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I got into Ham radio after a long hiatus and didn't have the money to buy a commercial appliance. I went to work and built my own 40m transciever and made many contacts with it. It was loads of fun to engineer and build and my first contact with it is still a treasure in my memories. I made a XCVR, power supply, transmatch, and balun.
Has any one else made their own equipment?
I always seem to come up a few parts short of the complete project. I did pick up Elekraft K1 last year and had a great time building it. I have to hand it to you it is quite an accomplishment. Some day maybe I can get organized enough to get all the parts together. With the internet you can probably scrounge everything you need these days. Hopefully I will run into you on 40 some day.
Actually, I did build my first rig. I was young and at the time had no extra money for 'trivials'. I made a chasis by bending roofing tin over the back steps with a hammer and soldering the corners together. I salvaged most of the parts from old scrap tv chasis thrown away by a tv repair shop in town (carried home on a bicycle). The only parts purchased was a 40 meter tank coil, an 807 final tube with socket, and a crystal. Everything else was scrounged. Had no money for a meter to tune the thing up with so I used a #47 bulb with a loop near the tank coil and tuned for maximum brilliance. No coax either, I used some old telephone cable I found that someone told me was in the vicinity of 70 ohms. Worked over 40 states and several foreign countries with that pile of junk and of course every tv for several blocks. Old memories.
burfurd aka K4WQK
Good deal, I went through the Navy Electronics schools and was weaned on vacuum tubes. I too used to rip apart old TVs and car radios and occasionally got one working again. There is nothing like the smell of a warm chassis.
Tubes are so expensive nowdays, otherwise I might take up a project like yours, but add a bit of harmonic filtering though. hi hi
A note on my HB rig...It only put out a watt and at some point I developed a PS problem and hence, some chirp. I was chatting with a fellow in Ohio, who had been a ham since 1924 and he gave me a RST599. During that same QSO, an OO in South Carolina heard me and saw fit so send me a "green card." My first thought wasn't the chirp, but rather, "I made it all the way to SC on 1W??"
I built an SST-20 from Wilderness radio. Very nice and an easy kit.
I sold it, though. Wish I hadn't.
It's not that difficult to work the world on 1 watt. I have operated some QRP and have worked Antartica, Australia, New Zealand, Europe, and Asia multiple times on less than 2 watts on SSB. CW should be easier to do than on SSB. You just have to pick the correct frequency and time and watch the band openings.
Forgot to mention but the first contact I made with the homebrew rig mentioned in above post, a guy answered my CQ, I panicked, shut down the rig and ran! I have been a ham since back in 1958 or 1959....forgot which, would have to look it up.
Originally posted by burfurd
Forgot to mention but the first contact I made with the homebrew rig mentioned in above post, a guy answered my CQ, I panicked, shut down the rig and ran!
My first contact (CW) I was shivering in my boots. I remember my first "big league" traffic net QNI, I had to pass a piece of traffic that I received at 10 WPM on a training net, and checked into this net that was running at about 25 WPM, I did get the traffic passed, but had to retake the shower I took an hour before. Now they're a piece of cake, but I'll never forget the first one. Kinda like your first piece of...never mind....
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