Setting up a portable station for Christmas

Treating myself to an early Christmas this year by buying some equipment to play around with. I have a Yaesu FT-817ND QRP rig on the way and a bunch of parts to make antennas with. I am looking to setup a portable QRP station that I can use on camping trips and field day. Will likely be taking the shack into the backyard in the coming weeks (if the weather permits).

The antennas I am looking to build are another end-fed antenna with a 9:1 unun as well as a buddipole and buddistick. These are fairly easy to make based on some plans I found on the internet. I ordered some connectors off the internet and will make a Radio Shack / Home Depot run this weekend for the other parts. I’ll test these out with the radio when it comes in and see which one performs the best and is also portable.

I am also planning to build some small verticals for reception on 855Mhz and see if I can get a trunking scanner working with the RTL-SDR dongles.

I have also taken a chance with a low cost, Chinese antenna analyzer based on the Sark100 design. This one is labeled as “Mini60” on Ebay. If all goes well it should help tune the homebrew antennas. I’ll post a detailed review once I get it in.

All this should keep me out of trouble over a long Christmas / New Years holiday!

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