YND

    K4YND Ham Member QRZ Page

    Im a new ham and live in the metro Dc area. Dont think XYL will go for ant and rig mounted in and on car. Can I use a 5 watt handheld and effectively communicate on my daily 1 hour commute?

  2. KJ4PLT

    KJ4PLT Ham Member QRZ Page

    i do it every day but with a mag mount antenna. get a better antenna for the HT and you should be fine.
  3. KB4QAA

    KB4QAA XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes. You may have signal dropouts with more distant repeaters due to the antenna being inside. A small magmount antenna can improve your reception, and can be easily removed when you get to your destination.

    73, Bill
  4. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    If it's a normal passenger car, you can have a mag mount in the trunk. When you want to operate, just open the trunk and pull the antenna through the opening.

    Mag mounts have the downside that they can easily scratch the car. Be very careful to clean the magnet and the spot you want to attach it each time you move it.

    A more permanent trunk-lip mount is still visible but not much more so after you remove the antenna, and won't damage the car.

    As for using the HT - I'd get a Yaesu FT-7900, and throw the radio under the front seat. Then, I'd attach the removable control head to one of those 'bean-bag' devices people use for their GPS's. When not in use, stick the whole thing under the seat. My son does this with his FT-7800 and you don't know there's a radio present.

    Tell your wife if she won't let you do ham radio, you're going to take up another hobby, like sailing or hunting.
  5. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Why don't you try it, and then let us know how it worked??:)
  6. NE3R

    NE3R Ham Member QRZ Page

    Give it a try, but don't set your expectations high. It really depends on exactly where you are going. There are some good repeaters in the area, but there is also a lot of terrain and buildings to get in your way. I live across the river in Frederick, MD, a long drive but not to many air miles from Sterling.

    Maybe I'll run into you on the air. In Virginia I often use the 147.300, at home, mostly 147.06 T123 (neither of which will work well on an HT inside the car).

    73 de Joseph M. Durnal NE3R
  7. N9XR

    N9XR Ham Member QRZ Page

  8. W5HTW

    W5HTW Ham Member QRZ Page

    PETA, AFLAC, GEICO. Cavemen, unite.
  9. AK4MP

    AK4MP QRZ Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    If you decide to use a Mag mount or lip mount antenna with your HT, I would recommend getting a hand mic for your radio as well.
  10. AA3CS

    AA3CS Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I've done both, use an HT with a magmount and have a semi-permanently installed FT-7800. The HT works well from my home in Southern MD all the way into DC except for a couple of very low spots, the 7800, of course, works better with a lip mount 1/2 wave antenna. Give it a try, the worst that will happen is that it doesn't work as well as you'd like. If you go the route of getting a real VHF/UHF rig, velcro works well to hold things down to the carpet, you can't tell I have a rig in the car except for the antenna...

    73 - Chuck, AA3CS
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