Thursday, 31 March 2011


Got a 'Springer' CB antenna for the car. It's even in red to match the car.
Length 155cm, coil length 15cm, whip 136cm.
I thought I'd have to cut some off to use it on 29 MHz but when I tried it on a magmount it was resonant at 28.680 MHz, so it's just the right length to cover (UK) CB and the 10m ham band. Why such a high frequency? Maybe just where it is on the car or the magmount I used wasn't really big enough.

28 MHz is noisy, even when driving round, until you get about 100 metres away from the nearest house.

Friday, 11 March 2011

SWR plots for new car

Here are the 2m and 70cm SWR plots for the Nagoya NL-77B dual bander on the new car. This is with a small Sirio magmount towards the back of the car nearside. There is less than a metre between the dual bander and the broadcast antenna.
For some reason the Nagoya doesn't give a very good SWR on 145 MHz, this was the same on the old car and with a different magmount. It's under 2:1 though.
At UHF though, it's very good if a bit high in frequency, there aren't the usual reflections on the coax, this might be to do with the magmount and coax being quite new.

Saturday, 5 March 2011

New Car

Some photos of the new mobile set up in Vauxhall Meriva VXR. I've not put the APRS tracker in yet but that should be able to go back on its sticky mat.
Yaesu FT-8900 main unit on passenger side. CRT extension speaker.

FT-8900 front panel fixed to air vent using some old air fresheners and clothes pegs. The CD player will play MP3 discs.

Nagoya NL-77B 2m/70cm mobile antenna on magmount

Thursday, 3 March 2011

Kirkby Moor

Activated Kirkby Moor (SOTA G/LD-049) on Sunday 27th February.
Used Alinco handheld on 2m and Wouxun handheld on 4m, with Garex whip. Summit to Summit with Alex G7RNX/P who was on Cracoe Fell (SOTA G/NP-032).

Soldered a new PL-259 plug on my 2m/70cm antenna coax at home tonight, because the weight of the LMR400 coax had snapped the inside of the plug (the brown insulator bit). I only noticed when I unscrewed the plug and the centre pin stayed in the radio.

For testing serial port radio interfaces, try ComTest, which can be used to control the DTR and RTS lines on your serial port. The DOS/Windows MODE command is supposed to switch DTR and RTS but when I tried in in Windows XP, nothing happened.