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Portable IC-7000

July 20th, 2014 No comments

I wanted to take part in the Berlin UrbanHamRadio activities with my own equipment. But I did not want to buy a new TRX for portable usage. My iCom IC-7000 is more or less portable – at least it fits in my backpack and can be powered with 12V.

After some research I found out, that I can use it with a standard Lithium-Polymer (LiPo) cell for RC racers. It costs about 50 EUR and if you don’t own a proper charger, you need to buy one as well (and a LiPo carrying bag). It’s a four cell LiPo with 14,4V voltage, which I can directly insert to the IC-7000 (it works best with 13.8V±15%, so from 11.7V up to 15.8V).

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The LiPo is equipped with an EC5 plug, so I soldered the proper pins to the power cable for the IC-7000. The good thing about this LiPo: it can release up to 20 times its capacity as current. This is a 5Ah battery, so it can provide up to 100A for a short period of time. With RC racers this is needed for the start-up momentum. But I can also have some advantage during TX, when I want to use up to 100W of the TRX. Although the IC-7000 drains up to 22A at 100W transmit, I’m far away from any unsafe usage.

Talking about battery drains. Unfortunately the IC-7000 is equipped with a bright LCD and a lot of circuits. It’s far away from low power consumption. In idle receive mode it drains about 1.5A. With a battery of 5Ah I can use that for a bit more than 3 hours. Time drops rapidly with every transmit.

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But it was time enough for several nice afternoons in the park! The small LEDs on the battery pack signal the remaining capacity. And we were lucky enough to bring a second battery pack just for the single time, when we wanted to end this QSO with Cornwall.

Unfortunately all the needed equipment is not portable enough for climbing on mountains. I need at least the IC-7000 (2.5kg), the battery pack (500g), the power connector (500g), probably the external tuner (700g), antenna and cables (4kg). So already about 10kg of stuff. But it’s okay for the city and carrying around on my bike and having a nice Sunday afternoon in the park!

Chaoswelle Fieldday 2013

August 22nd, 2013 No comments

It’s been four years since the last Fieldday at the good known old location near Celle. We planned the Fieldday for August 14–19 2013 at end of March, so that interested operators can plan with a lot of time ahead.

Fieldday in Celle

Fieldday in Celle

Furthermore we added some “extra days”. Arrival started on Wednesday and departure on Monday. I for myself arrived on early Thursday morning and left on Sunday afternoon. These were a four day mini vacation.

We set up two tents, one for the ham equipment and the other one as kitchen. Between the two tents we had some seats and tables protected against sun and rain by a tarp. And we had a lot of space for antennas. In the end there were five antennas set up, one even high up in the trees thrown up with a fishing rod.

My goal was to test my new IC-7000 on shortwave bands. I never had the chance, as I don’t own an antenna yet. I played around with the filters and all the other electronic gadgets in this device which are not available for 70cm or 2m.

I really liked the weekend with more than 30 attendees and people I didn’t meet in a long time. It’s not confirmed if we will organize another summer Fieldday next year, as there might be the event ICMP which is traditionally also an event where a lot of ham radio folks from Chaoswelle will show up.

New Activities

July 11th, 2013 No comments

This is one of my “lost blogs”. No update within 3.5 years, but I still own my ham radio license. There were some but too few activities in this time.

First I changed my locator to JO62RM, that is Berlin. Unfortunately I’m living now in the 1st floor, so that any antenna won’t help. I even sold my car where I had a 2m/70cm mobile radio installed. So there is barely a chance that I will work any frequencies from home.

But with some friends I rented a shared space in a building on a small hill inside the city. The view is great – and so is the range for radio waves. During the next months I want to install some ham radio equipment over there and even teach other interested people for the German license.

Furthermore I was elected into the board of the DARC group D23 / Chaoswelle. My job will be the communication with the Chaos Computer Club (CCC), the origin of this group.

My next activities will be during the upcoming IARU HF World Championship 2013 (July 13/14), the D23 Fieldday (August 17/18), the Worked All Germany 2013 (October 19/20) and finally the 30th Chaos Communication Congress (27–30 December).