FT-857 SOTA Manpack

Hello dr oms,

for everyone interested on how to make your activations with FT-857 easier check my how to:

Hope this helps.

If you have problems opening website, just wait a while. My server has problems with internet connectivity last week :-/

In reply to OK1BIL:
Hi Marek,
I followed Your link and say: A GOOD idea! It´s really so, a lot of time is used for plug-in/-out of all parts.
Hope to meet you from any hills or mountains

vy73, Hans-DL6UHA

In reply to OK1BIL:

I would love to read your ‘how to’ but seems your server has problems this week also. :frowning:

73, Derek

PS, finally connected after 45 Minutes.
Some good ideas there and I do have some old cases from defunct Videos etc. so will give it a go.

Tnx very much, 73, Derek

In reply to OK1BIL:
You copied my idea! :slight_smile:
Here is i more military manpack conversion of the 857

In reply to OK1BIL:

That’s a nice setup - a good way to keep the cables organised!

I use a ft-817 but have it similarly set up manpack style; LDG Z-817 autotuner velcroed to the top, 5Ah LiPo battery slotted down the side, all in a Lowepro Zoom 55AW.
I have a 50cm length of coax from the back of the autotuner out - for non-resonant HF I connect the antenna to that and tune; for resonant HF I plug it in to that then switch the tuner to bypass and for VHF I plug directly in to the front of the radio. That way I never need to take the radio out of the case now.
For power I plug the powerpole in to the battery, or in my car I pull the cable out (it’s pushed down underneath the base of the radio) and use a cigar lighter adapter. The usual bits and bobs go in the front pocket so everything’s together and I don’t repeat what’s probably my most embarrassing mistake and get to the top of a mountain to find I’ve forgotten a pen!

Works well for me :slight_smile: pics at http://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.10151270221714781.488782.503659780&type=1&l=db8bb69988

Thank you for your comments guys. I am sorry for the server connection, hopefully next week it will get better.

The main idea to get it organized came when I worked M0DAD with his “DX trolley” and seen his video later on youtube.

LA5XTA: I will watch your video in the evening, my employee does not permit youtube.

2W0NNN: Also great and much more lightweight solution, HI HI. Do you work CW or SSB with your QRP station? Photos also in the evenening, same story with facebook…

In reply to OK1BIL:
The video/radio is another LA that made (dont have his callsign here)

One of my ideas was to make a bacpack, just like the worldpack. The only problem, is the cooling, not sure how much air circulation the 857 needs for 20w SSB.

Since the 857 pack is heavy, ill add my NiMH pack, 11 D-cells, ratet for 10000 mah, more like 7000 mah.
This pack is 1kg lighter than a SLAB. And you can stack the batteries the way you want, for best fit.


In reply to LA5XTA:

Ok, I finally checked the video, this looks much more military with the camo painting and the whip, HI HI. But I won’t recommend that, when I see the moisture all around. FT-857D is mobile radio not outdoor radio. I had it open few times - all ventilation holes let the moisture go inside and condensate on the PCB. FT-857 contains ceramic resonators on the receiver input and not all of them are 100% sealed. When moisture gets inside the resonator, it will oxidize, which then results in S9+ crackling with no antenna connected and very poor sensitivity. This happened to me once and I had to get it repaired in local radio shop. So be careful about that.

The worldpack looks great, I was thinking about getting one.

Speaking about ventilation, I am using the manpack frame inside the backpack since end of september and running 20W SSB did not make the radio hot at all. I always touch it to be sure. On my last activation I did 50 QSOs in 40 minutes with 30W SSB and the radio did not get even warm. Outside temperature abt 10C.

How do you charge the D cells? Do you have a picture of your manpack?

In reply to OK1BIL:
My manpack is only an idea in my head.
But i think i will end with a system like yours, and sew a weatherproof outer liner of cordura.
The antenna connections will be cat-tails, just like the latest version og the sgc sg-2020.

I charge the batterypack with a hobby-charger, ImaxRc B606ac. It charges most types (nimh, LiFe, lipo, sla…)

In reply to OK1BIL:

I work mostly CW, though 2m FM occasionally for SOTA and SSB once in a blue moon. The UK weather is exactly why I like to keep it all in there!

I also use the touch test to ensure it doesn’t get too hot. No problem with CW QSOs but for PSK / Olivia I do take it out and grit my teeth re. the cables.

Yaesu - FT-817, lower rx power consumption, integrated Z-817 tuner, built-in LiPo battery, good voice compression and reverse polarity protection… pleeeease? I know, I should just buy a KX3!

In reply to LA5XTA:

I was also thinking about buying some NiMh/NiCd batteries, but two D cells cost like the whole SLAB. I would rather go for Turnigy LiPo from Hobby King, so maybe some day…

In reply to 2W0NNN:

Lucky you, CW can make thinks easier… I hope I learn it one day. PSK can heat the radio significantly as it is full duty cycle. SSB is only about 50%, apart from heating this can greatly affect the battery life. RX/TX ratio should also be considered.