eHam

eHam Forums => Mobile Ham => Topic started by: W4KVW on January 01, 2008, 03:05:31 PM



Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W4KVW on January 01, 2008, 03:05:31 PM
Was wondering if others would be interested in buying MONO BAND FM mobile rigs with removable face plates & seperation cables if they were offered for sale?The MONO BAND FM rigs that you can purchase today do NOT have this feature stock or as an option.You must spend the EXTRA money for a DUAL,TRI,or QUAD band FM rig if you want a removable faceplate,even if you have NO NEED for the other bands.With todays smaller vehicles it would make for much simpler mounting just as with the multi band FM & the mini HF mobile rigs on the market today.The last MONO BAND rig I remember with a seperation kit was made in the late 1970's or early 1980's.I have a full size pickup but would love to have the option of simpler mouting options.Tell me what you think & we will see if others feel the way I do.MAYBE someone(Icom,Kenwood,Yaesu,ect.)will give it a try for TODAY's ham market if it appears it would be a BIG seller!

Clayton
W4KVW  


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: K0BG on January 01, 2008, 04:47:56 PM
Forget it!

If you had spent the amount of money the big three have, on market research and planning, you'd know there isn't a market for the proposed radio. If there was, you'd still see them on the market.

One question you might ask yourself is this; why is the largest selling mobile radio of all time, the Icom IC-706 (some 70,000 plus in its various iterations)? It is not a single band radio, and it costs much more than any single band radio. The answer should be obvious.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: N8EMR on January 01, 2008, 05:07:48 PM
While a remote head mobile would be nice and I am betting pretty easy to adapt most current units. I would much prefer a "convertacom" type system. Take a small handheld and now put a docking station with it. Once docked  you get a mobile like remote head and high power RF dock. I dont just want amp I want a FUll blown mobile radio but use the computer guts and the low power RF front end from a handheld. Drop the HT in and your now a full function mobile


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W4KVW on January 01, 2008, 07:49:04 PM
Alan,just a couple of years ago I remember several times hearing it said that an HF rig with 6 meters is just NOT wanted nor would they sell since 6 meters is a DEAD band & a waste of time & money for modern gear!Guess those folks were WRONG since ONLY Kenwood was making such rigs for years(680/690 series).It's ONLY a "FORUM" of opinions of potential users & NOT an OFFICIAL survey! }:>)

Clayton
W4KVW


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: K0BG on January 02, 2008, 06:35:56 AM
Let's don't be naive here; everything, including amateur radio products, are market driven. Yes, I agree there are nitch markets, but when it comes to mass production, supply will always meet demand. No demand, no market!

For example, Gary's suggestion sounds like a good one on the surface, but based on personal experience with American Radio, it won't sell in enough numbers to make it profitable. At least in the mass market.
This fact is one reason there are so many amateur-related, small companies making nitch market products.

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: N8EMR on January 02, 2008, 10:32:19 AM
Alan,
I think my design would be a big hit if  if you could get a standard interface between vendors. I still not convinced a single vendor product wouldnt work. I think it would need to created for multi generation handhelds and have a universal interface for talking between the handheld and the rf dock. Most ham have handhelds, many have mobiles/base. Why do I need to program 3 different radio channels and tones. Program a base RF unit and then plug it into the mobile or base docking station for the power and easy to use dials.


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: KA1MDA on January 02, 2008, 03:08:26 PM
"everything, including amateur radio products, are market driven"

If that's the case, it's only a matter of time until the 2 meter / 11 meter dual band rigs show up.

KA1MDA
www.ka1mda.org


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: N6JRZ on January 02, 2008, 08:37:51 PM
Wheather there is a demand or not, I think a mono band w/separation kit rig is a great idear. Perhaps one of the big wigs from one of the big radio producers, Icom, Kenwood, etc etc read these forums and think about it!!!!! Apparently it would make some amatuers happy,me included!!!!


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: K4NFG on January 02, 2008, 09:01:28 PM
Excellent idea, I definitely would have bought one.


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W3LK on January 02, 2008, 09:01:31 PM
<< Wheather there is a demand or not, I think a mono band w/separation kit rig is a great idear. >>

Whether it is a good "idear" or not is immaterial. The cost to bring it to market is probably prohibitive.

I am amazed how many hams have so little knowledge of what is necessary to bring a product to market, especially such a small market as ours. :(

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: K0BG on January 03, 2008, 06:16:38 AM
Gary, from late 1979 through Spring 1981, I worked for American Radio Corp., based in Aurora, CO. I designed the exact device you're asking for. It was built to interface with the then, very popular Kenwood TR-2200 handheld. You might not be familiar with the unit, but the interface connections were on the side, not the bottom like the similar Motorola unit aimed at the public service market.

The tray the radio laid on had a special 3M tape developed for the purpose. The power amp was based around a CRC VHF FET (Please note, this was (1979), and put out 25 watts. The audio amp was a full 5 watts RMS. It was called the ARC220.

The first production run was 25 units. I still have one production unit, and the original prototype in my possession.

Kenwood had sold nearly 10,000 of them, and you'd think you could sell a few of the units. All told, HRO sold 18, and the rest were almost given away. The investment was nearly $20,000 in 1979 dollars, and with an MSRP of $129, it would have taken hundreds to recoup the investment.

At about the same time, Icom introduced their new handheld. It was half the size, half the weight, put out nearly twice the power, and cost less. In order to adapt the unit would have cost another $8,000 or so.

The only amateur product ARC built that went anywhere was the deviation meter. We sold about 100 of those at $49 each MSRP. I don't remember how much the design cost was, but I'm sure it was never recouped.

There are companies making money on the amateur nitch market (actually amateur radio is already a nitch market). MFJ is a very good example. However, in order to compete, the quality has to be on the dull edge (certainly not cutting edge). Or, the selling price has to be very high.

As for a universal interface; Motorola tried to do just that. At about the same time, Icom, Midland, Uniden, and a few others started after the public service market. After Harris bought GE two-way radio division, they closed it. They weren't about to buy the market like had been GE doing.

As Lon alluded to, there is much more to bringing a product to the mass market than meets the common eye. Part of the misconception comes from applying an MFJ-style nitch marketing technique, to mass marketing. With some apologies to Samuel Clemens, "The twain shall never meet".

Alan, KØBG
www.k0bg.com


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W3LK on January 03, 2008, 11:35:04 AM
<< With some apologies to Samuel Clemens, "The twain shall never meet". >>

You owe him a BIG apology for that one!!! :)

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: N5EAT on January 03, 2008, 03:38:11 PM
The cost to bring a single band rig with control head would be negligible.  The technology is over 15 years old and could be fitted easily into single band radios.



Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W3LK on January 03, 2008, 04:10:12 PM
Are you going to pay the setup and tooling cost for an assembly line?

Have an idea how many would have to be sold to get a return on the investment?

It's not that simple.

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: KE5OFO on January 14, 2008, 08:23:10 AM
I agree with N8EMR on the convertacom idea.  I would love that myslef  I have a couple of Moto HT's that I wouldn't mind picking up a conbertacom for.  I am also working on just buiding a sort of docking unit for my FT-470 with a custom drop in bay and a dual band brick amp.  The only thing is that you have to conntect cables for the antenna and the mic/speaker.  

Kerry
KE5OFO


Title: Mobile seperation kits?
Post by: W4KVW on February 07, 2008, 07:04:29 PM
OK,I solved my seperation kit problem.I now have the BEST HF/VHF/UHF all mode mobile rig in my pickup.The ICOM-7000 facelate takes up almost NO room at all mounted into the dashboard of my Dodge 1500 Quad Cab.Thanks for the imput but I decided NOT to wait on the idea to AGAIN one day catch on.Now I just operate ALL of the best bands & modes from the comfort of my drivers seat.

73's,
Clayton
W4KVW