The story

Hi, I am Andy, amateur radio operator N2GSA.  Over 20 years ago I made a career change.  With my unusual and long hours and changing band conditions, I lost touch with my ham radio hobby and friends. When the time came I lost the trees that supported my wires it did not seem that big a loss.

Recently, I decided to return to the hobby.  Operating from home was not a reasonable option but I could build a modern version of my old effective mobile station.  Yes; I would build a new station in my sub-compact, computer dependent, plasti-mold, 2011 Honda Civic and, in addition, I would run high power.  What could go wrong?

here are some old antennas and other stuff


here is my current high power mobile station setup for 75 meters



The electronics

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 operates from a single source of 50 volts.  That source is a string of 4 12-volt batteries which are charged from the automotive 12-volt system by way of a voltage converter.  4 12-volt batteries create over 55 volts, but good info says the amp will be fine.  The single voltage source aspect and the “over-design” is what led me to select this amplifier.  Batteries, charger, relays and more live in a group 27 battery box -also in the trunk- which I think of as the service module.  All connections go to or thru the service module.  A dash suction-mounted “pod” switches the 50-volt system on and off while monitoring voltage and current usage.  The pod includes a 3KW cross needle MFJ remote sensor SWR meter.  A separate meter pair monitors the controlled current drain from the car itself.  Almost everything is connected to the trunk via cat 5/6 patch cords.  The cords are color coded to where they plug in.

Here is the dash.  My 12 volt meter panel even has a tiny remote control to dim or disable illumination.  The meter and illumination activates and deactivates to indicate charging or not.  Everything is very turn-key.  There are no real “dials” that need to be operated.  I can drive or I can works dials but not both at the same time.  This radio has 4 preset power levels and that is about all I change other than frequency.


About the antenna / antenna videos

Trunk installation

The making of the service module

More random pics


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