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Orion radios.

merlin

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Wondering what I would do with all these Orion radios I stockpiled, I looked to other uses.
Orion radios, 1001 uses. Besides doorstops and anvils, they make good jack stands also.
 

wa8pyr

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Wondering what I would do with all these Orion radios I stockpiled, I looked to other uses.
Orion radios, 1001 uses. Besides doorstops and anvils, they make good jack stands also.
Depends on the band. . . .
 

wa8pyr

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Yes, very well suited for amateur, fairly easy to convert.

Looks like I have all but the 136-150 split.
Put 'em on eBay. There's always hams out there looking for real, manly radios, and the Orion definitely qualifies.
 

merlin

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ebay isn't worth it, besides, radios are a bit of R&D platform for me, a hobby. They just collect over time.
Have half dozen rangers, several Deltas. Last count was 62 portables from the PEs to 7200.
The really great radios are anything mastrII station. Everywhere I look is a Mastr II or III repeater.
And that is just the GE-Harris stuff.
 

KN4EHX

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The Orion certainly has the cool factor. I really liked the full display on them vs the Motorola Astro Spectra. Until stepping up to the Motorola W9 control head the Orion takes the cake. I’ve personally never used one, but when I decided that reliability was a factor in my life I gave the Orion a very hard look, but went with the Spectra instead since East Tennessee is void of anyone using Harris - or able to program them as far as I know. They were and are still reliable workhorses for many who need a solid platform. Besides the difficulties in finding people to help with programming I’d recommend them over the cheap Chinese radios to anyone looking for a solid mobile solution on a budget.
 

merlin

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Some of their pluses is a great sound for the audio processor and 15 watt audio out. built like a tank.
You need the daughter card for anything digital ( I have yet to see one). An elite group of UK hams have some mods, enough memory, they do P25 C4FM on ham bands.
True vintage over 20 years old and still have their place. Ham mods are not that hard and SC4 files get them on 2 meters. I have one now gutted out for R&D, the PA is next. (I have one each of 800Mhz and 450Mhz, with a low band on its way besides)
73s
 

KN4EHX

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Some of their pluses is a great sound for the audio processor and 15 watt audio out. built like a tank.
You need the daughter card for anything digital ( I have yet to see one). An elite group of UK hams have some mods, enough memory, they do P25 C4FM on ham bands.
True vintage over 20 years old and still have their place. Ham mods are not that hard and SC4 files get them on 2 meters. I have one now gutted out for R&D, the PA is next. (I have one each of 800Mhz and 450Mhz, with a low band on its way besides)
73s
Yeah, for the ones I’ve been around the audio quality was very full and rich. Unfortunately, outstanding speaker quality just isn’t found often in most new radios. As far as the elite UK hams with their brogues, oxfords, and P25 I think if a digital capable Orion is available it would be a good choice.
 

merlin

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Yeah, for the ones I’ve been around the audio quality was very full and rich. Unfortunately, outstanding speaker quality just isn’t found often in most new radios. As far as the elite UK hams with their brogues, oxfords, and P25 I think if a digital capable Orion is available it would be a good choice.
Any digital takes the DSP daughter cards and then it means mods to get C4FM.
I think the memory has to be upped to 1Mb to get P25. Total rework of firmware so no longer Ericcson save for 'made by'. I hear a new kid on the block is QPSK, this I gotta see.
 

TDR-94

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So it's now, essentially, a "Franken Radio" with C4FM kludged into it.

I don't think that actually qualifies as "supports" P25. That's like taking a Volkswagen Beattle and jamming a modified engine and ECU/ECM in it and claiming it now performs just like a Porsche.
 
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merlin

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So it's now, essentially, a "Franken Radio" with C4FM kludged into it.

I don't think that actually qualifies as "supports" P25. That's like taking a Volkswagen Beattle and jamming a modified engine and ECU/ECM in it and claiming it now performs just like a Porsche.
Yea, a complete mutt. Even with the dual S8 processors, I still can't see how they get P25, Maybe changing the master brain, but JEEZ, easier to design a new controller board. The DSP handles a lot of P25 so that is totally different too.
 

KN4EHX

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I have all of the bands, diddling with a low band to work 6 meters right now.
That is a cool concept. I actually bought a 6 meter mobile antenna for this purpose. It was a Larsen nmo antenna roughly the size of a 5/8 wave VHF antenna. Worked great until.... East Tennessee in the spring. Roughly this time last year we got a lot of rain. I smacked a low hanging branch and the coil absolutely exploded off the NMO. It was very loud and I was sure something terrible happened.

Was the modification to 6 meters difficult and do you have much luck with FM either domestically or internationally? I really like the ideal of 6 meters. Tennessee Highway Patrol used to have VHF low and high in their cars to receive and transmit back to dispatch since their repeater coverage could be less than stellar. I believe they received on 2 meters and transmitted on 6 meters. Perhaps the other way around. Virginia State Police still has low band VHF and high band (P25 Phase I) for the same reason. In Southwest Virginia I could easily see how 2 meters could be challenging.

Very cool and the thoughts of solid simplex communications is great.
 

merlin

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The brunt of the mod is the VCO coils. Winding my own to reach 54 Mhz Tx and 70 Mhz Rx.
The PLL has to lock at highest frequency, then an SC4 file to program + 5 Mhz.
Turn the output power down to say 60 watts, lest some of the SMD caps overheat.
Now you have 6 meter ham. Still just your basic analog radio unless you can find a DSP daughter card for it.
2 meters is a walk in the park, just start with the M7100. I have one programmed, just haven't benched it yet to see where the VCOs lock. A minor tweak worst case. Looking to RX 137 Mhz for the weather satellites.
 
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furbox

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Jul 21, 2004
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I was reading some older posts and was wondering if the .sc4 or .sc5 files were every posted to this forum or if they were moved elsewhere after Yahoo groups shut down? I have several Orion radios that I would like to get on the Ham bands.
 
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