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New blog - Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless


Chris Moulding
 

I do a lot of development work for our products and most of it never leaves the workshop.

I've decided to start a blog called "Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless" to share some of the ideas and developments that otherwise wouldn't see the light of day.

As an example the first post takes an idea from a book published in 1944 and revamps it using modern materials to make a doublet antenna with twisted pair feeder.

There's a lot more to come...

The link to the blog is:

https://crosscountrywireless.home.blog/

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

Thanks Chris...keep em coming


More on your rx projects is always welcomed  ...

Log and preamp

Ewe antennas

Etc

Cheers

Neil 

On Mon, 25 Mar 2019, 20:58 Chris Moulding, <chrism@...> wrote:
I do a lot of development work for our products and most of it never leaves the workshop.

I've decided to start a blog called "Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless" to share some of the ideas and developments that otherwise wouldn't see the light of day.

As an example the first post takes an idea from a book published in 1944 and revamps it using modern materials to make a doublet antenna with twisted pair feeder.

There's a lot more to come...

The link to the blog is:

https://crosscountrywireless.home.blog/

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG


Chris Moulding
 

Thanks, Neil.

I'll see what I can do with receiver and antenna projects. I have a few projects I could write about but I'll only write on the blog about projects that won't make it into production.

I might get some of the SDR prototypes off the shelf too.

One of the next projects will be looking at a Heathkit HW-7 CW transceiver from the 1970s and bringing it up to date with a restoration and rebuild.

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

Sounds good Chris

Interested in all aspects and projects

Appreciated


NC 

On Tue, 26 Mar 2019, 08:07 Chris Moulding, <chrism@...> wrote:
Thanks, Neil.

I'll see what I can do with receiver and antenna projects. I have a few projects I could write about but I'll only write on the blog about projects that won't make it into production.

I might get some of the SDR prototypes off the shelf too.

One of the next projects will be looking at a Heathkit HW-7 CW transceiver from the 1970s and bringing it up to date with a restoration and rebuild.

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

Hello again chris

On the subject of sdr, I run a couple of Elads...Duo and duo r

I wonder if you have looked at concepts for standalone/pc devices

NC 

On Tue, 26 Mar 2019, 08:07 Chris Moulding, <chrism@...> wrote:
Thanks, Neil.

I'll see what I can do with receiver and antenna projects. I have a few projects I could write about but I'll only write on the blog about projects that won't make it into production.

I might get some of the SDR prototypes off the shelf too.

One of the next projects will be looking at a Heathkit HW-7 CW transceiver from the 1970s and bringing it up to date with a restoration and rebuild.

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG


Chris Moulding
 

Yes, about a year ago I looked at a standalone receiver based on our Sentinel 4 SDR receiver.

It used a DSP IC and an Arduino controller to add a display, tuning and mode switching features to the receiver.

I built a prototype and it worked very well but I didn't think that there was a market for it so I stopped development.

Usually much of our development work gets as far as a working prototype based on modified existing boards to test firmware and operation but if there isn't an obvious market for it then that's as far as it goes.

Regards,

Chris


Tom Crosbie G6PZZ
 

On the other hand, Chris, giving your users/fans/followers an insight into your project might be a better indicator of whether a project is a “go” or otherwise.

However, there is little point in telling your competitors what you are up to!

Much of your website content seems to be aimed at the ham market. I would suggest there are many more SWL’s with a different set of criteria. Also, for both sides, what radio users want from a product and what they will pay for are very different!

I speak with the experience of approx. 20 years serving both markets, most of them with Lowe Electronics.

73’s

Tom G6PZZ

 

From: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io <CrossCountryWireless@groups.io> On Behalf Of Chris Moulding
Sent: 26 March 2019 08:52
To: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io
Subject: Re: [CrossCountryWireless] New blog - Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless

 

Yes, about a year ago I looked at a standalone receiver based on our Sentinel 4 SDR receiver.

It used a DSP IC and an Arduino controller to add a display, tuning and mode switching features to the receiver.

I built a prototype and it worked very well but I didn't think that there was a market for it so I stopped development.

Usually much of our development work gets as far as a working prototype based on modified existing boards to test firmware and operation but if there isn't an obvious market for it then that's as far as it goes.

Regards,

Chris


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

Tom

As a swl, I agree with your comments and I appreciate there's a fine line between testing the market and oversharing development projects.

Ham or swl, I think the duo concept has a market but I also think that the hobby leans heavily in the direction of the safety net of the big 3 appliance manufacturers.

I love the Elad but it feels flimsy compared to my Kenwood and Icom radios - it is like the Alfa Romeo of the radio world - stylish and unique but too risky to invest in for many.

I tried a Chinese Recent 918 radio - nice idea but like a school project radio.

SDR is the future but the new radios need to be as robust and trustworthy as the mainstream. I have never owned or driven but as an example, the standalone Flexradio 6400 looks good - at a price!

I have had a couple of 7300's - this in my opinion, is the nearest thing to Utopia at the moment:- a solid brand and a hybrid radio to use base or mobile and it looks the part.

There is loads of know how out there including at CCW but the set up and tooling costs for a "real" radio must be huge and prohibitive.

If the standalone looks and feels like a project, it will only appeal to the niche enthusiast and will never justify the huge set up cost.

Without sounding like an Elad rep, I think they are close with the duo concept but it is still not quite a Yaesu.

Maybe true sdr is destined to stay in a black box under the desk and all the fancy stuff is on the computer screen? 

Maybe I am looking for a solution to  non existent problem or maybe there is a gap in the market for a full blown appliance radio that can standalone or pair up to the pc.

My ftdx 3000 with rsp1 was good but cumbersome and showed its age aesthetically

Neil





On Tue, 26 Mar 2019 at 10:12, Tom Crosbie G6PZZ <tom@...> wrote:

On the other hand, Chris, giving your users/fans/followers an insight into your project might be a better indicator of whether a project is a “go” or otherwise.

However, there is little point in telling your competitors what you are up to!

Much of your website content seems to be aimed at the ham market. I would suggest there are many more SWL’s with a different set of criteria. Also, for both sides, what radio users want from a product and what they will pay for are very different!

I speak with the experience of approx. 20 years serving both markets, most of them with Lowe Electronics.

73’s

Tom G6PZZ

 

From: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io <CrossCountryWireless@groups.io> On Behalf Of Chris Moulding
Sent: 26 March 2019 08:52
To: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io
Subject: Re: [CrossCountryWireless] New blog - Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless

 

Yes, about a year ago I looked at a standalone receiver based on our Sentinel 4 SDR receiver.

It used a DSP IC and an Arduino controller to add a display, tuning and mode switching features to the receiver.

I built a prototype and it worked very well but I didn't think that there was a market for it so I stopped development.

Usually much of our development work gets as far as a working prototype based on modified existing boards to test firmware and operation but if there isn't an obvious market for it then that's as far as it goes.

Regards,

Chris


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

Here again and please tell me to back off if I am banging on about this too much..

I am just looking at my Kenwood TS480 sat and as a swl and appliance operator, I am thinking along the lines of:-

Using the 480 head and body and based loosely on the concept of my ftdx3000 with rsp1, offer a sdr bolt on that allows full control of the radio at the head but can be connected to pc (hdsdr or own software) but bypasses the superhet receiver. Ergo, a standalone sdr  or connect to pc sdr radio.

Maybe I am being too simplistic or have missed something obvious.

On standby to be embarrassed by replies!!   I often am.

On Tue, 26 Mar 2019 at 10:12, Tom Crosbie G6PZZ <tom@...> wrote:

On the other hand, Chris, giving your users/fans/followers an insight into your project might be a better indicator of whether a project is a “go” or otherwise.

However, there is little point in telling your competitors what you are up to!

Much of your website content seems to be aimed at the ham market. I would suggest there are many more SWL’s with a different set of criteria. Also, for both sides, what radio users want from a product and what they will pay for are very different!

I speak with the experience of approx. 20 years serving both markets, most of them with Lowe Electronics.

73’s

Tom G6PZZ

 

From: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io <CrossCountryWireless@groups.io> On Behalf Of Chris Moulding
Sent: 26 March 2019 08:52
To: CrossCountryWireless@groups.io
Subject: Re: [CrossCountryWireless] New blog - Odd projects at Cross Country Wireless

 

Yes, about a year ago I looked at a standalone receiver based on our Sentinel 4 SDR receiver.

It used a DSP IC and an Arduino controller to add a display, tuning and mode switching features to the receiver.

I built a prototype and it worked very well but I didn't think that there was a market for it so I stopped development.

Usually much of our development work gets as far as a working prototype based on modified existing boards to test firmware and operation but if there isn't an obvious market for it then that's as far as it goes.

Regards,

Chris


Chris Moulding
 

Thanks for your comments, Tom.

One of the reasons for starting a blog is to show some projects that we have shelved. As you say others may have a different opinion.

The web site may appear to be biased toward ham radio but in actual sales I would say that only around 10% of our sales are to the amateur market.

The remaining 90% are to the short wave listener and professional markets.

As a result over the last year or two we have stopped attending amateur radio events in the UK and now sell online.

Regards,

Chris


Chris Moulding
 

Neil,

I'd suggest going a stage further with your idea and network the connection between your receiver head and body. You can then place the radio body and antenna in a very RF quiet location and operate the radio from anywhere in the world.

It's something I've toyed before with but I'm very wary about security with systems like that.

Some years ago I used SDR-Radio to share one of the first SDR-4 receivers so that potential customers could try it out. It ran well for about two years until one morning I found a user with an IP address in St Petersburg dockyard monitoring a Royal Navy exercise on it! He had been using it for three hours by the time I found out.

Regards,

Chris


Neil Coley <coleyneil1@...>
 

I wouldn't want to cause a threat to national security Chris but I can certainly see the benefit.

I think you can run the 480 remotely in its current guise using Remoterig. I just wish I had a property or knew someone that lived at the top of Ben Nevis!!

I suppose my thought train was more along the lines of a Japanese, trusted radio with sdr capability

Thanks for listening to my ramblings - one day I will come up with a ground breaking idea!!      maybe


Neil


On Tue, 26 Mar 2019 at 13:43, Chris Moulding <chrism@...> wrote:
Neil,

I'd suggest going a stage further with your idea and network the connection between your receiver head and body. You can then place the radio body and antenna in a very RF quiet location and operate the radio from anywhere in the world.

It's something I've toyed before with but I'm very wary about security with systems like that.

Some years ago I used SDR-Radio to share one of the first SDR-4 receivers so that potential customers could try it out. It ran well for about two years until one morning I found a user with an IP address in St Petersburg dockyard monitoring a Royal Navy exercise on it! He had been using it for three hours by the time I found out.

Regards,

Chris


Chris Moulding
 

I've added a blog post about the cancelled Sentry SDR transceiver project.

It might be of interest to those who followed it's progress on the forum. I couldn't tell all the details of the story at the time.

The blog is at: https://crosscountrywireless.home.blog/

Regards,

Chris


WA8LMF
 

On 3/27/2019 12:04 PM, Chris Moulding wrote:
I've added a blog post about the cancelled Sentry SDR transceiver project.

It might be of interest to those who followed it's progress on the forum. I couldn't tell all the details of the story at the time.

The blog is at: https://crosscountrywireless.home.blog/

 

Read the blog post about the twisted-pair transmission line.   Isn't this essentially the same as the Ethernet transmission line for the Active Antenna?   Or was the doublet experiment the forerunner and inspiration for the CAT 5 cable feeder for the Active Antenna?



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Chris Moulding
 

The twisted pair feeder I use in the blog post is essentially a heavier duty version of the pairs used in ethernet cable with a similar impedance of 110 ohms.

Ethernet cable consists of four twisted pair transmission lines in a single cable. There are subtle differences in the rate of twist in each pair to help with the isolation between the four pairs.

I've always found it surprising that amateur radio text books and ham antenna designers completely ignore twisted pair as a feeder option.

An interesting point about the 1944 article I mention in the blog post was that twisted pair feeder back then used rubber covered wire that wasn't suitable for outdoor use. Ladder line was developed as an alternative but the old article suggests that twisted pair was more suitable for experimentation with antennas.

Having used it I would agree with that and it also looks a lot better than ladder line  for antenna installations.

Regards,

Chris, G4HYG