Archive for the ‘Radio Repair’ Category

This Week In Amateur Radio: 2017.52   Leave a comment

This week, I did not play on amateur radio nearly as much as I thought I would.  I had a whole route planned for running counties, and I think I only ran one, and only made one QSO in that county.  I had a report of audio problems, so I have been investigating that for the last few days.

I stopped by the Ham Radio Outlet in Atlanta.  I have been to most locations at this point.  Anyway, I picked up a few ferrite beads and put one on my antenna coax near the transmitter, as well as one on the cable between the alternator and the battery in hopes of limiting RFI during transmitting and receiving.

I also dropped the mic gain until the voltage remained above 11 V on transmit.  I have a major resistance problem somewhere as I am dropping to 9 V on my voice peaks, so I need to figure that one out as well.

Thank you for reading my post.

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Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.40   Leave a comment

I did not do much on the radio, as I only checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net one time last week.  I did, however do some radio related activities.

I spent Monday evening repairing my Kenwood TS-450S.  It had a bad capacitor, and I replaced it the other night.  My repair was mediocre, as I should have clipped the leads shorter before soldering instead of trying to get the entire length of the leads to slide through the holes on the PCB.   I finished soldering and then dropped one of the screws deep into the radio, so I had to take more things apart before reassembling the radio.  Anyway, I was able to reassemble the radio and put it back on the air.  Once it was connected to an antenna, I could hear CW signals on 40 meters, so I considered that a success.

I also hooked up an external speaker to the FT-857 I am borrowing from TARA.

Other than that, it has been a busy week, with little time for radio.

Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.39   Leave a comment

I ordered the capacitor I needed for my Kenwood TS-130S, and it arrived this weekend.  I have not yet installed it, but I will do that this week.  Hopefully, the new capacitor will fix the audio problems I was having with this radio.

Unfortunately, I need to replace the 20 meter Hamstick that was on the Crown Victoria.  I took the car to Firestone for a repair and they snapped off the antenna in their garage.  I spoke with the manager (who was on the scene when this happened), and he said that he will make sure I get reimbursed for a replacement antenna.

Other than that, I checked into the Albuquerque SCAT Net once.

I have not been very active operating the radio.  This upcoming week, I will repair the capacitor and perhaps update my logbook and DX4Win log.

Thank you for reading my post.

 

Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.38   3 comments

This week has been exciting for me in Amateur Radio. I started out at home, working through some of my radio equipment and beginning repairs.

I am having troubles getting on HF at home. I have two three HF rigs, all of which seem to be having their own problems.

First, my Kenwood TS-130S display and sound are non-functional. The rig worked fine for a while in my Crown Vic a few years ago, but then, one day, stopped displaying and making noise. I powered this radio up in the house and found that the RF/AF knob is loose. As it wobbles, the display and the sound come and go. I tightened this as best I could (without disassembling the radio), and now it seems to work just fine.

Second, my Kenwood TS-450S has two problems. One problem was that the VFO has been loose for a long time, leading to a lot of play in the knob. I removed the VFO knob (through the set screw on the side), and then adjusted the screws that hold the VFO in place. The next problem is that the audio does some strange things. The radio “sounds” like it is stuck in USB mode, no matter what. An internet search and some poking around internally, and I found that the C104 capacitor ruptured, as shown below.

The final problem I addressed was trying to understand why my Morse Code key played a continuous series of dits on my Kenwood TS-570D.  As it turns out, there are two separate CW ports, and I have the key plugged into the paddle port.  Problem solved!

Thank you for reading my post.

 

Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.28   Leave a comment

I received my Yaesu FT-857D back from repair.  I have plugged it into my home antenna station, and there is still a ton of noise.  However, I am having all sorts of base antenna problems, so that is not really an indication of a problem.  The real test will be when I plug it into my car.  Right now, the borrowed 857 is running S7 to S8 noise, with no filters.  If mine is still running S9+20dB, with or without filters, I’m going to send it back.

Other than that, I’ve been working through my stack of QSL cards.  I have quite a few still to go.  I did log all of my W1AW QSL cards from 2014, back when they did a number of special event stations to commemorate 100 years of the American Radio Relay League (ARRL).  I wish I had participated in this event a little more, as I was missing quite a few states.  However, I was having problems with my 857 back then as well.

This week, I’ll test the 857, return a few direct DX cards, send a few more DX enveloped to the bureau, and return the rest of the SASE’D QSL/MRCs that are sitting on my desk.

I have my work cut out for me!

Thank you for reading my post.

 

Amateur Radio This Week: 2017.27   Leave a comment

I have finally caught up on all of my logs and DX4Win electronic logs.  Now, I don’t feel as guilty getting on the air!  When my logs are behind, I am reluctant to make more contacts.

Yesterday, I also sent away 15 QSL/MRCs, and I am slowly catching up on those as well.

Yesterday, I also received a call about my Yaesu FT-857D.  $145 and it is on its way home.  It had a bad coax connector (where it mounted to the board) and several other things.  The coaxial connector, I could have found and fixed, but the other stuff, not as easy.  Either way, it ships tomorrow, and I should get it back soon.

I posted a comment on the CountyHunter.com forum, as I will be going to Illinois in a few weeks, and, because I am driving, I will be running mobile counties.

Thank you for reading my post, and have a Happy Independence Day!

This Week in Amateur Radio: 2017.23   1 comment

I borrowed the NMT Tech Amateur Radio Association (TARA) Yaesu FT-857D to compare against my own.  While mine has S9 +20dB noise on all bands, all of the time, theirs hovers between S3-S7.  I am currently borrowing their rig for this particular road trip.

With TARA’s radio, I was able to make a few contacts this weekend, in both a shipboard contest and the Alabama QSO Party, though I have not yet updated my logs.

I spoke with Yaesu customer service and they said to send mine in for a repair, which I will do as soon as I have time to go to a post office.

I’m currently on the road to the east coast, but one of these mornings, I will have some extra time and can send it off.

Thank you for reading my post.