Mobile HF set up

Discussion in 'On the Road' started by K7OYZ, Jul 25, 2017.

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  1. W6ELH

    W6ELH Ham Member QRZ Page

    Allan-

    Interesting, and thank you. Yes, I have certainly "spent the money." I'm running a Little Tarheel screwdriver with the optional longer whip. I tune it manually, and know how to do so. It is certainly not the best possible mobile antenna, but I had to balance cost, ease of installation and the all-important "spousal tolerance" factor. This is the same antenna which was working so well when band conditions were better.

    What has changed is not only propagation, but the loss of effective use of the 10-meter band. This is just my experience, but when 10 meters was active it was an extremely rare occasion to toss out a CQ and NOT receive an answer. Moreso, tuning up and down the band during prime hours would bring the sound of many operators calling CQ and seeking contacts. Perhaps this was due to it being the primary HF phone band for active new techs, but this charateristic simply doesn't exist on the 40 or 75-meter bands.

    I seldom hear CQ calls on those bands (my primary mobile bands), and my CQ calls are very, very rarely answered. There are always a bushel basket of fellows lined up to log in with a net, but those fellows seem to have no desire whatsoever to strike up a conversation with someone out of their groups. I suppose they are like the fabled Boston ladies and their hats - they don't make new contacts, they simply have skeds with their cronies. And if that is their personal joy in HF radio, more power to them!

    No, I never pulled the mobile HF rig from my Jeep, and now it lives in a new Ford F-150. I've been making many cross-country trips of late, and despite calling CQ for 20 minutes at a time off and on, I make only one or two contacts per trip. I don't really expect much from a 100-watt rig and a compromise antenna on the 75-meter band, but I do wish there was more activity on 40-meters. If, as you say, Old Sol is beginning to be a little friendlier to us, I hope to see that situation improve. Cheers... Jim W6ELH
     
  2. WJ4HCP

    WJ4HCP Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I will have to park somewhere to use my HF rig. Do I leave the car running the whole time or can I run off the battery for a short time?
     
  3. WD5GWY

    WD5GWY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Better to leave your car running. The battery should hold up for a while. But, if it drops down much, the radio might shutdown. Or, worse, if your battery isn't fairly new, you might not be able to start your car.
    What little gas you might save, won't be worth the aggravation of having to get a jump start.
    James
    WD5GWY
     
    K0UO and WD5IKX like this.
  4. KI5KT

    KI5KT Ham Member QRZ Page

    A very simple setup I use on occasion, and and that provides a very challenging operation, is my Xeigu G90 (20 watts out max) and an MFJ single band antenna and mag mount. Easy in/easy out. Even with 20 watts, I've talked all around the country. And the surprise from distant stations when they learn I'm running 20 watts mobile is well worth it. With this setup, you can easily just plug the radio into the cigarette lighter (if equipped!), making the in/out easy-peasy. Can't do that with a 100 watt rig!
     
    DG8AE likes this.

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