The Ringo is a build-it-yourself mobile phone that actually works

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I remember Nokia rinGo it was a cheap cellphone that used 1G network called NMT-900 (Nordic Mobile Telephony) from the 80s.


I also remember the Ringo vertical antenna for 2m.

Now get off my lawn because there are the ground wires for the 40 m vertical.


Also the Italian biscuits that are like the Oreo but tastier And the older spots used “Winchester Cathedral” as background music.


This seems fairly pricey and I’m sure this has some kind of insidious internet-of-crap spyware nestled in it somewhere, because Boing Boing Shop, but I have to say it’s at least a lot closer to an ad relevant to Happy Mutants than the usual Shop fare. So, good job, I guess.


Does the $179.95 require a two year contract?

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I had a 2M Ringo… Someone who worked at a radio store gave me a broken one. A piece of dowel and cable clamp got it going.

But it didn’t need radials because of the length, or that bit of tubing “ring” that gave it its name. It’s been decades.

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When I was a kid, someone I knew (older) said they’d used mobile phones by putting crystals for the mobile phone frequency in his 2M amateur radio transceiver, and calling the operator. I don’t know if he was joking or not, or whether others did it too.

This was in the early seventies, so maybe not that many years
before He, like many, had surplus commercial 2way radio equipment in his trunk, which were the mobile phones of the days.

He died a few years back, so telling this can’t hurt him.

Does it double as a drum machine?

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It wouldn’t be a very good drum machine…

I have seen some surplus carphones (pre 1G) modified for 70 cm amateur radio operator. Nice 30W final transistor, full duplex operation, PLL tuning.

Basically there was a microcontroller that implemented the phone protocol that was placed on a standalone board. The service manual and internal documentation somewhat leaked so was easy to make another board with another microcontroller and used the RF part to build ham radio repeaters or packet radio nodes.

giphy (12)

It would have been possible with older MTS or IMTS networks, which had a set of VHF-Hi channel pairs in the 150 Mhz band. It would still be necessary to generate the proper signalling tones, though.

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