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Author Topic: Which 2 meter all mode to buy?  (Read 4339 times)

Posts: 7

« on: August 11, 2008, 04:47:05 AM »

Hello all.  
I recently picked up a 2 meter 10 element beam that I can use for 2 meter SSB and CW.  I have never operated those modes on 2 meter and I'm excited about trying them.  So, I need to find a good used 2 meter all mode base type rig.  I"m hoping to keep this under 500 dollars.  Under 400 would even be better!  
I wonder if any of you folks can suggest what a good rig might be to look for.  


Posts: 21764

« Reply #1 on: August 11, 2008, 10:23:56 AM »

Make sure you install the beam with its elements horizontal, use a rotator and high quality, low-loss coax to start with -- even before a rig!

There really isn't any 2m all-mode in the $400-$500 range except stuff that's quite old.

A better deal in terms of cost:performance ratio would be to add a 2m transverter to your HF rig, assuming you have an HF rig.  Do you have one available??

If not, the "next best" thing might be to pick up a used IC-706MKII, FT-100D or something similar that covers HF+6m+2m and use the 2m section of that.

Posts: 2415

« Reply #2 on: August 11, 2008, 10:40:07 PM »

You dont say what other radios you have right now, But if you have a few for HF and VHF FM, Do consider getting a great Kenwood TS-2000 that does it all, Including cross band repeat, And selling the radios you have now to help pay for one.

The TS 2000 is selling nowadays for around 1100 dollars good used, And about 1450 brand new.

Two meter SSB activity here in the upper midwest has been going down, WAY down the past years, Until now there is almost no activity on SSB at all.  It would be nice if you could just borrow a radio to see what, If any activity is in your area before you spend money and effort for a band/mode that may not have much going for it.

Posts: 7

« Reply #3 on: August 12, 2008, 04:36:56 AM »

Good morning guys...or ladies too perhaps.  First of all I would like to thank you for your replies they are very much appreciated.  

I have had quite a bit of luck finding 2 meter all mode rigs for well under 500 dollars.  I find them mostly on ebay but also in a few other places.   They are used of course and it's always buyer beware but I have had good luck in the past.

Here's an example of one I'm looking at now.

I don't want to go the transverter route, I really want one radio that is dedicated to the job at hand, and that is 2 meter all mode.  

A few have asked what I have for rigs now and I have an FT1000MP-Mark V and a Kenwood TS830S for my HF activities.  I also have numerous 2 meter, 440 and 220 mhz FM rigs.  I have a Midland 6 meter FM rig...and a bunch of walkies.  I also have a Hy-Gain TH11DX and a TH6DX, two 2 meter 10 element beams an a 4 element 6 meter beam.  Those sit on a 72 foot US Tower crank up tower.  At the tip top of the tower sits a Diamond ground plain that covers 2 meter FM, 440 and 6 meter FM.  

So that is it ...thanks again for all the suggestions.

73 Jim KA1EUI

Posts: 718


« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2008, 05:34:22 AM »


   May I offer other choices. You want to look for an Icom 275H All modes transciever. These rigs sell for under $500 and are still considered one of the best rigs for weak signal work.

The option of a transverter is a great option. you want to pick up one of the new Elecraft models that sell for under $500. Again if you already have an HF rig you will use the 10m or 6m IF to add 2meters to it. The best part about the Elecraft is that you can switch back to 10m or 6m with a push of a button and the transverter will allow you to view the actual operating 2m frequency right on your HF rig display unlike other manufacturers. My choice of rig to use would be a Icom 756 series model for use of the Spectrum scope and other great qualities.

My other choice of rig would be the Icom 706mk2g which I was able to increase the recieve sensitivity easily and improve the 2 meter reciever a great deal. Had lots of success with it.

Good Luck and 73!

Posts: 75

« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2008, 07:49:40 AM »

Nobody has mentioned two obvious choices -- the Kenwood TR-751 and TM-255A.  The first is from around the late 80s to early 90s.  The second is from the mid to late 90s.  Both are very highly regarded (see the reviews on this site), but they're a little hard to find.  If you're lucky enough to lay your hands on one, never let it go.


Posts: 700

« Reply #6 on: August 14, 2008, 01:46:09 PM »

I used a Kenwood TR-751A as my 2-meter weak-signal SSB/CW rig for several years in the 1990s. Very nice receiver section. I wasn't too crazy about the feel of the main tuning dial but that was of secondary concern to the receiver which was hot.

I think I saw a used one of these on sale for about $350 on either the R&L site (Cincinnati) or HamStation (Evansville, Indiana) site.

73, N4KZ
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