I recently bought a second hand FT857d off eBay, to try for a little more power on HF SSB. I wondered what others who use a FT857 do to protect it while in the rucksack. Has anyone found a suitable case or protective cover? I am particularly worried about the front panel knobs, which do seem a little vulnerable.
Before Woolworths vanished I found a padded soft container there with a velcro lid, intended I think to put lunches in for kids, it is just the right size for the 857 although it is a bit of a nuisance that I have to take off the N to SO239 adapter before the lid will close…leading to it being forgotten on one occasion - GRRR! However my present rucsac has a padded internal pocket which I now use for the rig.
In reply to G7MLO:
I bought a black fabric “man bag” “Pierre Cardin” branded (!) from an airport for my FT857. The top is zipped and then clipped and it has a short carrying handle on the back. These seem to be available for £10-£20 depending if you buy them in Bangkok or at Heathrow. They have a removable shoulder strap, extra pockets and are a perfect fit for the FT857. The rig is of course removed for operation but placing it on top of the bag prevents damage to the rig case. I would think you will find a similar one in one of the shops that just sells bags and cases, which you see in town and shopping centres.
Good Luck - the FT-857 is a great rig and very underated I feel.
PS The rig with the mike attached all fit inside the case - it’s perfect, so good hunting I hope you find one. I don’t think you want to carry an aluminium case up a summit personally. This soft case is 11" X 8" X 3.5".
In reply to G0IBE:
I have been using a padded zip case designed originally to hold a notebook computer. It is waterproof, padded, and very light (250g). The 857 key, mic and LIPO batteries fit in the case, and it provides shelter to the 857 from the elements when activating. It slides easily into my sac, and I always ensure that the 857 is transported with the tuning knob upward facing. Been using this arrangement for all my activations, and my 857 is still ‘as new’.
You could probably obtain such a case from a computer junk shop.
I take the front panel off mine and carry it in a foam lined large plastic lunch box along with the mic.
Only takes a few seconds to replace the panel on the summit even with cold hands!
No danger of damage to the knobs etc even if you drop your rucksack.
Andy, I have to agree with you, I have an old ammo case here that would protect the rig in the event of a nuclear attack. It might not withstand a direct hit but if you are not bothered about weight then there is nothing better. I think you need to check the rules, no generators on activations, but I cannot find any reference to using a quantum singularity for power.
Problem I had with my FT-857 was the knobs falling off, you need to protect the head unit at least.
I also use bubble wrap then pop it in an rsgb cloth bag picked up from hamfest which offers some protection against scratches and dings but I’m still worried about the fragility of the rotary select control which seems to get more and more wobbly as time goes on.
My initial effort at protecting the newly acquired 857 is by using a 4 litre plastic box (Really Useful Box available at Staples), approx size 375 x 250 x 80mm. I’ve lined it out with cut up jiffy bags (bubble wrap type) with one rolled up as a pad alongside the left side of the rig to provide lateral support. The mic conveniently sits above this pad. The rig is transported in the middle of the pack with its front face upwards.
It seems strange operating the rig out in the open after having left the 817 inside the backpack for the majority of my previous activations, but there is no alternative in the case of the 857 on account of the need for ventilation. The challenge will come when activating in wet weather!
In reply to MM0FMF:
I have my own Sherpa in the shape of Tom M3XFG!!
Having weighed my 857, the case I have weighs less than the radio. It also provides a nice platform for the rig to rest on during use.
If we ever have the chance to do some activations in GM/MM land, then I’ll be sure to give you a hand to lug the big rig and some submarine batteries up hill!!!
That would be okay for a general walk-in summit Tony, but I would not recommend it for the higher rocky routes where damage to items in pockets is a distinct possibility. I think padded in the backpack is always the safest means of carrying the kit.