• Category Archives Ham Radio
  • DC Power Breakout Box

    Posted on by rob

    I’ve been working on this project for a few weeks (lack of time).  Basically, I bought a huge 120A/hr battery to go camping with and to use for other things, such as portable amateur radio work.

    Well, that’s all well and good, but how do I connect things to it?  I wanted some easy way to connect multiple things to the battery without having to have a number of wires getting attached to the battery.

    So, not wanting to spend ARM+LEG and either our first or second born to buy something already made, and it wouldn’t include the cig plugs either.

    So, I made this:


    Read on if you’d like to see the other pics .. or, you can just go and look at them in my Google Gallery< == Click there

    Ok, well looking at the picture above what you have is:

    – 4 way cigarette plugs

    – 4 sets of Anderson Powerpoles

    – 4 Fuse holders (15A for cig plug and 20A for Powerpoles)

    – 2 Inline fuse holders (40A fuses)

    – 2 Quick release battery terminal clamps



    These are the fuses holders up close and the Anderson Powerpole block.  This block is arranged in 2 groups of 4’s.  The reason for this is so that the 2 groups back wards from each other.  This means that there can be no mistakes in plugging into them the wrong way.  Each group of 4 makes a single circuit and fused by a 20A fuse.  There is the top group and the bottom group, also marked on the fuses.  The Powerpoles used are all rated at 45AMPs each.  It’s over kill but by risk it.


    The 4 way cigarette plugs are connected through a 15 amp fuse, also marked on the front.






    Looking inside the box.  On the left side top and bottom are the 30AMP bus blocks I’ve used to distribute the incoming power feed (both the negative and positive are fused with 40AMP fuses).





    This is a close up of the Powerpole blocks.  You can see how each pair are ganged together.  It wasn’t too hard, but where the double wires were attached to I had to shave off some of the insulation on both wires to allow them to get closer together and prevent too much strain.  Each and every connector was first crimped then soldered to ensure both a good connection and also security of the connections.

    Close up of the fuse connections isn’t very exciting.  Each connection here is also soldered and then taped to ensure the “hot” connections aren’t open to something falling in or on them.





    Each and every wire going into or connecting the bus blocks has been soldered to ensure the wires won’t break or wear with movement.  it also means the screws holding them in will have a more secure fit




    Just another shot of the front again

  • Pics from Mull

    Posted on by rob

    I’ve just posted some of the pictures from Mull.  You can find them in the Gallery.  There are just over 300 pics of the 1000 or so that I took while away.

    I will post some videos once I’ve had a chance to go through them and convert them for the web .. it could be a week or so as this weekend will be super busy.


    I have 2 RAYNET events.  Saturday is the Cottenham Fun Run, and Sunday is the Oxfam: Cambridge Walk.  More on that if there is anything to report.


    Enjoy the pics.. I’ll try to upload more later, plus the videos.

  • Back from Scotland…

    Posted on by rob

    Well the trip to Scotland was great!!!  I’ve taken around about 1000 pics and videos, I’ll go through them and get a selection of them put up in the gallery. 

    This is the write up of my trip.  It’s very long and contains lots of links..   The pics of the trip will follow ..  Click to see the full story.

    Continue reading  Post ID 305

  • Finally in Scotland…

    Posted on by rob

    Well we are finally here in Scotland.. but not quite in Mull yet.  We departed Gav’s (M1BXF) house today about 1030 am.. a short stop at Huntingdon for some breakfast then it was anchors away and northward bound.  We had a very uneventful trip north.  Saw a couple of accidents on the way but nothing that effected us.

    We arrived in Helensburgh at Gav’s folks house for the night.. we arrived about 1915hrs.  All in all not a bad trek considering all the kit we had in the Jeep and on the trailer.  I’ll provide pics of that later and post a link as well.

    We had a great dinner “ruby murry” (Curry, it’s cockney rhyming slang haha) .. then a quick trip to the pub for a couple of drinks and finally back to the house.

    We’ll set out Saturday morning about 10am for Oban where we are booked for a 1400hrs sailing of the ferry to Mull.  I should be able to post to more later if we have Internet.. if we at least have telephone and I get SMS messages out to Twitter and you can follow our adventures on my twitter page .. http://twitter.com/m1xzg, or check out things out on the CAMB-HAMS page.

    Hope to get more post later on..