Best Portable Ham Radio Battery Setup

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by K7JSG, Sep 17, 2021.

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  1. K7JSG

    K7JSG Ham Member QRZ Page

    I created a blog post and video to help others determine the best battery setup for ham radio to use in your Portable Ham Radio Operations and Ham Radio Emergency Communications. I hope you enjoy it and can learn from it.

    Getting Started in Portable Ham Radio
    When I first got starting in portable ham radio doing ARRL Field Day I used Lead Acid Batteries with a Solar Panel. It was hard lugging around a couple of 50-70 pound batteries so I could do my ham radio operation.

    Now I use LiFePO4 batteries for all of my portable ham radio operations which mostly includes POTA activations. Portable Ham Radio Battery Setup.png

    Read more:
    KC7ZXY, KJ7CNZ, KX4O and 14 others like this.
  2. N4KIN

    N4KIN XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Enjoyed the video. Very informative! Thank you.
    K7JSG and M1WML like this.
  3. N9YB

    N9YB XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Is the solar controller RF quiet? Same question regarding the Bioenno AC inverter. Does it generate RF hash?


    And thank you for posting this video.
    M1WML likes this.
  4. W5NQH

    W5NQH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes it Quiet as a mouse, no Hash at all great for field Camping ect...
    KC7ZXY, N9YB and M1WML like this.
  5. K7JSG

    K7JSG Ham Member QRZ Page

    The Solar Control is quiet and produces no RF noise. The Bioenno Power Pack does create some RF noise.
    KC7ZXY, K0WLO, N9YB and 1 other person like this.
  6. M1WML

    M1WML Ham Member QRZ Page

    ;) great..
  7. AK5B

    AK5B XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Genasun MPPT solar charge controllers are also RF quiet, I use one with my 83-watt panel and Bioenno 30ah LiFePo... Great combination!
    NY9H, N9YB, M1WML and 1 other person like this.
  8. NA4A

    NA4A Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Victron Smart solar charge controller is also quiet.

    Attached Files:

    K7JSG, M1WML and AA5BK like this.
  9. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    Here's the 13.2V, 485Ah battery I built for field day and remote operations from my vehicle or RV. It only weighs about 90lbs. On my RV I also have 800W of solar panels, so with decent weather I can be remote indefinitely, limited only by my water supply.

    Go big or go home. :D

    KC7ZXY, K7JSG, M1WML and 4 others like this.
  10. N5MJ

    N5MJ QRZ Lifetime Member #98 Platinum Subscriber Life Member QRZ Page

    Nice carry-on. Would that be 485AH, or 485 CCA, as in a DC60-12 type?
    M1WML likes this.
  11. W2JKT

    W2JKT Ham Member QRZ Page

    It's 485Ah worth of LFP cells. Current is limited to 250A by the BMS.
    KC7ZXY and M1WML like this.
  12. K9RDU

    K9RDU Ham Member QRZ Page

    I came across a simple, cheap solution quite by accident. It's not the best or lightest, but it works well. Mobility scooter batteries. They are sealed, have a really long shelf life, 100ah and up can handle ridiculous discharge rates (often 300-400a off a single battery), cheap, replacements and chargers are available almost everywhere, and they can be had with a wide variety of terminals to suit your needs. I have had excellent luck with UPG batteries on Amazon.
    KC7ZXY, K7JSG, N7KO and 4 others like this.
  13. N7KO

    N7KO XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I do not have any pictures of my battery set up, but it consist of four pocket radio 9 volt batteries, I am guessing all four weigh about 6 ounces.
    QRP and CW using a Mountain Topper transceiver not much bigger than a deck of cards. This gives me more fun than a Fox has in a hen house.
    K7JSG and M1WML like this.
  14. K6OWF

    K6OWF Ham Member QRZ Page

    I just put together my first dual band station. I too is mobile and features a Bioenno 20AH battery with a 100 watt solar back up. The guys in the club want me to create a story about how I did it........ Is a video hard to do or is it easier making an e-book-let.... ? My design is a combination of some other stations. It's pretty neat if I must say so my self...... 73, Bob
    K7JSG and M1WML like this.
  15. AG6QR

    AG6QR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Based on what I've seen on YouTube, I believe it's very easy to fire up a camera and blather in a rambling fashion in front of it. A minimal-effort video probably takes less effort to produce than a minimal-effort text article.

    But I hope you set your quality standards above the bottom rung. It's quite a bit harder to produce a well-edited educational video that demonstrates something clearly, with a minimum of distractions.

    There are a lot of small things that can distract from video content: Poor lighting, echoing audio, vocal habits, cluttered background, poor script (or no script at all), etc.

    It's hard to produce and edit video well.

    It's also hard to write and edit text well. But at least there are far fewer technical issues with text; it's only a matter of getting the right words in the right order to make your point clear. When producing a video, you also must get the right words in the right order, but there are a host of other potential problems to trip you up, even after you get the words right.

    I believe written text is usually kinder to your audience, because it makes it easy for them to process the content at their own pace.

    There are subjects where the motion of the video aids understanding in a way that no text can. There are other subjects where text combined with photos can do the job very well. And there are subjects where no photos are needed.

    For an presentation on a battery for ham radio use, I'd go with text, plus a couple of photos.
    K7JSG, N7KO, KJ3X and 2 others like this.

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