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Reviews Categories | QRP Radios (5 watts or less) | Glowbugkits 1-DER 40 Meter QRP Tube Transceiver Help

Reviews Summary for Glowbugkits 1-DER 40 Meter QRP Tube Transceiver
Glowbugkits 1-DER 40 Meter QRP Tube Transceiver Reviews: 3 Average rating: 4.7/5 MSRP: $$129.95
Description: 40 meter single tube transceiver. Regen receiver. Crystal controlled transmitter (7.040 included). Powered by 1 D-Cell and ten 9 volt batteries or external power supply.
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Glowbugkits 1-DER 40 Meter QRP Tube Transceiver.

HFHAM2 Rating: 4/5 Aug 7, 2010 13:09 Send this review to a friend
A QRPp One Valver  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
The kit was complete, with a nice looking, solid and well printed enclosure. The components and board seemed to be of good quality, and the instructions (with photos) were easy to follow.

I didn't like that the key and phone jack sockets are mono and don't easily work with the stereo jack plugs which are now ubiquitous. Also, the supplied crystal earpieces weren't much good; they both stopped working on the second or third use. I ended up using my trusty little Radio Shack mini amplifier/speaker, which has a high impedance input and which allows you to plug modern low impedance stereo 'phones into it if you don't want to listen on the speaker.

It was good that Dwight supplied the crystal earpieces though as many modern hams would not have the required high impedance crystal earphones to hand. They're enough to get you started.

Giving the rig the ability to run on batteries is a nice touch as many hams nowadays are unlikely to have a power supply that can supply the 90V (and 1.5V) that this rig requires. If you used this rig a lot (and therefore got through a lot of batteries), you would damage the board due to the mechanical stresses of plugging and unplugging the batteries. Again, enough to get you started but better to build or buy a suitable power supply.

It's (plug-in) crystal controlled on Tx and one crystal (7.040) is included; other freqs are available at the time of purchase (only). I would've liked to see the crystal socket on the front panel though because as designed, you have to remove the rig's cover (quick & easy) to get at the socket.

How does it work? Well, it does work and my first and only so far (due to lack of time) QSO with 180+ milliwatts RF out to a ground mounted 4BTV vertical antenna, was around 650 miles distant (day time) with a received RST report of 559. Running on batteries, I noticed a little chirp on TX, but not objectionable.

Receive however, was challenging. The regenerative receiver goes into regeneration very smoothly (not touchy) and when left alone, is stable. However, during the QSO, when switching between Tx and Rx using the push-button switch, the receiver would drift, requiring constant touch-up of the tuning (which is an RIT) or regeneration (which also varies the Rx frequency). I found myself having to conduct the QSO with one hand on my pencil (to record the QSO) and the other on the rig's tuning or regen control. Do-able, but certainly different to what I'm used to.

Being that it's QRPp (~200mW), and as many of us QRPers have so-so antennas, it's of limited use though. I'd really like to see Dwight design a 5 watt VFO controlled Tx/Rx using tubes (with a more stable receiver). I'd buy one in a heartbeat.

In conclusion, it is very basic (as advertised), is quite unique in today's market place, and in my opinion, is a great bargain at it's current (reduced) price of $89.97 plus S&H.

Get one before they're all gone and you wish you had.
N4QA Rating: 5/5 Mar 2, 2008 06:04 Send this review to a friend
1W @ 150 vdc on plates  Time owned: more than 12 months
Have made several contacts using the 1-DER 40 at 200mw out to the 80m endfed wire, up 5m.
Have also had one Q in the mobile...Hustler whip mounted on rear bumper...while running one watt out from the 1-DER 40. For mobile ops, using a DC-DC converter module which ups the vehicle 12v supply to 150 VDC for the 3A5 plates, resulting in a full watt of rf output.

This rig is a blast to operate!
If one chooses operating times wisely...mainly to avoid swbc will be richly rewarded with contacts. Yes, the rig presents somewhat of a challenge to successfully operate...I like that!

I see that Dwight, KG4HSY, has again reduced the kit, to well less than a hundred bucks.

It's a fun build too.
Can't go wrong with this rig.

Bill, N4QA
K3MD Rating: 5/5 Dec 28, 2007 14:06 Send this review to a friend
It works!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
When I saw this on EBay, knew I had to have it, since I liked my first glowbug kit so much. This is the brainchild of KG4HSY, in response to requests. It is a 1-night kit, and worked perfectly when first turned on. Alignment is simple. It puts out a whopping 120mw into my Oak Hills wattmeter. The tube is slightly microphonic, but copies signals well. There is a built-in sidetone from a neon oscillator! Interaction between tuning and the regeneration control is there, but quite expected. A true one-tube wonder!

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