Tag Archives: APRS

Update on APRS

About a year ago I got APRS working with a Baofeng radio, a Easy Digi interface from N5CEY and a surplus iPhone running PocketPacket. I basically set it up, tested it and put it away.  In December, I put the APRS system back together and nothing seemed to work right. Over several days nothing but frustration. I decided to try this again this afternoon. This time I got it working the first time. Go figure. For future reference things are setup as follows:

Baofeng UV-5R:  VOX=1 volume up about halfway.

PocketPacket: Tracking ON, Report Altitude ON, TX interval 15 minutes, APRS-IS DISABLED, Audio Modem ENABLED, Transmit ENABLED, VOX trigger 500mS, Digipeater path Via 1 = Wide1-1; Via 2 = Wide 2-1.

Iphone volume full.

Next I will look for a way to strap the components together for portable use.

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Setup APRS Station

I finally broke down and bought a digital interface from Cliff, N5CEY that connects my Baofeng UV-5R to an iPhone. The iPhone is an older 4S model that is now retired after having been upgraded. It does not connect to a phone service but the WiFi and GPS work fine. I installed the Pocket Packet app and after a bit of fiddling with the radio and the app I started successfully sending APRS packets to the local digipeter.Mission accomplished as I now have a low cost dedicated APRS system to play with.

Vacation projects begin

I am on Christmas/New Years holiday here now and have started some projects I have been meaning to get to. First up was making some short coax patch cables for the portable rig. I also took the opportunity to replace the DC connectors on the amplifier with Anderson Powerpoles and shorten the wiring. I am planning to shorten some of the coax runs on the FT-450D as well so I have plenty of coax connectors on order.

I am also building a interface cable for my iPhone to connect to my Baofeng radio for APRS packet work. I will post on this separately as I start testing it.

I have also ordered two more long whips from Buddipole with the intention of building a portable 2 element yagi to work 20m thru 2m. This will be a mighty interesting experiment. I plan to have everything built up so that I can test when the whips arrive next week.

Last but not least, I am planning to setup the S9v33 vertical as an end fed vertical this week.

Time does fly when you’re having fun!

A couple of new projects to think about…

I have been looking into making a custom air variable capacitor for an improved magnetic loop antenna. This looks like it would be entirely feasible and allow me to make a loop that could handle 100W. At 100W the voltage across the capacitor is just under 3.9kV at 14Mhz. The plate separation for this would be about 55-60mil. It would be a fairly large capacitor but it could be made fairly easily from sheet aluminum.

Just ordered a 2.5mm stereo plug to finish my wiring harness to connect my iPhone to my Baofeng HT to use with APRS. Been wanting to try Pocket Packet app for some time now and this will be my chance.

Also finished making an air choke for the 2m Moxon out of a coax patch cord. This is ready to test out with the new mast.