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Author Topic: A cheap, easy, and fun way for a person to get into QRP operating!  (Read 2301 times)
KU4UV
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Posts: 375




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« on: December 12, 2012, 03:50:07 PM »

I recently purchased a Ten-Tec 1056 direct conversion receiver kit back in late October to have something to put together on my birthday.  My 38th birthday was on Halloween, and I decided to take a day off work to relax and build a receiver kit.  I finished the receiver kit over the course of a couple of hours, and decided to build it for the 40 meter band.  The receiver works great, and for $40, it is probably one of the better values I have seen as far as direct conversion kits that will cover the amateur bands goes.  I think this kit can be built by most anyone with even basic building skills, as long as you follow all the instructions in the manual and take your time.  It is really not difficult to align either.  You basically have two shielded inductors that you have to adjust.  I ended up making a tuning adjustment tool out of a wooden dowel rod, and that works just fine.  What I did was tune into W1AW and then adjust the receiver gain once I had W1AW tuned in well. Ten-Tec mentions in the manual that the kit can be built for the 160-10 meter bands, but that performance drops off above about 12 meters.  I have found my kit to be really sensitive on 40 meters.  The drift is marginal after the receiver has been on for about 15-20 minutes.  I like the receiver so much that I am planning on building a couple more and putting them on 80 and 160.  I am currently using a NS-40 QRP transmitter available from the 4-State QRP Group as my transmitter.  The transmitter runs about 10 Watts output from 13.8VDC, but I am planning on dropping the Voltage to about 12 Volts to go a little easier on the IRF510.  I have made several contacts from a few hundred miles away using this setup.  This is probably one of the cheapest, and most fun, ways that a new ham could get on the air and have some fun with QRP operating.  The crystal that came with the NS-40 is set for 7.030, but I have found it is closer to 7.031.  I have a total of maybe $50 invested in this station, not including the antenna tuner, SWR meter, and coaxial switch for TX/RX switching.  I am planning on eventually putting both the NS-40 and 1056 in metal cases and taking them along with me when I go camping.  I am using a simple longwire antenna about 200 feet long and 10 feet off the ground outside of my apartment for the antenna.  The wire is actually laying horizontally in the rain gutter that runs along the outside of the apartment.  If you hear me calling CQ around 7.031, feel free to give me a shout.  I have a video of the 1056 receiver I built on Youtube.  Just enter "KU4UV" on Youtube and it will bring up all my videos.  All comments or questions are welcomed.

73,
KU4UV Mike
Richmond, KY.
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LA9XSA
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Posts: 376




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« Reply #1 on: December 12, 2012, 06:18:07 PM »

Thanks. Just a quick note that Ten Tec has a policy of cutting off customers who don't give them favorable reviews, so caveat emptor or find anonymous reviews too if you're buying more expensive stuff from them.
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STAYVERTICAL
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Posts: 859




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« Reply #2 on: December 12, 2012, 10:24:05 PM »

Congratulations on your QRP operating adventures Mike.

I can feel your excitement through your writing, and it is great to see you so motivated.
If I hear you, I will most certainly give you a call, although it will be DX for sure.

Happy birthday, and 73,

Rob
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KU4UV
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Posts: 375




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« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2012, 02:24:17 AM »

Congratulations on your QRP operating adventures Mike.

I can feel your excitement through your writing, and it is great to see you so motivated.
If I hear you, I will most certainly give you a call, although it will be DX for sure.

Happy birthday, and 73,

Rob

Thank you so much Rob.  I live in the central Kentucky area and so far all of my contacts with the NS-40 have been with border states.  I may try to build some sort of transmitter for 20 or 30 meters and put it on the air along with another 1056.  73, and Merry Christmas!

73,
Mike KU4UV
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