Sunday, July 12, 2015

The Mobile Shack

Followers of my IT blog already are aware of the fact that I am fitting out a worker's van for camping and other spare time activities.
Over the last years (maybe even decade) I was neglecting my radio hobby. The van is meant to be one of the remedies. It is presently arranged to survive a few days in it, however, the van still lacks radio equipment.

Readily available options are the following:
  • 20m PSK as base gear
  • the 20m Pex-Al-Pex loop
  • fishing-pole elevated dipole
  • 30m PSK for mail
  • TenTec Scout #555 (low power consumption and punchy audio)
  • Icom IC-M710 (even punchier audio) w/ respective auto-tuner
  • Vertex Standard VX-1700
  • PCT-IIe

Further thoughts add digital radio such as D-STAR or DMR. Since I got zero experience in that field, I just started my research. As appealing the digital world is, as confusing it is!

Presently, I am somewhat sure about the computing device I will use:
  • HP Stylistic ST4120
  • respective docking station
  • respective 12V power supply

This thing presently runs WinXP.  Years ago, I bought this thing (used) to be the board computer of my sailing boat. For unknown reasons, the PC never made it aboard.

Things I need to do before getting serious with radio in the van:
  • install one or more service batteries
  • install a charger for the service batteries
  • install a VHF/UHF antenna
  • solar panels?
  • create an RF-ground device 

The van also needs a decent WiFi solution. I presently research the possibilities.

BTW, the van is a Mercedes-Benz Vito (2008). Some told me that Vito's are supposed to be like regular cars. Well, driving one, I can tell you that the allover feel of a Vito is more like driving a semi than a people carrier.

73 for now, stay tuned....