Operating Portable With The Icom 7300 and Hi-Q Mobile Antenna
I have tried a lot of antennas for my camper and this is the best! Operating portable can be extremely enjoyable. I took a trip to Iowa to visit friends and to operate portable from my camper. It was a nice little vacation and a good test for my solar kit installation and my portable Ham station.
The Icom 7300
The heart of my portable Ham shack is of course the ICOM 7300. What I like about the Icom 7300 for operating portable is it’s size. It’s a good fit for the small dinette table. It is also easy to operate using the LCD touchscreen. I can operate CW, RTTY, PSK31 and FT8 easily with this little transceiver. Also, it’s nice to have 100 watts out.
Icom 7300 power consumption: Tx: 21A (at 100W output power) Rx: 0.9A typical (Standby), 1.25A (Maximum audio)
Icom 7610 power consumption: 23 A (at 100 W output power) 3.0 A (Standby), 3.5 A (Maximum audio)
The Hi-Q-5/80 Mobile Antenna
Second part of the station is the Hi-Q-5/80 mobile antenna mounted on the rear. I debated where to put this antenna and had some other ideas for the location, but this seemed to be a good spot. Another Ham friend mentioned that he has a screwdriver antenna and a similar set up on his camper.
The mast is made out of two pieces of pipe conduit to form a 8 ft. mast mounted on the rear bumper. It’s attached with two U-bolts and a standoff or arm about 4 ft. up the lower mast. I can lower the antenna for traveling and easily raise it up when at camp.
One 1-1/4″X10′ EMT CONDUIT (cut in half)
One 1-1/2″ X 10′ EMT CONDUIT (cut in half)
Two U-BOLT 5/16″X1-3/4″X4”
Support Arm is made of slotted angle steel and a U-bolt.
20ft. of 4-flat wire for the Hi-Q control cable and power.
20ft. of LMR double shielded coax (spare coax lying around).
PTO Round Wire Shaft Locking Pin 1/4” x 2-1/4”
Please see my video below.
HP Stream Notebook for Logging
Finally, for logging, I am using a cheap HP stream notebook. It’s not the fastest, but I can log with it, control the radio and the battery will last all day. This time I was using N3FJP AClog, Fldigi and WSJT-X.
I took a long my Elecraft KX2 and sat out in front of the camper to operate CW. It’s a lot of fun and the KX2 is a good little transceiver. Operating QRP can be exciting and rewarding.
Solar Kit Installation Update for Operating Portable
I fixed a few things on my solar installation. Take a look at my article: Solar Kit Installation for Portable Operation
Operating Portable Video
I hope all is well where you are and you are safe.
If you have any questions, comments or solutions, please comment below. I prefer the comment section here or in YouTube because your comments and questions will help others as well.
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Best 73! – Rich,K0PIR
Excellent set up and well documented …Tnx, 73, John W2USN
Great write up! Thanks
73 de M5PM 🇬🇧 Patrick
Nice antenna setup on the camper. I have been scratching my head on how to mount my extra Hi-Q on the quack of my overhead camper.
I will investigate using standoffs from the roof access ladder.
Also, what desk mic are you using with the 7300?
Nice to hear from you and I hope all is safe where you are.
In the camper I was using the SM-50 desk microphone from Icom.
Yeah if I had a ladder I think I might have opted for it.
The ability to lower it when I’m traveling is good. At the extended lenght it would be too high. The collapsed length is too low to operate because it’s too close to the wall of the camper.
Take care and best 73!
I have followed your blog and videos for a long time, thanks for all the information, on how you use the 7300. I have used a 100 ahr battery for my home station along with a Hercules II amp, Tentec Omni V first then a 7300 when it came out. a battery . I operate on a casual basis for nets and normal conversation and I have gone as long as a week without charging, Now I have an automatic charger inline; it’s all about cumulative amp-hours.
Thank you so much and thank you for participating on the website. I’m going to try a battery in my home and see if I have a quieter receiver. It’s always good to have there’s a back up too.
Yes, those two 100 amp hour batteries did a great job for me while I was in Iowa. It rained probably the entire first week and I only ran my generator a few hours to keep the batteries fully charged up. Take care and I hope everything is safe where you are. Best 73!
Hi Rich, what are you using for a ground? I saw in the video what looked like a short copper strap tossed up over the tarp covering the generator, but can’t see it connected to anything. Ground is so important, so asking. THANKS! 🙂
It’s nice to hear from you and I hope all is safe where you are.
That must’ve been a rope you saw. I have the radio grounded to the steel frame of the camper.
I am getting a 4Ft. copper grounding rod and using it while boondocking. Next time when I go the a campground I’ll look for a ground on the electrical box and run a wire from it to the frame. My old jumper cable might do the job.
Do you have a suggestion?
Thank you, best 73!
Great video show casing your camper portable set up and running the net. Great job! Thanks for sharing.
Thank you Mark and thanks for commenting here. Take care and best 73!
This is Jim w7cfl from Oregon
I have a 2013 keystone cougar(fiberglass). Have you heard of anyone using a HI Q on the fiberglass trailer.
I have a 4/80 hi q, love the antenna. It’s my second ,used the first one while driving semi.
If you have an idea how to get it to work or maybe a source I can go too.
Any help would be greatly appreciated.
It’s nice to hear from you and thanks for commenting on my website.
I’m not sure about the fiberglass trailers. I haven’t heard if they work good or not on them.
I’ve tried many things and sometimes setup temporary installs to test with. It’s a pain, but can be fun.
Good luck with it and thanks again. I hope you are your are well.