*Rugged Radio Box*
28 November 2009
I wanted to be able to put some of my commo gear in to a rugged box and yet have it easy to move around and have it easy to use.
So here’s a box
The inside dimensions are 28” long, 11” wide and 9” deep.
Gear installed is:
Yaesu FT-857 to cover HF, 2M and 70cm
TRC 419 40 Channel CB
Kenwood TM-261 for 2M
MFJ 945E HF-6M tuner
CB & FT-857 control head-----------------------Back of tuner
The 857 head is mounted so that I can rest my right hand on the box and easily access the big knob which is used for tuning through HF frequencies.
I drilled out a piece of wood to accommodate the back of the tuner. The coax, meter light power wire and ground wire fit through it and there’s a couple inches to spare between the wood plate and the bottom.
Tuner plate mounted----------------------------Tuner sitting on it
The tuner simply sits in its box. I mounted the FT-857 in front of the tuner. I cut a small piece of chipboard to act as a wedge. To remove the tuner all I have to do is disconnect the coax from the radio and 2 way coax switch and the ground wire at the ground buss and pull it up.
From there it was wiring. I had a couple of small brass buss bars that were perfect for this project. I also wired in a 1/8th in barrel plug to power an HT. The power connector is connected to the busses with 8 gauge wire.
The antenna switch is hooked to the tuner. This gives me easy access to be able to attach HF and a 6M antenna without having to access the back of the tuner. The way I mounted the 857 I have easy access to the VHF/UHF antenna connector. Coax cables will enter from the left side of the box.
Since HF radios and tuners work the best when they are grounded I made a small copper ground buss and grounded everything. The tuner, antenna switch, CB, 857 and Kenwood all have chassis grounds. The bar is connected to a bolt that I installed through the box. Now to ground I just have to clip a wire to the bolt and run it to a ground stake.
Ground bar--------------Neatened up
Ground bolt-------------CB coax
I ran a piece of RG-213 coax under the HF tuner and around to the CB. Now to connect an antenna I can hook up right next to the 2 way splitter for the HF rig.
The only thing left to do is make a non-conductive shield for the power buss bars.
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