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 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. However, RF Ham Radio is the goal, internet the backup!

Thus, 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.
  • A switchable connector has been added between the Motorola DMR radios enabling a cross-band repeater capabilities on both DMR and Narrowband Analog.
  • On a side note: we use licensed commercial frequencies on DMR between the our family vehicles and “in the woods” home.






GO-BOX #3 (under construction)

Box 3 will be mini standalone business level cross-band repeaters. 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.

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