Radio upgrades?

Now that I’ve had my VX-8DR for a couple of months (and even used it a few times), I think it’s time for some upgrades.

After a recent road trip, I’m thinking it needs more antenna because getting a signal from another handheld radio that was more than a mile away just wasn’t happening. Being inside a big metal box on wheels probably didn’t help things much either. There aren’t too many quad-band antennas out there, but I did find a Diamond SRH-999 that would probably work. I’ve seen mixed reviews about it, but generally favourable.

I’ve also been researching making my own antenna and looking at different Yagi designs. Small portable ones are pretty easy to make and there are a lot of plans for them out on the web. I think building my own Yagi will be my first radio project. If I do it right (by which I mean if I remember), I’ll even make it so that I can use my monopod as a stand for it.

I’ll also probably need to build some kind of wall mount to hold all the portable Yagi’s I’m eventually going to build.

Then there are the radio accessories that I’m deciding I want now, like the handheld speaker/mic and the GPS attachment, because it’s always nice to know where you are.

Soon I’ll be ready to upgrade myself to Extra class, and then it will be time to start thinking “ham shack”.