Showing posts from 2018

2019 ~ The Year of Change ...

2019 N6QW New Year's Resolutions!

My Soldering Iron will always be Clean and Bright! I will RTM before starting any project. I will have the bins always stocked with parts. I will endeavor to keep the work bench neat and tidy! I will unsubscribe from certain reflectors. I will endeavor to use my website as the only place to share ham related info. I will wean myself from making trivial electronic videos on You Tube. I will endeavor to "step up" the technical aspects of my projects.  Closing Out 2018 Projects...

Happy New Year from N6QW.
73's Pete

2019 MAGA ~ More Arduino's Greater Advancements

What Ham Radio Needs?December 26, 2018 ~ The Day After ..
Well I did get one radio related gift from my middle son and his XYL. Parts! Yes I got three bags of parts... one of caps, another of diodes and zeners and the third of inductors. So not all bad.
In thinking about MAGA ~ More Arduino's Greater Advancements. I have come up with several "tools" built into one Arduino.
First would be a simple band switched RF Oscillator. This would provide outputs in the ranges 1 to 3 MHz, 3 to 6 MHz, 6 to 10 MHz, 10 to 15 MHz, 15 to 22 MHz and finally 22 to 30 MHz for starters. These would all be step tuned in increments of 10 Hz, 100 Hz, 1K, 10K, 100K and 1 MHz tuning steps.
Also being considered is fixed frequency outputs for testing IF stages like outputs at 4.9152 MHz, 9 MHz and possibly 10 MHz or other chosen frequencies (CLK2).
Next would be audio related such as Two Tone generation for Linearity testing of RF Power Amps and to provide fixed tones for use in checking audio amplifie…

2018 ~ The year of SSB Transceivers

The Year is Just About Over!WSPR Data from RIB 12-18-2018. The rig has passed the tests!
This is the "last gasp rig' for 2018. Don't try this with your Bitx40 or uBitx!What Drives Ham's to do insane things? When does a Vision become an Obsession?Who would have thought this was possible?
Does Tribal Knowledge Apply?
Would QST ever cover this Project?
When does an idea spark a project?

Does being inebriated help?
Who else has done this? Is this just a toy?Why is this not a published article?
Is this a dare or a challenge?Is this a project for a newbie homebrewer?

This is a "Ship in  Bottle"

This is a "Rig in a Bottle"

Happy Holidays!
73's Pete, N6QW

2018 ~ The Year of SSB Transceivers

Why you should NOT build your own Rig!

There are many proponents of the concept of building your very own homebrew station frequently involving more than a simple CW transceiver. Often the discussion will start off by saying this is how the hobby started, or a true ham is more than an appliance operator. Still others will say that it is through the understanding of the form, fit and function of each and every component will you then and only then appreciate fully our hobby. 
Today I want to explore the many reasons why you should NOT build your own rig. This seems strange coming from me; but I do want to relate some personal experiences that support this argument. 
My published works both formally via mediums such as QRP Quarterly and the GQRP SPRAT and Hot Iron and on my websites, you tube videos and N6QW blog contains about three dozen transceiver projects with about 98% being SSB and the other 2% --you know the other mode CW. 
This sharing of knowledge has frequently generated lots of …

2018 ~ The Year of SSB Transceivers

A New Transceiver ~ Dual Filter Rig11/23/2018 ~ A case for "Troubleshooting".
Since much of the prep for Turkey Day are now over thus I had a few spare minutes to work on some radio projects. I needed to use a bigger wattage soldering iron to "weld" some copper PCB cases together. When I plugged in the iron purchased from MPJ in FL, the ON LED  was intermittent and the iron would not heat. This required a disassembly of the controller since I knew the iron itself was good. 
What a bear to get that case apart but I did manage to get the unit out of its case. Actually the soldering control box is kind of cool as it has a detachable 3 prong cord and built into the unit receptacle is a fuse assembly and upon checking the fuse discovered there was even a compartment for a spare fuse. The fuse checked good so that was not the issue,
I "jiggled" the wiring from the transformer to the board and saw the LED flash on/off. Boom, a loose connection. But interesting was …

2018 ~ The Year of SSB Transceivers

When your Hobby May Save Your Life!11/14/2018 ~ A movie …

11/13/2018 ~ The Hills are Alive with FIRE!

This was a shot taken this morning about 2 miles due south of my home around 9:30 AM. To our imperial emperor (small e) this is  a brush fire coupled with high winds and lack of rain. No amount of Forest Management would have helped. You best get the facts straight before making your pronouncements. 

Pete N6QW

[This being Veteran's Day (see my later note) my XYL and I went out to lunch. I wore my very special US Navy Seabee baseball cap. I received several Thank You for Your Service Comments and several handshakes. When I asked for the bill, the waitress informed me that someone had paid for our lunch. That was far different from the reception I got when I returned from Vietnam the second time. 
What was also amazing was a group of firefighters that left after having a spot of lunch and returning to the fire lines -- a rousing round of applause as they exited the restaurant. Yes there…

2018 ~ The Year of SSB Transceivers

Building the Si5351 VFO/BFO Board!11/07/2018 ~ Post Mid-Terms I have transitioned to the remote console andthe result are very satisfying. You will see that shortly and I want to tie in a program on the Velocity Channel which is a cable reality show 24/7 showing guys and gals homebrewing amazing cars mostly out of junk parts. So it was with the new console which formerly housed a linear power amplifier stage.

This box was fabricated from double sided copper PC board with an aluminum back cover. It was fully intended to be a totally shielded enclosure and it served that purpose when initially built as a power amplifier stage for a Ten Tec Model 540 that I acquired sans the linear amp brick. This was the prototype and a second one that was built was installed in the Model 540 which I later added a Digital Display effectively making it a Model 544. So I had a spare shielded enclosure in the "junk box".
When you undertake these zany projects there are often unexpected by products a…