eHam.net - Amateur Radio (Ham Radio) Community

Call Search
     

New to Ham Radio?
My Profile

Community
Articles
Forums
News
Reviews
Friends Remembered
Strays
Survey Question

Operating
Contesting
DX Cluster Spots
Propagation

Resources
Calendar
Classifieds
Ham Exams
Ham Links
List Archives
News Articles
Product Reviews
QSL Managers

Site Info
eHam Help (FAQ)
Support the site
The eHam Team
Advertising Info
Vision Statement
About eHam.net


Reviews Categories | Batteries & Chargers for amateur radios. | Hardened Power Systems \"JuiceBox R2\" Help


Reviews Summary for Hardened Power Systems \"JuiceBox R2\"
Hardened Power Systems \ Reviews: 2 Average rating: 2.5/5 MSRP: $600
Description: Portable 30Ah battery bank in ammo can with solar charge
capability, AC inverter, USB, PowerPole outlets
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.portableuniversalpower.com/juicebox-r2/
Email Subscription
You are not subscribed to this review.

Subscribe!
My Subscriptions
Subscriptions Help

You can write your own review of the Hardened Power Systems \"JuiceBox R2\".

KJ6MC Rating: 3/5 Jun 17, 2017 21:11 Send this review to a friend
Finely crafted device. World's worst customer service  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
The Upside? I purchased this device to run my qrp rig as a part of my "go kit". It is sturdy, well-made and well thought out. It supplies all the needs for my KX3, antenna tuner, laptop, light without breaking a sweat.

The downside: I ordered this in Mid-December. After a number of unanswered emails/facebook posts, it arrived in April. There was a minor problem, and it went back for repair. Many unanswered email later, the fully operational unit arrived on June 1.

So, a fine unit, superbly engineered. Just be sure and order early, as it may take 6 months to actually arrive. During that time do not expect more than a cursory reply.
 
KG7NJQ Rating: 2/5 Jul 13, 2015 13:19 Send this review to a friend
Price point vs what you get..   Time owned: 3 to 6 months
This is my first "portable" battery product as a ham, mainly bought for off the grid ham operations wherever that may be.

I read all there was to read on website for the product, and tossed the idea around for several months before finally pulling the trigger.

You are getting:
(2x15Ah) 30Ah capacity fit behind a custom designed panel incorporating two 30A powerpoles stacked on top of each other. I understand these are wired straight to the batteries, thus are capable of output AND input. I have not tried them as power input, yet.

A 3-amp automatic (charge\float) battery charger, with stowable cord

A solar charge controller+socket for a standard 2.5mm plug for solar charging. 4.5A max.

Two USB ports, 3A max

Two marine grade locking 12v sockets

A 450 watts constant, 900 watts surge AC inverter w\two US-style sockets

All in a waterproof (when closed) surplus ammo can (that is not re painted before assembly, exterior of mine was cosmetically about 3/5 upon receiving). A small cubby hole which can fit a rigblaster, assorted power cords, and the automatic AC charging cord.

MY EXPERIENCE WITH THE UNIT

I use this to power my Icom-718 HF radio. When the radio is the only power draw on the unit, at a full charge, you will only be able to send at 50-60W, and from my understanding this is not the unit, but the fact most HF radios require 13.8V stable, to draw the specified current for full power out. A full charge is 12.8V, 13.0V shortly after a float charge. This hasn't hindered me greatly, just something to keep in mind.

I know this is not advertised as a power supply, but I discovered something quite disappointing this past weekend when portable-
The automatic AC charger that comes with the unit is about the RF-noisiest thing I have heard in my given, short time, as a ham. S9 signals literally get wiped out, replaced by a solid hash noise, the second you plug in the charger pigtail into an AC power source. I noticed this across 10, 15, 20m, as those were the only bands the tribander works on. I will be testing 160-6 soon enough.

This means if you forgot to charge, or are low on battery, and want to use the unit to power an HF radio while near mains power (but no power supply on hand), then.... you can't (unless you use another battery with higher voltage plugged into one of the powerpole ports)

Construction of the unit itself is FB. It (the enclosure built into the ammo can) is NOT moving when latched shut, faceplate compressed with foam attached to the inside of the lid - no rattle or shake of any kind.

Customer service is a 2/5 in my book as well.
I purchased the unit on my birthday, 22nd of March early AM, paid via paypal.

They list on their website that if you are a ham, they will stencil your callsign on the unit for free, just let them know callsign upon purchase. Cool I thought - I not only included my callsign in the paypal notes upon payment, but right after sending funds via paypal, I drafted and sent a lengthy email, happy I finally pulled the trigger, including a paragraph that also said please do stencil my callsign KG7NJQ on the unit.
On top of the excitement, I had several questions that were not answered anywhere on the website regarding battery voltage in relation to capacity in percent, along with things like what considerations do I need to take if I want to charge the unit via a powerpole lead connected to my truck battery, along with several other questions.

I got no response. 9 days since PayPal payment cleared, and several emails, I had not received a response. I sent a facebook message to their company profile. I was answered within the hour, with the response pretty much saying sorry, we have been busy, your juicebox will be shipped this week.
I followed up with thanks, I still have several unanswered questions via email regarding juicebox operation.. should I call the phone line for easier explanation?
They viewed the message and did not reply.

I received my juicebox fast enough when shipped, out of their hands... unboxed it eagerly.. no callsign stenciled on. I sent a confused email within minutes, as trivial and insignificant as it was, wondering why not. Bill rectified this by sending me a stencil cut for my callsign, which then prompted me to have to buy a $7 can of spray paint just to use it for that.

All in all.. not satisfied, and would not buy any product again. I understood that I was paying a premium for their R&D design into this neat product. But if done again, I would just buy batteries, any and all pigtails\leads I would need to connect any of my devices, a (hash free) charger, and feel like I'd be better off with a bit of money saved in the end.
 


If you have any questions, problems, or suggestions about Reviews, please email your Reviews Manager.