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Old 06-03-2009, 11:23 PM   #101
williaty
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I blocked my under-seat vents off on that side specifically so it couldn't blow hot air on the radio.
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Old 06-03-2009, 11:24 PM   #102
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Guess that might be an issue in the colder months. Noted.
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Old 06-04-2009, 01:09 AM   #103
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^^ I thought about that, but on the flip-side it will blow cool air on it in the summer...

I mounted the IC-208H under the driver's seat only because it fits and I don't have to extend the mic. I forgot how nice a freq-agile radio is.
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Old 06-04-2009, 01:10 AM   #104
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The trade off with the 208 is that the receiver is wider than a barn door
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Old 06-04-2009, 12:43 PM   #105
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williaty View Post
The trade off with the 208 is that the receiver is wider than a barn door
So is every multi-band hammy transceiver, which is why I haven't used them for years...but all the Motorola's in the world still won't help me change freqs on the fly. It's a trade-off. The Motorola that I use for work has to be there, so that radio will always be there. If I get serious about keeping a hammy radio in the car, I'll probably swap it out for something with less "extended receive" that doesn't go up to 1 GHz.
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Old 06-05-2009, 12:31 AM   #106
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Continuing saga...

Tonight I installed the Larsen NMO antenna (dead center on the roof as I could not live with a cruddy ground plane). I took the headliner all the way down to make sure I didn't drill into bracing and the NMO mount ended up in the dome light well so if anything goes wrong I can access it quickly. Also installed some sound deadening on the roof panels just for good measure since I had some laying around. Left some space around the front in case I decide to do a rally air vent; won't have to scrape off the deadening material.

Drilled the NMO hole with a UniBit and cleaned it up using a Dremel fitted with a small sanding disc. I taped a plastic bag underneath to catch all the shavings. The coax runs under the center stiffener to the right side B pillar and then down to the rig. I also ran the remote face panel control cable and got that hooked up.

Still no 12v power and I need to terminate the coax, but that's what tomorrow's for. I powered the rig and the face panel controlled everything just fine. The volume is also very loud so I should escape using an external speaker.

Pictures:









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Old 06-05-2009, 12:36 AM   #107
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That's starting to look oddly familiar...

I was AMAZED how loud the rain on the windshield got after I put the RAAMMat on the roof during my antenna install.
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Old 06-05-2009, 12:40 AM   #108
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I fought it pretty hard, but everything I read said that cars will do some weird stuff to propagation patterns and dead center roof is the best of a bad situation. I still haven't tried to escape the garage. It might just rip right off. :-)

Interesting! I have always been amazed how loud the roof is and seeing the dearth of sound deadening up there pretty much explains it. The car is a snare drum.
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Old 06-05-2009, 12:44 AM   #109
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I think I mentioned it in an email to you, but when you hit that antenna on the garage door the first time, it's going to sound like you're turning the car into a convertible. However horrible I make it sound in text, in person it'll be worse. As far as I can tell, after a year of in and out, it's not hurting the antenna, mount, or roof.
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Old 06-05-2009, 12:46 AM   #110
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I guess I'll find out in the morning!
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Old 06-06-2009, 10:28 PM   #111
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It's not so bad going out, but it's pretty noisy coming in.

Got everything finished finally and spent a good 1.5 hours last night talking with some of the old dudes on one of the local repeaters. I dropped the transceiver down to 5 watts and I was crystal clear into the repeater which was 12 or so miles away.



Kind of nice to be back after all these years. Thanks for the final push!
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Old 06-07-2009, 10:56 PM   #112
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Subscribed! My set-ups coming in the mail. I'll be running a magnet mount in the center of my wagon's roof until I know I want it there, then it will be drilled in.
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Old 06-08-2009, 03:01 AM   #113
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Looks good, Sonic.

Once you go NMO, you never go back.
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Old 06-10-2009, 02:05 PM   #114
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I have an IC-2100 in the car now, in the glovebox.
I'm looking to "upgrade" to a radio that I can remote mount.
I was going to mount it on the side of the "shifter" area on the passenger side(don't know what to call it), but I don't want to drill holes in the plastic.

I have been debating going NMO, instead of the mag mount that I run now, but don't have the courage to drill a hole in my roof. Maybe I'll take it to the place we take our fire trucks to get lights installed and tell them to just do the drilling/mount the antenna.
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Old 06-10-2009, 02:23 PM   #115
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Drilling was a daunting thought, but in terms of difficulty was not at all. Getting the headliner down took much more time. I started with a very small drill after marking the center of the roof using diagonal straight edges to find the center. Once I stepped up a few times I let the Unibit take over and went slow.

Here are a couple more pics taken out at Voice Of America's Bethany Relay Station:



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Old 06-10-2009, 02:56 PM   #116
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I like the pic down the... aisle of whatever that is.
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Old 06-10-2009, 03:04 PM   #117
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whats the point?
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Old 06-10-2009, 03:24 PM   #118
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williaty View Post
I like the pic down the... aisle of whatever that is.
Thanks! Those are the antenna switches used at the Bethany Relay Station. All of the antennas are now gone, but in the early 90s when I first moved to the area you could still see them from the road. The crowning glory was a HUGE Sterba curtain that towered above everything.

The building itself (seen in the background) is still resplendent with a 1940s-1960s cold war look. I attended a club meeting there on Monday night and one of the guys took me through parts of it. It's way cool.

We will be running field day ops from the front lawn of the VOA HQ building later in the month.
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Old 06-10-2009, 03:28 PM   #119
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Ah, so it was basically the American equivalent of the Woodpecker?


Wait... that's where the region-8 bureau sorts QSL cards, isn't it?
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Old 06-10-2009, 03:42 PM   #120
SonicWRX
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Quote:
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Ah, so it was basically the American equivalent of the Woodpecker?


Wait... that's where the region-8 bureau sorts QSL cards, isn't it?
I think the Woodpecker was more of a radar whereas the VOA stations were propaganda broadcast centers.

And yes, I was in the bureau on Monday night; stacks and stacks of QSL cards from all over the world in little post office style cubby holes. I have also been in the W1AW bureau and though that one's larger they have the same look and feel.

Last edited by SonicWRX; 06-10-2009 at 03:43 PM. Reason: misspell
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Old 06-10-2009, 03:45 PM   #121
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Yeah, physical equivalent, not content equivalent.

We had the guy in charge of the 8-land bureau out to our club meeting a couple of months ago. Crazy amounts of cards!
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Old 06-10-2009, 04:03 PM   #122
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Quote:
Originally Posted by williaty View Post
Yeah, physical equivalent, not content equivalent.

Vastly different in scale, but yes. And same nefarious intent. :-)

Compare the Woodpecker to Bethany VOA
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Old 06-10-2009, 04:05 PM   #123
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Hmm... I wonder if I hooked that first one up to my wireless router if I could cover the whole US....
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Old 06-10-2009, 04:25 PM   #124
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Hmm... I wonder if I hooked that first one up to my wireless router if I could cover the whole US....
Might need to hack the power up a bit to excite that thing.

Speaking of long range wifi, when I bought my new house and before I moved I was searching for a way to extend my wifi about 1/2 mile and made some slotted waveguides. Turns out they won't burn through trees, but I still have them and will one day find a good use for them.
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Old 06-10-2009, 04:30 PM   #125
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My current project is to try to work up a car-portable repeater. I'm going to see if I can manage to put a 2m antenna up a couple of hundred feet on a kite or balloon. I've got kites that will hoist ~100lbs up several thousand feet. The feedline is going to be the only sticking point, I think.
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