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Author Topic: Want a Collins station-  (Read 11036 times)
W2RKJ
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Posts: 49




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« Reply #15 on: July 28, 2012, 10:23:32 AM »

Thank you K8AXW I have now even added muffin fans to the Collins gear and amp and everything stays much cooler. It's still a work on progress. BTW to the original poster, I would also reccomend using a variac and meter to constantly monitor your voltages going to your rigs. I'm pretty close to my power station and my voltage ranges from 125V to 127V and it's constantly changing by the hour. I run my recievers (75S-3B and R-388) on 110V or less down to about 105V. When I'm transmnitting, I boost it back up to 115V for good transmitter output.
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KB2FCV
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« Reply #16 on: July 30, 2012, 10:34:46 AM »

I'm not so sure I would be so quick to simply trade out the modern stuff for the vintage stuff. There are a lot of conveniences you'll simply miss once they are gone. Also, the vintage gear will take some maintenance and repairs now and then, which means you might be off the air for a while.

I started collecting BA gear when I was a kid back in the 80's. I can remember gazing at the 50's QST's drooling over EF Johnson, Hallicrafters, Hammarlunds, Heathkits and of course Collins. Anything Collins was unobtanium on a kid's budget. My collection grew pretty large until we bought our first home a few years ago and I moved it all from my parents house.. wow, I have a lot of stuff just sitting on shelves. I decided to sell most of it and go for one nice setup that I always drooled over, the Gold Dust Twins (see my qrz page).

I still mostly prefer using my modern Icom 746 pro. It is till the day to day rig for just about everything I do. I fire up my Collins station when I just want to rag chew with friends, and occasionally I will chase some DX on it. I wound up getting my Collins Station from someone who had it up and running. It should be good for a while but as others have said.. there is a gamble every time you turn it on.

I think I'd still want something modern and reliable if I were going to jump into vintage gear. I like getting on the air a lot, whether it's chasing dx or having a casual ragchew. I think I would get quite frustrated if my only station once in a while gets knocked off the air for a few weeks while on the search for parts. If cost of the Collins gear is why you must sell the modern gear, then maybe start with something less expensive then a Collins station and see how you like it first so you can keep what you have and just get used to running the older gear and see if that's what you really want to do as a sole station.
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K0OD
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Posts: 2557




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« Reply #17 on: July 30, 2012, 06:56:53 PM »

Grandma's boatanchor: Paying the dump to take pianos.

“It is the most emotionally charged piece of furniture that there is,” said Martha Taylor, a rare restorer of uprights, whose Immortal Piano Company is based in Portland, Ore. “When I have to say: ‘You’ve buried your grandmother. You have to bury her piano,’ it’s a really hard thing.” 

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/07/30/arts/music/for-more-pianos-last-note-is-thud-in-the-dump.html?pagewanted=all

Anyone want to guess what that $1,100 near-mint Central Electronics 100-V will be worth in 30 years?

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N2LXM
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Posts: 70




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« Reply #18 on: August 02, 2012, 09:21:46 AM »

I have to agree with all those who stated about the E-bay prices. I always want a Collins station mty self. When Fort monmoth Closed down and the M.A.R.S. Station was deactived I was given a full KWM 2A (KWM-2A. 30L1, Remote VOF-watermeter-Phone patch) station. I have spent the last few months going over the radio and amp. Replacing caps, rebuilding the power supply, cleaning and aligments. I will say that for a radio system going on Sixty years it can still hold it's own with most of the rice boxes. having said that, I to own three SS radios. But as a good freind said " transistors are for performance, tubes are for fun ". And I for one am having fun. Hope to hear you on the air.
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KC4MOP
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Posts: 734




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« Reply #19 on: August 03, 2012, 04:23:22 AM »

I have to agree with all those who stated about the E-bay prices. I always want a Collins station mty self. When Fort monmoth Closed down and the M.A.R.S. Station was deactived I was given a full KWM 2A (KWM-2A. 30L1, Remote VOF-watermeter-Phone patch) station. I have spent the last few months going over the radio and amp. Replacing caps, rebuilding the power supply, cleaning and aligments. I will say that for a radio system going on Sixty years it can still hold it's own with most of the rice boxes. having said that, I to own three SS radios. But as a good freind said " transistors are for performance, tubes are for fun ". And I for one am having fun. Hope to hear you on the air.
Ft Monmouth brings back my Army dayz and the trip to sunny South Viet Nam. I was an instructor there 1967 and listening to WABC blaring in the barracks. And was impressed with the Collins goodies in the transmitter repair class rooms. Western Electric and Technical Material Corp was there too.
You're a lucky guy to get a complete Collins station.
Sorry to read that they closed Monmouth.
Fred
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N2LXM
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Posts: 70




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« Reply #20 on: August 03, 2012, 10:57:52 AM »

We may have crossed paths Fred. I was there 68-74, 24Volt Microwave. Spent most of my free time at the station working phone patches and DX. The Fort Monmouth A.R.C. still lives. K2USA has found a new home with the Ocean Monmouth A.R.C. at the Project Diana Site at the former Camp Evans Complex in Wall Township. About Ten miles south of Fort Monmoth. K2USA is on the air during the year for special events. The next event will be International Lighthouse lightship weekend. Hope to work you then.

Jeff
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W7GIF
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Posts: 122




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« Reply #21 on: August 19, 2012, 08:09:28 PM »

Greg,
Enjoy the hobby to it's fullest. Have some fun. Experience history.
Check your "messages".

73....
Allen
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W0BTU
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Posts: 1665


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« Reply #22 on: August 20, 2012, 06:19:20 PM »

If you still want a Collins S/Line, I'll likely sell mine. I've owned it since 1979. Details and photo on http://www.qrz.com/db/W0BTU

Collins 32S-3 Transmitter, modified from 32S-1 by Paul Pagel N1FB himself (ex- Technical Editor of QST magazine). Has all the standard, important 32S-3 enhancements (such as the recommended circuit changes published by Collins Radio Corporation in their service bulletins). Classic DX Engineering RF speech processor with the essential hot-carrier diode modification. VFO is FSK capable via RS-232 or TTL input. Winged emblem.

Electronically-regulated transmitter power supply, very heavy duty, weighs 150+ lbs.

Collins 75S-3 Receiver, with adjustable, modified Heath SB-104 Noise Blanker; and all the other important standard enhancements (mostly the ones published by Collins Radio in their service bulletins). Winged emblem.

I'd prefer to keep the 312B-4, but I might sell or trade it for a good wattmeter.
« Last Edit: August 20, 2012, 06:24:22 PM by W0BTU » Logged

K8AXW
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Posts: 3836




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« Reply #23 on: August 20, 2012, 09:29:24 PM »

8ZF:  I can almost hear you hyperventilating! Roll Eyes
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K4FY
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Posts: 3




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« Reply #24 on: August 23, 2012, 10:40:06 AM »

I doesn't make a lot of sense comparing the Collins gear to recent vintage equipment.  I owned an ICOM 765 driving a Drake L-4B and managed to push my country total to 245 before I dropped out of the hobby for a while.  It was a nice setup and it could bust any pile-up.  I liked it.

Now I own a Collins KWM-2 and a 312B-5 remote VFO.  I bought it on EBay.  It’s in top shape, but I still had to fuss with it a little to get it up to spec.  It cost a bundle.  I love the Collins gear but it has limitations.  Most boat anchors do.  Heck, most new gear does.

Would I trade my Collins setup for a Belchfire Wattmaster 5K?  Nope.  But then, I’ve been in this game since the 50”s when Collins was undisputed king.  I just had to have the stuff if for no other reason than it’s pretty.  Operationally?  It rocks.  Collins seems to make a hundred watts sound like a lot more.

The quality is mil-spec because that’s where Art made his dough – selling S-Lines and KWM-2’s to Uncle Sam.  To old timers (like me) Collins is legendary and a cult radio.  And it’s pretty.

There are places that specialize in restoring boat anchors, but they aren’t cheap.  Putting a trashed KWM-2 (or similar gear) in like new condition (it can be done) will set you back $800-$1000!  There’s a raft of vendors out there that sell parts – also not cheap.

Boat anchors are just another sub-set of the hobby that some folks dig.  If you’re one of them – go for it.
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W8XLR
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Posts: 11




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« Reply #25 on: August 23, 2012, 03:06:40 PM »

Collins heaven:

http://www.flickr.com/photos/x-ray_delta_one/6199457701/in/photostream


I cant imagine what the cost of duplicating that station would be today, even if all that gear could be found...

Phil/W8XLR
« Last Edit: August 23, 2012, 03:30:16 PM by W8XLR » Logged
W0BTU
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Posts: 1665


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« Reply #26 on: August 23, 2012, 03:15:31 PM »

Check out W9EVT's Collins (among others) stations:

http://www.qrz.com/db/w9evt
http://www.wadsworthsales.com/Pages/w9evt.aspx
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W8XLR
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Posts: 11




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« Reply #27 on: August 23, 2012, 03:43:31 PM »

Check out W9EVT's Collins (among others) stations:

http://www.qrz.com/db/w9evt
http://www.wadsworthsales.com/Pages/w9evt.aspx

WOW!, George isnt missing much is he Shocked

I like how that collection is kept in a museum like setting instead of being heaped up like so much junk in a nasty, damp basement, garage or shed. Good for him...  ...green with envy here.
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W8JI
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« Reply #28 on: August 24, 2012, 02:36:34 PM »

If we are looking for raw performance, we really should buy something new.

If we are looking for emotional enjoyment, we should buy what we feel good about buying no matter what the cost.

It is this way with cars, and it is the same way with radios.

For example, look on this list:

http://www.sherweng.com/table.html

Look way down the list for the 75S3 receiver. :-)

It would be the same way if you looked at the K-code 289/271 HP 66 Mustang GT I restored. It would be way down the list for all aspects of perfromance, but that doesn't mean it isn't a cool car. We just shouldn't pretend old radios and cars actually run like we remember.  :-)
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W0BTU
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« Reply #29 on: August 24, 2012, 02:38:59 PM »

If we are looking for raw performance, we really should buy something new.

Yup. That's one of the reasons why my S/Line is available for sale.

But I'll never sell my modified R-4C. :-)
« Last Edit: August 24, 2012, 02:42:00 PM by W0BTU » Logged

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