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Author Topic: Which transceiver should I keep?  (Read 1660 times)
KJ6ZOL
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Posts: 341




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« on: October 10, 2012, 08:38:38 AM »

Ok, I finally got a HF transceiver. Well, I wound up with TWO. I was over at the house of the Elmer who said he'd give me a Heathkit SB-102, and we're looking over the old Heathkit and he's saying "well, this thing is gonna take some work to get working, and I know you want to get on the air immediately, so why don't I look and see if I have something that doesn't need work". He eventually dug up a Kenwood TS-130S, with power supply and mic, and gave me that too. The only problem is, I don't need two transceivers. The Kenwood has a digital frequency display, which I like, but it's all transistor and I can't work on it. I'm worried that the final power transistors will drift out of spec, as happens with early Yaesu all solid state rigs. I have a source for a freq counter for the Heathkit. The Heathkit needs a 0A2 tube and the rubber O rings, and it will need to be brought up on a Variac. The filter caps in the power supply may or may not need replacement. After I get the Heathkit running, which transceiver should I keep, and which should I give back? I intend on operating voice, no digital modes for me.
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K8AXW
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Posts: 3666




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« Reply #1 on: October 10, 2012, 09:06:45 AM »

ZOL:  I think your Elmer has just presented you with a 'test.'  IMHO, I think you're about to fail it!

Now, with that said, let give you my opinion and explain it.  Keep them both.  Get on the air with the working gift from your Elmer and enjoy it.  After all, that's the primary goal, right?

Once you get set up and get everything to work, turn your attention to the SB-102.  That was a fine kit, now very old, which will no doubt need the attention you mentioned. It is very repairable and will no doubt lead to many interesting discussions with your Elmer.

Consider this a great gift from someone who I think wants you to grow in the ham radio hobby.  He has given you a great gift in the SB-102 that should help you learn and give you something to think about.  This is one of the major differences between CB and ham radio.

Take advantage of and be thankful for both gifts!
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KJ6ZOL
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Posts: 341




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« Reply #2 on: October 10, 2012, 09:53:27 AM »

ZOL:  I think your Elmer has just presented you with a 'test.'  IMHO, I think you're about to fail it!

Now, with that said, let give you my opinion and explain it.  Keep them both.  Get on the air with the working gift from your Elmer and enjoy it.  After all, that's the primary goal, right?

Once you get set up and get everything to work, turn your attention to the SB-102.  That was a fine kit, now very old, which will no doubt need the attention you mentioned. It is very repairable and will no doubt lead to many interesting discussions with your Elmer.

Consider this a great gift from someone who I think wants you to grow in the ham radio hobby.  He has given you a great gift in the SB-102 that should help you learn and give you something to think about.  This is one of the major differences between CB and ham radio.

Take advantage of and be thankful for both gifts!

I'll find room for both of them. I usually consider ALL my options before making a decision. Some of those options are less palatable than others. But you're right, I should keep both of them.
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G3RZP
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Posts: 4389




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« Reply #3 on: October 10, 2012, 10:23:44 AM »

I think you've struck lucky!

Keep both, and learn by fixing the '102.
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VE7DQ
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Posts: 175




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« Reply #4 on: October 10, 2012, 11:52:02 AM »

I've never seen the final output transistors in a TS-130 'drift out of spec'; either they work or they are dead.  Overall, the '130 is a pretty decent radio.

I would strongly advise you to use an antenna tuner with the '130, as there are some conditions of higher SWR that will stess the finals, in spite of its protection circuits.  An matching Kenwood AT-130 tuner will match a modest SWR range, up to about 3:1; you will require a different tuner if you want to use unusual and/or non-resonant antennas.

Good score!

73
Tom
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NO2A
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Posts: 758




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« Reply #5 on: October 11, 2012, 09:56:26 AM »

I`d keep both rigs too. I`d use the `130 for now. If the only thing wrong with the `102 is the o rings and the OA2,you`re lucky.  As for the Heath power supply needing a rebuild,using it will tell. If it`s never been recapped it probably will need it.
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W8JX
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Posts: 5467




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« Reply #6 on: October 11, 2012, 10:28:23 AM »

I've never seen the final output transistors in a TS-130 'drift out of spec'; either they work or they are dead.  Overall, the '130 is a pretty decent radio.

I would strongly advise you to use an antenna tuner with the '130, as there are some conditions of higher SWR that will stess the finals, in spite of its protection circuits.  An matching Kenwood AT-130 tuner will match a modest SWR range, up to about 3:1; you will require a different tuner if you want to use unusual and/or non-resonant antennas.

Good score!

73
Tom

The 130 is a real reliable work horse and a keeper for sure.
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