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Thread: Portable communications box

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Central Florida
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    586

    Default Portable communications box

    Well, this looks lame compared to what Duplicity built back in 2010. It was far from what I wanted to build but I was in a rush. It only took a day to build it with everything already in the parts bin.
    My original desire was to build a portable comm box based on the BD-71 field switchboard box. Google "BD-71 Switchboard" for images. The reason I wanted to do this design was because I do a WWII Signal Corps living history display with a working switchboard wired out to EE-8 field phones. We usually camp when it is a whole weekend even so I figured I could hide my modern equipment in a closed switchboard box and play with it after the guests left. Unfortunately the front to back dimensions were not adequate to house the FT-859 and tuner as one assembly. Maybe down the road I will try again and use the remote head.

    This is a M548 40MM ammunition container. I used 1/2" plywood to mount the equipment on so that I can easily slide it out to service things.
    The assembly includes: Yaesu FT-857D with LTG YT-100 tuner, Uniden BCT15 scanner, 25A AC power supply, 14AH battery and a West mountain PWRgate 12V uninterruptible power system.
    There are coax connections on the side for HF, VHF/UHF and scanner antennas. There are 12VDC and 120/230VAC connectors on the side to feed power to the components. Also has cigarette lighter / USB outlets to power other items like a Windows tablet, mobile phone or ipod. I was also going to add LED lighting but ran out of time. That will be the next mod.

    BD-71 Switchboard


    M548 40MM ammunition container






  2. #2
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    Mar 2007
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    Default

    Wow, nice setup! Great job there!
    In a crazy world, it's the crazy man who can get by - and it's about to get cray-cray up in here.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Apr 2016
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    Default

    While it is not a big priority right now...I've been thinking about something similar using a Yaesu 857 with battery and a 13.8 volt power supply set up. Small tuner too. VHF/UHF/HF hook ups.

    Something for portable..on the go.

    Right now I am dependent on my FT 100 d in my pick up truck for portable operations. Four antennas....10 through 30 meters on the back bumper...on one side. 40 and 75 meters on the other side of the rear bumper. Magnetic mount dual band...2 meters/440 MHZ on the top of the cab and also a separate 6 meter magnetic mount.

    It looks like an antenna farm but it works ..and that is what matters to me.

    But have been thinking of such an boxed set up for portability.


    Thanks,
    Orangetom

  4. #4
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    Aug 2008
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    Montana
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    Default

    Nice!
    Good medicine in bad places

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
    Location
    Central Florida
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    Default

    I have a 40M hamstick in on the bumper of my '15 GMC pickup truck and other hamsticks in a PVC pipe attached underneath for when I want to swap out. I find the tuner will tune the 40M stick on every band so I rarely change out the antenna. I have an Icom IC-7000 in my '06 Jeep LJ with the AH-4 tuner. I still have to work out the ignition noise problem on the Jeep.

  6. #6
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    Nov 2009
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    East Tennessee
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    Default

    Nice cooms box. Really nice set up. A buddy of mine set up a HT, battery, & TNC in a .30 can and had similar connectors on it. We could set it up in a high remote area and have an instant digipeater to run APRS or Winlink 2000 from. Used a roll up J Pole for an antenna.
    That type set up is very handy for emergency use. And can be a lot of fun to play with as well.
    Greater love hath no man than this, That a man lay down his life for a friend.
    John 15:13

  7. #7
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Here's a guy who put together his own version of that (acknowledging the limitations of the GMRS-only format):

    The Ham-O-Can
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vr_rGJ8Rq5c

    He was flattered when someone undertook to produce a commercially available product along the same lines:

    Ham-O-Can Redux: The Operator G1 by Hardened Power Systems
    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=HhqWj8h12wo

    Operator G1 product page:
    https://www.portableuniversalpower.c...s/operator-g1/
    Last edited by bruss01; 09-13-2018 at 01:53 PM.
    In a crazy world, it's the crazy man who can get by - and it's about to get cray-cray up in here.

  8. #8
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    Mar 2007
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    I could have done much better but I was in a rush to get it done. I'm not quite happy with it and eventually I will rework the inside.
    At a minimum I want to make a face plate to hide all the stuff visible from the front. That will also keep things from falling in and getting lost in the wiring mess. That too needs to be cleaned up some.
    I originally I planned to have some LED lights just inside the opening to illuminate the area so I can see the notes I take at night. All this eventually ...

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 1969
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    Lake LBJ, Texas
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by alpmco View Post
    I could have done much better but I was in a rush to get it done. I'm not quite happy with it and eventually I will rework the inside.
    At a minimum I want to make a face plate to hide all the stuff visible from the front. That will also keep things from falling in and getting lost in the wiring mess. That too needs to be cleaned up some.
    I originally I planned to have some LED lights just inside the opening to illuminate the area so I can see the notes I take at night. All this eventually ...
    Very nice setup, but looks like something you could mod over and over and still find something else to do, similar to my Jeep CJ projects.
    Once on safari in deepest darkest Afganistan we ran out of Gin, and were compelled to survive on food and water for several days.


    I typically carry a flask of vodka for snakebites. I also carry a small snake.- W. C. Fields

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