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Author Topic: Wanted Heathkit Elmer  (Read 1939 times)

Posts: 30

« on: March 24, 2013, 10:29:08 AM »

Wanted Heathkit Elmer

I am looking for a Heathkit Elmer, Someone who lives in the Dayton - Columbus,
Ohio area who would be willing to Elmer me on testing and repair of Heathkit SB
series radios. I don't have the equipment or knowledge to do this myself and
maybe I am too old to learn, but I will give it my best effort. I would be
willing to compensate my Elmer for the time spent teaching / repairing the
equipment. Please email or call 937-215-1456 if you are willing to help.
Thank you and 73,
Ralph AA8P

Posts: 2409

« Reply #1 on: March 24, 2013, 11:19:08 AM »

You might consider asking the same question in the Heathkit Yahoo group. They are dedicated to helping with all kinds of Heathkit equipment.

Posts: 3333

« Reply #2 on: March 24, 2013, 06:45:15 PM »


The majority of Heathkit work that one can do can be done with not much more than the original tools used to assemble the radio.

One would expect to have good soldering skills, adequate vision, and for repairs, knowledge of basic electronics ... the ability to read a schematic is critical.

Your work area should ideally be dedicated to the task, with adequate ventilation.  AC power, preferably locally switched, is a requirement, along with suitable lighting.  There should be a telephone handy for safety.

One would need the original radio assembly manual, preferably the same one use to build the rig, if it's still in readable condition.

A large-thermal-well type temperature controlled iron, such as a Weller WTCPx series (Curie-temp type) is wise to use, with a 700 degree tip, and a 80W conventional "American Beauty' type iron with conical tip is also handy for the times you need it.  And you will need it.  I would not talk you out of a 140W Weller type 8200 gun, either.

You will want some fresh, rosin core solder.  There are many types out there, but, good old Kester #44 is your best bet.  0.062" size for vintage Heath gear.

You will need a desoldering tool and the skill to use it.  The ONLY useful tool in this case is the Edsyn model DS-017 and you'll hear plenty of other advice regarding such devices.  Ignore these well meaning yet erroneous suggestions.

You'll be doing some electromechanical disassembly, too, so a good digital camera with macro mode is almost a must-have.  A variety of simple yet high quality hand tools will be needed and believe it or not, we still make these in this country... and they're often available at the major home improvement stores in many cases.

Lastly, an RF signal generator, wattmeter, RF dummy load, bench grade digital multimeter, and an oscilloscope will round out your basic Heathkit restoration bench.  If / when you need more than this, you'll have to resort to getting help from others anyway, and they can arrive to work in your new well-appointed work area for the best of camaraderie and learning.

73  Steve KZ1X

Posts: 5224

« Reply #3 on: March 24, 2013, 06:49:08 PM »

You might consider asking the same question in the Heathkit Yahoo group. They are dedicated to helping with all kinds of Heathkit equipment.

I tried to join that group and got no response. And I had no history on the Yahoo groups, so it wanted because of something I did. Just seems like the moderators had flown the coup.

Posts: 7042

« Reply #4 on: March 24, 2013, 10:06:05 PM »

Ralph:  It would help if you mentioned what Heathkit you wanted to get repaired.

Now, someone built that kit with this list of tools:  $20.00 soldering iron, 60-40 rosin core solder, a blade screwdriver, a Phillips screwdriver, small wire cutters and a pair of needle nosed pliers.  And of course the assembly manual.

It's quite possible he had a VOM meter (Volt-Ohm-Milliamp).  This would be to check voltages, continuity.  It's doubtful if he did any current measurement.

This should be all you need to fix the radio.  As for the procedure, well that is a bit more involved.  However, if I was you with the lack of any troubleshooting skills, the first thing I'd do is get the tubes tested.  You an pull them (after tagging them with masking tape), take them to someone who has a tester and go from there.

You problem might simply be a bad tube.  If not then go from there.  Having someone to help you would be great but remember, this item was assembled one piece at a time.  The Heath manuals supply a myriad of voltage and resistance checks.  You might be able to do this if you take your time and pay attention to what you are doing.

THIS IS TO BE TRANSLATED TO BE CAREFUL!  Some of these old radios have high voltage that can KILL you!


A Pessimist is Never Disappointed!

Posts: 2409

« Reply #5 on: March 24, 2013, 11:08:41 PM »

I can't say what membership conditions they got. Perhaps you could try to send a mail to the moderators through the group. You would have to go to the members list and choose the moderators tab. I can tell you that they are: K5JWK and vlincoln1735. You also could let me know by separate mail under what name you tried to join so I could contact them and ask for any reasons. My guess is a lack of activity  Wink
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