eHam

eHam Forums => Boat Anchors => Topic started by: K2OWK on February 25, 2014, 09:25:34 PM



Title: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K2OWK on February 25, 2014, 09:25:34 PM
How old does a radio have to be to be considered a boat anchor? I have a Yaesu FT-4700RH transceiver. These radios were made in the early 1980s. Are they considered Boat anchor's? Just curious as to what is the designation of a Boat Anchor?

Thanks,

73s

K2OWK


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KI6LZ on February 25, 2014, 09:33:04 PM
Not really sure it goes by age, think it has to do with weight. Maybe around 100 lbs?


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KE6EE on February 25, 2014, 10:24:09 PM
Not really sure it goes by age, think it has to do with weight. Maybe around 100 lbs?

More like density or weight per unit volume. A big boat anchor like a Heath DX100 or a Johnson Viking would be about 100 lbs. and maybe 2.5 cubic ft. A small boat anchor like a Drake R2B might be 10 lbs and maybe .25 cubic ft. Density of big and small would be about the same at something like 40 lbs. per cubic ft.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KI6LZ on February 25, 2014, 11:00:28 PM
Thanks for the density reminder. Forgot doing those physics calculations.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KI6LZ on February 25, 2014, 11:39:13 PM
DX-100 comess out to 37.63 lbs/cubic ft.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W8JI on February 26, 2014, 12:34:09 AM
I think the term is commonly applied to go by type and era.

It is generally the stuff from the 1960's and earlier, almost always tubes, and almost always AM or the era of AM.



Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: GW3OQK on February 26, 2014, 12:50:53 AM
I dislike the term and never use it.  My shack has old, vintage, historic, and classic gear to bring me joy. I'm an ancient mariner and its dreadful to think of dropping an old radio in the sea. Use the proper device instead.
73, Andrew


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K8AXW on February 26, 2014, 07:51:40 AM
OQK:  5UP would probably disagree with you saying that a Heathsh.t DX-100 on the end of a chain would be a "proper device."  LOL


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on February 26, 2014, 09:14:08 AM
OQK:  5UP would probably disagree with you saying that a Heathsh.t DX-100 on the end of a chain would be a "proper device."  LOL

   And he at the other end of the chain ? :D


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KE6EE on February 26, 2014, 10:28:49 AM
The term "boat anchor" is really not appropriate for old gear. It's an ugly and incorrect term I think.

Especially if you, like me, grew up with beautiful, emotionally evocative tube and transformer gear with a single control for every function. A most attractive producer of heat and light; a magical portal into the ether. Turn it on and get set for an extended period of warming up and knob twisting. Nothing automatic or computerized. A tuning dial with an image that suggesting an adventure into undiscovered territory (such as the frequency you are on).

A bit of context: if the density of a "boat anchor" is about 40 lbs. per cubic foot, that means that the device will float in water (density of water is about 60 lbs. per cubic foot). An anchor that floats.

A "boat anchor" is not a boat anchor.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: N4NYY on February 26, 2014, 10:34:08 AM
Tubes and weight (hence boatanchor). So most pre solid-state rigs.

Granted, that is us. If your a kid of 25 year of age, a transistor radio from the 1970's might be considered a boat anchor.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K2OWK on February 26, 2014, 12:42:52 PM
Thanks for the answers. It gives me some idea to what a boat anchor refers to.

73s

K2OWK


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: G3RZP on February 26, 2014, 01:24:46 PM
A 'boat anchor' can also be a much loved piece of equipment sought after by collectors but with performance horrendous by today's standards - such as the WW2 spy sets like the B2 or the AMkIII, which had receivers no better than BC sets - probably outperformed by the Hallicrafters S38!


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on March 03, 2014, 03:41:34 AM
A 'boat anchor' can also be a much loved piece of equipment sought after by collectors but with performance horrendous by today's standards - such as the WW2 spy sets like the B2 or the AMkIII, which had receivers no better than BC sets - probably outperformed by the Hallicrafters S38!

   Then again , the fellow who owns a 1929 Bantam Roadster or 1938 Morgan 3 wheeler or  even a 1930 Bugatti is not planning on outrunning a 2014 Ford Mustang ...but his car is and will be far more valuable for many years to come . ;)
It isn't always about pure performance . The experience has it's own appeal and value . If we could only operate the newer appliances or SDR , I would walk away from ham radio instantly . The new stuff has zero appeal to some of us .


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: G3RZP on March 04, 2014, 12:58:26 AM
I do have a new amplifier, but a 30 year old transceiver to drive it......Must resurrect the Drake TR3  from the 1960s sometime.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KE0ZU on March 17, 2014, 02:21:05 AM
My general definition is, made in the country you live in, metal chassis front panel and cabinet, tubes, and as mentioned earlier, a mechanical control for every function.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K9MHZ on March 19, 2014, 07:49:46 AM
I think that's it, ZU. 


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: VE3LYX on March 19, 2014, 09:51:00 AM
   Then again , the fellow who owns a 1929 Bantam Roadster or 1938 Morgan 3 wheeler or  even a 1930 Bugatti is not planning on outrunning a 2014 Ford Mustang ...but his car is and will be far more valuable for many years to come . ;)
It isn't always about pure performance . The experience has it's own appeal and value . If we could only operate the newer appliances or SDR , I would walk away from ham radio instantly . The new stuff has zero appeal to some of us .
[/quote]
I didn't think anyone else understood. Well put. I have a pair of ARC5s on Am and CW, A TNT 1929 style (on AM even) and a bunch of homebrew 1930s style rigs (CW and AM) I don't expect them to work like a modern rig and get ticked off when some self appointed expert mentions Pinched off audio or non broadcast audio. I don't think an ARC5 was intended to have broadcast quality audio  and recently discovered the main promoter of it does a lot of broadcasting and very little listening anyway.(his shortest transmission this week was 37 minutes) I also have a TS830S which I have had since new when I want something a bit more modern. Wouldn't trade it out either.
I  drive a 63 Dodge 426 MW with no PS or AC etc for fun. Also have a slant six dragster (remember the slant sixes?) which I take out twice a year to give these old bones just one more adrenalin rush while I still can. But if I need to go to town the 2009 Dodge Journey is what I drive. Same concept exactly. Your post just reinforced that. Thanks
don


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: N8NSN on March 19, 2014, 10:11:04 AM
Boat Anchor = Tubes  I.E. Iron, Glass, & Class
Heavy or Big Iron = Broadcast Transmitters of tube era.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KI6LZ on March 19, 2014, 10:18:05 AM
Some radio that should have been thrown into the ocean but for some reason was kept by those that like them. Very limited, and getting less limited group that still keeps them running for some reason.



Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: N8NSN on March 19, 2014, 07:04:52 PM
Some radio that should have been thrown into the ocean but for some reason was kept by those that like them. Very limited, and getting less limited group that still keeps them running for some reason.



Obviously someone whom, "just doesn't get it". Has to imply insults to perhaps provide the illusion that profound thought abounds within the "limited" intellect in true possession.

For this person I have only one statement...

That is:

Let us all know how well the "plastic radio, loaded with proprietary parts", bought recently is s
serving anyone - 50 or 60 years from now.

Boat anchor is truly a poor term for a well maintained, still quite antiquate, though certainly "high energy consuming" masterpiece.

Just enjoy what ever facet of the hobby you wish to enjoy and discount the rhetoric from those who enjoy insulting others whom enjoy the hobby differently than themselves.

. .


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KI6LZ on March 19, 2014, 08:11:51 PM
To me a Boat Anchor is a junky heavy poorly designed radio as opposed to a classic, vintage, or historical radio. Obviously someone used the nomenclature Boat Anchor in jest. My do some get touchy.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K9MHZ on March 20, 2014, 08:05:57 AM
Yes they do.  The really entertaining part is his trying to sound pretentious while totally screwing up the use of the word "whom."   

Full disclosure.....I've owned many boat anchors over the years.  Size, lack of capability, deaf receivers with no selectivity, etc......takes away the "magic" of it, and they become just old, PITA junk before you know it.     


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W6BP on March 20, 2014, 08:48:55 AM
Back in the early 1970's, a ham told me about a frustrating experience with a piece of WWII surplus radio equipment he'd acquired.  Try as he might, he couldn't find any information about how to convert it for use on the amateur radio bands.  Surplus equipment was plentiful at the time, and one of the ham radio magazines--I don't remember which one--published a series of books on how to modify various types of equipment.  My friend finally stumbled across an index for these books, and found one that claimed to show how to convert his radio for civilian use.  Elated, he ordered it.

A few weeks later, when the book arrived in the mail, he quickly thumbed through it to find the article on his radio.  To his disappointment, he found not an article, but a series of photos: (a) a rope is tied around the radio, (b) the radio is hefted over the side of a boat, and (c) the radio is lowered into the water.

That's a boat anchor.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K9MHZ on March 20, 2014, 12:35:12 PM
Great story!

 ;D


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K1CJS on March 20, 2014, 01:55:30 PM
To me, a boat anchor is a heavy radio, period.  It usually includes any radio, historic, vintage, classic--or total junker--that has a lot of weight due to a heavy steel chassis, transformers, tubes, built-in power supplies, etc. 

When the radios started being built solid state, a lot of the weight got lost somewhere--gradually--but still lost.  Once the steel and the heavy components went out of radios, they stopped being called boat anchors--simply because the weight was no longer there.

I've a Yaesu FT101-EE which was the beginning of solid state construction.  The transmitter, however, still used tubes for its finals, and the radio has a built in power supply.  It's still weighty--and what I'd consider a boat anchor--even if some hams would disagree with me.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K9MHZ on March 21, 2014, 03:46:53 AM
I've a Yaesu FT101-EE

That is a nice one, along with the Kenwoods of the same era.   Still got the load and tune fix while having some better receive capabilities.  Both manufacturers did a nice job in building those heavy and solid.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KA5ROW on March 22, 2014, 04:14:22 PM
Boat anchor rigs would fall in the range of the 1960's and earlier. Tube type a must, by law.

From the ROW dictionary the Drake 4 series would have been it for them. The TS-520 Kenwood is there last.

The hybrids just don't quite make it to the boat anchors. But are fine transitional
 rigs. No new boat anchors have been made sense. Sorry but that IC-7800 or the new Kenwood TS-990 will never be a boat anchor, ( Even ) 50 years from now the real classic rigs will shock and awe anyone. But any modern rig of today will just be an old radio even if it never left the box it came in.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on May 20, 2014, 02:55:34 PM
  Then again , the fellow who owns a 1929 Bantam Roadster or 1938 Morgan 3 wheeler or  even a 1930 Bugatti is not planning on outrunning a 2014 Ford Mustang ...but his car is and will be far more valuable for many years to come . ;)
It isn't always about pure performance . The experience has it's own appeal and value . If we could only operate the newer appliances or SDR , I would walk away from ham radio instantly . The new stuff has zero appeal to some of us .
I didn't think anyone else understood. Well put. I have a pair of ARC5s on Am and CW, A TNT 1929 style (on AM even) and a bunch of homebrew 1930s style rigs (CW and AM) I don't expect them to work like a modern rig and get ticked off when some self appointed expert mentions Pinched off audio or non broadcast audio. I don't think an ARC5 was intended to have broadcast quality audio  and recently discovered the main promoter of it does a lot of broadcasting and very little listening anyway.(his shortest transmission this week was 37 minutes) I also have a TS830S which I have had since new when I want something a bit more modern. Wouldn't trade it out either.
I  drive a 63 Dodge 426 MW with no PS or AC etc for fun. Also have a slant six dragster (remember the slant sixes?) which I take out twice a year to give these old bones just one more adrenalin rush while I still can. But if I need to go to town the 2009 Dodge Journey is what I drive. Same concept exactly. Your post just reinforced that. Thanks
don
[/quote]

   The attribution was missing in the quote line by I thought the lines were familiar !

  Yes indeed we agree . Funny how the people who feign a dislike of vintage gear feel the need to bash the radios and those who appreciate them and derive great satisfaction owning , restoring and operating them . 

  Different people enjoy different aspects of the hobby . 
 It may be the band , the mode , the equipment or even how we attend the Dayton Hamvention that seems to bother them . My pleasure is their distraction .... Cool  ;D

 Don , you are most welcome .



Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: WA2EHV on May 20, 2014, 06:53:58 PM
To me, "boat anchor" always sounded negative.  I run a homebrew rockbound 6C5-6L6 with a Drake 2B, and that humble setup has given me 4 DX and 29 states. 


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W9WQA on May 24, 2014, 07:57:06 AM
B. A. an affectionate term.
when you come home from a hamfest with a real diamond,your wife looks out as you struggle up the sidewalk, and says, "another B. A." going to sink the house.

oh if i could have sold that heath freq counter fo $85 i could have stolen that ART 13.!!

crown point about 15 years ago!! i never forget.

but i got the viking 2 for free


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W1BR on June 02, 2014, 09:57:17 PM

For all of the Kenwood, Yaesu wannabes.... THIS IS A BOATANCHOR...

(http://i.ebayimg.com/00/s/MTYwMFgxMjAw/z/H08AAMXQuCdTizJZ/$_57.JPG)


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: K9MHZ on June 05, 2014, 01:28:57 PM
That's a battleship anchor!


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KA4KOE on June 20, 2014, 05:33:29 AM
T368 also qualifies.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: G3RZP on June 20, 2014, 06:58:29 AM
A Marconi NT201 Naval marine tx. The psu  is 2 feet high by 2 feet 1 wide by 2 feet 3 deep and weighs 450 pounds. The transmitter 4 feet 3 high, 2  feet wide and 2 feet 3 deep and weighs 400 lbs...all for 700 watts of CW and about 1kW PEP.

I think that's heavier than a BC610!


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W1BR on June 20, 2014, 05:58:47 PM
Marconi never made anything small!  I owned one of their tube based spectrum analyzers back in the 70s. It was the size of a washingmachine on a stand!


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: G3RZP on June 21, 2014, 01:57:24 AM
Strangely, the original design of that spectrum analyser was done shortly after WW2 by the GPO, who in those days were the radio administration in the UK. They got Marconi Instruments (now IFR) and a company called Furzehill to make them for use at the GPO HF radio stations - Rugby, Leafield, Truro, Dorchester etc, and I believe, took a royalty on sales elsewhere. Marconi Instruments did an update in the late 1960s, when it got even bigger and heavier, but looked more modern!

Marconi did an all solid state one in the early 1970s: it was in two units and smaller so it could be manhandled down the hatch of a submarine, that being a Naval requirement.


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on June 21, 2014, 03:10:18 AM
T368 also qualifies.

   Yes , it does . However by pulling out the drawers I was able to load my T-368 onto a pickup truck alone .

The BC-610E in the pic should be arriving in Spain tomorrow . The air shipping alone was near $5600.00  (FedEx) .


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KA4KOE on June 21, 2014, 05:19:34 AM
Another qualifier: any transmitter/radio that is too heavy for your house. I had an opportunity to acquire a T368, but my shack is in an upstairs room. An architect friend told me that the maximum load for a structure of this type is 40 lbs/SF. The T3 tipped the scales at over 90 lbs/SF. So, there was a distinct risk of the unit crashing through the upstairs floor. I did not acquire the T3....


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on June 21, 2014, 09:15:41 AM
You can cheat that number a little by placing the TX closely into a corner where two bearing walls meet to form the corner .  ;D

 The BC-610E only loads to about 76 LB/SqFt . But if you use the RTTY generator on top (The RTTY generator is often used as a very stable 150 pound VFO ).. The loading gets up around 100 Lb/SqFt .

   Fortunately , my shack is in an outbuilding with an insulated built up floor that is supported by a 6 inch concrete slab . No problem with real boatanchors  ;) The BC-610E had a BC-610H for a neighbor up until last week . There had even been a pair of T-368s residing there at one time . Listening to the howling blowers on a T-368 makes one appreciate the quiet grace of the BC-610 .

   


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KA4KOE on June 21, 2014, 09:51:50 AM
No dice. Architect said don't do that either. I needed bracing underneath......


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on June 22, 2014, 11:27:35 AM
I didn't say the trick was "Architect Approved"  ;) I also said "cheat the number " a little"  I have seen it done . We hauled a T-368 off of the second floor of a rickety old house . 2X6 floor joists and plywood sub floor . It sat perched in a corner , over load bearing walls for over 50 years .  He also had a rather heavy baby grand piano in the same room .

  Given your luck with Valiants however , I certainly would not suggest trying a similar trick  ;D


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W1BR on June 23, 2014, 06:47:17 AM
We had a hoarder living in CT, until a few weeks back.  She was living in the cellar, and finally the upstairs floors collapsed onto of her, crushing her. Rescue (recovery crews) had to tunnel in using trenchers to find her remains. I wonder how many BC-610s she was hoarding in the parlor :P


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: W4KYR on June 23, 2014, 05:08:57 PM
I guess that beloved and classic rig called the "Seven Drifty Three" could be considered a Boat Anchor .   Read the outstanding reviews of this all time favorite. http://www.eham.net/reviews/detail/2223


(http://www.asu.edu/clubs/amateur_radio_society/equipment/eico753.jpg)


Title: RE: What is a Boat Anchor?
Post by: KG8LB on June 24, 2014, 03:00:54 AM
We had a hoarder living in CT, until a few weeks back.  She was living in the cellar, and finally the upstairs floors collapsed onto of her, crushing her. Rescue (recovery crews) had to tunnel in using trenchers to find her remains. I wonder how many BC-610s she was hoarding in the parlor :P

  Probably none . Better chance she had the entire floor loaded with tons fo trash , including the critical mid-span sections . Straw men on the other hand are remarkably light . ;).   


    Saw three of the Eico 753s dropped into a trash barrel at the Findlay Hamfest two years ago .  One fellow had them on his table marked "free" . Early in the day a fellow picked them up . Later in the day , just before he went home , the fellow walked them over to the trash barrel and threw them in real hard . As he walked away he quipped "I had one of those years ago, that was sweet revenge" .