VHF/UHF mobile radio installation

I recently updated my POV and decided to install a Yaesu FT-8800 dual band radio. The main radio is located in a tray covered by a lid in the trunk of the vehicle and the control unit sits between the front two seats and is secured still with a french zipper. The current antenna for the 2M band is a stainless steel whip and spring attached to a magnet mount. This is a temporary setup until I decide on a permanent dual band (VHF/UHF) make and model.

Radio set up in the trunk.
Temporary 2M antenna
Job done!


An approaching Grand Solar Minimum is gaining evermore support. Even NASA appears to be on-board, with their recent SC25 prediction — though, predictably, they stay clear of the implications.

NASA’s forecast for the next solar cycle (25) reveals it will be the weakest of the last 200 years.

The maximum of this next cycle — measured in terms of sunspot number, a standard measure of solar activity level — could be 30 to 50% lower than the most recent one”.

The agency’s results show that the next cycle will start in 2020 and reach its maximum in 2025: For further info see this link.

The mother of all antenna couplers: Harris RF-601A.

The mother of all antenna couplers the Harris RF-601A. Ruggedly designed to meet any weather conditions head-on, this 1 kW manual/automatic hf antenna coupler is solidly constructed out of die-cast aluminum. Its internal is cavity pressurized with inert nitrogen gas. Frequency coverage is from 2 to 30MHz and electrically couples the transmitter with practically any antenna. A perfect match with the rugged Comrod marine fiberglass constructed marine antenna.

LP-100A Digital Vector Wattmeter

Last week I received my LP-100A digital vector watt meter as an addition to my shack. This meter is a state of the art essential for accurate SWR-Watt readings, various testing, calibrations etc. The true peak reading functions are also spectacular. For more info see inserted link above.

Ergonomics and the Radio Room.

I re-organized my radio room after designing a new simple console with the ergonomics in mind. The purpose was to achieve a more user friendly operating environment. Some minor changes are still pending additional gear. The PSU will be placed under the desk plate, the speakers on vertical stands and a dual monitor bracket will be installed freeing up space on the top shelf. Special cable organizers are installed on the rear of the console with all wires and cables (coax, electrical and audio) stacked with ferrite cores to eliminate any RF signals in the shack. The console also includes a “star grounding” system connection points on the rear side as well.

TF3XO´s Radio Room

Jetstream switching power supply review.


Recently I came across W5KUB´s review on switching power supplies on Amateur Radio Roundtable. In this case he reviewed the 30 AMP Jetstream JTPS32MAB 12V switching power supply. These units are sold for a fair price compared to many others on the market. I decided on this one and it´s on order since the review implied the unit is very quite while running. I will post my personal review later down the road.