the GO-BOX


Ham & Biz Band Event Box

For easy transport and easy setup the “Go-Box” comes to play. For me it is a 6m to UHF setup. I have not had the need to use HF for any event, only 6m on up.  The current Go-Box has 5 radios (1 dual band) for 6 simultaneous frequencies on 10m, 6m, VHF and UHF analog and DMR. The box is a shallow 6U with 2 shelves:

  • 2 DMR/ANALOG UHF Hytera Mobiles (commercial & ham)
  • 1 UHF Motorola CDM1250 Part 90 and Amateur Radio
  • 1 swappable position:
    • VHF Motorola CDM1250 Part 90 and Amateur Radio, and/or
    • 40Mhz Motorola CDM750 Part 90 and Amateur Radio (6m)
    • X-Band Part 90 and Amateur Radio Capability
  • 1 Yaesu FT-8900 6m,10m,2m,70cm (Amateur Radio)
  • 35amp Power Supply
  • Ham X-Band VHF/UHF capability
  •  Additionally:
    • 2 Drive-over antenna mast plates
    • 2 antenna masts (12′ and 24′)
    • Outrigger for 2 NMO mount antennas on one mast.
    • misc multiband base and mobile antennas


The Mobile Travel Kit – My Car

My car currently has a CSI800D FM/DMR dual band radio in it. It works OK, but does not have DMR Roaming. Additionally, the car also has a APRS Mobile I-Gate with WX3in1 Smart Tracker from Microsat with a tailored beta firmware.

The entire route between our houses has DMR coverage, but over two separate systems; CT ARES and NYC Metro. The car also has a DMR OpenSpot HotSpot via cell-internet, but that’s kind of cheating. Thus, RF Ham Radio is the goal – internet as backup!

The goal is a Roaming DMR setup so that as the car moves, the best DMR repeater is always automatically selected much like cell towers as.


GO-BOX 3 is designed based on a shallow 4U SKB Gig-Box I had laying around. At this time (it may change) it has 4 radio slots:

CB for when traffic is backed up     Moto XPR4550 UHF for DMR Roam
Icom IC-2820 D-Star Dual Band Ham     Moto XPR4550 VHF for DMR Roam
Experience from using the Go-Box – the installation has been flip-flopped so that the Mototrbo radios are on the left to be easier to work while the Go-Box is on the passenger seat in the car to my right.
  • The MOTOs and CB are connected to one antenna with a Comet CFX-514 Triplexer to reduce the porcupine effect on the car. 
  • The 2 XPR4550 UHF and VHF are optionally connected as a cross-band repeater (flip of a switch) on DMR or analog including our narrowband biz frequencies. 
  • The IC-2820 will probably not normally be used, but can be turned on by adding (yet) another mag-mount antenna. Other than Analog and D-STAR, this radio will also do cross-band repeat. I commonly use this during events as a HT range extender.
  • All radios are connected to a Anderson PowerPole strip and then connected to the car’s Anderson PowerPole outlet.
  • Microphones are disconnected for the picture.
  • On a side note: we use licensed commercial frequencies on DMR between the our family vehicles and our “in the woods” home.






GO-BOX #4 (under assembly)

A 4U molded rack box similar to the other Go-Boxes have been procured, although not assembled yet. The box will have a HYTERA RD982U with DMR IP Connect and ANALOG FM capabilities.

The primary Preselector and Duplexer is tuned for Ham Radio. A secondary Preselector and Duplexer set is available for 2 of my business band frequencies.

The box will rely on an external power source.


Box 5 will be mini standalone business level cross-band FM Narrowband repeater. The concept is in place. Radios are on the bench working. The appropriate inexpensive box has not yet been defined.



On the list of future builds is a small low-cost ROW (Repeater on Wheels) for events. The objective is the smallest trailer with a secure job-box for a cross-band or in-band repeater to be powered from a marine-battery and dropped in a convenient location for an event. A collapsable 20′ antenna mast needs to be attached.

The box will also contain an APRS I-Gate.