Vintage Ham Radio
Well, the AM bug
has bitten hard. What a great mode of operation to QSO with. My
first introduction to AM was on 2 meters with a Heathkit Twoer and
after up converting CB transceivers on 10 meters. My transition to 10
meter FM was yet another reason for my attraction to pleasant sounding
signals. The audio
quality on that rig was awesome. I have always loved the fidelity of
transmission and reception.
"Thunder is good, thunder is impressive but it is lightning that does the work"
......Mark Twain 1835-1910
My new transmitter project, a Collins 20V3. This transmitter was originally on 630 AM station in Lovington New Mexico. It arrived after a week long freight journey in 2 crates. Unfortunately, the modulation transformer got damaged during shipment. I have since found a replacement transformer. I have a lot of cleaning and maintenance to tackle before even getting to the conversion effort.
STATUS: Replacement Modulation transformer obtained. Cleaning phase
HRO-50T that I recapped. This receiver is awesome. What excellent
sounding audio. After a long day of the AM transmitter rally, R33, a 5k
10 watt resistor opened up.
STATUS: Repaired and working well !
My 3/8 wave inverted "U" with a raised radial system consists of a vertical element about 40 feet, then shoots out about 100 feet horizontally and drops down another 50 feet. I use an elevated ground plane that starts at the feedpoint rooftop level. I currently have 3 radials on the system. I am building a tuning network that consists of a vacuum variable capacitor and 2:1 transformer. I use a home depot weatherproof enclosure to house the capacitor. I also fashioned a homebrew lightning arrest. The system is being tweaked for 160/75 meter operation. I seem to finally have the design finalized and hope to put it all together for final testing and on air use.
PROJECT STATUS: Tweaking/Testing
My Knight T60 that I recapped. A 6DQ6 output in the final.
PROJECT STATUS: Restored
A pair of 2C's being restored as part of project that I need to complete for Dave ! I have not forgotten about you :-)
PROJECT STATUS: Repainting covers
My electronic keyer full of 12AU7's !
PROJECT STATUS: Recapped but need to design a TR relay system for the DOW Key and my other transmitters.
Viking Ranger I
My Ranger has been worked over numerous times. Stew, AB2EZ took the transmitter through its first series of mods. I have since replaced other capacitors and resistors subject to failure. My last quest on this transmitter is to obtain a clean 100% modulation at 1KHz. Currently, the transmitter makes it to about 75% and goes non-linear.
PROJECT STATUS: Researching
I obtained an R7 that needed a lot of TLC. The fiberglass insulator was severly weathered and the 1:4 balun was damaged by excessive heat. I reworked the insulator by coating it with several layers of polyester resin. I repaired the 1:4 balun by replacing the damaged FT240-61 ferrite core.
PROJECT STATUS: Restoration Completed and working great. My first contact with this antenna was with RX3xx near Moscow, Russia on 20 meters using my FT-817. My report was 57.
My radio interests were Inspired by many nights tuning through the AM and shortwave broadcast bands for distant radio stations, an electronics tinkerer at heart, lover of morse code, a ARRL Volunteer examiner, collector of vintage vacuum tube radio gear, and awe inspired by severe thunderstorms since the day a stroke of lightning struck my parents house. My growing interest in severe weather has always followed me through life, from the excitement of buying my first anemometer to my first storm chase. That is the reason for the "WX" in my callsign. My interest in weather has been present since 5th grade. My sister Pam got her Tech Plus license the same year I upgraded to extra class in 1996. I passed the 20 WPM morse code exam and proudly display the CSCE on my wall in my shack. I wanted to pass the 20 WPM morse code exam before they downgraded the need for morse code in amateur radio exams. I was very proud of my sister passing her CW exam on her first attempt. I will always remember that very special exam session the rest of my life.
Public Service Awards/Recognitions
April 1996 - American Red Cross - Severe Snowstorm
March 2001 - NOAA Special Service Award - Mt Holly NWSFO Skywarn
November 2003 - ARRL Public Service Commendation - EPA
The breadth of my electronics experience encompasses: television bench repair (My first job), broadcast transmitter/studio equipment installation, repair and maintenance, two-way radio bench repair, supervisory positions in the electronics field, test engineering positions in research and development of wireless products and technical project management. I am a certified Radio Broadcast Engineer through the Society of Broadcast Engineers and have a number of years experience in radio broadcast engineering. I was employed as a per-diem engineer for many educational, non-commercial and commercial radio stations.
Some of the equipment I worked on
I own a Yaesu VX5 and have a FBA23, the alkaline battery pack I keep loaded with new battery cells in case I need the extra battery power in an emergency. Well, I found that one of the Duracell batteries leaked and corroded the pack terminals. I went to the Poctor & Gamble website and sent feedback regarding my damaged battery pack and the relatively new cells I had loaded in the pack. I received an email thanking me for the feedback and stated I would receive something in the mail. Well, I received a check for $30, the cost of a FBA23 AND they sent me a coupon for a 8pk of AA alkaline batteries. Nice ! Thank you !
Drake 2C front panels or reproduction of. Know of someone that is capable of reproducing front panels ?
GE Mastr II High Band mobile (66 split) with control cable and head. One that is easily modified for 220MHz operation (Oscillator section has variable caps as opposed to inductors)
2 - GE 2C ICOM Xtal Oscillator Modules http://www.repeater-builder.com/ge/icoms/ge-2c-icom.jpg
National HRO-50T "F"(480-960kHz), plug in coils module
National HRO-50T Speaker
Radiotron Designers Handbook - Langford Smith, 4th edition - 1952
Used Stanley Vidmar cabinets for part storage...HELP !
Philmore NR-300 receiver
Electronics Illustrated magazines, 1969 - 1970's
Pictures of old ham shacks prior to 1975
Old (Pre 1960) ARRL handbooks
You must have at times, thought into the past, Where some things go out, while others last. What comes to mind is the Old Morse Code, That has weathered the storms from any abode. To talk with one's finger is surely an art, Of any info you care to impart. In most conditions the signals get through, While the same about phone is simply not true. Those dits and dahs cut through the trash, Of nearby noise or lightning's crash. To the sensitive ears of the ham receiver, That records this data with ardent fever. He knows he's doing something unique, In such poor conditions, that's quite a feat ! To roger the message that came off the air, These brass pounders sure do have that flair. They say Morse ops are a dying breed, but don't despair, There's always the need. When conditions get rough for the new automation, Rest assured there is a need for your station. CW is dying ? Believe it never, This mode will be 'round forever and ever. But one thing is for sure, What we really need Is to relate our knowledge to the younger breed. To carry the torch long after we're gone To send Morse code through the air like a song When at last, silent keys pull that final lever We can rest in peace. It's CW forever --Jim Hatherley, WA1TBY
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Last Modified: November 28, 2010