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Reviews For: Heathkit SB-1000

Category: Amplifiers: RF Power - HF & HF+6M

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Review Summary For : Heathkit SB-1000
Reviews: 36MSRP: 799.95
160-10 meter HF Amp
Product is not in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
K9PLK Rating: 2016-06-05
GREAT AMP Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Well having owned this amp for a year now can say its fantastic! I operate 10 thru 160 and this JEWEL handles it all! I have many amps in my time including the FAMOUS ALPHA 86 and its a true beast but lets compare apples to apples! I must say I had and fairly new AL 80A and this is as good if not better than that amp! I do prefer it more than the AL80B which I think is a poor amp! So if you can find one of these grab it and dont let go!
W1UFL Rating: 2016-06-01
Perfect Amp ! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Purchased a used SB-1000 off of ebay which was being sold by a well known electronics repair shop. It came well packaged with a brand new RF-Parts 3-500zg packaged separately and new in box. Amp performs perfectly on all bands. I use an MFJ-9982 tuner behind it into an end-fed longwire and have had no issues whatsoever on 160-10. If you can find one get it !
VA3MLV Rating: 2016-02-23
Update review Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Ok so after having my Heathkit SB1000 for about 2yrs I ended up putting in a Peter w. Dahl power transformer purchased at Hammond MFG in Guelph Ontario Canada just 25min drive from my home location. It was a purchase that was worth every dollar. I ended up with my heathkit SB1000 a few yrs back by making a trade with a local operator for my Ameritron AL811A a newer linear plus a few extra $$$. Even though I had to replace a few parts & make it to my operating standards I'm glad I made the trade. Anyways overall it's a much better linear than what it was when I first got it & a much much better linear amplifier than any of the Ameritron AL811 models. 73
KI4VEO Rating: 2016-01-02
A Sweet Amp after some modificastions Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I purchased this sight unseen from a seller on e-Bay (need I say more). It arrived in terrible shape, so it required a lot of work before putting it on the air.

1. New bandswitch from MFJ - the original had burnt contacts
2. Added 17 feet of twisted pair hi-temp teflon wire to the filament output of the transformer to drop the filament voltage to just under 5 volts.
3. New plate choke from MFJ so I could use 17M
4. New HV filter caps
5. New beefier heatsink for the 3-500ZG
6. New cooling fan (the old one was on its last legs)
7. Added a time delay circuit, so when I switch off the amp, the cooling fan runs for an additional 3 minutes
8. Removed the carbon comp resistor in the plate circuit, installed a flame proof 5 watt, wound with a new parasitic coil around it (made from nichrome wire, al la Richard Measures)
9. Replaced a large number of HV disk caps that were bad, or going bad.

DL1MEV Rating: 2015-04-02
My Workhorse Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Built it in 1989. Later I changed the plate-choke to a aperiodic wound one form Ameritron, so the WARC-Bands were usable from then. The original plate-choke was wound evenly and had a lot of series-resonance frequencies in the short-wave-range. An external homebrew inrush-current-limiter was added too.
A new 3-500 (Amperex) was put into service, after the original EIMAC started arcing 5 years ago.
Due to the cooling-scheme extended key-down-periods should be avoided.
The costs over the lifetime are very reasonable.
KI4ECU Rating: 2014-03-18
Sweatheart Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
There is nothing more i can say everyone else has not but i can say this,i bought a brand new al-80b and sold it and kept the sb-1000.In my book the heathkit is built better,but mine has had alot of work,new caps,new plate choke,new fliment choke,new transformer,new band switch,added soft start which is the first mod anyone should do to this amp,new ceramic tube socket,new relay.I dont think there is nothing left.This may be why this amp is doing so well but have mine on 240v and 50 watt gives me 1k all day long.Oh yeah,has the new 65 qubic feet fan that is really quiet.also have a ic 741 timer delay on the fan so whenever your done talking just kill the power and fan runs for 10 minutes and shuts off by itself.Also added the missing corna washer on the band switch to stop 160m arching.Would like to add vacum relays so if anyone reading this has done the vacum relay mod look me up on qrz and shoot me an email,also if anyone needs any help with the mods i have listed would be more than glad to help if i can.73 everyone and dont think you can send me an email and buy this amp,she has found a home.I would get rid of my icom's first,and that is saying something.
KD6CCP Rating: 2014-02-10
Tank amp Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Had mine for over 20 years not a single problem. Moved several times and amp is a tank always fires right up easy to tune I can't part with it. Gives me 800-900 watts but right at home at 500. Just right for me.
WD5DJX Rating: 2014-02-10
Leader of the Pack! Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I have had a lot of Amps over the years with about every design ever made. This is the best design I can think of and the best bang for the buck ever made in my humble opinioin. I am a retired RF and Telecom Engineer. I have 2 of these and will have them until I go SK. If you find one at a decent price, you can do a lot worse. I have the 2 3-500Z amps also and still like this one best! Very linear amp!
MW0ATK Rating: 2013-12-08
Fantastic Amplifier Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
Recently bought an SB-1000 from an internet auction site as my first valve (tube) amplifier. Previous owner a licensed radio ham but only used it on 11metre CB band! Informed me the amp was fine except problems with the input filter system (high SWR all bands) and i would need to use a tuner on the input.

After setup i found input SWR very low from my FT-897 and ran fine into my home-brew Windom Antenna cut for 20metre - a problem was i overheated the off-centre fed 4:1 voltage balun testing the output during tuning (had originally made the voltage balun with too low gauge speaker wire!!)

Amp had previously been fitted with an incorrectly rated transformer but refitted with correct type for 3.2kv output voltage and a new Amperex 3-500z both fitted 2 years ago!

A minor issue was the front panel multimeter Power Output was reading off the scale after 500watts actual output, easily trimmed with the meter board variable pot (having taken proper precautions not to kill myself of course!!) rooting around inside whilst pushing 500watts on 20 metres - working through original setup as described in supplied constructors manual!!

I ordered the correct 0.10hex adjustment tool from Ameritron in case i ever need to trim the input network.

I'm a keen constructor and would love to have built this amplifier back in the day, think mine was made mid to late 1980's. I understand the design is the same as the commercial Ameriton AL-80A.
Very pleased with my first amplifier, very easy to tune and watch the valve (tube) glowing a dull red in service. Reading up at the moment how to look after the tube plate and grid currents - seems the tubes don't like to be underdriven and need the occasional blast on full power!

Very happy i noticed if i can hear a station i can now work it at the UK 400watt limit, even on a home-made Windom?!! Can't see me parting with this lovely piece of kit!
K4QM Rating: 2013-08-30
Solid Amp Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Picked up a SB-1000 last Tuesday and have been looking it over. Had to re-heat a few joints and put in the anti-corona washer Heath left out. The amp had a new tube and tunes really easy. I know this will be on my desk for quite a while.