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Reviews For: MFJ-962D

Category: Antenna Tuners/Matching Networks

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Review Summary For : MFJ-962D
Reviews: 94MSRP: 269.95
Description:
1.8 - 30 MHz 1.5 kilowatt AirCore roller inductor antenna tuner
Product is in production
More Info: http://www.mfjenterprises.com/products.php?prodid=MFJ-962D
# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
14943.1
KD7KE Rating: 2019-10-06
MFJ 962D Roller Inductor A Great Low-cost Tuner Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I have owned my MFJ 962D Versa Tuner III (with a roller inductor) for 4 years. I have used tapped tuners (MFJ and other brands) but found that I that getting a perfect 1:1 match on them may not be possible. Getting a good match is necessary, if you don't, you will pay the price in extra heating of amplifier tubes and output transistors and may also suffer damage to radio, amp and tuner. Arcing damage may occur if the match is poor. Once the best sweet spot (low SWR) per band was found I wrote down the settings. This is a God-send when changing frequencies and bands as it makes tuning very easy, accurate and quick. I use my tuner with an Ameritron AL 80A amplifier, a sweet combination. I recommend this tuner anyone with the proviso that you make a record of your tuning spots and refine them as necessary. Weather can affect the SWR so nothing is perfect as weather changes may affect your adjustments. Your record will make the difference. Keep it in a prominent position by your radio and you will run a cooler station that should last for years. I give it a 4 of 5 because I have damaged internal components by forgetting to change the 0-300 to 300 - 1000 watt switch when using the amplifier. Maybe the MFJ will improve the tuner so that no damage to meter will occur if one fails to change the output setting. The good news is that MFJ is helpful in selling or giving, free of charge, parts and instruction if you opt to repair yourself. They will repair for a fee, if you send the tuner to them.
KH4AB Rating: 2018-11-13
It Work--But Handle With Care Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
OK, I've owned this unit for about three months now and I must say you really get what you paid for. There is no trusting for me until I have inspected under the hood of this “mighty fine junk” MFJ…lol.

Brand new out of the box, I found a cold solder joint on the main tuning coil, re-soldered and it is working fine now. Just last night, my Cirro Mazonni Baby Loop magnetic antenna started acting erratically. Opened up hood, and I had to reseat all the rotary connectors as one apparently is coming loose.
Luckily, I am using this box as a pass through connector/patch panel, as the Baby loop antenna resonates at 1.1 to 1.5 across 6600 to 29800Mhz so I am not really dependent on this for tuning. The analog power meter is so out of calibration that it reads 125 watts vs my LP-100A’s 100 watt readout.

Maybe, one of these days, I may try and score a Palstar HF-Auto when I decide to install a long wire or some vertical multiband antenna in the back yard…

Dan
KM6VMR
KE1RI Rating: 2018-09-14
Works well if I use Dummy Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I purchased this MFJ-962D tuner used (less than 1/2 price). The previous owner had shorted the tuning coil and had it replaced by MFJ. He also removed the meter bulb and taped in two LED’s. He never bothered to solder them. He also forgot to put the back cover of the meter back and lost it. Although he demonstrated the unit to me I never opened it.
I have since repaired a rail on the roller inductor frame, soldered in the LED’s, and adjusted the turns counter attachment so it reads correctly through the window.

This unit works well but is finicky. The instructions suggest you tune into a dummy load first. I have found that this is essential. This step gets the inductor setting almost perfect for my antenna (OCFD / Carolina Windom). Otherwise it is very difficult to near impossible to find the exact spot on the inductor that will even show movement of the meter. I also keep all pre-transmit tuning limited to 10 watts and NEVER touch the inductance control when transmitting over 10 watts.

Works fine. Just follow the instructions and keep good records. I now get 500-600 watts out with my Ameritron AL811H. I also have a spare burnt roller inductor for parts.
AB9PM Rating: 2018-08-24
SURPRISE! Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I had bought this tuner NEW to use and recently moved it to another location to tune my antennas. I would tune up and all was good. Suddenly I go to transmit and the SWR is all erratic. I opened it up and found the 9vdc clip laying across the inductor coil. No big deal. Then I remembered reading about loose solder being left in MFJ products. So before I closed it up I tipped it upside down. Out of the tuner falls a 3/4 inch cut silver wire. I am not a basher of MFJ, I have owned multiple products over the years, but this is carelessness. Thus I rate your item a 3. Buyer beware.
N5ID Rating: 2018-03-02
Works Great! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I bought mine used for 125.00 but it looks and works like new. My MFJ-962D tunes my 80 meter full wave loop on all bands 80-10. It is quick and simple to tune.
K8DXX Rating: 2018-01-23
Well Ya Know Jane, It's Always Something Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I'm going to give this a 5 even though a 4.75 might be more appropriate. This MFJ-962D was just purchased to replace an MFJ-994B auto tuner that didn't work correctly out of the box (and was missing a rubber foot). But now, the good news. For the price, this is a very nice tuner. The roller inductor and counter operate smoothly. I checked the inside and it looks first rate. The fit and finish are very nice, if you like basic black! The peak reading meter is more-or-less accurate (maybe 50 watts high). I've run this amplifier through other meters and tuners and 650 PEP is about what they show (it's all an estimate, anyway). I ran into no issues tuning first with an MFJ 259 analyzer, then my exciter at 25 watts and then turned on the ALS 600. Even the roller inductor knob looks classy.

So, what's not to like? The grounding lug on the back was missing the wing nut and washers. It's a small thing. I temporarily borrowed the wing nut and washers off the balanced line feedthrough posts and can replace them later. My point is that MFJ could probably boost their average review by a full point and avoid the "Mighty Fine Junk" moniker if they'd just do a little QC. How about including a postcard or asking buyers to complete a survey online along the lines of "how's our quality?" They could use data gathered to identify weak points in their manufacturing processes and avoid the missing wingnuts and rubber feet.

I still think MFJ products generally provide excellent value and service. I have purchased at least 6 MFJ/Ameritron items in the last 2 years. About half worked perfectly. Two required one or more calls to Starkville to ask for replacements of clearly defective or missing parts. The auto tuner just didn't work! One in six, at the price is not bad! These silly errors and omissions tarnish the reputation of an otherwise great manufacturer. My experience as an ISO 9000 consultant indicates that the cost of compliance is usually less than that of non-compliance.
KR4AW Rating: 2017-11-21
Not surprised Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Not surprised the MFJ 962D is just like most MFJ products. They are not what they advertise. This one said rated for 1.5 kw but in the manual in big letters said do not use more than 800 watts. It also said you can plug a 9 volt battery to it. Not true no plug inside for a battery. The manual has to be printed from the internet. It's a joke. Check out page 4 said meter is 0 to 200 watts on low and 0 to 2000 watts on hi. Not true it's 0 to 300 w and 0 to 3000 w. OK just a mistake. I told them about it about a year ago and others have also and they have not fixed it. Same with an antenna I purchased from MFJ said it was good for 160 meters. Not true. After talking with them they told me it did not do 160 but they continue to advertise saying it does. I have never seen a company that just plain out lies and does not care. If I can help it. I will never buy another MFJ product.
G8UBJ Rating: 2017-08-28
VFM Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
I found this to be a very flexible tuner and superb value at the price. Impressed by the self resonance damper. This is a simple idea and a trick that some other manufacturers seem to have missed?

I use reasonably resonant antennas and often full legal in the UK (400W) which this tuner handles easily.

Internal construction is solid, not sure how MFJ produce this at the price
N4URW Rating: 2017-08-16
Not accurate Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Bought a used MFJ-962D. First thing I did was to check and see how accurate the watt meter was. After checking, I could tell that it was off so I went by the directions in the operators manual to adjust the pods for low power and high power. But now I noticed that when using my Ameritron 811H, it would only show that the amp was putting out 450 to 500 watts but another SWR/WATT meter shows 750 - 800 watts. So I will need to check and see if the pods need more adjustment.
K4FY Rating: 2015-11-18
MFJ-962D; Junk or Bad Rap? Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.

A popular sport around Hamdom is to find fault with all things MFJ. Conventional wisdom has it that if it has an MFJ label it’s suspect. I was reluctant to pull the lever and order the MFJ-962D transmatch until I saw one at Hamvention. Not bad looking, the operation felt smooth, and the price was right.

Once the unit arrived I decided to put MFJ to the test. I opened the unit and made a thorough quality inspection to see if there were loose screws, cold joints, or bad parts. So far, so good. The parts are adequate for the specs and the workmanship is fine. I’ve built more than one transmatch from QRP to 2KW and, to me, the MFJ seemed well designed and assembled.

I didn’t like the inductor knob so I coughed up five bucks for an MFJ crank knob like the big boys use. Much better. Another little quirk is that the meter circuit needs a 12 volt supply to function.

Using a hundred watts, I ran it for a few months on a 40-20-20 OCFD that didn’t like any other bands. The MFJ loaded everything except 80 (what a surprise). It does require careful tweaking on some of the off bands.

Then I put some power to it. My ACOM1010 put 800 watts through it without any problems. I always tune the MFJ at 20-30 watts first. Not doing this invites trouble with any transmatch. I suspect some of the arcing problems mentioned are caused by impossible, low impedance loads, or attempting to use the unit beyond its specified range. Read the manual.

Overall, the unit performs as advertised, has solid construction, and represents a good value.