HF Radio

I am aware that there are many threads concerning HF Tranceivers.
I have a Barrett 2050,it was installed in Northern Territory some 12 months ago when my wife and I were traveling around Australia.
We joined VKS737 as part of the installation and membership of this tranceiver.We had an option of an extra 12 months and did so,BUT find now that for $125:00 well we just dont use it any more,but we are looking at other options.I had some Amateur Radio Frequencies installed and also some other benefits as well.I am an Amateur Radio Operator,and do suggest that when and if one purchases one of these tranceivers that you get yourself an Amateur Radio license,pay the extra $100:00 and have Amateur Radio frequencies installed.
I am a Amateur Radio Operator and have used these frequencies as well as the VKS737
We have this Barrett along with the tuner and also we found that the 9' stainless steel whip antenna was a better than the supplied two piece 4' solid one that was supplied.
We have found that since installing this HF tranceiver we have had the need to help out at least two people who were broken down and also the need to get first aid assistance for another broken down and injured passenger that also had only a phone and nothing else.Sat phone is totally useless in some parts of Australia,as is cell/mobile phone BUT the HF comes into its own.
There are about three or four other organizations around,so I would suggest that you check out all organizations before settling for one HF company.
There are two main types of HF Tranceivers,the Codan and the Barrett.I chose the Barrett as there is a dealer in WA and they are willing to assist 110% of the time.
My wife and I are on another trip later this year,when we are heading up the centre of Australia from our current location of Peak Hill.We will continue to use the Barrett,its just a matter of which club we are a member of.
I have also found that there are a couple of HF Clubs that will offer you heaps and return nothing so watch them...
In the mean time purchase your HF Tranceiver use it correctly,have it licensed properly and enjoy using it and keeping intouch with the world around Australia


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Reply By: Robin Miller - Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 15:38

Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 15:38
Peter, also radio amateur here , the Barrett 950 may be a better buy, lot cheaper second hand and comes with ability to cover anywhere from broadcast band up to 30 mhz unlike the 2050 which is initially blocked.

I find even 27mhz ssb is very useful and fit a CB whip for normally driving which is good for general listening and doesn't break the fluro lights in the car park I sometimes use.

It also has 125w peak output. The 2050 is cute'er and a little smaller.

I use VKS 737 and it is an expense, have thought of ditching it however keeping it for now , partly because I find HF so useful - just pinging Beacons gives you that warm fuzzy feeling.

On your comments on 9ft whip - my multi tap is only 2m long and I put a sand flag on top but we have new regs this year requiring 3m+ flag height.

Does your stainless steel whip, whip around much - how do you think it would flop around with a sand flag on top ?
Robin Miller

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AnswerID: 531194

Follow Up By: olcoolone - Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 10:32

Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 10:32
You better be careful..... The men in black will come a knocking, they are a listerning.
FollowupID: 814256

Reply By: racinrob - Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 16:35

Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 16:35
As you say Peter there are several HF clubs, some good some not so. I'm with the HF Radio Club VKE237, I find their coverage of Oz very good with bases at Wiluna WA, Cobar NSW, Alice Springs and Sapphire Qld and annual membership $65.
They have a daily sked, an hour in the AM and an hour PM as well as regular social get togethers and a quarterly magazine.
As far as I'm aware you must be a member of any club to transmit on their frequencies except of course in an emergency.

Rob VKE237 Sel 6678
AnswerID: 531199

Follow Up By: Member - Tony H (touring oz) - Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 18:28

Friday, Apr 25, 2014 at 18:28
Definitely DITTO to Rob.... HF radio club (VKE237) is a very friendly group of users, great socials & magazine
Tony (sel 2325)
Insanity doesnt run in my family.... it gallops!

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FollowupID: 814217

Reply By: pepper2 - Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 09:28

Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 09:28
For those considering making radio connected phone calls with hf an alternative supplier is Reids Radio Data at cowra,excellent coverage,great pricing much better than some others.
AnswerID: 531245

Reply By: olcoolone - Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 10:40

Saturday, Apr 26, 2014 at 10:40
We are members of VKS 737 and don't use it that much but we do listen to the scheds and it's always on 8022 when traveling.

Most of our comms are via sat phone now as we find it easier and more convenient.

You mentioned Barrett and Codan, what about Icom, we use a IC-F7000 and a 9350 Auto tuner with a conversion box and it works a treat.

4wd HF is starting to become more of a hobby and past time as technology overtakes it..... It will be letters in the mail vs Email.

AnswerID: 531252

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