eHam Forums => Repeaters => Topic started by: KB3YLQ on July 18, 2012, 06:55:55 AM

Title: I'd love to make one of these portable repeaters
Post by: KB3YLQ on July 18, 2012, 06:55:55 AM

2 meter repeater made with handhelds and a Radio-Tone controller. The only thing, I checked into the Radio-Tone controller, and it doesn't look like it IDs or has a courtesy tone. Still though, pretty handy portable repeater to have for emergency use or just plain old fun. :)

Anyone ever try?

Title: RE: I'd love to make one of these portable repeaters
Post by: K9KJM on July 18, 2012, 08:59:50 PM
There are so many issues with that foam padded case "repeater" I dont know just where to start.......

It will NOT work well as an "in band" repeater at all.  It could function as a "cross band" (VHF/UHF) repeater just fine, BUT using those little hand held radios inside a foam case will destroy the transmit radio in short order when talking over it for any length of time.

A MUCH better cross band repeater is to just get a Yaesu FT8800 and use it as a cross band repeater:

Not only does it have a decent cooling fan to keep from self destructing, It could run much higher power levels than a little hand held could ever hope to. No external "controller" needed.

The Yeasu FT60 hand held radios shown in the video ARE nice little radios at a fair price.  But you can get hand helds lots cheaper.  The little Baofeng at 43 bucks is a great little rig:

A big advantage to the little Baofeng is that it uses the very low cost (Less than 5 bucks each including shipping) Very common camera battery, Same one used in the Yaesu VX 3 hand held, Also a great little rig.

If you feel you "need" the full 5 watts in a hand held (In most cases you do NOT) The Wouxun at 110 bucks is a good buy:

Congratulations on the recent upgrade to General!   DO check out the Kenwood TS 2000 for a "do it all" radio.
The TS 2000 will also cross band repeat!   Something no other radio in this price range can do.  Not only VHF to UHF, But HF to UHF etc in any combination wanted!   The TS 2000 sells good used in the 900 to 1100 dollar range, And brand new for less than 1500 bucks.
While there are other HF rigs that can provide slightly better "performance" in the same price range, They cannot do all that the TS2000 can. AND you can have lots of fun with a TS2000 making all kinds of HF contacts. It takes a pretty experienced operator to even utilize the higher performance of other rigs.

Title: RE: I'd love to make one of these portable repeaters
Post by: WB6BYU on July 19, 2012, 12:01:17 PM
I remember a portable 2m repeater that used a pair of HTs that was used for emergency
communications when I was in Search and Rescue.  While the radios were small, it still
required two people to load it in the back of a pickup truck due to the size of the
cavity filters required to prevent desense.

By using separate antennas I've seen them compressed to the size of a footlocker
because not as much filtering is required.  But that one wasn't as reliable.

Don't underestimate the difficulties of getting a portable 2m repeater to work reliably,
even at the 2 watt level.

Title: RE: I'd love to make one of these portable repeaters
Post by: NA4IT on July 22, 2012, 04:28:22 AM
The issue with a portable 2M repeater is the spacing of 600Khz. VHF duplexers won't do that cheaply. And antenna spacing get's into hundreds of feet.

We use 2 Alinco DR435s in our comms trailer as a "portable" repeater. It has a UHF duplexer which was bought for $35 at an estate sale, and a Com-Spec ID-8 board in the TX radio. It is programmed for two frequency pairs that are 50KKs apart, and the duplexer tuner for the middle of both freqs. We use it for events where a short range repeater is needed. It only puts out 10W, and is either fed to a 1/4 wave antenna on top of the trailer, or when a little more ranges is needed, and fiberglass 70CM repeater antenna on a 30 foot mast mounted on the side of the trailer.

70CM is the way to go. Stuff used in commercial service will also work in ham service. Commercial repeaters and ham repeaters both use +5MHz split.