[amsat-bb] Re: Recommended TNC

Edward Cole kl7uw at acsalaska.net
Tue Feb 2 14:06:12 PST 2010

Having owned a FT-847 since 1998, I can.

For 1200-baud packet it merely requires connecting a std TNC (I use a 
KPC-3+) to the 6-pin mini-Din packet connector (plug available from 
many Radio Shacks) on the back of the radio.  Page-17 in the 
operators manual shows how.  You can also connect 9600-baud 
audio-output from pin-6.  Back in the AO-40 days I used Mix-W2 as a 
sw modem and connected to pin-6 for audio into the computer 
soundcard.  38k4 requires some radio modifications to tap wide bw 
ckts inside the FT-847.  I never played with 38k4.

Setting modulation for Packet without a deviation meter is harder 
(pin-1 on the radio).  I use my FT-817 for packet, now.  Nice thing 
is the connector on the radio is pin-compatible with the FT-847, so I 
could use the same TNC/radio cable.  The FT-817 has packet mode 
available in menu so you can preset your mod levels by mode and by channel.

Note: I may have my new "Lindy's" operational later today.  Hooking 
up the preamp power and T/R relays wiring in the shack.  Probably 
give AO-51 a try for my initial "return" to satellites.
I also have my M2-436CP42, LY2345 (1.2-GHz Loop Yagi), 33-inch dish 
(2.4-GHz Rx), and a M2-2m7 yagi for hard-core satellite work (they 
also require wiring in the shack to be QRV).  All those antennas have 
T/R relays, preamps and 432, 1268 have amps at the tower.  So I am 
(about to be) ready for P3E!

You can view these on my website:

73, Ed - KL7UW

At 10:06 AM 2/2/2010, you wrote:
>Hi Mike,
>You probably should specify which type of packet you are interested in
>working; an answer to your question depends on that.
>For 1200 baud packet, you can use just about anything, including some
>software solutions (MixW, for example).  Or, one of many MFJ TNCs you
>find at hamsfest or on eBay.
>For 9600 baud packet, you'll need to be more careful in your search.
>  For 38k4, you need to be even MORE selective, as there aren't many.
>If you want a TNC that does all three--1200, 9600, and 38k4-- you
>might consider a KPC-9612+  TNC.   Never owned one myself, so I can't
>For 9600 and 38k4, my personal choice is the Paccomm Spirit-2 satellite model.
>I've never owned or operated the FT-847, so I can't comment on that
>part of your question, either.  But one thing's for sure--38k4 packet
>requires modification of any radio currently in (or out!) of
>production (well, except for the Icom PCR-1500/2500).
>Mark N8MH
>On Tue, Feb 2, 2010 at 1:37 PM, Sean Cavanaugh <seanc at unixgeeks.ca> wrote:
> > On 02/02/2010 11:12 AM, Michael Wolthuis wrote:
> >> Can anyone point me to the recommended TNC for adding to an FT-847 for
> >> digital satellite work?  Are there special modifications needed?  What
> >> connector does it use on the FT-847?
> >>
> >> Thanks,
> >> Mike
> >> kb8zgl
> >
> > I can't speak to any specific "recommended TNC", but I've been using my
> > old PacComm Tiny-2 MK2 for years. It uses a 5-pin DIN (think ancient
> > AT-style keyboard connector) and I connected it the packet port on my
> > FT-847 (6-pin mini-din, like the slightly newer PS/2 keyboards) and have
> > copied the ISS using this. The connections were fairly trivial to make
> > following the manuals for the radio and TNC.
> >
> > Years ago I used the same TNC with my old radio shack HTX-242 to post
> > messages to the BBS on the Mir.
> >
> > With a different TNC, I could also do 9600, but I don't have that
> > capability at the moment. I'd think most any TNC should work.
> >
> > --
> > Sean - VA5LF
> > _______________________________________________
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>Mark L. Hammond [N8MH]
>Sent via AMSAT-BB at amsat.org. Opinions expressed are those of the author.
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