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Author Topic: Six Meter AM Rig  (Read 6549 times)
K0CBA
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Posts: 304




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« Reply #15 on: January 31, 2008, 10:38:48 AM »

While Clegg equipment was really top flight in their day, they were pretty expensive and came about in the last gasp days of AM only rigs and therefore are hard to find in the vintage radio market.

On the other hand Gonset with the many variations of the "Communicater" series culmunating with the Communicater 4, were like the WWII Command sets; they were 'pretty good' and enough were made for every man, woman and child in the country.

The Gonset G-50 had a built in VFO and ran a 6146 in the final for about 50 watts input....quite respectable power for the time.
I would think the VFO feature would be most desirable as the crystals are surely getting hard to scare up especially if you are aiming for 50.400...the de facto AM hangout.

Rather than being "tranceivers" they were transmitters and receivers in one box so if tubes don't scare you off, they are usually easy to fix up.

I'm not a big eBay fan for radios but an item serach for "gonset" will give you an idea of whats around and what they are bringing.  
 
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #16 on: February 01, 2008, 10:54:49 AM »

>RE: Six Meter AM Rig  Reply  
by K0CBA on January 31, 2008  Mail this to a friend!  
While Clegg equipment was really top flight in their day, they were pretty expensive and came about in the last gasp days of AM only rigs and therefore are hard to find in the vintage radio market.<

::The top end ones were surely pricey; but they sold a lot of "99'ers," which were introduced at literally $99 and there were thousands of them on six meters in the early to mid 60s.

>On the other hand Gonset with the many variations of the "Communicater" series culmunating with the Communicater 4, were like the WWII Command sets; they were 'pretty good' and enough were made for every man, woman and child in the country.<

::My opinion is that Gonsets were actually *excellent* rigs, quite state-of-the-art for their time, and built with high quality components and workmanship.  Maybe that describes ARC-5's too (a bit before my time!) but I think Gonsets were great, or at least the "VHF" rigs were.

>I'm not a big eBay fan for radios but an item serach for "gonset" will give you an idea of whats around and what they are bringing.<

::Yep, and unfortunately for those who live in the fly-over areas of the country, you'll end up paying much more than a lot of stuff is actually worth this way.  Gonsets around here (Los Angeles area) go very cheaply because there are thousands of them in garages all over, and people literally dump them.  I found a Gonset Communicator-IV 220 MHz model (fairly rare, they sold less of these than any other model), 20W from a 6360 on 220 MHz with a great receiver and excellent modulation, at a "yard sale" about six blocks from my home last year.  I tried it out in the seller's garage just to see if the power supply worked and tube heaters would light, and they did, so I offered $25 for it.  I got it.  Darned thing worked fine, although all the pots and switches were noisy.  A few quick sprays with tuner lube and the rig cleaned right up like new.  $25.  On eBay, this model normally goes for about $250.  

WB2WIK/6
 
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AF9J
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« Reply #17 on: February 01, 2008, 06:08:16 PM »

6m AM is a blast!  I'm looking forward to doing it again, when this year's E-Season arrives. A few other thoughts:

1.  If you don't mind going the separate transmitter & receiver route, some of the 50s & 60s 80-6m transmitters might be worth considering.  I have a Globe Scout 680A that will do 6m, that only cost me $50.

2.  As was mentioned earlier - low level modulation works just fine for 6m AM, if you set the rig up properly.  The vintage Japanese 6m rigs fall into this category.  I have a Yaesu FT-620B, that I picked up at a swapfest last August for only $100.  It's in great shape.  It's been a good SSB & CW performer, the few times I was able to use it before the summertime Sporadic E ended.  Carrier level & mic gain has to be  watched on it, but it's audio (when I've monitored it - I haven't had the opportunity to do an AM QSO with it yet) seems to be pretty good, when it's set up properly.

73,
Ellen - AF9J
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K3JVB
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« Reply #18 on: February 02, 2008, 06:26:45 PM »

You gents are getting  me leaning towards a AM rig again, too.

Maybe a Gonset "Gooney box", and the matching amp would fit somewhere around the shack. Smiley

The one I had for 2 meters worked great. The Rx was good...but being near an airport, I did have some overload from commercial jets, and the tower.

I think I used an old bell-telephone co. head set, with a carbon mike..worked ok. Then I tried a D-104.
You would not believe the audio reports it got.
This was my first rig I used for phone, at the time a novice was able to use two meter phone only...I think
circa 1966-67
Fun rig...only had one crystal...cq...cq///and tuning !
73
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WA2DTW
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« Reply #19 on: February 04, 2008, 03:23:38 PM »

Ranger II.

73
Steve WA2DTW
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KE5ICG
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Posts: 10




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« Reply #20 on: February 06, 2008, 08:58:39 AM »

Hi Ed,

I've got a Sixer, absolutely QRP (a watt and a half) but not a bad little radio.  Bought it on ebay on a lark so I'm darn lucky it actually works.  Tubes are plentiful, and it was a good build to begin with.  Plus, I believe I could work on it if needed based on what I see in the manual.

You might try and get a look at the manual for a Swan 250 or the Gonset Communicator.  Might give you some ideas.

Good luck and give a holler on 50.4

Ray
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N2LYN
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« Reply #21 on: February 06, 2008, 05:18:08 PM »

I picked up a Lafayette HA-460 last summer that needed a little work (unknown to me). But since it came with a manual I had no problem getting it back on the air. Easy to work on. Receive is very good with a little drift. Transmit audio is clear but not as full-bodied as AM should be. I'll be recapping this radio soon. I'm happy with it. I found that it works better with 115vac applied. I happen to have, believe it or not, 124vac at my house. A small buck-boost transformer made up from a 120/24 volt ct transformer worked wonders. Hope to hear you on 6meters.
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WA4UF
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« Reply #22 on: February 15, 2008, 05:37:45 AM »

How about an Icom 551D?  Or is that not old boatanchor enough?  How *does* the 551D do on AM?  I'm keen to try, but haven't heard anyone on 50.4 in a great deal of time listening.
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W2WDX
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Posts: 188




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« Reply #23 on: June 07, 2009, 07:23:58 PM »

I vote for the Clegg Zeus. A monster transmitter. I have the Zeus with the Interceptor B. The real estate issue previously mentioned was a bit over stated, since these units are very shallow, so they can be tucked back on the desktop.

The Zeus has a separate modulator/ps unit that can go underneath. It's a pair of 811's modulating the plate of a single Eimac 4x150 for about 150 watts carrier output on 6 meters, and a little less on 2m. It sounds incredible.

Yes they are very hard to find, especially in good condition (I got very, very lucky. Copy and paste this link for an image of my Zeus http://www.qsl.net/w2wdx/images/48454-552.jpg), but they are very much worth seeking out and waiting for. You would never need another AM rig for 6 and 2 ever again.
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KB1LKR
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« Reply #24 on: June 08, 2009, 02:43:52 PM »

Clegg Zues = Clegg Zeus (named after the Greek god).
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W6IEZKEN
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Posts: 29




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« Reply #25 on: June 14, 2009, 02:44:26 PM »

I never figured out whether the "Sixer" was an AM rig or FM because it drifted so much and I could copy the receiver further than I could copy the transmitter.All the rich hams had "Gooney Birds".
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KB2FCV
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« Reply #26 on: July 09, 2009, 10:47:28 AM »

I'd love to get my hands on a Gonset Communicator II or III for 6. I have a II on 2 meters that works. While my modern rig can do 6am, its far more fun on a tube rig!
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K1OTA
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« Reply #27 on: February 06, 2010, 04:22:28 PM »

I have the Clegg Interceptor B and a Climaster 331 and I think they were highly coveted by many operators in the  60's for six meter AM. I used the receiver during last weeks VHF contest to listen to many ssb contesters and enjoyed using the vintage Clegg receiver. I have my rig for sale if anyone is interested.Email me at nreb@comcast.net if anyone wants info or photos.
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KG6YV
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Posts: 517




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« Reply #28 on: February 09, 2010, 11:39:40 AM »

One of the best choices (if you can find one) would be a Clegg Zeus.  This was a plate modulated transmitter with a ceramic final.  The modulator/power supply was a separate and very heavy chassis.  The rig puts out 150-200W and with the speech processor enabled (audio clipper) it is awesome for DX.  

On a smaller scale/lower power The Johnson Ranger II (not the RangerI) did 6 meters.  This transmitter has beautiful audio.  

Clegg also built the Thor, which was a 30W output AM transceiver for 6M.  I have one and it works nicely.  It has an outboard psply/modulator as well but it is quite compact.

FYI,

Greg
KG6YV
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KG6UTS
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« Reply #29 on: February 10, 2010, 08:35:23 AM »

Howdy!
I've reworked an Gonset G50 and a couple of the 6mtr 'Gooney Boxes'. Also have a Globe HiBander&VFO, a couple of Senecas, Johnson 6N2 tx and RX conv, 6/2 converters with SB301. The 8.4 xtals came from AF4K. Am available for 6m AM in San Diego DM12jr and Borrego Springs DM13tg.
73!
EdZ KG6UTS
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