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Author Topic: Do I need an SWR meter for a backpack rig?  (Read 2806 times)

SlowBro

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Re: Do I need an SWR meter for a backpack rig?
« Reply #15 on: August 24, 2017, 11:28:35 AM »
Well I accepted from the beginning that marginal transmit and wide selectivity would be sufficient since I didn't want to go over budget. Gotta start somewhere. And yep, I saw that video, took notes.

Main concern is getting situational awareness during grid down or EMP. Info on nuke plants especially. If more than a few of those are going up in smoke we should beat feet out of the northern hemisphere. I'm betting that CW will last the longest and go furthest during grid down, and I shouldn't need to transmit very much if anything, I'm sure there will be enough people talking that I can just listen. So I string up an end fed, tune the varicap to find someone talking, plug in and tweak the center frequency on the CW filter. With the end fed I can use a variety of configurations and go DX to NVIS.

swxx

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Re: Do I need an SWR meter for a backpack rig?
« Reply #16 on: August 24, 2017, 09:32:19 PM »
Great to meet you SlowBro and good points. For me budget is the big stumbling block to things, even though this is a high priority. For that reason to I started with a Pixie, my first kit, aside from a small CW keyer kit. The pixie though I found very deaf even though I managed contacts thousands of miles but if they had also been on Pixies I'd not have heard them. Good point on listening, though I suspect it would be the same for many, so maybe we don't get much information as everyone is listening and preserving power! For that, nets will be important, I guess.

Once I can manage the cost, I'm thinking PFR-3B is good, except it doesn't have wide receive (so no SSB) and doesn't receive outside the ham bands. It also won't transmit outside the ham bands, which I think is a minus point too, it should be able to go over the edges a bit, in an emergency one is allowed to transmit anywhere. So I'm thinking there is a need for a second portable for receive only, more general coverage, not sure what is available. The other expensive ones such as mountain toppers but to me things that have lots of functions depending on computer chips, I just mistrust as being long term reliable. Components that are large, easy to fix or replace and tolerant, I'd trust more. What if there is a real EOTWAWKI then I don't think finding and replacing components is an option! I would not know how to get soldering iron to work without electricity. Note to self: keep eye out for portable soldering iron.

Good point on the northern hemisphere. Just a quake in Calif long over due will send the entire northern hemisphere into the dark ages. Fuk-U-Shima was nothing learned from except cover ups. Foreign (US) companies supplied all that stuff and they built it on fault lines. What about Calif. In theory, the Southern Hemisphere has no nukes but in reality they may be stationed in Australia or at least on submarines. If that happens the whole world is in a mess. But I think the north would be worst, already is pollution wise. If one has to move far, weight and durability is an issue, and back ups -- more than one TX, more than one RX, spare components. Realistic sources of power. Solar panel, if there is sun getting through after such an event. Me thinks if something like that happens, whoever has batteries or knows how to make them is going to be the new billionaire, locally. Everyone will want batteries. Not sure what for, as aside from radio, not sure what is needed on batteries, lights I guess. People can learn to brush their teeth with sticks surely.

SlowBro

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Re: Do I need an SWR meter for a backpack rig?
« Reply #17 on: August 26, 2017, 03:05:50 PM »
Note to self: keep eye out for portable soldering iron.

Got five bucks?
http://www.ebay.com/itm/Gas-Blow-Torch-Soldering-Iron-Gun-Refillable-Butane-Pen-Tool-LW-/232382296450?hash=item361b107182:g:mNgAAOSwhQhY3MJy

Got a piece of wire, tape, and a Bic lighter?
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WRpYx8UTveA


Good point on the northern hemisphere. Just a quake in Calif long over due will send the entire northern hemisphere into the dark ages. Fuk-U-Shima was nothing learned from except cover ups. Foreign (US) companies supplied all that stuff and they built it on fault lines. What about Calif. In theory, the Southern Hemisphere has no nukes but in reality they may be stationed in Australia or at least on submarines. If that happens the whole world is in a mess. But I think the north would be worst, already is pollution wise. If one has to move far, weight and durability is an issue, and back ups -- more than one TX, more than one RX, spare components. Realistic sources of power. Solar panel, if there is sun getting through after such an event. Me thinks if something like that happens, whoever has batteries or knows how to make them is going to be the new billionaire, locally. Everyone will want batteries. Not sure what for, as aside from radio, not sure what is needed on batteries, lights I guess. People can learn to brush their teeth with sticks surely.

If I have to beat feet out of the northern hemisphere it would be after listening to the radio reports and committing to the direction of travel no matter what. Thus carrying a radio after taking off wouldn't be as critical; if I had to ditch the radio for some reason, I would.

I happen to have a number of 3V 0.42W solar panels from another project that I'm going to integrate into my pack radio. I'm going to solder them up and tape them together with cardboard and duct tape. Ugly but free 8)

swxx

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Re: Do I need an SWR meter for a backpack rig?
« Reply #18 on: August 27, 2017, 08:40:39 AM »
Thanks, very educational, good solutions!