Recently, I was in in touch with Jim (WA7VFQ) who was trying to decide which radio to take on a vacation to the North Carolina coast. He replied with details about the field kit he put together for the trip which will require air travel. Jim writes:
Last year in one of your QRPer posts you mentioned your search for a case for one of you radios. I commented that I had a Nanuk case that I liked and promised pictures.
Well, we are finally there!
It wasn’t until yesterday that I decided to take my Icom IC-705 over my Elecraft KX3 [on vacation]. I had new foam for the case and last night I did my “foam plucking” and I’m pleased with the outcome. I had a couple of Icom decals and since it wasn’t the Elecraft, one of them wound up on the exterior. Some guy on the internet was touting the Tom Bihn Travel Trays; we have 4 on them, 3 large and one small. All are headed to NC with us. One of them will carry my extra radio gear.
The Nanuk 915 (above) houses the Icom IC-705 (with cage), a RigExpert 230 Stick analyzer, Bioenno 4.5 Ah battery and Mat 705 Plus ATU.
The Tom Bihn Large Travel Tray houses all the cables, mics, SignalStuff 2m/440 antenna, RG-316 coax (25ft., 3ft, 2ft), Powerwerx Watt Meter, and Manfrotto tripod (for the IC-705).
Antenna will be a WRC Mini with dual collars. Tucked into a tripod case and in my suitcase.
Most of the gear out of the Nanuk and Travel Tray (above).
One of the things I like about the Nanuk cases is the dual action latch to open it. It won’t just pop open like one of the Apache cases that I have.
Once I was carrying a 2m 80w Yaesu mobile radio to an ARES event, the Apache case fell out of my truck and popped up and dumped the radio inside. I was not pleased.
When I travel, the Nanuk case will be carry on, but I will keep it latched with Nanuk TSA lock to keep access to contents to myself or TSA if need be.
One additional item to keep track of the case will be an Apple AirTag. It’s housed ironically in a Pelican Tag holder, semi-concealed under the lip on the side of the case. Good reminder for me if I’d walk away from it, as I will get an alert on my watch and phone.
Thomas, thanks for the great advice helping me decide on which radio to take.
I’m hoping to activate SSB sometime around 10 to 11 on Saturday, May 7th from K-2730 on the Atlantic. It would be nice to have you in the log. I’ve heard you once but barely.
Wow, Jim! I love the travel kit. That Nanuk case will do a brilliant job protecting your IC-705. I like the bright yellow color, too. That will make it much easier to spot, say, on a luggage carousel.
And the Apple AirTag? I’ve never thought about using those before, but it makes a lot of sense. I’ll admit that I’m a bit paranoid about keeping all of my belongings close by when travelling by air or taking public transit. That’s one reason why I’m such a one-bag traveller (indeed, this reminds me about this post I made nearly a decade ago on the SWLing Post!)
But there are times you need more than one bag and this certainly can include those trips where you plan to do some proper radio activities. I can go super minimal with a radio kit, but packing out a field kit like you have opens the door to even more radio fun!
Thank you again for sharing, Jim.