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Saturday 15 April 2017

Some tinkering

In the early days of this blog I posted about building a homebrew extension speaker out of an old shower radio that bit the dust, I have had this speaker in service ever since and it has only let me down on a couple of occasions, today it received it’s first major upgrade in almost 6 years, a headphone jack, this is in the hole where the original AM/FM selector was fitted when it was a radio, I still have room to fit a mute and volume control, the headphone jack itself came out of an old speaker mic I disassembled, and is a mono jack as fitted to the rig at the other end, my CRT SS9900 at present, this was done after something else.

I had previously built a mono to stereo converter to run my stereo headphones (well both pairs of Sony over-ear headphones) from the socket on the back of the radios without losing audio in one side as these are mono, the previously built circuit was destroyed unfortunately, and had slightly too high resistors that made it so I had to turn up the connected radio to full, this new one was rebuilt using the same jack plug and lower value resistors, all this does is ties the left and right sides of the stereo part together using a pair of resistors for each channel, theoretically it should work in reverse but I’ve not tried that as I intend to use this solely with my radios, it works with them all and my improved speaker as noted above.

Earlier in the day I had run a test of a 2-metre groundplane antenna I had built a while ago, or part-built as it will be mounted atop some plastic waste pipe, it seemed to work ok though I did test it on a bed with a metal frame and mattresses are full of metal springs, so a proper test outdoors is needed, the test was done at 10 watts on my Leixen VV898 powered by my jump starter, the VV898’s first time on air since the QYT KT-8900D replaced it in the shack, needless to say the fact the antenna radiated at all (verified by my field strength meter I posted about) was impressive as the radiator is simply a piece of copper wire on the centre of an SO239 socket.

Well it’s what Amateur radio (and the radio hobby as a whole) is all about, making it yourself and tinkering with it, as well as the communication aspect of course.


73 de M6RSQ

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