Friday, November 2, 2018

A Self Contained Digital Radio Mobile/Portable Go Kit

Occasionally, it is necessary to head out on a mobile trip in a hurry. Piecing together a system for DMR operation in a hurry can be a nuisance. It is convenient to have everything in the one box and ready for operation. With this in mind, it was decided that a rapid deployment kit was the best option.

The perfect sized case, just right for purpose, was procured from the now defunct Maplin store. The criteria was a self contained unit with its own power supply. As most systems run on 5 volts, it was easy enough to obtain a small lithium ion battery with sufficient capacity to last 2 days of continuous use. The simplest and easiest system was the Shark RF Openspot. A small Vodaphone "pebble" mobile data WiFi system was more than adequate. Any changes to the operating parameters could be made using a mobile phone or tablet through the WiFi network.

Unfortunately, the Openspot needs direct Ethernet connection as opposed to the DVmega which operates direct from WiFi. The most practical way around this problem as the use of a mobile router from TPLink the TL-WR802N. Any mobile router would suit the task, but this particular system was small and tidy and better still fitted into the case. For good measure a spare handheld and battery filled the remaining space.

The Vodafone "pebble" is ideal and seldom drops out unless in a totally obscure environment. Once out of the range of a Repeater or Gateway, it is simple enough to switch over to the Hotspot Channels.

This system has been used in conjunction with the the UHF Motorola DM4600 system on long journeys and has given consistent results throughout the journey. As the infrastructure for DMR radio is only in its infancy, this is the ideal solution to mobile operation where DMR Repeaters are few and far between.

Operation on Yaesu Fusion is possible and requires an Android device to change the operation of the Openspot over to the Fusion System.

This system has proven itself on many occasions and is a vital part of the current mobile station.