Portable 50 Watt VHF/UHF Station

I decided to build a small 50W VHF/UHF station to use for portable operations, such as supporting events or setting up in a temporary location, with a choice of using AC power or a battery. I don’t need anything fancy like DMR or D-Star, but I might want to to use it for APRS or WinLink.

After a bit of research and pricing options, I went with something that turned out to be a very easy build. I chose a Yaesu FTM-6000R as the transceiver. It has basic features, but has gotten some good reviews. It is also known to be a good transceiver for data, and is 9600 bps capable.

I also chose a 30 amp switching power supply and a mobile base station enclosure from PowerWerx, to make it a single unit that’s easy to carry around. The enclosure includes a short DC cable to connect the radio to the power supply. If I want to use a battery instead of the power supply, I just disconnect the T-connector from the power supply, and connect it to the battery. It was very easy to assemble the whole system.

I tested with the power supply and with a battery, and it works great. The whole unit is very compact and stable.

My next step will be to configure it for WinLink and APRS. I have a Mobilinkd TNC-4, and I ordered a DigiRig. The FTM-6000R has a 10 pin MiniDin connector, and DigiRig sells 1200 bps and 9600 bps cables for the radio. DigiRig also sells an adapter cable to use DigiRig cables with a Mobilinkd, and vice versa.

I’ll make another post after testing the setup with WinLink and APRS.