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Author Topic: How to convert a cb into a ten meter rig?  (Read 10431 times)
OLDWORLDER
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Posts: 20




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« on: November 08, 2011, 10:08:44 AM »

I have an old Uniden Pro 340xl-2 that I haven't used since I got my Ham ticket.  And I was wondering if it would be possible to repurpose it into a 10 meter radio.  The owners manual says it is a Am transmitter I would like to get it to do ssb.

thanks and 73's
Ki4shr
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AC5UP
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Posts: 3825




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« Reply #1 on: November 08, 2011, 10:37:24 AM »

Converting an AM rig to SSB is a non-starter... It's possible, but the effort to benefit ratio is not good.

If you pay attention to 29.000 MHz and slightly above you'll hear a fair amount of AM activity. Not familiar with that radio, but if there's an easy way to jumper the PLL or re-crystal it up a couple of megs that could be worthwhile.
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NO2A
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« Reply #2 on: November 08, 2011, 08:33:14 PM »

One problem with converting a cb to 10m is you never know exactly what frequency you`re on. It`s not really worth the trouble.
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K1CJS
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Posts: 5884




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« Reply #3 on: November 09, 2011, 02:59:18 AM »

You really don't have to know what frequency you're on, as long as the transmitted frequency is the same as the received frequency.  The thing that really has to be looked at, however, is the time, effort and cost of the conversion.  If all that one is doing it for is to give themselves a project to fill their time (to prevent boredom, so to speak) then fine, go for it. 

Converting the rig to SSB, however, will probably cost more and have a worse result than just converting it to straight AM.

If I were you, I would just put this old CB aside for possible future use as it is, and just get a simple 10 meter rig.  The costs will be lower, the result better, and the hair pulling and frustration will be eliminated.  Of course, YMMV.
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K1CJS
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« Reply #4 on: November 09, 2011, 03:03:59 AM »

BTW, how come over 99 percent of these type inquiries come from people who, on this website, refuse to use their callsigns?  Looks like all too many of them are ham radio wannabees instead of legitimate ham radio operators.
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N3OX
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« Reply #5 on: November 09, 2011, 04:54:57 AM »

BTW, how come over 99 percent of these type inquiries come from people who, on this website, refuse to use their callsigns? 

Who's refusing to use their callsign here?
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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
KA5N
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Posts: 4380




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« Reply #6 on: November 09, 2011, 05:43:35 AM »

Being an old fart, an old adage comes to mind:  "You can't make a silk purse out of a sow's ear."   
Oh I suppose you could, but the effort would not be rewarded by anything useful.  Even
converting a SSB CB into a useful 10 meter rig is not very simple or easy.  Since the 10 meter band is not "channelized" you have the problem of how to get where the action is.
I once acquired a very sophisticated SSB CB, built a VFO in order to tune 10 meters, added
a mixer to get the odd IF frequency to match the VFO offset etc.  It worked I made a few
contacts, but it just didn't perform like a real amateur transceiver.  It still lies in the junk box,
unwanted.
Allen
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N4NYY
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Posts: 4742




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« Reply #7 on: November 09, 2011, 06:06:37 AM »

I go on CB to rag chew. Here is the problem with a CB. While you can get a freq counter to tell what freq you are on, they are still channelized. That is a problem on the ham bands, as you are in need of a VFO.

Now, if you want to rag chew at night with a ham buddy, that is not a big deal. But if you plan on DXing, it is a waste. You will need a VFO and adjacent filtering (especially with the bands wide open).  Having familiarity with CBs, the only worthwhile radios for SSB are those Philippines Cobra/Uniden models, because they drift the least after warming. Those other newfangled radios like Galaxy, Ranger, Magnum, etc, are all useless on SSB, and drift like unanchored boats. And some go upwards as much as a Yaesu FT-450.
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AD4U
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Posts: 2153




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« Reply #8 on: November 09, 2011, 06:14:57 AM »

There is no practical, cost effective, or reasonable way to convert an AM CB radio to a 10 meter SSB radio.

Dick  AD4U
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AC5UP
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Posts: 3825




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« Reply #9 on: November 09, 2011, 08:36:07 AM »

... but if you could time travel back to the late 70's you'd find outboard SSB adapters like the CV-591A and CV-1694 at reasonable prices. Both were intended to work with (almost) any radio using a 455 kHz IF that could be tapped ahead of the AM detector. Essentially a mil-spec rack mount box with IF filters, BFO and product detector circuits intended for the R-390 and GPR-90 class of radios.

That option won't do anything for TX, and it is a crime against nature to hang a fine piece of tubular electronics from TMC or Manson Labs on something as lowly as a freakin' CB radio, but I'm just sayin'. And now that I think about it, last spring when I was cleaning the garage, I may have thrown out...............................................

BTW: I've been scrounging the web off and on for years looking for more info on a Manson Labs CV-1694 / GRC-129 and if anyone recalls the piece all I need is one question answered: I have one complete and perfectly lovely except for a power supply. Best guess it was intended to power from the accessory jack on the rear apron of a receiver. It needs 6.3 vac for filament and something B+... Which is the question: How Much?

The typical accessory jack was good for what......... 150, 180, XXX vdc?

I'm thinking 150 ought to be safe (?) and it's probably not hyper critical, but if anyone knows better....................
 
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K1CJS
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Posts: 5884




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« Reply #10 on: November 09, 2011, 08:54:30 AM »

BTW, how come over 99 percent of these type inquiries come from people who, on this website, refuse to use their callsigns? 

Who's refusing to use their callsign here?

Whoops!  My bad--and my apologies to all.   Embarrassed
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AA4HA
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Posts: 1378




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« Reply #11 on: November 09, 2011, 11:05:45 AM »

You could make a small, outboard VFO that would give you some frequency flexibility. Then you could make a simple dial template so you would know (approximately) your operating frequency.

The SSB conversion would be more work than you probably want to throw into this radio. If you can find a 40 channel AM/SSB rig and do some frequency shifting it probably would not be that hard to get up on 10 meters.

In regards to the CB'er in disguise comments. Usually they start out as "I have a 10/12 meter radio that I need help doing a freeband mod on". That is 99.99% chance of being a CB operator who wants to take a 50 or 100 watt radio and convert it to CB use.

My general opinion is that I do not care what they do in their own FCC allocated space, in their own service. If the FCC will not police the CB channels then maybe those few CB operators who are willing to "learn and earn" an amateur license can make the cultural conversion to our society where we have our own measure of acceptable radio practices.
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Ms. Tisha Hayes, AA4HA
Lookout Mountain, Alabama
WB6BYU
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Posts: 13029




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« Reply #12 on: November 09, 2011, 11:41:48 AM »

In most cases you can convert a CB to 10m by swapping the synthesizer crystal(s) and a bit of
retuning as needed.  That makes it channelized.  The common approach for providing tuning between
channels is to extend the range of the "clarifier" to +/- 10kHz or so.

Unfortunately, clarifier controls aren't as common on AM CB sets.

While adding a BFO will allow you to listen to SSB, transmitting is a more difficult conversion,
and at that point you would be better off finding a SSB CB, or running AM on 10m.

(Unless you have an old Heathkit SB-10 or similar SSB adaptor...)
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NO2A
Member

Posts: 758




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« Reply #13 on: November 09, 2011, 01:22:57 PM »

The bottom line is the worse ham rig is better than the best cb rig,much better. In every way.
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K5LXP
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Posts: 4450


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« Reply #14 on: November 10, 2011, 06:25:01 AM »

Converting a CB to 10M is actually a pretty easy process.

Convert the CB to cash.
Add some wallet gain.
Convert the cash to a 10M rig.

I can't think of a better or easier way to do it.


Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
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