Quantum Ham Battery

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Any professional or serious amateur photographer is probably familiar with Quantum Instruments, For over eight years. Quantum has been the leading supplier of power packs to the photographic mdusiry, Their products have been proven to be reliable, whether It's a wedding photographer snapping candids of a radiant bride, or a news photographer slogging through the jungles of South America Photographers the worid over reiy on Quantum battery packs to supply full power in the field Quantum tnstumenls has now brought their experience to the amateur radio market with the introduction of the Ham Battery.

The Quantum Ham Battery is a hefty (36 oz.) power pack that will provide full. 12 volt power to your HT, There are several things that make the Ham Battery different from the standard NiCd pack. First and most importantly, the Ham Battery is not a NiCd, The attractive black case contains a sealed tead acid battery rated at 12V and 2 1 Ah. Since the battery is designed for high current drain, it can handle up to 3 amps of current draw Also, since the battery is not a NiCd. there is no problem with "battery memory." You can recharge the battery at any time, without the risk of shortening the battery iife Since the charging circuit is fully regulated, there is no danger of overcharging.

The other btg difference in everyday use is that the Ham Battery does not attach directly to the bottom of your HT. The battery is hung on your belt with a built-in belt clip, or you can use an optional shouider strap . An adapter is plugged into the top of the Ham Battery; the other end replaces the bauery pack on your HT You can then use your HT as a speaker nuke, or you can leave your HT on your belt and use a regular speaker/mike. The adapter is so lightweight that with most mim-HTsr it is most convenient to use the whole radio, instead of having the additional tangle of a speakerftnike

To test the effectiveness of the Ham Battery, I subjected it to several real-world situations (if you can call the Dayton Hamvention ' real worid"). The Ham Battery has three green LEDs which show the approximate state of charge. They are marked %M 'J2/3Pi and "1/3" (with meaning full charge, etc). Eight hours of constant monitoring and occasional transmitting never did more than put out the first light. Hooktng my HT up to a wattmeter showed that I was getting a full 5 watts out at this level (my HT's maximum output at 12V)r Every evening upon returning to the hoteL I plugged the wall charger in and woke up to a fully charged battery, without the worry of NiCd battery memory.

After doing this at three separate hamfests, I figured it was time to give the Ham Battery a tougher test. The opportunity came when my car went into the shop for some repairs and I was given a loanef I ttnew the Ham Battery in a dash cubbyhole, stuck a 5/8 wave mag mount on the roof and set my sights at full battery drain. This set-up took me on a six-hour trip over the weekend, and back and forth to work every day (about 1 hour/day total) for a week—without a recharge. When I returned the loaner car a week iater (and gratefully went back to a full 45 watts of output on my in-dash 2 meter gear), the "2/3" light was just starting to flicker. Granted, I probabiy didn't transmit as much as most people, (doubt :hat someone who is more of a rag-chewer than \ am could repeat these results, but since you're probably never more than a full day away from an AC outlet, you could probably go for years without ever seeing that last LED go out.

The Ham Battery has two output jacks, so you can power two units at once (just don't exceed 3 amps draw). You can order a coiled power cord without an HT adapter, so you could power anything that takes 12V DC- This seems tike the perfect power source for taki ng a QRP rig on that next wilderness camping trip In fact, there's probably a hundred different ways you could utilize a highly portable 12V power source.

Come to think of it. I'll be spending a few days in a canoe in the backwoods of Maine this month. Hmrnm.. j wonder if DXCC has a special certification for QRP canoe maritime mobile?

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DIY Battery Repair

DIY Battery Repair

You can now recondition your old batteries at home and bring them back to 100 percent of their working condition. This guide will enable you to revive All NiCd batteries regardless of brand and battery volt. It will give you the required information on how to re-energize and revive your NiCd batteries through the RVD process, charging method and charging guidelines.

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