Other SOTA sites: SOTAwatch | SOTA Home | Database | Video | Photos | Shop | Mapping | FAQs | Facebook | Contact SOTA

FT 857D case

I know similar posts exist, but just a quickie. Having just bought an FT 857D, I wanted a strong protective case to protect it in my rucksack. Solution - one of the large Plastic Cereal containers. Perfect fit, with room around it for padding.

Jonathan
M6HBS

In reply to M6HBS:

Just wondering what you do with the leads in / out of the rig Jonathan.

73, Gerald G4OIG

http://www.flickr.com/photos/18897403@N00/5418195757/in/photostream

In reply to G4OIG:
Hi Gerald.
The Mic & lead just fit down the side of the rig and the main power lead is disconnected and carried separately. Its just used for pure transit at the moment, but I guess it could be modified to operate the rig from inside with the lid removed.

Jonathan M6HBS

In reply to M6HBS:

Hi Jonathan,

It becomes a whole new ballgame when you want to operate the rig inside the backpack. Having to bring flying leads out of the rig for RF, key :-), headphones, etc is a major headache. The rig has to face upwards to operate it through the top of the backpack and it therefore sits down on its connectors at the rear of the rig, so packing out is essential. I’ve looked all over for a suitable backpack which would allow me to get access to the rig from the outside with pack vertical and the rig lying horizontal within it, but I’ve not found anything suitable.

73, Gerald G4OIG

In reply to G4OIG:
Hi Gerald,

Im not sure whether you saw my other post on one of the other topics, but a couple of days ago I bought one of Hobbycrafts really useful 4 litre flat containers and this proved to be better for my aplication than the cereal container. It looks a similar size to your box in that it will take a ream of A4 paper and it is quite strong. Still fits nicely in my rucksack and for me, is an ideal storage/carry box.

Jonathan
M6HBS

In reply to M6HBS:

Hi Jonathan,

I used one of those containers when I first got the FT-857D (http://www.flickr.com/photos/18897403@N00/4378077517/sizes/o/in/photostream/) and the rig is certainly a good fit, but I decided the container was too heavy to carry around with all my other kit. You wouldn’t believe what I take up mountains! I keep trying to lower my backpack weight, but things keep creeping back in. It’s hard to keep it down around 11 to 12kg, after all the 857D weighs 3kg on its own.

73, Gerald G4OIG

In reply to G4OIG:
Hi Gerald
Living where I do in N. Wiltshire, its likely I will only be doing 1 pointers for the forseeable future, so the weight isnt so critical for me at the moment. I guess that if I do get round to doing some of the higher summits, then I will start to cut things down weight wise. Im just trying to work out the ideal SLAB at the moment, around 2.7kg for 9ah or 4.1 for a 14ah. With some of my local hills being a reasonably short but steep climb or parking virtually on a level with the summit, then I will probably go for the 14ah for now. With regard to rucksacks to use the rig from, I wonder if there is any army surplus stuff that would fit? Trouble is, some of that can be pretty weighty too!

73
Jonathan
M6HBS

In reply to M6HBS:

In my case I operate the FT-857 from inside my backpack–being of the newer internal frame style, there’s a vertical “pocket” where a plastic plate is slid down into for support. I slide my rig right down into there, it’s suspended about halfway up in the pack, more or less close to my back (separated by a layer of webbing, a couple layers of fabric plus that plastic plate).

I like this situation because it isn’t anywhere near the exposed back or bottom of the pack so should I slip or fall, the rig doesn’t see any of the impact.

While it isn’t 100% weather proofed, it is quite concealed. The faceplate is always detached. For transport (with mic) it’s in a sealed sandwich case for protection, when it comes time to play I plug in the face, mic and battery and I’m all set. The rig’s orientation in the pack is vertical, with antenna jacks (back side) up, as I tend to do more cable swapping here than anywhere else.

For the moment, that’s the state of affairs, and as the weather’s getting warmer, I’m wondering if I should make some adjustments, as it’s getting warm inside the bag, and I hear the fan running a lot more often (one reason why I shy away from completely enclosed containment, since I do have a waterproof pack fly for when it really is coming down).

73 de Jason
HL4/W2VLA

In reply to HL4/W2VLA:

Hi Jason,

I made sure that there was a circulation route for air around the rig within the plastic case and the front cantilevers over the supports to the underside leaving the air ventilation holes exposed. The fan operates on transmit regardless of whether it is +25C or -10C. I know it’s hot when the fan is still operational on receive, which has been about three activations so far.

The reason I package my rigs in plastic boxes is that rain rarely falls vertically on the hills - I was caught out with swirling winds and rain on one summit a couple of years back which resulted in an expensive repair to my 817.

73, Gerald G4OIG

In reply to M6HBS:

Hi Jonathan,

I gave up on carrying SLABs a few years back on account of the weight. I now use 4AH 3 cell LiPos with a 10AH D cell NiMH in series set up as packs. I’ve just rewired my system using powerpoles and now can run 2 packs in parallel, so hopefully a few more QSOs worth of power available. Even more so if I run the 817 and linear amplifiers.

I’ve looked through army surplus supplies, fishing tackle supplies and other lists, but haven’t found what I would ideally like as a backpack. Maybe I need to purloin the XYL’s sewing machine and make my own. That would stir up a few negative Brownie points!

73, Gerald G4OIG

i only tend to do local(ish) 1 pointers and so weight for me isnt too much of a problem but i stopped using my 857D on summits after a slight problem on my Local Hill CE-001 where when packing away i placed the rig ontop of the trig point and the strong howling winds up there took it off the trig point and hit the floor (i was very suprised considering it is a rather heavy rig) when it hit the floor the SEL Knob was snapped right off :frowning:

i now use my FT-817ND in the leather protective case which it stays in almost all the time and a 20Ah Deep Cycle Sealed Lead Acid Golf Trolley type Battery with tail off it with PowerPoles for connection to the Rig Etc.

all this fits just snuggly into a fishing bag i bought from Aldi for next to nothing and even has room for wire antennas and even food and drink in some cases (ive even had the netbook led in the top with the internet dongle for some of the contests ive done from my local summit

im kind of glad i got this fishing bag when i did and in some ways i wish i had bought 2 so i have a spare for if this one shud happen to get damaged

the bait box in the bottom of the bag i use for various antenna adaptors, Feeders, guy kit for fibre glass pole etc

when i get a moment i will get the camera on the go and take a picture of it and post a link to it on here

Mstt M3WDS

In reply to G4OIG:

OK Gerald, I see how that could be useful for those unplanned squalls (I don’t think we usually plan to go out in the rain :wink:

So far, since I don’t have that kind of protection, I’ve just had to be more careful, but now that I think of it, I’ve only had this new backpack since this winter, an “upgrade” to fit more stuff and do overnighters. How quickly I’ve forgotten about summer and wetness (and how I’m going to deal with it!) after just one snowy (unusual for here) winter and the dry fire season (just winding down now, many mountains “re-opening” this last weekend after a two or three month hiatus).

Explanation: my pack upgrade in some ways is a downgrade (can carry heavier stuff :wink: as my “day pack” situation before was the backpack-adaptor kit for my Ortlieb bike panniers, which by definition are water/dust-proof 110%, prancing around last summer I didn’t have to worry that much at all…

Waterproofing for the separation kit might be in order! (or get one of those bothies I see on the Euro sites and waterproof the operator as well!)

73 de Jason HL4/W2VLA

In reply to HL4/W2VLA:

Well Jason, I always carry a bothy bag and I have never used it for an activation - it is in my backpack for emergencies only. I carry a 2.4 x 1.8m plastic tarpaulin to rig as a shelter or wind break - it is much more adaptable to rough terrain.

I guess we all have our preferred solutions… it is often easier to protect oneself and all your kit in inclement weather rather than just the rig!

73, Gerald G4OIG