Date   

Re: Are the uBITX receivers ripe for improvement? -- And some other miscellaneous thoughts.

Bo Barry <bobarr@...>
 

After listening to mine today on FT8  I'd say the RCVR I'd just fine. Or mighty fine!

It's been a joy listening to CW, SSB, & FT8  today.
I have problems on the transmit for another post.

Definitely interesting for projects with the pi and ubitx.

Bo W4GHV 


Re: Are the uBITX receivers ripe for improvement? -- And some other miscellaneous thoughts.

Tom, wb6b
 

These are all interesting comments. Especially on the tradeoffs of trying to preserve the simple battery operated radio concept or trying to use the uBITX as a component in a larger system. Yes, real coils, capacitors and crystals can produce functions in micro watts that brute force real time math requires multi watts to accomplish.

The comments on other peoples' comparisons with other receivers and the tradeoffs on sensitivity and overload are interesting. 
It sounds like the uBITX is a solid radio to use and modify for going in many different directions. 

Tom, wb6b


Re: Variable uBitx IF bandwidth question

K9HZ <bill@...>
 

 

 

Dr. William J. Schmidt - K9HZ J68HZ 8P6HK ZF2HZ PJ4/K9HZ VP5/K9HZ PJ2/K9HZ

 

Owner - Operator

Big Signal Ranch – K9ZC

Staunton, Illinois

 

Owner – Operator

Villa Grand Piton – J68HZ

Soufriere, St. Lucia W.I.

Rent it: www.VillaGrandPiton.com

Like us on Facebook! facebook icon

 

Moderator – North American QRO Group at Groups.IO.

 

email:  bill@...

 

 

From: BITX20@groups.io [mailto:BITX20@groups.io] On Behalf Of Gary Hanson
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2018 2:13 PM
To: BITX20@groups.io
Subject: [BITX20] Variable uBitx IF bandwidth question

 

I apologize if this topic was covered in an early message string, but I have only been actively reading the list for a couple of weeks and noticed a couple of posts about it.

 

In the mid-1990s, I built the MXM transceiver kit and it used a 100 ufd or 150 ufd panel-mounted air variable capacitor to vary the IF band width of a four crystal Cohn filter where all the caps were the same value. If I remember correctly (at my age that isn’t always a safe assumption), the IF band width would vary from about 100 hertz to 500 hertz, maybe as much as 1 kHz.  Sorry, but I am out of town and can’t check the schematic.

 

Based on some of my early QRP kit building experience, the change in capacitance you could get from varying the voltage was fairly limited.  Wasn’t  the shift around 25-50ufd? Also, the change wasn’t linear across the entire range, though you could restrict the voltage and keep in a linear range.

 

My question is this:  Are there varactor diodes today with enough capacitance range to shift from a 2 khz bandwidth SSB signal to a 500 Hz CW signal?

 

I have not done the math to calculate how much capacitance shift would be required and in what range (...and not sure I even remember where to start - - so little time, so many dead brain cells).  I assume it would need to go from the current 100ufd caps upward by at least another 200ufd  I think my White Mountain 20 meter SSB transceiver from the 1990’s used around 330ufd in the 8 MHz SSB filter.

 

Also wonder if we could use a polyvaricap instead of diodes?

 

I agree with Bill that this would be a pretty easy solution if the right varactor diodes could be found.

 

Gary, KJ5VW

 

 


Virus-free. www.avg.com


Re: Buyer beware! RD16HHF1

K9HZ <bill@...>
 

Much of it is already captured on UBITX.net

 

 

 

Dr. William J. Schmidt - K9HZ J68HZ 8P6HK ZF2HZ PJ4/K9HZ VP5/K9HZ PJ2/K9HZ

 

Owner - Operator

Big Signal Ranch – K9ZC

Staunton, Illinois

 

Owner – Operator

Villa Grand Piton – J68HZ

Soufriere, St. Lucia W.I.

Rent it: www.VillaGrandPiton.com

Like us on Facebook! facebook icon

 

Moderator – North American QRO Group at Groups.IO.

 

email:  bill@...

 

 

From: BITX20@groups.io [mailto:BITX20@groups.io] On Behalf Of Gordon Gibby
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2018 11:54 AM
To: BITX20@groups.io
Subject: Re: [BITX20] Buyer beware! RD16HHF1

 

​I don't know if y'all have already done that....but writing up a little "white paper"" and putting it on the web site about little bite-size improvement steps like going to the RD16HHF1 for example, would make very helpful little bite-sized projects.    Again, you may have already done all that.

 

I'm submitting gerber files right now to get my cheap homebrew soundcard-interface done as prototype batch --- it is very similar to the EasyDigi but includes gain potentiometer trimmers and a RELAY for the push to talk, LED ptt indicator.    If it works....it will be freely available.   The previous (expensive-PCB-company-version) went through about 40 [expensive]  copies locally and elsewhere and many are 24/7/365 in service).    You guys have taught me a lot!!!!

gordon

 

 


From: BITX20@groups.io <BITX20@groups.io> on behalf of Jerry Gaffke via Groups.Io <jgaffke@...>
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2018 12:30 PM
To: BITX20@groups.io
Subject: Re: [BITX20] Buyer beware! RD16HHF1

 

Also, keep in mind that if you plan to move from the IRF510 to the RD16HHF1, 
the uBitx final should have some adjustments to the transformer ratios and such.
The RD16HHF1 is not quite a drop in replacement.

Jerry


On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 09:17 am, Jerry Gaffke wrote:

Allison has quite a few posts here.
None have discouraged experimentation with the IRF510's.
Quite the contrary.

She did however suggest you get your RF parts from reliable vendors,
be they IRF510's or RD16HHF1's.

Jerry

. . .

 


On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 08:54 am, Russ Hines wrote:

Gents and ladies, I don't post much as I'm a busy broadcast engineer.  But I try to read often.
Allison's post contains wisdom.

Education tends to be expensive.  If your goal is IRF R&D, then knock yourselves out.  You will go through a lot of parts, and likely as not, spend a lot more time and money in acquiring the knowledge and experience.  In the end, you'll know what a part can or cannot do.  If that's YOUR goal, great.

For myself, my time is worth something to me.  I think it's false economy of both my time and money to blow up a few dozen $0.50 parts, chasing issues created by the selection of an inferior part from an unreliable source, when one appropriately selected and sourced $4.75 part will accomplish MY goal - to use a piece of equipment that I built.  The former is not worth the hassle.

If you need a cliche, here's two:  I'd like to "not reinvent the wheel," but would much rather "stand on the shoulders of giants."

Two cents duly submitted.

73,
Russ Hines
WB8ZCC
--
Reply to: russ@.


Virus-free. www.avg.com


Genuine parts

K9HZ <bill@...>
 

These parts are genuine too:

 

http://www.thepartsplace.k5nwa.com/index.php?route=product/product&product_id=61

 

 

 

Dr. William J. Schmidt - K9HZ J68HZ 8P6HK ZF2HZ PJ4/K9HZ VP5/K9HZ PJ2/K9HZ

 

Owner - Operator

Big Signal Ranch – K9ZC

Staunton, Illinois

 

Owner – Operator

Villa Grand Piton – J68HZ

Soufriere, St. Lucia W.I.

Rent it: www.VillaGrandPiton.com

Like us on Facebook! facebook icon

 

Moderator – North American QRO Group at Groups.IO.

 

email:  bill@...

 

 


Virus-free. www.avg.com


Re: Buyer beware! RD16HHF1

K9HZ <bill@...>
 

Well this is not entirely true.  You will get about the same performance out of the RD16HHF1 as that of the IRF510 by just replacement. Where the RD16HHF1 comes alive is when you also do other mods.

 

There have been plenty of posts in this forum about the advantages using 1:4 transformers and others to perk up the RD16HHF1 sets.

 

I think the real advantage of using the RD16HHF1 is 1) its much lower Gate capacitance that the IRF510 making it easier to match and flatten the power with frequency, and 2) it was designed for use at 12 volts, whereas the IRF510 comes alive in the 28+ volt range.

 

There is a plethora of designs available to learn from.  See here  for starters:

 

G6ALU   http://www.radio-kits.co.uk/radio-related/20W_PA/20W_HF_PA_Construction_V2-1.pdf

TF3LJ SoftRock  https://sites.google.com/site/lofturj/softrock6_3

Open HPSDR  https://sites.google.com/site/lofturj/softrock6_3

G6LBQ  http://www.catlog.net/_Descarregas/Manuals/99-Miscelaneos/G6LBQ%20-%20HF%20LINEAR%20AMPLIFIER.pdf

G0IMX  http://carnut.info/WSPR_Tx/WSPR_Tx.htm

VK5FE  http://www.studioadriana.com/vk5fe/wp-content/uploads/2013/09/15WAmpl_EE.pdf

MiniKits  https://www.minikits.com.au/eme210.htm

Radio Kits  https://www.radio-kits.co.uk/

NT7S  https://nt7s.com/2009/06/homebrew-20-watt-linear-amp/  This one on 6 meters…

 

 

 

Dr. William J. Schmidt - K9HZ J68HZ 8P6HK ZF2HZ PJ4/K9HZ VP5/K9HZ PJ2/K9HZ

 

Owner - Operator

Big Signal Ranch – K9ZC

Staunton, Illinois

 

Owner – Operator

Villa Grand Piton – J68HZ

Soufriere, St. Lucia W.I.

Rent it: www.VillaGrandPiton.com

Like us on Facebook! facebook icon

 

Moderator – North American QRO Group at Groups.IO.

 

email:  bill@...

 

 

From: BITX20@groups.io [mailto:BITX20@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jerry Gaffke via Groups.Io
Sent: Sunday, May 13, 2018 11:30 AM
To: BITX20@groups.io
Subject: Re: [BITX20] Buyer beware! RD16HHF1

 

Also, keep in mind that if you plan to move from the IRF510 to the RD16HHF1, 
the uBitx final should have some adjustments to the transformer ratios and such.
The RD16HHF1 is not quite a drop in replacement.

Jerry


On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 09:17 am, Jerry Gaffke wrote:

Allison has quite a few posts here.
None have discouraged experimentation with the IRF510's.
Quite the contrary.

She did however suggest you get your RF parts from reliable vendors,
be they IRF510's or RD16HHF1's.

Jerry

. . .

 


On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 08:54 am, Russ Hines wrote:

Gents and ladies, I don't post much as I'm a busy broadcast engineer.  But I try to read often.
Allison's post contains wisdom.

Education tends to be expensive.  If your goal is IRF R&D, then knock yourselves out.  You will go through a lot of parts, and likely as not, spend a lot more time and money in acquiring the knowledge and experience.  In the end, you'll know what a part can or cannot do.  If that's YOUR goal, great.

For myself, my time is worth something to me.  I think it's false economy of both my time and money to blow up a few dozen $0.50 parts, chasing issues created by the selection of an inferior part from an unreliable source, when one appropriately selected and sourced $4.75 part will accomplish MY goal - to use a piece of equipment that I built.  The former is not worth the hassle.

If you need a cliche, here's two:  I'd like to "not reinvent the wheel," but would much rather "stand on the shoulders of giants."

Two cents duly submitted.

73,
Russ Hines
WB8ZCC
--
Reply to: russ@.


Virus-free. www.avg.com


Re: Variable IF

Tom Cooper
 

I added variable BW to my uBITX by placing BB112 VVCs across C218, C219 and C220.  I use the RX voltage varied by a 10K panel mounted pot on receive and the TX voltage on transmit to make the BB112s go to minimum capacity.  I use individual 4.7K resistors to feed the control voltage to the caps.  The bypass cap that the 4.7K resistors fan out from needs a bleeder resistor.  I used 510K.

As the voltage on the caps is reduced the higher audio frequencies are reduced until the BW is probably 100Hz or so at 1 volt.  The filter center frequency is very low, 200 Hz or so with my BFO setting.

The BB112 has about 500pf capacity at 1 volt applied.

Tom  W1EAT


Re: No Speaker Audio #ubitx

W7PEA
 

Note: I used the wrong resistor (15K) and that reduced the audio way too much. I am now using a 10 Ohm resister and now its great!


Re: SSB filter - adjust width to 23kHz

Ondrej Jaburek
 

Yep, I had some wide digi modes to try on 10m, so it appears I'd have
to use SDR for those.
Anyway, thanks for reply.

On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 9:42 PM, ajparent1/KB1GMX <kb1gmx@...> wrote:
No. And did you really mean 23KHZ? That the width used for the old wide FM
15khz deviation.
Generally ladder filters for even 6-8khz are difficult at 12mhz, between
ripple and notches at
the edges its hard to get a decent filter. For 23Khz I'd go to the drawer
and get a 10.7mhz
or 21.4mhz filter as they can be had with 25khz bandwidth. However its not
going to fit well.
The small 4pole filter for those frequencies you would need two cascaded
with noticeable loss.

You would also have to get a wider filter for the 45mhz spot too.

Allison


Variable IF

Gary Hanson
 

Thanks Allison. I forgot about the K2 and will check the schematic when I return home. One nice thing about the old MXM circuit was that it was continuously variable rather than the step system used in the K2. Both work beautifully. I was thinking that the continuous shift might work, until I went back to read your comment about adjusting the BFO as well. I should have realized that if there was a simple solution, someone would have done it already. Life is never quite as simple as I would like it to be and my self-taught electronics instructor is nearly always behind the curve.

Gary, KJ5VW


Re: SSB filter - adjust width to 23kHz

ajparent1/KB1GMX <kb1gmx@...>
 

No.  And did you really mean 23KHZ?  That the width used for the old wide FM 15khz deviation.
Generally ladder filters for even 6-8khz are difficult at 12mhz, between ripple and notches at
the edges its hard to get a decent filter.  For 23Khz I'd go to the drawer and get a 10.7mhz 
or 21.4mhz filter as they can be had with 25khz bandwidth.  However its not going to fit well.
The small 4pole filter for those frequencies you would need two cascaded with noticeable loss.

You would also have to get a wider filter for the 45mhz spot too.

Allison


Re: Oops - variable bandwidth IF

Arv Evans
 

Once the proper capacitance has been determined for 2800 Hz and 500 Hz
bandwidth, it should be possible to use fixed capacitors with diode, transistor,
MOSFET, or relay switching to select bandwidth.

Arv  K7HKL
_._

On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 1:34 PM, ajparent1/KB1GMX <kb1gmx@...> wrote:
The hyperabrupt diodes can easily go from a 400pf down to 50 and there are smaller value diodes
for the 40- 250pf range.  They are not all that cheap.

The alternate is switching between two filters each tuned as desired.  Diodes or relays can do
the switching.  The advantage of doing that is the end transformers can be optimized for the filter
in question as the terminating impedance changes with bandwidth.

Allison



Re: Oops - variable bandwidth IF

ajparent1/KB1GMX <kb1gmx@...>
 

The hyperabrupt diodes can easily go from a 400pf down to 50 and there are smaller value diodes
for the 40- 250pf range.  They are not all that cheap.

The alternate is switching between two filters each tuned as desired.  Diodes or relays can do
the switching.  The advantage of doing that is the end transformers can be optimized for the filter
in question as the terminating impedance changes with bandwidth.

Allison


Re: Variable uBitx IF bandwidth question

ajparent1/KB1GMX <kb1gmx@...>
 

Gary,  if you need large type let us know.

Using Varicap diodes is do able as the Elecraft K2 does exactly that.

Allison


Oops - variable bandwidth IF

Gary Hanson
 

Managed to get my thinking on the caps.backward...the current filter is already designed for SSB, so we would have to lower the cap value for CW filter, not increase. Reminds me I shouldn’t do anything from memory. Basic issue remains, finding a varicap with sufficient shift in capacitance.

Gary, KJ5VW


Variable uBitx IF bandwidth question

Gary Hanson
 

I apologize if this topic was covered in an early message string, but I have only been actively reading the list for a couple of weeks and noticed a couple of posts about it.


In the mid-1990s, I built the MXM transceiver kit and it used a 100 ufd or 150 ufd panel-mounted air variable capacitor to vary the IF band width of a four crystal Cohn filter where all the caps were the same value. If I remember correctly (at my age that isn’t always a safe assumption), the IF band width would vary from about 100 hertz to 500 hertz, maybe as much as 1 kHz.  Sorry, but I am out of town and can’t check the schematic.


Based on some of my early QRP kit building experience, the change in capacitance you could get from varying the voltage was fairly limited.  Wasn’t  the shift around 25-50ufd? Also, the change wasn’t linear across the entire range, though you could restrict the voltage and keep in a linear range.


My question is this:  Are there varactor diodes today with enough capacitance range to shift from a 2 khz bandwidth SSB signal to a 500 Hz CW signal?


I have not done the math to calculate how much capacitance shift would be required and in what range (...and not sure I even remember where to start - - so little time, so many dead brain cells).  I assume it would need to go from the current 100ufd caps upward by at least another 200ufd  I think my White Mountain 20 meter SSB transceiver from the 1990’s used around 330ufd in the 8 MHz SSB filter.


Also wonder if we could use a polyvaricap instead of diodes?


I agree with Bill that this would be a pretty easy solution if the right varactor diodes could be found.


Gary, KJ5VW




Re: can I bypass the CP2102 chip on the NANO with an FTDI based serial adapter? #arduino #cp2102 #ftdi #nano

freefuel@...
 

the FTDI interface board has selectable 5 or 3.3 volt TTL logic levels, along with lead for the reset pin. it's intended for Arduino boards that do not have the Serial interface chip. 

-Justin N2TOH


Wiring schematic uBITX

Bill
 

Has anybody drawn out a schematic for the USB & D9 connectors supplied with Inkits metal chassis kit? I know it has been suggested to them, but I don't think they've posted anything yet. Thanks.
                                       Bill A.


Re: BITX QSO Afternoon/Evening, Sunday, May 13, 3PM & 7PM Local Time, 7277 kHz in North America, 7177 kHz elsewhere.

John P
 

On Sun, May 13, 2018 at 11:23 am, kc1at wrote:
I don't hear a single station on 40M. CW or SSB
Same here! Only 2 stations on FT-8, and my 100W FT-8 signal is only getting out about 700 miles.
 
--
John - WA2FZW


Re: SWR

Arv Evans
 

Hello

Discussions about reading FWD and REV power and SWR bring to mind a
possibility that I have not yet seen in BITX software.  Would it be advantageous
to periodically check RF measurements and compare with some pre-set
threshold to drive an alarm function?  This way you would know if something
changed while you are using the rig.

Arv  K7HKL
_._


On Fri, May 11, 2018 at 4:10 PM, Jerry Gaffke via Groups.Io <jgaffke@...> wrote:
Problem with the two Nano readings goes away if you tune up the antenna in CW mode.
Or whistle into the mike, assuming you can whistle a pure single frequency note.

It might sort of work well enough on regular SSB phone transmisssions with large enough caps on the detector outputs.
I'd have my doubts about the SWR figure in that case, but the forward and reverse power readings might be useful.

Here's a couple old posts:
    https://groups.io/g/BITX20/message/48408
    https://groups.io/g/BITX20/message/48422

So the bias offset could be read once immediately before we start transmitting 
at the outputs of the two diode detectors, the same points we read during transmit.
Alternately, we could read the offset once during calibration and store it to eeprom.
Or read it once during development and hard code that offset into the firmware.
I think that last one would work well enough, better than most such detectors which have no offset adjustment.

Then whenever we read the diode detectors for power and swr, we subtract that offset.

I'm shooting for a max reading of 25 Watts into 50 ohms. 
So best case resolution of the detectors using the 10 bit ADC on the Nano is 25000/1024 or about 25mW
Could have a low range by going to the 1.1v reference voltage on the Nano ATMega38P's ADC, bringing that to around 5mW.
    https://www.arduino.cc/reference/en/language/functions/analog-io/analogreference/

So when measuring 100mW, the 5mW resolution means we might see 95mW, 100mW, or 105mW.
If everything works perfectly and the ADC's are really 10 bit, this could be useful down to around 100mW.

Jerry, KE7ER



On Fri, May 11, 2018 at 02:36 pm, Kees T wrote:
OK, sounds good to me and eliminates the external ADC and S/H circuitry. I thought there was a problem syncing up the two Nano readings here also ? I really like those HSMS-2815 matched diodes. Where are you going to read the bias offset to subtract from the ADC reading ? ....may change over time.