Elecraft K3 Final Build Assessment and First On Air Testing


Nick Palomba:
Elecraft K3 Final Build Assessment and First On Air Testing

So the Elecraft K3 build is finished ☺ Yes it has been a long process for me but only because of my time and schedule. I think this is a project you could finish in a weekend if you really put dedication into it but I’m not sure you would want to. I will explain this as I go along…

The first questions I got were why would you do this? There are so many radios out there to purchase and some could argue many better. Well, that’s subjective of course and I’m a big fan of my Yeasu 1000mp, which I believe is my third one. I also love what Icom is doing with their new rigs but I remember a hobby that I used to table and build circuit boards, solder resisters and diodes and even build a Heathkit or two. I wanted to regain that experience in the hobby…. Get on air with something I assembled and tuned… something my hands were inside and I know where everything is and could replace if needed. How comfortable would you be installing a filter in your radio? I could do it in 10 mins now ☺ so that is a big part of the why.

The second part – FUN. Yes, if you read my posts you will see some frustration in my build. There are a few reasons but one is I was sick during the first phase… I was diagnosed with Ulcerative Colitis and was in the midst of an episode when I was doing the first few days of assembly. Take that out and I think you would find that I was having much more fun. ☺ Also – I have a really busy with work, life and family so I wanted something that I could have to sit down and take my mind away. This project seemed like a great one.

So here are the videos of assembly if you haven’t seen them and then I will provide you my overall thoughts below:


Guy Kowalski:
I have started to build my K3 this weekend. I am about half way done. I am very impressed with the quality of this beast and how it fits together so well. I hope to have it finished this coming weekend some time. I have the P3 assembled already and have my eye on the K3 Line antenna tuner and power amplifier. Nice job on the video!

William P Kelly:
I put mine together about 2 years ago. Only quirk is remembering to turn on the vox to send CW. You'll still be learning stuff a year later! Very happy with it. Not too many bells and toys, just enough to get the job done.  Enjoy!



I am SOOOOO jealous. I plan on building one this summer and cannot wait to get into it.


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