Amateur Radio Club & Repeater Network





Gear Guide

The Bay-Net Gear Guide is a compilation of recommended equipment that would be of interest to ham radio operators.


Alex Loop

Very portable magnetic loop.  Tunes 7-30 MHz.  Works well on Rx and at Field Day, we worked Hawaii on 15m running 10 watts on the KX3.  20 watts max.  Available directly or from HRO.  The reviews on eHam are very positive.  The antenna is light and compact when it breaks down for travel.  It works well mounted to a photo tripod.  

Trail Friendly End-Fed Long Wire

LNR Precision makes a very small long wire that is perfect for backpacking or travel.  It has a built in UNUN transformer and a small coil that lets you operate on 40, 20 and 10 meters.  Purchase direct.

Hawaii Ham Club 9:1 UNUN for End-Fed Long Wire

This is a great little 9:1 UNUN for running end-fed long wires antennas.  Nice little package.  Purchase direct.

Custom Small Coax Cables by

This outfit will make you a small coax cable to your specs.  They carry all the common stuff like RG174, RG58, RG8X, RG213, and all the LMR cables. You specify the connector type (N, BNC, UHF SMA, etc) and the cable length up to 10’ through the web site.  If you need longer cables, up to 300’ contact them directly.  They make great small cables for your trail optimized coax.  For example use the RG316, which is silver coated, the size of RG174 and a bit more mechanically strong.  Make a 10’ cable going from BNC male on your radio to a BNC male to connect to the PAR end-fed trail friendly antenna.  Add a second cable with BNC male to BNC female for an optional 10’ extension cable.  Or have them make whatever you need. Very fast turn around time.  Contact the owner, Mike Zeltser, for custom cables at

SOTA Beams

This outfit sells all kinds of stuff for portable ops.  Poles, wire, guys, etc.  Check out the 30’+ long “mini mast” pole for maximum length and the shorter mini poles for easy backpacking.  They are in the UK but ship most items to the US.  Very fast and personal service.

13.5’ Mini Pole

33’ long “mini mast”    

3 Element Portable HF Yagi from HF Portable Antennas

Vern, W6MMA, makes a great portable HF Yagi and other antennas.  They also supply the heavy duty tripod and mast.  This antenna can be assembled in about 10 minutes.  

12v Portable Antenna Rotor by Portable Rotation

Finally ! A 12 VDC rotor for portable field ops.

The rotor worked great at Field Day !


HamLog  -  iPhone, iPad, Android, Mac Logging and Utility Program

HamLog is written by our very own Bay-Net member, Nick Garner, N3WG.  Not only is HamLog a handy portable logging program but also features dozens of useful operating tools.  It’s a kind of Swiss Army Knife of ham radio software.  Features include: Rig control, Callsign look up, Maps, Prefix lists, Band plans, Weather, DX Spots, Grid Square tool, and dozens of other useful features.

We use HamLog on phones and tablets every Field Day.  This year we field tested the HamLog Field Day Server running on a Beaglebone embedded Linux board.  All client phones and pads connect over WiFi to log contacts to the central data base running on the Beagle.


Goal Zero Yeti Battery Packs

This versatile battery system includes an SLA battery, charger, display, AC adapter, AC inverter and various power jacks including 12v car outlet, 5v USB jacks and 120 VAC outlets.  The big surprise is that model 400 includes 2 Anderson Power Pole connectors hooked to the battery terminals.  They use these connectors to parallel multiple Yeti 400’s to build a higher capacity system.  For our purposes, having two power pole jacks is super useful for radio gear !  These units are expensive.  If you build your own, you certainly can do it for less money.  Look for Goal Zero at COSTCO.  They come through from time to time and offer these products at a good 20% discount.  This brings the cost of the unit close to the total cost of building your own unit.

High Capacity LiFePo4 Battery Packs From Elite Power Solutions

These batteries are significantly lighter than their lead acid SLA counter parts. They also have a fairly flat discharge profile so they keep their terminal voltage up above 13 volts most of the time.  This provides you more power to the transmitter’s finals for higher power output.  These batteries are recommended by Jeremey KF7IJZ.  You can listen to his description of these batteries and why he choose them for his portable ops.  FoTime Podcast

Elite power systems also makes specialized LiFePo chargers, cell balancers, battery management systems and other related products.

Nominal Voltage: 12.8V (4X 3.2 V) LiFeMnPO4 chemistry

Operation Voltage Range: 11.2 to 14.4V

40 Ah version Weight: 14.6 lbs, 4.9 X 8.2 X 7.1 in

LiFePo Chargers From Elite Power Solutions

These chargers are designed to handle the special needs of LiFePo batteries like the 40 Ah LiFePo battery listed here from Elite Power Solutions.

GV-10 | 140W 10A MPPT  Solar Charge Controller for Lithium Batteries

from Genasun

These chargers are recommended by Jeremey KF7IJZ in his interview on the Fo Time pod cast to be used with the high capacity LiFePo batteries from Elite Power Systems.  These MPPT charger controllers are specially designed for this chemistry and Jeremey says they are super RF quiet.  Essential for a solar powered HF station.

Medium Capacity LiFePo Battery - Drop In Replacement for SLA

The 7 Ah SLA battery is very popular for portable radio ops.  This LiFePo battery from A123 is ½ the weight, higher terminal voltage and may give you longer operating time.  The battery has a smart balance charge circuit inside so you can use it like your trusty old SLA battery.

Check out Jeremey’s excellent YouTube video comparing it to a similar sized SLA.


Useful videos featuring various radios, antennas and accessories in use…