yaesu ft-1900r portable go box

Discussion in 'VHF/UHF - 50Mhz and Beyond' started by KK4QGN, Sep 2, 2014.

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  1. KK4QGN

    KK4QGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I am working on making a 2m portable packet station, it will definitely have the following:
    steel ammo can (go box shell)
    signalink usb (for digital modes)
    sony vaio mini (to enable digital modes)
    yaeus ft-1900r (radio)
    homebrew 2m 5/8ths wave groundplane antenna (so I wont need a mast)
    anderson powerpole connectors (for ease of switching between batteries and power supply while at home)
    cigarette lghter outlet (to power netbook without an inverter)

    My radio draws 11 amps at full power transmit and .7 amps receive. I need some suggestions for man portable battery options that can last 24 hours at full power with 70/30 rx/tx ratio
     
  2. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    What the radio draws isn't all the current required. What about the computer, which needs not only its own power but a bit more to power the Signalink via USB?

    I'd put it all together, run it from a power supply with an ammeter, and see what total system drain is including "everything," then figure a 40% duty cycle.

    Maybe it's 13A at 12Vdc for everything. At 40% D/C this would be 5.2AH. To last 24 hours would be ~125AH. That's a lot.

    An AGM sealed 12V battery that might be capable of that is a Group 30H product with a 110AH rating based on a 20-hour rate. Typically 67 lbs weight:

    https://www.1000bulbs.com/pdf/upg-sla-brochure.pdf
     
  3. K0RGR

    K0RGR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    What kind of packet are you trying to do? If it can be done via APRS, there are some much more workable solutions around. APRSDroid runs on Android tablets, and you can build an interface to connect a radio to an Android tablet device. The Baofeng UV5R will work for this, because you need a radio with a VOX - the Android doesn't have a way to do PTT. For slightly more money, you can get a Bluetooth TNC from Mobilinkd. This provides the packet data and the interface between the Android or a Windows computer with Bluetooth and any radio. http://www.mobilinkd.com/

    The tablet, TNC and radio would all have internal batteries and should run for an extended period. You can get a 3.8 A/hr battery for the UV5R, which I have never run down yet. This will work if APRS messaging will work for you. If you're trying to do WINLINK or something else, probably not.

    There are reasons I declare my pickup truck to be my 'go' kit, and this is one of them. My 'go' kit includes a powerful generator, a heater, an air conditioner, a stable radio platform, a place to attach and support my antennas, and many other nice features.
     
  4. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Piker.

    [​IMG]

    There's a go-kit. It has three bedrooms, two bathrooms, living room with 60" television and wet bar, full kitchen and laundry (washing machine and dryer), and gets almost 5 mpg on flat roads.:eek:
     
  5. KK4QGN

    KK4QGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I am intending to use my go box to access WL2K via a 2m node about 25-30 miles as the crow flies from my house. My kit would have to be able to be carried. :cool:
    From my mag mount quarterwave I can hit repeaters about 50-100 miles away.
    my netbook can run for 8-12 hours with the wifi switch turned off. :)
    Also no smart phone or tablet and the signlink usb runs off the power from the computers usb port.:cool:
    also I don't drive so pickup for a go box is out of the question. :(
    I am open to alternative energy solutions but most generators are to bulky though my ec for ares has one and uses it for field day and 24+ hour bicycle races and foot races. :cool:
     
  6. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    But your original post said "24 hours," not 8-12, and you were including a power port for the computer; as such, you must include that consumption in the overall calculation.
    True, but in my comments I included that. The Signalink does consume power (from the USB port), and that power has to come from somewhere. It's about five watts. Not much, but a lot more than zero.

    The problem is trying to run the rig, and probably the computer also (with the Winlink attached and being powered) for 24 hours without a recharge, and having a 30% transmitter on time as per your original post. That really does take a very substantial battery, as I posted. A 110AH AGM isn't very expensive nor very large, but it weighs 67 lbs.

    If you can run the "rig" only on low power (5W or less), turn off its LCD backlight, keep its volume turned down to zero (that part should be a given, with the Winlink), you might find you can get away with maybe 5A for that instead of 11A on TX, and that would reduce the battery requirement quite a lot.
     
  7. K5GHS

    K5GHS Ham Member QRZ Page

    One thing to keep in mind as well is the fact you'll have to be able to not only "hit" the packet network you're trying to connect to, but you will have to be able to hear it.

    So how far are you going to be from it? If its not far, 5W should more than suffice. Its different if you're going to be a digipeater on a hilltop.

    You should only need enough power to get into the nearest node, as well as be able to hear it. So 30 miles...clear shot....what about a yagi of some sort? I know you don't want to have to haul around a pole, but if its line of sight you should only need a little stand?

    There is a reason why my packet node at home runs 25W. Its on a larger battery and has a float charger on it. Like repeaters, they are designed to do the heavy lifting for you. You just have to be able to make the trip to it, and hear it, of course :)
     
  8. KK4QGN

    KK4QGN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I mostly run my rig at 25 watts for long hops that equates to 7A and 5A puts me at 10 watts with 4A at 5 watts. Of the wl2k nodes one has an analog repeater nearby that I frequently use, and can get into the analog portion with 5 watts on my baofeng UV5R, but it only barely makes the trip, 10 watts does well and gets in full quieting and sorry but I am new to the concept of portable radio go boxes. I see the sense in a yagi uda antenna and I have seen where some operators mount them on camera tripods. The netbook draws about 2 amps of power for charging and operation, so here is the thought as I understand it put netbook into powersaver mode turn brightness to minimum, turn off wifi switch, turn backlight on radio off, use qrp level transmit, a yagi or other gain antenna, nd turn the volume off on my radio to conserve power, if I missed anything please tell me and if not can you give suggestions for batteries I am trying to keep my station light, compact and foot mobile (if possible)
     
  9. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    It depends how long you expect it to run!

    Your original post said "24 hours," and that's a long time on battery power.

    For 24 hours based on the updated requirement, you'd need about a 60AH battery, which still won't fit in a suitcase...it's a 30-35 lb battery for an AGM or SLA.

    You might be able to assemble a LiPo pack that can do this "lighter," but those require specialized charging systems.

    The battery pack for a laptop is LiPo typically and weighs about 2 lbs to provide about 30W of power for a few hours. You need more than that. You probably need about 40-50W of power for 24 hours, based on the OP and the updated specification for running lower power. That's equivalent to about 6x-7x the power of a laptop battery pack...or about 12-14 lbs if you can pull it off and don't mind building or buying the correct charger for it.
     
  10. AG6QR

    AG6QR Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I'd definitely consider a gain antenna on a mast in order to lower power requirements and save battery cost and weight. If you're only going to run a short time, then it's probably cheaper and lighter weight to use high power into a simple antenna. But if you want to extend your run time, it's cheaper and lighter weight to use low power into a more efficient antenna. It's always a tradeoff, the cost and weight of batteries vs. the cost and weight of antenna systems. You'll have to run your own numbers to figure out the best solution for your needs.
     
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