FT-817 Operating Stand

The Yaesu FT-817 is a great radio but lacks a mounting arrangement. I wanted to use my FT-817 in a variety of environments and needed to:

To meet these needs, I built an operating stand out of wood. You can see an operating stand holding an FT-817 and an audio filter in figure 1 and two stands in use on Field Day 2010 in figure 2.

FT-817 Operating Stand

Figure 1. FT-817 Operating Stand

Operating Stands at Field Day 2010

Figure 2. Operating Stands at Field Day 2010.

The parts I used to build the stand are detailed below. All dimensions are approximate.

Parts List

The individual parts are shown in figure 3.

Operating Stand Disassembled

Figure 3. Operating Stand Disassembled.


The assembled stand is shown in figure 4.

The triangular pieces of wood are cut from a rectangle of 2 ½ by 6 inches. Cut off approximately ½ inch from the long end of each triangle.

The top piece of plywood will be roughly the length of the long side of the triangular pieces. The bottom piece of plywood will be a little longer than the second-longest side of the triangular pieces.

Assemble the bottom piece of plywood to the triangular pieces so that the extra length of plywood sticks out the front. This allows holes to be drilled in the extra length of the plywood if you want to mount the operating stand on something else.

The small piece of wood helps stop the radio sliding off the back of the stand. Mount it to the top piece of plywood so that it is clear of all connectors and cables on the back of the radio.

The straps of double-sided hook-and-loop fastener are held between the top piece of plywood and the triangular pieces. Set the front strap so that it doesn’t interfere with the microphone connector and the back strap so that it doesn’t interfere with the headphone jack. Watch the locations of the screws holding the top piece of plywood so they don’t interfere with the straps.

Four of the rubber feet go on the bottom of the stand to help prevent it slipping in use. The other four go on the top of the stand to help hold the FT-817 in place and to improve airflow under the radio.

Operating Stand Assembled

Figure 4. Operating Stand Assembled.


The stand can be mounted to a larger board, as shown on my home page. The board in this case was made for contesting at a location away from home and has a key, antenna switch, speaker and 222MHz transverter mounted on it for ease of transport and setup. An extra hole will be needed in the bottom piece of plywood for a third mounting screw, and a hole above it in the upper piece of plywood to access the screw. I drilled more holes in the stand shown which made it a bit easier to carry and probably helped a bit with air circulation under the radio. The rubber feet can be left on the bottom of the operating stand so that it may be detached from the board and used alone.

As shown in figure 1, items such as an audio filter can be held on the top of the FT-817 by running another piece of double-sided hook-and-loop fastener around just the radio and the other item.

I have added a microphone hang-up clip on the side of the stand. This is because the most common sound on microwave contest days is the sound of the microphone hitting the side of my car. You can get some idea why in figure 6 on my White Box page which shows the setup before the clip was added.

Further Improvements

Copyright Keith Thomson, 2017.