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Author Topic: Footswitch or exciter amplifier interface?  (Read 3761 times)
KD0ZGW
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Posts: 419




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« on: April 20, 2015, 08:45:10 PM »

Just got a nice Heil headset and footswitch for my new to me Kenwood TS-590.  Amp is an AL811H.

Footswitch has a switch for amp that is closed prior to the xmit switch for the exciter.

Is there a reason to use the exciter amp switch vs. the footswitch or vice versa? (TS-590 amp switch is configurable so correct signal for amp is no problem)

thx for advice or info.

KD0ZGW
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W1QJ
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Posts: 2030




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« Reply #1 on: April 20, 2015, 08:47:32 PM »

It's always nice to have the amp connected to the antenna before the RF hits the amplifier.
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KD0ZGW
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Posts: 419




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« Reply #2 on: April 21, 2015, 05:40:18 AM »

"It's always nice to have the amp connected to the antenna before the RF hits the amplifier."  I imagine it's also beneficial to have the amp plugged in ... but I didn't ask about that either.

Still looking for advice on footswitch vs. exciter amp switching.

thanks
KD0ZGW
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N9XTF
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Posts: 282




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« Reply #3 on: April 21, 2015, 05:51:27 AM »

"It's always nice to have the amp connected to the antenna before the RF hits the amplifier."  I imagine it's also beneficial to have the amp plugged in ... but I didn't ask about that either.

Still looking for advice on footswitch vs. exciter amp switching.

thanks
KD0ZGW

If you're using the footswitch to key the amplifier, you don't have to worry about possible damage to keying circuit, relay, in the radio. This is most common due to incompatible key line voltages. I did recently have an IC-7600 key line relay fail with an Ameritron buffer attached; just a bad relay.

As was mentioned, amplifier is switched in fractions of a second before EXCTIER drive is present.

Outside of the obvious, where is the most comfortable place to position the foot switch, I don't know much else can be said 


Doug - N9XTF
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K4RVN
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Posts: 1007




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« Reply #4 on: April 21, 2015, 08:08:30 AM »

I would suggest using the foot switch to key the 590 and let it key the 811H amp. I have the Heil hand switch and have always
used it this way without problems. I owned an 811 amp. The AL811H operate switch would be on and the exciter would key the amp. Having two keying paths is just asking for trouble should one fail if I understand what you are asking. The trouble would  require you to find why no amp output, but why fix a non existing tried and true way to key the AL 811H. If it is not broke don't fix it. My new little Heil BM10 has a built in switch on the cord to key the exciter. BTW, Lou is a good guy,works on amps,
and gives good advice on the forum.

Frank
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KK4RSV
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Posts: 66




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« Reply #5 on: April 21, 2015, 08:48:37 AM »

W1QJ  gave you the best answer and advice I think it might have gone over your head.  Think about it and he's not talking about hooking the antenna lead to the amplifier! Hes talking about avoiding hot switching of the amp.

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WB2WIK
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« Reply #6 on: April 21, 2015, 09:31:16 AM »

The Heil dual-switch footswitch product does key the amp before the radio (if you wire it correctly!) so it does solve the "hot switching" problem.

However it assumes you're sitting down and can reach the footswitch, and you don't mind having the footswitch depressed the whole time you're transmitting.

I have one but don't use it much.  My rig keys the amp just fine, with sequencing, so the amp is keyed 15mS before the rig can produce any output power, and vice-versa when returning to receiving.  So, I can use VOX or QSK and it all works regardless of where or how I'm sitting -- or even standing.
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W8JX
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« Reply #7 on: April 21, 2015, 09:44:19 AM »

I would suggest using the foot switch to key the 590 and let it key the 811H amp. I have the Heil hand switch and have always
used it this way without problems. I owned an 811 amp. The AL811H operate switch would be on and the exciter would key the amp. Having two keying paths is just asking for trouble should one fail if I understand what you are asking. The trouble would  require you to find why no amp output, but why fix a non existing tried and true way to key the AL 811H. If it is not broke don't fix it. My new little Heil BM10 has a built in switch on the cord to key the exciter. BTW, Lou is a good guy,works on amps,
and gives good advice on the forum.

Frank

Best advice here. I would not suggest keying amplifier separately. You could possible hot switch amp independent of rig while transmitting and releasing foot switch by accident. You want them tied together.
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KD0ZGW
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Posts: 419




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« Reply #8 on: April 21, 2015, 10:23:39 AM »

Everyone;

thx for replies.  I'll use the exciter to switch the amp.
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KM3F
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Posts: 673




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« Reply #9 on: April 22, 2015, 11:11:07 PM »

There really is no issue if you wire up a plug/connections to the rear jack of the 590 that keys the amplifier.
Look in your menu and set to key HF amplifier from the rear jack and it selects transmitter delay.
The system keyed from the mic jack in front then takes care of it.
For a PTT control, consider a small project box the fits in your hand palm.
Outfit it with a soft momentary push switch.
Once you get to use this you won't want to do it any differently. Still uses a hand but keep it off the mike.
The mike is hot all the time and does not connect with the PTT operation.
There are other functions you can even add that makes things pretty easy for Tuner and amplifier settings.
If you need an extended key up, install a push on push off switch along with the regular one in a bit different location on the box.
I have in addition to these, a small bat handle toggle that with extra leads to the rear, triggers the internal keyer to send out CW DOTS  in CW mode at a 30 wpm rate for antenna and amplifier tuning. It's so fast to do and easy on the amplifier than tuning with full time drive, and causes much less QRM to others.
Good luck.
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W1QJ
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Posts: 2030




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« Reply #10 on: April 23, 2015, 03:41:01 AM »

W1QJ  gave you the best answer and advice I think it might have gone over your head.  Think about it and he's not talking about hooking the antenna lead to the amplifier! Hes talking about avoiding hot switching of the amp.



Thank you, sometimes I take too much for granted.
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KE0ZU
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Posts: 177




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« Reply #11 on: April 23, 2015, 04:00:38 AM »

 I use a T/R switch with carrier operated relays in the amps, simple.   The 50 year old version of plug-N-play.
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KC4MOP
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Posts: 908




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« Reply #12 on: April 27, 2015, 04:58:51 PM »

I use an old huge Motorola PTT footpedal from the 2-way dispatch consoles from years ago. That footpedal keys a multi-contact relay and each radio and the linear are separately keyed. There have been no issues, so far, of any RF disasters. The T/R relay is also keyed by this central PTT. All dry contacts..
Fred
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