Monday, February 14, 2005 Zulu
First TR-4C QSO

I traded N5LK my PSK-20 for his Drake TR-4C and sent it off to The Man Electronics, John Kriner, who does TR-4 repairs. John found some flakey tube sockets and sent the rig back to me aligned and working. Unfortunately, UPS took care of the "working" part and I had a few minor things to do to it when it got back here. The tubes and relay had come out of their sockets, and one of the sockets (IF amp) remained flakey. But I got it working, except for the backlights, which flaked out again.

Next project was getting the tuner to work. I think it's an Ultimte Transmatch, since it has a split capacitor on the input, but I haven't studied it carefully enough. It worked sporadically, fine for my FT-817 to make a 60M QSO on 25W or so to Hawaii, but when I pre-tuned it for 20M and tried it with the TR-4C I was rewarded with unhappy finals.

So last night I took it apart again, cleaned some (but not all) of the screw-terminal contacts, polished the silver on the inductor, and replaced the broken binding post on the balanced output with the exact same part from Radio Shack, purchased last week! The balun is black and sticky, and I don't know what's on it but I think it needs to be replaced, and possibly redesigned -- I haven't looked at how it's hooked up.

Anyway, I used my antenna analyzer and got a good match on 20M and another on 40M with my G5RV, so I decided to tune around late and listen for opportunities. On 7018 or so at 0555z I heard W0UI calling CQ. I answered, but after the 559 report I heard nothing. Woody came back a minute later and said he had shack noise and had to turn off his computer. Woody was runninga Johnson Valiant for TX and a Collins 75A4 with a Gap Voyager antenna. Woody has been a ham since he was 11, and I'm sure we'll have more to talk about next time I see him on the bands.

Woody also gets the first of my WA5ZNU cards that looks like the old WN5ZNU ones.

- posted by Leigh @ 07:53 z
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