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  • newbie to HAM need advice.

    hurricane Francis knocked out the phones and cell service. I had no comms with my family or my wife who had to work. Weve decided to get licensed and purchase radios. I was looking at the Yaesu vx-150 as reccomended by Amishbill. I know range depends on a lot of circumstances but how do I find out an estimated range? No mountains (florida) and not much steel and concrete in the way.

    [ September 12, 2004, 16:17: Message edited by: LoneGunman ]

  • #2
    well how far from your house to your wifes job ?
    good thing about ham radio , you can added a beam antenna to add range or you can add amplifer legally to add range.
    our ham repater never went down during hurricane andrew and ran on solar power for weeks afterward.

    three ways to get more range.
    add hight to antenna
    use a yaqi more elments the better
    add a amplifer.
    "He who feels no pride in his ancestors is unworthy to be remembered by his
    descendants" Major David French Boyd, 9th Louisiana Infantry, Confederate States army

    <br />\"may your trails be crooked,winding,lonesome,dangerous,leading to the most amazing view.<br />may your mountains rise into and above the clouds\"<br /> e.a.

    Comment


    • #3
      LoneGunman.. MM had excellent points but I'd like to recommend a backup battery for your rig. A 12 volt car battery will go a LONG time on an HT and is an easy addition to have at home. If you are able to take another step you might consider a decent mobile rig. (my choice is the Yaesu 1500) They're small, up to 50 watts out, and can serve as a great base unit as well.
      Welcome to Ham Radio, enjoy...
      de JW in "Down East" Maine...

      Comment


      • #4
        Originally posted by mosbysmen:
        well how far from your house to your wifes job ?
        good thing about ham radio , you can added a beam antenna to add range or you can add amplifer legally to add range.
        our ham repater never went down during hurricane andrew and ran on solar power for weeks afterward.

        three ways to get more range.
        add hight to antenna
        use a yaqi more elments the better
        add a amplifer.
        Wife is probably 3 miles tops.

        Comment


        • #5
          you should be able to do 2 meter simplex (not using a repeater ) easy at 3 miles
          you could use a vertical or a 3 elment beam at those ranges..
          get her a decent anntena on her car..
          you can even get a magentic mount antenna and put it on a steel cookie sheet and use it inside..
          "He who feels no pride in his ancestors is unworthy to be remembered by his
          descendants" Major David French Boyd, 9th Louisiana Infantry, Confederate States army

          <br />\"may your trails be crooked,winding,lonesome,dangerous,leading to the most amazing view.<br />may your mountains rise into and above the clouds\"<br /> e.a.

          Comment


          • #6
            All good advise.

            Icom makes a higher power mobile, the 75watt V8000. It would only work properly if both of you had that much power. it wouldn't do much good if you could hear her, but she couldn't hear you, or the other way around.

            A mag mount on a vehicle (or any good metalic ground plane) will greatly enhance the range of a handheld. I like the cookie sheet idea above. Just make sure it's an iron based sheet and not an aluminum or other alloy based sheet... the magnets don't stick so well to those.

            How much foliage (trees, shrubbery, etc) between your locations? Wet leaves do a remarkable job of reducing radio range.
            Killing for the sake of honor is no longer allowed in our decadent society<br /> more\'s the pity, as it would greatly improve manners.<br />- - - - -<br /><a href=\"http://www.cloud9photography.us/\" target=\"_blank\">Airplane Pictures</a><br /><a href=\"http://crankylabs.com/gallery\" target=\"_blank\">Cranky Labs Image Repository</a><br /><a href=\"http://www.a-human-right.com/\" target=\"_blank\">A Human Right</a><br /><a href=\"http://www.olegvolk.net\" target=\"_blank\">Oleg Volk Photography</a><br />- - - - -<br />I\'m Amish Bill, and I approved this message.

            Comment


            • #7
              I would also look at the ICOM t-90 hand held. It's small but has 5.5 watts power on high and tough as nails. I dropped mine on concrete and the case did not even get a scratch. The above recommendations are all very good. If you can get a dual band mobile for 2 meters and 440, you could set up a personal repeater with plenty of power. If you can't get a beam up, try to find a Ringo Ranger vertical. I live 70 miles away from a repeater in my state and with 100 watts I can get into it every time. Just remember that your antenna, regardless of polarization, must have gain to be effective in the scenario you are talking about. And this is especially important for mobile antennas. Comet and Diamond make some great mobile antennas , Larsen does as well.

              73,

              RBL

              Comment


              • #8
                Heres a site that offers an easy to build antenna for two meters. I have operated with a very similar design for 12+ years with excellent results. There are several variations on this design. Do a google search for "Copper Cactus", "J-Pole" for other design ideas.
                73...de..JW...

                http://www.tcars.org/elmer/jpole.html

                Comment


                • #9
                  jw,
                  i have built a least 8 of those things.
                  usally give them away to new hams..
                  they work great.
                  i take a lenth of chainlink fence top rail and electrical tape the copper cactus to it and stick it up in the air ,quick and fast tower
                  "He who feels no pride in his ancestors is unworthy to be remembered by his
                  descendants" Major David French Boyd, 9th Louisiana Infantry, Confederate States army

                  <br />\"may your trails be crooked,winding,lonesome,dangerous,leading to the most amazing view.<br />may your mountains rise into and above the clouds\"<br /> e.a.

                  Comment

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