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Author Topic: Looking to get into HF cheaply.  (Read 7329 times)
KE4DRN
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Posts: 3710




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« Reply #15 on: February 25, 2010, 08:20:34 PM »

hi Zack,

Be sure to attend Field Day at one of your local clubs.

You will learn a lot by getting in on the action and meet good
people that can Elmer you.

I know you want to avoid home built gear, what happens if
your G5RV is damaged during bad weather what will you do to fix it?

Find a local club here

http://www.arrl.org/FandES/field/club/clubsearch.phtml

Learn all about different antennas here www.cebik.com
you need to register no cost.  Lots of info written in plain english.

73 james
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K1TWH
Member

Posts: 103




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« Reply #16 on: March 11, 2010, 04:04:01 PM »

Zach,
   Starter radios around $300-400;  Yeasu FT-747GX, Icom IC-725, IC-728, IC-735,Kenwood TS-130, TS-140, TS-430, Ten Tec Triton, Argosy, Delta, Alinco DX-70T & DX-77T.
    Tuners @ $50-100;  MFJ-900, MFJ-901, B&W VS-300, and too many others to remember.  Look for their eHam reviews.
     Wattmeter?   If the radio has SWR indications, you can live without any 'wattmeter'.  MFJ makes a few approximate reading meters under $40.  I'd save my money on this for the antenna.
     Power Supply;  Astron 20, Astron 35, Jetstream JTPS28, MFJ-4125, and quite a few others.  Look for a nice used one on the web, even on Craigs list locally.  They are pretty common.  Just find a 20 amp supply in decent shape.  There are quite a few 'switching' supplies to avoid due to noises they make in the radio spectrum, so read the eHam reviews before buying any supply.
       Antenna;  Two equal lengths of wire longer than 50 feets attached to 300 ohm twinlead routed to that inexpensive tuner you buy.  Tweak the tuner for lowest SWR, note the settings for each band you are interested in, and enjoy HF.  Try to keep your doublet away from your home and other's home so as to minimize the amount of antenna currents induced into the house wiring (while minimizing the noise you pick up as well).
     73, and good DX.   Tom Howey  WB1FPA
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #17 on: March 20, 2010, 02:42:47 PM »

Okay, now I've passed my General and I am working on Extra. But, in the meantime, I have figured out a new basic outline for my station. I plan on buying a used transceiver at HamCom (A large North Texas Hamfest) in June. I was thinking an Icom IC-730 or 735, a Kenwood TS-430S, Yaesu FT-747GX, or a Ten-Tec Delta 580. I plan on getting a half-size G5RV from Antennas and More. For power supply I am going to use an Astron SS-25M. For an antenna tuner, I intend to use an MFJ 901B. I recently figured out a dipole requires no grounding, but how would I go about grounding the rest of the equipment. Any and all feedback is welcome.

73
KF5BKW
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #18 on: March 20, 2010, 02:43:42 PM »

Okay, now I've passed my General and I am working on Extra. But, in the meantime, I have figured out a new basic outline for my station. I plan on buying a used transceiver at HamCom (A large North Texas Hamfest) in June. I was thinking an Icom IC-730 or 735, a Kenwood TS-430S, Yaesu FT-747GX, or a Ten-Tec Delta 580. I plan on getting a half-size G5RV from Antennas and More. For power supply I am going to use an Astron SS-25M. For an antenna tuner, I intend to use an MFJ 901B. I recently figured out a dipole requires no grounding, but how would I go about grounding the rest of the equipment. Any and all feedback is welcome.

73
KF5BKW
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #19 on: March 20, 2010, 02:44:10 PM »

Okay, now I've passed my General and I am working on Extra. But, in the meantime, I have figured out a new basic outline for my station. I plan on buying a used transceiver at HamCom (A large North Texas Hamfest) in June. I was thinking an Icom IC-730 or 735, a Kenwood TS-430S, Yaesu FT-747GX, or a Ten-Tec Delta 580. I plan on getting a half-size G5RV from Antennas and More. For power supply I am going to use an Astron SS-25M. For an antenna tuner, I intend to use an MFJ 901B. I recently figured out a dipole requires no grounding, but how would I go about grounding the rest of the equipment. Any and all feedback is welcome.

73
KF5BKW
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #20 on: March 20, 2010, 02:45:40 PM »

Okay, now I've passed my General and I am working on Extra. But, in the meantime, I have figured out a new basic outline for my station. I plan on buying a used transceiver at HamCom (A large North Texas Hamfest) in June. I was thinking an Icom IC-730 or 735, a Kenwood TS-430S, Yaesu FT-747GX, or a Ten-Tec Delta 580. I plan on getting a half-size G5RV from Antennas and More. For power supply I am going to use an Astron SS-25M. For an antenna tuner, I intend to use an MFJ 901B. I recently figured out a dipole requires no grounding, but how would I go about grounding the rest of the equipment. Any and all feedback is welcome.

73
KF5BKW
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #21 on: March 20, 2010, 07:38:54 PM »

Sorry about the quadruple post, computer was very sluggish, obviously pressed the post button 3 too many times.
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AD6KA
Member

Posts: 2232




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« Reply #22 on: March 31, 2010, 02:50:02 AM »

Buy The Kenwood TS-430.
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #23 on: March 31, 2010, 07:41:54 PM »

OK, now I've only got three problems. Two of which you can help solve. One is which transceiver of the ones mentioned above would work best? The other one you can help with is what to do as far as antennas go. I would like to know if it would be feasible to run a half-size G5RV across my deck (about 15') then back to the main part of the house (About 10' each side) and then droop both ends down (About 10' each side). If you can think of any more efficient solutions, please let me know. In case you were wondering, the third item is money, but I'm nearing my goal (sort of).
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K7LA
Member

Posts: 60


WWW

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« Reply #24 on: April 01, 2010, 07:21:09 PM »

Don't overlook silent key estate sales.  A good source for that are local clubs who help the late ham's family dispose of the station.
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AE5MW
Member

Posts: 5




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« Reply #25 on: April 12, 2010, 03:57:52 PM »

I see where you posted that you want to stay away from homebrew where an antenna is concerned but look at this site anyway. You may be able to fit a full size G5RV at your site. My dipole is homebrew along with the first 42 feet of feedline. Don't let the homebrew factor be intimidating. All antennas at my home are built by me and I enjoyed creating them all. Hope this helps.
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AE5MW
Member

Posts: 5




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« Reply #26 on: April 12, 2010, 03:59:56 PM »

oops I forgot to post the site  http://www.comportco.com/~w5alt/antennas/notes/ant-notes.php?pg=16  It may answer you questons.
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KC2UGV
Member

Posts: 217




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« Reply #27 on: April 14, 2010, 07:53:00 AM »

I'm not really sure why you want to stay away from homebrew antennas.  They are easy-peasy to build, and really hard to screw up unless you can't use a measuring tape.

A homebrew G5RV = $40 + 2 hours of time
A packaged G5RV = $150

Both will perform equally as well.

Dipoles are even easier:
SO-239 Chassis Connector = $3.69 at RadioShack
Wire - $7.99 for 50ft of 14 Ga speaker wire at Walmart
Some solder, or in a pinch, electrical tape
10 minutes of build time.

You can cut a lot of money down by building at least the antenna.  I can see why you don't want to homebrew a transceiver (Heck, I don't like soldering SMD parts, and my theory is weak).  But buying an antenna?  I can't see why.
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KF5BKW
Member

Posts: 16




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« Reply #28 on: April 17, 2010, 04:46:03 PM »

For the G5RV, I intend to go half-sized, and it would not be that expensive ($20-$30). Also, I recently received infromation, from the scout leader that got me into ham radio, that there is a local ham who would be willing to fix up a TS-830 for free if I bought one. One last thing, what would be a good hand mic to purchase ofr my Yaesu VX-3R if I have an adapter to a normal mic jack?
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KE7UFQ
Member

Posts: 44




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« Reply #29 on: April 19, 2010, 11:30:06 PM »

I haven't tried one of these, but it is as close to homebrew as you can get and you don't need a tuner,

http://www.hamradiofun.com/yo-yo-vee.htm

An HF radio and that antenna...your on the air.

Good luck to you and congrats! I hope to hear you on the air soon!

Jamie
KE7UFQ
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