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Yaesu FT-60R question

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    Sue, KN6CZA

    I bought my Yaesu FT-60R this summer. I can charge the radio fully (8.2 V?), and if I leave it in the charging base turned on and don’t use it, it will slowly drain until the radio is dead. If I take the radio out and insert it back into the charging base, it will charge up again. I would expect that if you leave something in a charger, that it will stay charged. So I sent it off to Yaesu for repairs in December. They said that there was nothing wrong with it and sent it back. SO I wasted $15 shipping fees.

    Are the radios supposed to stay fully charged if they remain in the charging base or is my radio working as designed?


    Mike, KJ6VCP

    This seems to be a Yaesu ‘feature’. My VX-7R does exactly the same thing – the battery will discharge if the radio is on while it’s in the charging base. They really should explain that in the manual.

    With the VX-7R, the external DC jack will charge the battery while the radio is on, but the FT-60 doesn’t work that way.

    If you connect a 12 Volt supply to the FT-60 external DC jack, it will power the radio and the batteries will not discharge. From reading the manual, it seems the standard PA-48 charger won’t power the radio this way, you need something with more current capacity.

    Sue, KN6CZA

    Thanks Mike. That’s quite helpful. I just assumed a charger would keep a radio charged!


    Ah! A learning experience! As you discovered, the FT-60 charger cradle is designed to charge the battery to full and then shut off. You need to remove the battery from the charger to reset and place it back again to start a new charging cycle.

    Older model FT-60s would charge the battery when they were plugged in. At some point Yaesu removed the charger circuitry from the FT-60 and now the plug-in port is only intended for powering the radio with the car cord. At that same time the drop-in charger cradle became standard equipment, supplied with the radio. That’s your clue about what you have.

    If you want to keep your FT-60 on “indefinitely”; Charge the battery in the cradle and then plug the power cable directly into the radio. That won’t keep the battery charged on the later models, they will slowly self discharge over some weeks, but the radio will be running from the power cord so the battery will last as long as if you weren’t using the radio at all. The FT-60 can receive just fine while using the “wall wart” plug. As Mike mentioned; The stock power supply doesn’t have enough “oomph” to transmit (the car cord does!) but I think it will transmit fine if the attached battery is charged up. Please verify this yourself. If you mostly monitor then once a week (or any day that you have transmitted, whichever comes first) you can unplug the radio and top off the battery in the charger cradle and you will probably never need to turn it off.

    I can’t speak to the other models. You need to read the manual for your radio to learn if it charges while plugged in or if you need to use the charger cradle.

    Sue, KN6CZA

    Thanks Peter. Great information.
    It just seems weird to design them this way. I wonder if they assume most people leave them off? Being new to ham radio, I wanted to leave mine on to get a sense of what kind of traffic comes across other than weekly check-ins.

    David, KM6DOV

    Many of us keep a radio on in the house. I’m not sure how many do this with a handheld. I have a mobile radio plugged into a power supply and an external antenna with the volume turned up loud enough to hear throughout the house. I also have a scanner with all the local repeaters and fire dispatch that I turn on when I’m listening more actively.

    The reason radios tend to not work on the charger is because it will cause the battery to degrade more quickly.


    I use my ft-60 for monitoring the repeater when I’m home. The battery lasts for days, though it’s usually turned off when I’m at work. I’m using Li-Ion batteries, which last longer than the Ni-MH batts.

    Yaesu-Vertex FT-60 Battery

    (choose Li-Ion chemistry on the menu).

    Casey, KA5WAX

    ( catching up )

    @Neil, we’ll have to come up with some kind of practical advice for Puente and their FT-60’s

    Neil, W6VG

    Thanks Casey. Yes, let’s follow up with Puente. I have a lot of practical info already prepared, but would like to do a faceplate diagram for their radios. These will be materials that can go along with all our 8900s and FT-60s. If we set a date to go back, it will help make sure the materials get done! Two or three weeks from now?

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