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Author: Subject: Hook (and others) get in this thread and help me with a Baja comms package
Jack Swords
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[*] posted on 6-28-2018 at 08:05 AM


A 5/8 wavelength antenna typically has a gain factor of about 2 dB due to the directivity of the radiation. That excludes losses from coaxial connectors and feedlines. The 2 dB factor is a power (watt) multiplier. For a 5 watt output radio that would result in approximately 10 watts effective radiated power (ERP). The simple rubber ducky or tiny whip does not increase ERP, but reduces it. 5/8 wavelength antennas for mobile use are common and much more effective than a simple whip antenna. If you need greater distance on VHF freqs look at the antenna.

Jack, N1IY
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[*] posted on 6-28-2018 at 10:56 AM


Thanks everyone for the antenna advise -- I will go bigger and see what that does. I broadcast around 150.xxx MHz.



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[*] posted on 6-28-2018 at 07:37 PM


Got the Baofeng today. There are a million videos on YouTube for "programming" the thing. Some are like 1.5hrs long, lol. They talk about using a cable to do it with your laptop. None of the videos were helpful.

If anyone wants to set one up fast, here's the video you want. It can be done in 2 mins.

https://youtu.be/akS6Fq3yVLc


[Edited on 9-13-2018 by JZ]




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DouglasP
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[*] posted on 9-13-2018 at 02:08 PM


Great info above. It makes my head hurt!

I am looking at a set up for my Can Am UTV. I am looking at the PCI intercom and radio package.

https://www.pciraceradios.com/collections/trax-intercom-pack...

It's a lot of money, but it is pretty much plug and play and gives me all of the things I'm looking for.
My concern though is the two way radio. Is 50 amps enough? It doesn't have the MARS/CAP mod, is that necessary?
If I go with another radio it won't interface with the intercom, which will suck, the radio they include has been modded to integrate into their system.

Thanks for any help in advanced. Type slow, I've hit my head a few times :?:




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Pacifico
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[*] posted on 9-13-2018 at 05:57 PM


Quote: Originally posted by DouglasP  
Great info above. It makes my head hurt!

I am looking at a set up for my Can Am UTV. I am looking at the PCI intercom and radio package.

https://www.pciraceradios.com/collections/trax-intercom-pack...

It's a lot of money, but it is pretty much plug and play and gives me all of the things I'm looking for.
My concern though is the two way radio. Is 50 amps enough? It doesn't have the MARS/CAP mod, is that necessary?
If I go with another radio it won't interface with the intercom, which will suck, the radio they include has been modded to integrate into their system.

Thanks for any help in advanced. Type slow, I've hit my head a few times :?:


Douglas, You can't go wrong with the PCI set-ups. They are tried and true. You mentioned 50 amps, I think you meant 50 watts...and yes, it is enough. You can also get 60 watt (Rugged Radios) and 110 watt (Kenwood) radios https://www.pciraceradios.com/collections/radios/products/ke... . Check out Rugged Radios also. Their 60 watt radio has a feature where you can easily program in your own channel/frequency which can be very helpful during races where there is a lot of traffic and all regular channels are busy. https://www.ruggedradios.com/index.php?main_page=special_cat...

I have always been a PCI guy, but I recently bought the 60 watt Rugged Radio because a friend raved about it. I really like it!




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PaulW
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[*] posted on 9-13-2018 at 07:17 PM


Hi Douglas,
The PCI setup is very good. That PCI setup is very spendy and is way overkill for most of us. You can do a lot cheaper and still have the option for the PCI intercom for two people.
I suggest Yaesu FT2980 with 4 power levels and 75W max. Get the Mars mod to allow using all the other bands, also the programming SW, and handbook (Giga parts). Less than $300 for a great radio setup. Add the following: This radio will work fine with the PCI Intercom for 2 persons Like the 4 link pro setup with helmet or headphone option. Tip: Make sure you understand the connection wiring for the radio to intercom to headset/helmet.
For an open UTV I would think a helmet with air pumper would be most desirable. Or skip the heasdset/helmet and just turn up the radio volume.
The last thing needed is a 5/8 antenna with NMO mount and some Coax.
With the above you can communicate with just about anybody due to the long range capability and multitude of the bands.
Check with Rugged Radios for comparable setup.
Get a magnetic mike mount like Vava.
Can your CanAm handle 75 watts?
======= =
Quote: Originally posted by DouglasP  
Great info above. It makes my head hurt!

I am looking at a set up for my Can Am UTV. I am looking at the PCI intercom and radio package.

https://www.pciraceradios.com/collections/trax-intercom-pack...

It's a lot of money, but it is pretty much plug and play and gives me all of the things I'm looking for.
My concern though is the two way radio. Is 50 amps enough? It doesn't have the MARS/CAP mod, is that necessary?
If I go with another radio it won't interface with the intercom, which will suck, the radio they include has been modded to integrate into their system.

Thanks for any help in advanced. Type slow, I've hit my head a few times :?:
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[*] posted on 9-13-2018 at 07:34 PM


Quote: Originally posted by DouglasP  
Great info above. It makes my head hurt!

I am looking at a set up for my Can Am UTV. I am looking at the PCI intercom and radio package.

https://www.pciraceradios.com/collections/trax-intercom-pack...

It's a lot of money, but it is pretty much plug and play and gives me all of the things I'm looking for.
My concern though is the two way radio. Is 50 amps enough? It doesn't have the MARS/CAP mod, is that necessary?
If I go with another radio it won't interface with the intercom, which will suck, the radio they include has been modded to integrate into their system.

Thanks for any help in advanced. Type slow, I've hit my head a few times :?:


$2,200, come on man. Read through the thread. Look what PaulW wrote. Don't p!ss your money away.

We built the config for you. Just add the intercom/headset pieces.


[Edited on 9-14-2018 by JZ]




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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 04:55 AM


$314 bucks from giga parts shipped to my door.
Yaesu ft2980r - 80 watts
Modded for full tx and rx 144-174 mhz
Compatible 2m antennae
NMO mount
Coax
Software and programming cord

Will try to get it installed this weekend
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 05:58 AM


The best plan for radios is pick the model you like and do a search for the lowest price. The result is I have used Giga, Red dog, and Ebay. These sellers like mail order and have very low margins. And they do not target the high end racer community, and do not offer expensive at the race support (and do not locate their facility in places like CA). Your buddies do support just as good IMO, just ask for help. Same drill is applicable for CB as well as VHF.
The latest offerings in the HAM world have greatly improved and approach the high end commercial versions for VHF/2 meter. The HAM issue is a single band which means they all need the mod to include all the bands. It is still unknown is if the HAM units have the durability of the high end commercial units, but in my experience I have had no such issues. Never have a radio fail in all these years. The biggest issue for any radio in the antenna and its connections. Good installation and constant preventive maintenance is the rule. The darn antennas take a beating especially in Baja. This comment applies to handhelds doubly - all are fragile and wont take any abuse.
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 06:23 AM


Just got an email this morning...Rugged is having a 25% off storewide sale, September 14th - 24th.



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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 09:02 AM


Okay, first off thanks for the quick replies. Lots of info.

PaulW- It looks like you are on to exactly what I'm trying to do. I really want the versatility and power of the Yaesu FT-2980 with the MARS/CAP mod. I was just not sure if it would interface with the PCI intercom system. If I am understanding you correctly, it will. But it will only work for two out of the four headsets, which is fine. Couple questions for you:
1) Can you point me in the right direction on how to accomplish this? I'm handy with a soldering iron, as long as I know which wires go where.
2) My (admittedly) limited knowledge on antennas is you need one for VHF and one for UHF. Is that where your suggestion of a 5/8 comes in? Can you 'splain that one to me?

ehall-That's the system i'm looking for, if Paul or some one else can help with the integration issues.


JZ-"We built the config for you. Just add the intercom/headset pieces."
It's the intercom/headset pieces that are the spendy part, not the two way radio. :biggrin:

Thanks to all who have responded for your help and patience.




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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 09:27 AM


It seems there is room in the market for a multi band (MURS) FRS/GRMS VOX bluetooth waterproof 2 way radio for off road, boating, skiing in groups?

Here is an interesting article on using 2 way radios on bikes with headsets bluetooth and multiple band radios.
https://www.webbikeworld.com/motorcycle-two-way-radio/

Sena SMH10-10 Motorcycle Bluetooth Headset/Intercom (Single)
https://amzn.to/2QCv3S1

Baofeng BF-F8HP (UV-5R 3rd Gen) 8-Watt Dual Band Two-Way Radio (136-174Mhz VHF & 400-520Mhz UHF) Includes Full Kit
https://amzn.to/2OygZrp

Baofeng Black UV-5R V2+ Plus (USA Warranty) Dual-Band 145-155/400-480 MHz FM Ham Two-way Radio
https://amzn.to/2QEh3r0

Programming Baofeng, Kenwood, frequencies with the cable and CHIRP software

Programming cable
https://amzn.to/2Df4IqK

Nagoya antenna 16inch
https://amzn.to/2MFQjDe

Guide
https://geekprepper.org/program-a-baofeng-radio-with-chirp/

Chirp Software
https://chirp.danplanet.com/projects/chirp/wiki/Home


Que tipo de comms tienes?


[Edited on 9-18-2018 by gnukid]
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 09:27 AM


Quote: Originally posted by ehall  
Yaesu ft2980r - 80 watts


Can be had on Amazon for 166$




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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 09:42 AM


Quote: Originally posted by StuckSucks  
Quote: Originally posted by ehall  
Yaesu ft2980r - 80 watts


Can be had on Amazon for 166$


159.95 with free shipping at Gigaparts
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 10:04 AM


I really think the 2980 is the way to go. 75 watts is a lot of power from a mobile rig.

But I am a little concerned about the lack of a cooling fan, if running in a hot car environment. Predecessors of that model DID have overheating problems in hot environments. There's only so much a heat sink can do in a hot environment.
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 11:44 AM


Quote: Originally posted by StuckSucks  
Quote: Originally posted by ehall  
Yaesu ft2980r - 80 watts


Can be had on Amazon for 166$


That one doesn't have the MARS/CAP Modification though. The one I bought off Amazon came with the mod.


[Edited on 9-14-2018 by JZ]




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PaulW
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 01:07 PM


No issue with no fan. Only gets warm during transmit. Mine sits next to the roof on my Jeep and that black roof gets really hot.
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 01:21 PM


1) Discuss intercom with the tech guy at Giga and ask for help or referral. Or search for "intercom for Ft2980"
For a 4 seater then choose another intercom. I always have only used a 2 position one.
Like I said before look into Rugged and evaluate his intercoms then call and ask how to do adaptability to an EXISTING radio to avoid the sales pitch for his radio.
2) One antenna for both. You probably will not be using UHF except for Noaa weather. There are other freqs you may want to use, but most of us are happy with a 5/8 tuned for "weatherman". Tune antenna with an SWR device or just follow the instructions on the antenna package Either way will be fine. Don't spend extra money for the dual band antenna, Not worth it - IMO.

Quote: Originally posted by DouglasP  
Okay, first off thanks for the quick replies. Lots of info.

PaulW- It looks like you are on to exactly what I'm trying to do. I really want the versatility and power of the Yaesu FT-2980 with the MARS/CAP mod. I was just not sure if it would interface with the PCI intercom system. If I am understanding you correctly, it will. But it will only work for two out of the four headsets, which is fine. Couple questions for you:
1) Can you point me in the right direction on how to accomplish this? I'm handy with a soldering iron, as long as I know which wires go where.
2) My (admittedly) limited knowledge on antennas is you need one for VHF and one for UHF. Is that where your suggestion of a 5/8 comes in? Can you 'splain that one to me?

ehall-That's the system i'm looking for, if Paul or some one else can help with the integration issues.


JZ-"We built the config for you. Just add the intercom/headset pieces."
It's the intercom/headset pieces that are the spendy part, not the two way radio. :biggrin:

Thanks to all who have responded for your help and patience.
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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 01:23 PM


A couple of things to consider about the radios. For best results you should wire the radio directly to the battery using the proper size wire. An 80 watt radio with draw about 15 amps. While a 14 gauge wire will work it would be best to use a 12 gauge or even a 10 gauge for less IR drop.

Also when you double the power such as 40 watts to 80 watts you increase the distant by the square root. For example if you could transit 40 miles at 40 watts, you'll go about 57 miles at 80 watts. Doubling the power does not double the distance.

Another thing to keep in mind is the ground plane. Generally speaking the more metal area under the antenna where it attaches will provide the best signal in that direction. In other words if you mounted an antenna in the middle of the roof the signal would radiate equally in all directions. If there is more metal toward the front than rear the best signal will radiate best toward the front.

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[*] posted on 9-14-2018 at 01:28 PM


Hi Jack,
I use a 5.8 tuned for my overpriced Yaesu VX5R and the distance demonstrated is outstanding. Its a 5 watt unit.
Confirm rubber ducky is poor, but the cheater 1/4 antenna is better, but not even close to the 5/8.

Quote: Originally posted by Jack Swords  
A 5/8 wavelength antenna typically has a gain factor of about 2 dB due to the directivity of the radiation. That excludes losses from coaxial connectors and feedlines. The 2 dB factor is a power (watt) multiplier. For a 5 watt output radio that would result in approximately 10 watts effective radiated power (ERP). The simple rubber ducky or tiny whip does not increase ERP, but reduces it. 5/8 wavelength antennas for mobile use are common and much more effective than a simple whip antenna. If you need greater distance on VHF freqs look at the antenna.

Jack, N1IY
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