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Author Topic: FT-817nd power questions  (Read 5395 times)
KA4NMA
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Posts: 348




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« on: September 28, 2013, 06:39:10 AM »

I am looking for a cigarette plug for my 817nd.  Would this cause any problems? Where can I find it?

Randy ka4nma
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N1DVJ
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« Reply #1 on: September 28, 2013, 02:45:14 PM »

I just picked one up about 4 weeks ago on eBay for $12, shipping included.  It has the right angle 4.0x1.7 coaxial plug and a lighter plug on it.  It's not fused.
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N1DVJ
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« Reply #2 on: September 28, 2013, 03:54:54 PM »

Just checked.  It's we6g.radio on eBay, and he has 5 left

If you order, make sure you order the correct one, as he sells a number of different styles.


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N2RRA
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« Reply #3 on: September 29, 2013, 02:17:45 PM »

Would think you can get them in Radio Shack.

You have no problems running the rig through the cigarette lighter plug. In most cars you should be able to upto about 20watts. Anything over that and you may be looking at a fire.
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N1DVJ
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« Reply #4 on: September 29, 2013, 03:01:07 PM »

You can get the parts at RS,  I think the coaxial plug is their size 'B'
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K0JEG
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« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2013, 06:36:24 AM »

I just picked one up about 4 weeks ago on eBay for $12, shipping included.  It has the right angle 4.0x1.7 coaxial plug and a lighter plug on it.  It's not fused.

Are you sure? Usually lighter plugs have the fuse under the hot pin. Just unscrew it and there should be a fuse inside.
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N1DVJ
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« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2013, 07:33:29 AM »

Quite sure.

The higher quality ones, in my opinion, are actually the cheaper ones and don't have the fuse.  They solder right to the pin.  These plugs are usually made of a hard plastic, almost like bakelite.

The units with the fuse can be VERY problematic.  What happens is the fuse is in the center pin with a spring behind it to make contact.  The spring is in the 'slider' portion.  Once there's ANY resistance in the surfaces, which almost always happens, the spring now becomes part of the circuit in series with the +pin.  The spring almost invariably heats up, and eventually gets red hot.  Since these plugs are 'precision molded', they are made from a soft plastic, and putting a heating element inside the plug is not a good idea.  Even at 10amp, with a continuous draw, like a series of long-winded 2M conversations, can lead to the plug melting inside the socket in your car.  When the plug melts, they also all 'migrate' the + voltage around the spring and slider to the ground, shorting out the plug WITHOUT blowing the fuse, causing the car fuse to the socket to blow.

I wouldn't use a fused lighter plug at anything over 3amp, which leaves out a lot of uses.

Doubt me?  Take one of your fused plugs, and hook up a small light bulb to it on the bench, something that will draw as little as 5amp,  and see how long it takes to get hot.  And this is with the plug in the open.  Now look at most of your radios.  They may draw 5 to 10 amp in transmit, but a lot STILL draw 2 to 3 amps in receive, meaning that the plug just ain't gonna cool off between long winded keydowns.

Radio Shack has a fused plug with bannana post on the back.  I actually have a couple of these, but I haven't tested them to destruction.  One thing of note, though, is that these plugs are 'vented' so they may not have as much of a problem as the others.

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K5TED
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« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2013, 04:55:40 PM »

I use the RS one with the banana plugs. It's perfectly adequate for the 817. Better to use a non-fused plug and inline fuse, though.
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KA4NMA
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« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2013, 07:32:25 PM »

Thanks for the info.  I learned a few things from your post.
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