In the late 90s a career change pulled me away from my ham radio hobby and friends.
Recently, I decided to get back on the air. I still have no time and my antenna trees are now gone so I decided to build a mobile station featuring my cage antenna as well as high power in my sub-compact, computer dependent, plastic-mold, 2011 Honda Civic. High power? What could go wrong?
This is my current mobile setup for 75 meters: I’ve gotten 5-9 reports running under 5 watts with this.
here I am setup for 160 meters – notice the denser wound coil
The station currently consists of a dash-mounted Yaesu FT817ND QRP radio along with a desktop legal limit amplifier constructed by W6PQL in the trunk. The amplifier requires a single 50 volt D.C. source. That source is 4 12-volt batteries charged from the automotive 12-volt system by way of a voltage converter. The single voltage source aspect and the over-design (my typical operating is 700-800 watts) is what led me to select this amplifier.
Batteries and electronics live in a group 27 size battery box also in the trunk. A suction-mounted “pod” powers the amplifier on and off while indicating voltage and current. A 3KW cross needle SWR meter is included. A separate meter pair monitors voltage and current consumed from the 12 car system.
Here is the dash
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