Manager - NA4M
Manager Notes

Reviews For: Oak Hills Research RFL-100 Dummy Load Kit

Category: SWR & Wattmeters & Dummy Loads

eMail Subscription

Registered users are allowed to subscribe to specific review topics and receive eMail notifications when new reviews are posted.
Review Summary For : Oak Hills Research RFL-100 Dummy Load Kit
Reviews: 17MSRP: 34.95
The Oak Hills Research RFL-100 was designed specifically for the QRP operator and builder who needs an accurate and stable 50 Ohm load. Handles 100 Watts continuous (air cooled).
Product is in production
More Info:
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
N7AG Rating: 2017-02-13
Good looks, too Time Owned: more than 12 months.
Went together just fine. Quality! 50.5 ohms on the OK meter. What more do you want?
W5JV Rating: 2017-02-11
Research & Think before you buy Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I'm leaving a low recommendation in order to get some information out to prospective buyers. OHR or Milestone Industries, whatever they really are now, is unable to supply 5W 1% resistors within their tolerance. They are shipping 5W resistors measuring 980-985 ohms which is unacceptable if the whole point is to build a precise 50 ohm load to test & evaluate QRP rigs. I built one a few years ago and it barely fell within tolerance range but the result was an acceptable 49.5-49.65 ohms. I returned a new kit this week because the resultant load would be 48-48.5 ohms. I asked Milestone if they could replace it and they just sent me an RMA number and said return it. That was a week ago and I have yet to receive my refund.

Can't recommend this group anymore. Sitting on laurels is one thing, not making any effort to deliver what you advertise or correct what you sent, is another. If you are not doing precision or low low wattage QRP testing and if you don't care what the load result will be, you will enjoy the kit.
N6MST Rating: 2015-07-30
Kit is great, Marshall is even greater. Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I wanted a dummy load to practice sending CW with my QRP radio. The RFL-100 looks superb, was easy to build, and works like a dummy load should.

The product is great, but the customer service is even better. The OHR website is easy to use, my purchase went smoothly, and the follow up from Marshall is top notch.

As a related example, 20 minnutes ago I ordered the OHR wattmeter kit. Eight minutes later I had an email from Marshall telling me it would be in today's outgoing mail and might even be here the day after tomorrow. And I ordered at 4PM, Colorado time. For my money it doesn't get any better than that.
K0LSR Rating: 2015-07-01
HIghly recommended kit Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
There is absolutely no way that I cannot give this little kit a 5! Oak Hills is a great company to deal with and provides top quality items. I ordered the kit on Friday evening and received it on Monday. Now that's fast shipping!

The kit has great quality components and the instructions are clear and easy to follow. The case is really nice and looks totally professional. My kit measured 50.1 ohms - right on target. I highly recommend this kit. Try it, you'll love it.
NASSAU Rating: 2014-11-12
Fantastic, accurate, simple and cheap! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This dummy load is a great kit. My kit arrived with all pieces, 100%. The metal case is of very high quality and finish - epoxy paint and 'crinkle' paint for bottom and top parts.

A kit like this quickly demystified any uncertainties on exactly how dummy loads work: this one is a parallel circuit of 20 5W 1000Ohm non-inductive resistors connected via a clean, crisp single-sided PCB to an SO235 socket via the metal case. Air-cooled and well ventilated.

This is my first experience of an OHR product, attracted by the product as a kit (I love to make stuff), the size (a useful 100W CONTINUOUS POWER load), the price (only $40??) and fact that OHR (under Morse Express ownership) is a small business run by hams for hams.

My finished load reads 49.7Ohms, well within the 50Ohms +/- 2% stated tolerance of kit), which yields 80m SWR = 1.00 and 10m SWR = 1.02.

It is just that good. Very recommended.

Thank you Marshall Emm (N1FN) for maintaining such high standards of product, service and pricing!
AG6QR Rating: 2014-08-28
Fully meets expectations Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
OK, it's really hard to get too excited about a dummy load. On the other hand, I can't find any fault with this product, and there's no reason to ding it down below a 5 star rating.

This load consists of 20 resistors, each one rated at 1K ohm, 5W. The resistors are wired in parallel for a total load of 50 ohms, 100W. Any ham worth his salt should be able to purchase a pile of resistors, some perfboard and solder, and an enclosure and connector, and produce something that functions about as well as this. But it probably won't be cheaper than this, and it won't look as good when finished. This is a solid, rugged, professional looking device.

I have extensive prototyping and kit building experience, and I have mixed feelings about this as a soldering exercise. It has big fat traces, big rugged components that aren't sensitive to polarity, and nothing at all delicate or tricky about it. The instructions even suggest that it's good to apply excess solder to help in conducting heat away from the resistors. The good side of this is that any beginning soldering student is likely to succeed at building this kit. There's virtually no way to mess it up in a way that can't be fixed by reheating some joints, and there's almost no way to make an accidental solder bridge. So it's likely to be a good confidence builder for a beginner. The bad side is that there's nothing tricky about it, there's likely to be no debugging required, and this kit is very tolerant of the "glob lots of solder on every joint" technique. The student isn't likely to learn too much, and if not coached well, a student might pick up some hamfisted techniques which won't be helpful when assembling a more refined and delicate subsequent project.

My MFJ 269 antenna analyzer shows a perfectly flat resistive impedance through all the HF bands, but starts showing some measurable reactance at about 70MHz, with an SWR of 1.4 at 148MHz. So this is not a perfect VHF/UHF dummy load, though it should be adequate for many purposes. But for HF, it is more than fine.

It's well-ventilated, with properly rated resistors to handle a full continuous 100W, or a significantly higher load for a short period of time.
KC3BKG Rating: 2014-03-27
Great Kit Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Great little kit. Very well made and a easy build. All the parts fit correctly so there wasn’t any adjustments needed. After assembly it measured 50.2 ohms. I would recommend this to anyone wanting / needing a nice dummy load.
K5MF Rating: 2014-03-22
Very Nice Finish Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Everyone needs a dummy load now and then. And most of us have 100 watt radios, so this will work well for the most of us. It is rated at 100w continuous. I haven't tried it for extended periods of time but you shouldn't leave your radio key down for extended periods of time anyway. The kit goes together easily in about an hour. It works as it should. Whoever is doing the powder coating on these boxes is doing an excellent job. It looks really really nice and comes well protected. I can't compare it to other dummy loads but it works great and looks very nicely made. Response to my order was quick and delivery was by USPS priority. I received it in two days. Plan on paying about $51 for it with priority shipping. The only niggle I have is that I don't understand why the assembly process asks you to bend and cut the leads of the resistors so they lie parallel to each other across the board. Then they ask you to solder the leads together as well as to the pads. It isn't a big deal to do, but I am not sure why this is necessary. Anyway, good piece of equipment to have in the shack. Highly recommended.
VE3GNU Rating: 2012-09-21
Wonderful Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I put one of these together a couple of years ago---and will agree with all the aforementioned reviews---one of the great kits offered by OHR---and highly recommended for anyone operating at 100 max output.
VK7JB Rating: 2012-09-21
Outstanding value... Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
This little kit is amazing value for the price: one of ham radio's true bargains. It's a cleverly designed, very simple kit to build and took me a little over an hour to put together over a cup of coffee. It measured 50.0 ohms after I'd finished, with a flat SWR 1.0:1 across all the HF bands on my antenna analyser. It will accept 100W continuously with the cabinet getting warm. No smoke, no smell of roasting resistors, no fans and no leaking oil. The quality and finish of the cabinet work is exceptional: other kit manufacturers could take a lesson from this attention to detail. Wish I'd had a couple of RFL-100's years ago.
Thanks Marshall for your speedy service and a great product.