I rode and drove SAG for the AABTS "One Helluva Ride" on Saturday, July 14, 2018 with Saul KE8DDR. We clocked 111 miles door to door, which included two stops at the Gregory rest stop and a scenic ride through Hell, MI on a road that was paved with good intentions.
My 5 watt Baofeng HT was useful for talk-in to reach George K9TRV and Dan KB6NU who were operating net control. I had earlier programmed in the WD8IEL Chelsea repeater into it using Chirp, so I was ready to go. The range of my HT inside the car was not very good, but it was good enough for its purposes getting started. The Chelsea repeater is located near the M-52 and I-94 interchange.
The ARROW club has some radios just for this purpose, so we installed them temporarily in my car. Last year I made a goal of getting a W8EMV plate on the car just for this reason, and I managed to successfully navigate the Michigan Secretary of State system for doing that (at a cost of $7 for the vanity plate - cheap).
The antenna we used was a 5/8 wave with a mag mount on the roof of the car and the antenna cable snaked through a crack in the window, from ARROW.
The radio we used was a 2m rig, a FT-2900R, from ARROW. The only thing I noticed was that the tuning knob was very easy to turn and I bumped it at least once knocking me off-frequency.
The SAG drivers didn't all use APRS this time as far as I could tell. I also didn't have enough space to set up a laptop + wifi + cell phone hotspot in the car. Perhaps next year that can be a goal.
Neither WD8IEL nor N8DUY are on Echolink, so there wasn't really any backup plan to use wifi to get access to the net. That said, N8DUY which was pressed into service mid-ride has excellent coverage of the whole county and beyond. I was able to hear N8DUY on the HT all the way to Gregory. Of course net control had a cell phone number so the backup plan was the phone network.
Saul KE8DDR and I joke that the Sunday night nets are the "fix your radio hour". It turned out that running a net for a ride gives you a chance to do the "fix your radio hour", "fix your bicycle hour", and "fix your repeater hour" all at once. He repaired two blown tubes, and helpfully ran shifts both driving and operating the radio.
Elsewhere on the net: