First off, I must apologize because this will not be for amateur radio use. I am not a ham (yet!) because the day my test was scheduled (back when there was a technician plus) my grandpa died. I never scheduled another test and forgot a lot of the exam material. One day... I currently work in an emergency communications center and am trying to put together a proposal for a kit we can use both for emergency outages and building evacuation scenarios. The box would be plugged in to both roof mounted antennas and line power while in the communications center, but able to be packed up and taken mobile fairly quickly. I have been doing some research and checking out a lot of ham operators' wonderful boxes for ideas and I think I have a good inkling of what I want to do.
I'm quite interested in the Gator boxes, probably a 6U
. I'm pulling a lot of design ideas from KA5CVH's photo
I'd put a 1U power strip
Currently I'm thinking two universal shelves, one at the bottom to mount three radios, an aviation band, a vhf, and a uhf. The aviation band we have in use already, the vhf and uhf would be new purchases. I don't want to use a dual band based on price for a type accepted dual band for public safety. There should be room to mount three mobile style radios side by side. I may have a blank cover with cutouts for the radios installed here as well. Above the radios would be another shelf with a ~28Ah SLA battery, and a Super Powergate 40S
and a 12v power supply of some type. I'd have a blank cover in front of this to make everything look nice.
On the back I'd have a blank cover with some panel mounted SO-239 jacks for antennas. I'd also have 120v power connector and 12v power connectors or cigarette lighter jack here.
My two big questions to the experts here are 1) Is it reasonable and possible to either use a dual band antenna for all three radios? We would be transmitting around 123mhz, 155mhz, 461mhz frequency bands. When we pull the box to go mobile I'd prefer to have a single mag mount antenna we can use. On the flip side, how could I set it up so that we could have 2 or 3 antennas (we already have the aviation band antenna and anywhere I can cut costs is a plus) when at base and just a single antenna when mobile? Are there antenna switches or triplexers or something similar that would be easy for a layman to follow simple instructions to switch over?
2) Regarding the 12v power, would it be feasible to run 120v to the power supply, the power supply to a aux battery isolator
, along with 12v power from say, cigarette lighter or external battery pack, and run from that into the powergate? Or would it be better to have a dedicated toggle switch to switch between 120v and 12v power supply?
Thanks for your time and any help you can provide would be greatly appreciated.