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Old 05-04-2009, 17:54   #1
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Ham radio, where to mount it?

I need to replace my old Icom 718 and would like some ideas on where to mount a replacement. I typically listen to ham SSB more than talk, and also like to listen to shortwave broadcast as well.

My cabin is two long settees with a small galley to the starboard aft. There is a folding table that comes down from the fwd bulkhead. There are shelves behind the settees. and a long shelf along the aft cabin wall. I have a hammock that crosses the cabin from corner to corner, which is my favorite listening location.

In the past I mounted the ham radio in the aft port corner, and the vhf on the cabin top, also aft port. It was always a stretch to sit on the settee and reach back and to the right to tune the ham radio. It works OK when I stand and tune it. It is somewhat uncomfortable to scan the bands for shortwave broadcasters because you have to stand until you find something worth listening to. Somehow I need to put the radio near where I like to sit so I can enjoy tuning it.

Does anyone move their radio around from place to place in the boat? If I had a way to dismount the radio I could put it on the folding table while using it, and maybe stow it in the shelf behind the settee when not using it. This might cause the radio to be broken if it fell while not secured.

Has anyone used some type of bulkhead mount for the radio?

It would be nice to be able to control the radio from the hammock. This sounds silly but I have spent most of my hours on the ham radio while "hanging" in the hammock on board. I can easily hold the mike while in the hammock, it is just tuning that is the problem, it is a pain to get out and adjust the radio and then climb back in the hammock. Are there any ham hf radios which are suitable for use on a boat that have controls on the mike?

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Old 05-04-2009, 20:29   #2
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I have a Kenwood TS-480 SAT on the boat. The Radio and control head are separate. I mounted the radio inside a cabinet at the nav station. The control head is wired to the radio with a simple telephone type cable (but with more wires). It is long enough that if I want to just listen, I can use it on the setee. The built-in speaker in on the control head. The mic connects to the radio itself, so no talking while on the setee, as the mic won't reach. I could extend the mic as well, and I think they have a mic that has more controls on it - but I don't have one. The only drawback to this radio using it this way is the connectors on these cables are the plastic ones line used on ethernet and phones - and they are easy to break the tab that holds it in.



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Old 05-04-2009, 21:04   #3
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While listening to the SSB as you lay in the hammock do you drink rum and tropical fruit drinks? I am dreaming already! Sounds like my kind of life! Lots of luck with your remote control head on the ceiling. You might as well have it attached to a small drink cooler with a 12v fan blowing on your face. Yeah, and a bikini clad young lady to look after you! Ahh, the cruising life. What a life!
Jerry and Denver
Happy Old cruisers!
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Old 06-04-2009, 13:57   #4
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I have a beer keg with a CO2 pressure system and can reach the tap from the hammock.

The radio with a separate head sounds like what I need, I'm sure I can find a place to mount the radio part on a bulkhead somewhere, maybe in a storage locker. The head can be put where I can see it from different positions, perhaps just under the clock and barometer. Then I just need a mike with decent controls on it, in particular the ability to tune easily, hopefully with a knob, not just buttons to switch up and down channel. I will look into the Kenwood radio, thanks for the tip.
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Old 06-04-2009, 14:05   #5
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Sounds like you have enough money to go for an ICIM 802..........It has a seperate control head, and thats wher the mic is also hooked up!!
Do not go where the path may lead.........
go instead where there is no path........
and leave a trail.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Old 06-04-2009, 14:14   #6
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I am using an Icom 706 MK2G. The rig is fastened to a bulkhead and out of sight. The control head and microphone are remoteable. I have mine near the dinette.


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