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Reviews For: CRKITS CRK-10A CW Transceiver Kit

Category: QRP Radios (5 watts or less)

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Review Summary For : CRKITS CRK-10A CW Transceiver Kit
Reviews: 9MSRP: 55
A tiny 40m or 30m CW transceiver kit designed by BD4RG. 3 watts output. Built-in keyer. Multiple frequency options.
Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
AD4HB Rating: 2017-12-08
This is a real radio...suitable for daily use Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
1. The performance of this radio is receiver and silky smooth QSK
2. Easy to build. All parts are thru hole construction. toroids are easy to wind
3. Full three watts out, enough for long ragchews
4. Super built in keyer/controller.
5. Adequate selectivity with dual crystal input filter.
6. Plan to build another CRK-10A and install crystal sockets.
7. I'm not getting any perks from any vendors.
NU6I Rating: 2017-10-22
lot of fun Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I bought mine assembled from QRVTronics. Larry did a great soldering job building the kit. Great service too.
I can only agree with all the positive comments in this review.
The receive is very sensitive for such a simple design. I used it
with a paddle and a straight key. The CQ memory is very helpful.
WD4ELG Rating: 2017-02-21
Lots of fun! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I have been in the hobby for 40 years, but just recently (re) discovered the joys of building my own gear.

I ordered this kit about 18 months ago, but just not got around to building it.

An easy and interesting assembly: built-in keyer, all surface mount parts, auto-repeat CQ. The rig comes in 40 or 30 meter versions.

Drawbacks: single frequency, crystal controlled. No AGC (careful with the ears). But the rig packs a lot in a small and affordable package.

Total build time for me over a two week period was 4 hours. I am very deliberate and careful, I wind my own toroids, I take my time nice and slow. An experienced builder could put this together in about 2 hours. But, it is a suitable kit for a beginner once you have mastered soldering techniques.

Minimum recommended equipment: good soldering tool, magnifier, digital volt meter, tweezers, tool for holding the circuit board, small wire cutters. I had other odds and ends around the shack (DC plug, small screwdriver, bench power supply).

My only issue was that the voltage regulator was not working, probably my fault (those don't go bad too often). Customer service is great, I emailed to the contact email on a weeknight and received a response within an hour.

The assembly instructions are online and outstanding: pictures to accompany the descriptions, step-by-step logical assembly, and intermediate testing to confirm proper assembly!

If you have never built a kit, you don't know what you're missing: there is nothing like the thrill of powering on your assembled kit and hearing CW audio and seeing your transmit signal on the scope!
W9CTW Rating: 2015-11-10
Fast good service from Qrvtronics Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
The kit arrived in today's mail, and the weekend can't get here fast enough. The PC board looks like it's high quality. Larry Lovell was fast and pleasant, so I'm hoping to soon afford the CRKITS SSB kit he sells, too.
NN1F Rating: 2014-11-14
Very Suprised!! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I received the radio in the mail two days ago. Surprised that it came in a normal small bubble wrap envelope.
Plugged it in after reading the operating page in the manual. I was VERY SURPRISED that when I called CQ that evening, I received a call from Roger in WI. He thought I had a very good signal for QRP. I was using my DX-EE dipole antenna in the woods. Family has kept me from playing any more with the CRK-10 until tonight. About to turn it back on for some more FUN!!!! Would highly recommend this rig to anyone who is looking for a fun rig to travel with or even use in the home shack.I may order another for a second frequency on 40 meters. Mine is on 7.030.
VE3HG Rating: 2014-07-02
Great QRP rig Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Great considering it's xtal controlled on 7030. So there's no vfo. There's no volume control. There's not even an off/on switch. BUT I just worked special event station WM3PEN in Philadelphia thru QRM and we had a full and interesting QSO at 559 both ways. The direct conversion receiver is very quiet with none of the internal noise generated by the big rigs. Listening to CW is a pleasure. Yes it has some crystal and audio filtering and comparing it to my big rigs the CRK-10A hears about 400 Hz or more of band with the desired signal the lower sounding note. Does not seem to be prone to overloading by nearby strong signals. Seems stable after a short warm up. The rig needs a decent 40-meter antenna with a low SWR to work properly but a simple dipole will do the trick. Wouldn't recommend it as your first rig but as a QRP rig it's a lot of fun. See you on 7030.
W9NMT Rating: 2014-05-05
Surprising little rig! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
CRKits sent me one of these for use in a book that I'm writing. My co-author (W6DQ) and I added a DDS VFO to it, which was extremely easy to do. However, two things really surprised us: 1) its size, and 2) the receiver. It is about the size of a deck of cards and almost fits in a shirt pocket. The receiver is extremely sensitive and we had no problems making contacts with it. The CRK-10A is the newer version and was the one we tested. The A version can be configured for either the 40m or 30m band and removes the dot/dash wiring jumpers...yes, there's a built-in keyer.

It is a direct conversion receiver, but does have a two pole crystal as well as audio filters. Even though it uses the NE602 mixer, we didn't notice any overloading from strong signals. A small microcontroller controls the keyer and auto-detects a keyer, bug, or straight key, provided you insert the plug before applying power. You can adjust the speed using the keyer itself and store a CQ message with your call.

Given its price, this is a fun rig and just took away any excuse you had for not taking a rig on your next camping trip.
AF2DX Rating: 2013-06-24
UDATE ON THE LITTLE CRK-10 Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
I really do not work aany contest except to see how well my antenna is and how well i'm being heard.
I had the rig with me when I went to visit my Mother at the nursing home.
I used a 65 foot wire that was almost vertical in the rear of the building.
I made 21 USA contacts and one from Ireland.
Not bad fot 3 watts and a simple wire.
I was rock bound on 7.025.0
Had a blast
JL1KRA Rating: 2013-06-16
Minimum TRX maximize fun Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This second generation simple transceiver bring
you an essential pleasure of amateur radio.
You can not move from certain frequency by
the selected crystal.
Still you can hear many QRM and target stations
on the channel.
This is an experience of old successors in early era.
When you can work stations on the frequency. You will feel
great pleasure emotion that you can not experience by big
DDS VFO brothers.

Kit construction is straight forward.
As the Heath kit, step by step instruction will
give you perfect soldering work. Beside this
work, builders can understand transceiver schematic.

Any amateur bored with recent Japanese Yaesu Icom
Kenwood should try this CRK-10A. You will feel
something different. Then you will need both transceivers.