Date   
Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Al N1AL
 

For the P3 problem you might try changing the setting of "TX SensEn" in the TX Monitor menu.  This changes the method by which the P3 switches between transmit and receive mode: either by RS-232 command from the K3 or by sensing the RF signal.  Normally this should be set to the default disabled mode (i.e. RS-232 command mode enabled) when the P3 is used with a K3 or K3S.

If that doesn't work you could try adjusting the value of the "TX hang" parameter.  That sets the transmit hang time in ms.

Alan N1AL

On 1/14/19 5:50 AM, wb6bee wrote:
I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.  However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Michael Kopec
 

Hello again Don.  What I forgot to mention is:  I use QSK.  The weird stuff only happened in QSK and I did not experience it in semi auto delayed break. de Mike K8NS

On Monday, January 14, 2019, 8:50:12 AM EST, wb6bee <wb6bee@...> wrote:


I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

harry latterman <harrylatterman@...>
 

I am just guessing, so take it for whatever it is worth.  One problem with high speed digital is key bounce. It is sometimes so fast that it is a pain to catch and fix. You are using a system that depends on bouncing and it is possible that the contacts are adding very small and fast extras thus giving the radio and amp fits. As I said, I could be wrong and this is just a guess, but one thing about working with control systems for almost 40 yrs, is you see same damn strange things that don't always make sense until your look really close to things that are not obvious

Harry  K7ZOV


On Monday, January 14, 2019, 11:20:14 AM MST, Michael Kopec via Groups.Io <michaelkopec1@...> wrote:


Hello Don.  I have a K3s, P3, KPA500 combo and also use bugs,  I have experienced some strange things, as u did.  My fix was to insert either my bug descratcher (Jackson Harbor Press) or my old MFJ Econo keyer set to semi auto position between the bug(s) and the K3s.  No more strange stuff happening anymore.  Maybe not a real fix or explanation but works for me. GL de Mike K8NS

On Monday, January 14, 2019, 8:50:12 AM EST, wb6bee <wb6bee@...> wrote:


I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

I: [Elecraft-K3] Using a Bug key with the K3s

IK4EWX <glcazzola@...>
 





Don, the K3 seem to not like a bug.
With my K3S i use always a bug (a Vibroplex Presentation or a Begali Intrepid).
In the past, when keying with the bug, the K3 displey become blank and sometime appeared on the K3S display, diagnostic  that disappeared when I used my paddle with the internal keyer. 
Even with HI CURR the transceiver transmitted well. 
With a firmware upgrade this problem was solved and I hadnt this strange problem, us since when last month I installed the last firmware 5.66.
Now, only on 20m it seem to me, when transmitting with 100w HI CURR appear and the transceiver reduce the power to 85 watts.
I signaled it to Elecraft, at first they thought it was a power supply low voltage on transmission, but when I said that i see the problem only on 20m, with 1.5 SWR, that it disappear when using ATU, they said me to reinstall 5.64 firmware and try again to see if there is the problem.
In the past I thought that K3S (and K3 as it seem) doesnt like the bug little bounces (or scratch dots...), on the keying input.

I send you below my exchange with Elecraft support  in  2016 that can evidence better the past problems. I hope it help you.
For the actual problem of HI CURR diagnostic on 20m, I am thinking to reinstall the 5.64 firmware version. With it I havent problems even without ATU inserted.
What is your firmware version? do you have 5.66?

73,

Ian IK4EWX

Da: Gian Luca Cazzola <glcazzola@...>
Oggetto: Re: IK4EWX: K3S losing swr-watt meters indications on tx - please help
Data: 29 giugno 2016 00:05:04 CEST
A: k3support@...
Cc: Carlo Bianconi <carlobianconi@...>

Sorry Dave, I have seen only today that your elecraft server haven’t received my reply.
So I repeat here.
-MY K3S HAVE SERIAL NUMBER 10715
-I SEE THE PROBLEM AT ALL POWER LEVELS, REDUCING AT 80 -60-40W DOESNT SOLVE. I AM NOT SURE ABOUT 20 W.
WITH THE ATU INSERTED IT HAPPEN LESS FREQUENTLY.
- THERE ARENT DIFFERENCEs IN WATTS OR SWR REaD ON K3S OR MY BIRD 43.
BUT WHEN THE SWR AND RF INDICATIONS ON K3S DISPLAY GONE BLANK, WHEN I MAKE  WITH  A LITTLE TUNE WITH THE BUG  DASH CONTACTS, OR  
EVEN SENDING NORMAL MESSAGES, DOTS AND DASHES KEYING WITH MY BUG, THE POWER ON THE BIRD 43  READ NORMAL WATTS, THOSE  CHOICED ON THE K3S
(EXAMPLE WITH POWER 90W CHOICED WITH THE K3S POT, AND KEYING WITH THE BUG, THE SWR AND RF DISPLAY GO BLANK - I READ THE SWR AND RF LETTERS 
BUT NO PIXELS OVER THEM - BUT ON THE BIRD 43 I SEE THE NORMAL 90 W OUTPUT).
I HAVENT OPTED THE QRQ NEW COMMAND ON THE CONFIG - SO IT ISN’T THE PROBLEM, WITH MY BUG ADJUSTED AT 18-25WPM
I have understood from your mail that the key input  is well filtered and  also debounced, but I have this problem, that also other hams on the K3 forum say to have.
You have read them.
Can you make something?
Mi friend Carlo Bianconi say that the rig have no electronic problems.
So do you know what can be the problem? Firmware?
Thanks es 73
Ian IK4EWX


Il giorno 20 giu 2016, alle ore 20:36, David Shoaf < k3support@...> ha scritto:

Hi Ian,

Thanks for the contact.  To your questions, we do not believe that adding additional components will affect the problem.

As shown on the K3S schematic, there are RF chokes and capacitors bypassing all the inputs on the K3S so additional ones outside the K3S would not be adding anything.

<lncmegamcpmiohfj.png>

We are also CC'ing our Authorized Warranty Repair Center, who may also be able to help.  

Additional questions:

- What is the serial number of your K3S?

- Do you see the problem at lower power levels (20, 40, 60 watts)?  Does it do the same thing on the dummy load?

- When you see the RF on the Bird 43, what do you see on the K3S display for RF and SWR?  Do they agree or not?

Cheers,

David

---------------------------------------
David Shoaf/KG6IRW
Elecraft International Distributor and Customer Support
831-763-4211 x121
---------------------------------------
On 6/20/2016 8:55 AM, glcazzola@... wrote: 


Yesterday I wrote on Elecraft K3 email list:


I own a great K3S from a pair of months. It work great, dx, qsos, contest (just worked CQWPX, 1200 qsos).  
Just after bought it, sometime on cw transmission  the swr-rf indications, the moving black dots, gone all blanked, all on the swr and on RF indications.  
I thought about rfi problems, but it happened even with dummy load. And with no swr on antenna.  
With atu inserted is seemed more rarely happen.  
This morning I have this problem happen at least on 14-18-21-24-28mhz, keying the rig with my bug, only with long dash and not with dots string.  
It is a rainy cloudy day, but I think that doesnt matter :)  
When using the paddle with internal keyer I havent the problem.  
It seem to happen only when keying is at least 2-3 seconds long.  
When it happen, with the two measurements blanked, the rig really continue to transmit - I see regular power on my external Bird 43 wattmeter.  
Somebody had this problem and know how to solve it?  
Many thanks  
Ian IK4EWX 

I received this reply from Lucien W5QD:

Yes, both my K3 and a K3s do this when I key them with my bugs or with my 
straight key. Even my K2's will behave strangely, though not quite as 
bad as 
the K3 and s. It's not a problem with the rig; it's just a contact 
bounce 
issue, so you'll just need a debouncing circuit. Either an external 
keyer 
(most of them have debouncing circuitry in them) or you can home-brew one. 
There are a couple good circuits in the list archives. 

A capacitor across the bug terminals will help, say a .1 uf, but beware that 
it'll key the rig momentarily when you first plug it in as the cap 
charges. 

73, LS -  W5QD 

I can say only that I am astonhished. 
It seem impossible that  rig of the K3S quality and price have this incredible ridicoulous problem.
Is it true and should I make a home made modification of the kind suggested?
Thanks

Gian Luca Cazzola - IK4EWX



----Messaggio originale----
Da: wb6bee@...
Data: 14-gen-2019 14.50
A: <Elecraft-K3@groups.io>
Ogg: [Elecraft-K3] Using a Bug key with the K3s

I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE



Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Michael Kopec
 

Hello Don.  I have a K3s, P3, KPA500 combo and also use bugs,  I have experienced some strange things, as u did.  My fix was to insert either my bug descratcher (Jackson Harbor Press) or my old MFJ Econo keyer set to semi auto position between the bug(s) and the K3s.  No more strange stuff happening anymore.  Maybe not a real fix or explanation but works for me. GL de Mike K8NS

On Monday, January 14, 2019, 8:50:12 AM EST, wb6bee <wb6bee@...> wrote:


I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

john ni0k
 

Bob,

I have a peak reading meter on the output of my K3, with the output set at 60 watts. I will see some peaks at 70. Some people think it has to do with how hard you drive the mic gain. I haven't really looked at it on CW. It doesn't do it on FT8 or RTTY. And yes, I've done the power output calibration.

-John NI0K

Bob McGraw - K4TAX wrote on 1/14/2019 10:05 AM:

I would check for warm PL-259 connectors.  Make sure to snug them with 4" Channel lock pliers.  Finger tight is not good enough.  And any PL-259 which is warm along with the coax jumper is suspect.  Follow this all the way to the vertical.   I use a $29 laser IR thermometer purchased from Harbor Freight to make such measurements.  

Item 3....seems that a bit of RF is getting into the system somewhere.  Maybe due to SWR increase.  Again check all connectors and connections in the RF and ground system path. 

I have seen some slight overshoot with my K3S when driving my KPA500 with 20 to 22 watts.  In watching the PWR LED's on the KPA500, it indicates things run along at 400 watts and then an occasional 550 to 600 watt LED flash.  Haven't been able to exactly nail down why.   I'm using an Iambic paddle and the internal K3S keyer running 15 to 20 WPM.  I've tried both configurations, ALC from the amp being active to my  K3S and ALC from the amp not active to my K3S.   Still no conclusion. 

73
Bob, K4TAX

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Everett N4CY
 

Best way to take care of RF problems is to use Common Chokes. I use them at the antenna feed point, before entering the house and if need at the rig. I make mine using FT240-43 cores with 17 turns of RG-400 coax. I also used the FT240-43 cores on the USB cord from the K3S to the my computer (17 turns). Before adding all of the chokes I had a lot of RF problems. I was consistently fighting computer crashes and my K3S doing strange things. I also have a good earth ground on all of the coax just before it enters the house. I used a 10' length of 3/4" hard copper water pipe for my ground rod and soldered the ground strap to the copper pipe.

Everett N4CY

In a message dated 1/14/2019 10:05:13 AM Central Standard Time, rmcgraw@... writes:

I would check for warm PL-259 connectors.  Make sure to snug them with 4" Channel lock pliers.  Finger tight is not good enough.  And any PL-259 which is warm along with the coax jumper is suspect.  Follow this all the way to the vertical.   I use a $29 laser IR thermometer purchased from Harbor Freight to make such measurements.  

Item 3....seems that a bit of RF is getting into the system somewhere.  Maybe due to SWR increase.  Again check all connectors and connections in the RF and ground system path. 

I have seen some slight overshoot with my K3S when driving my KPA500 with 20 to 22 watts.  In watching the PWR LED's on the KPA500, it indicates things run along at 400 watts and then an occasional 550 to 600 watt LED flash.  Haven't been able to exactly nail down why.   I'm using an Iambic paddle and the internal K3S keyer running 15 to 20 WPM.  I've tried both configurations, ALC from the amp being active to my  K3S and ALC from the amp not active to my K3S.   Still no conclusion. 

73
Bob, K4TAX

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Bob McGraw - K4TAX
 

I would check for warm PL-259 connectors.  Make sure to snug them with 4" Channel lock pliers.  Finger tight is not good enough.  And any PL-259 which is warm along with the coax jumper is suspect.  Follow this all the way to the vertical.   I use a $29 laser IR thermometer purchased from Harbor Freight to make such measurements.  

Item 3....seems that a bit of RF is getting into the system somewhere.  Maybe due to SWR increase.  Again check all connectors and connections in the RF and ground system path. 

I have seen some slight overshoot with my K3S when driving my KPA500 with 20 to 22 watts.  In watching the PWR LED's on the KPA500, it indicates things run along at 400 watts and then an occasional 550 to 600 watt LED flash.  Haven't been able to exactly nail down why.   I'm using an Iambic paddle and the internal K3S keyer running 15 to 20 WPM.  I've tried both configurations, ALC from the amp being active to my  K3S and ALC from the amp not active to my K3S.   Still no conclusion. 

73
Bob, K4TAX

Re: Remote antenna switching

David Perry
 

Jeff,

I use an SM-8 band decoder and a 2 x 8 antenna switch by Hamation (available via Array Solutions) to switch my antennas remotely.  The band decoder has two modes -- Auto and Manual.  In auto mode the band decoder reads the frequency of the K3 and automatically switches to the correct antenna.  In manual mode, I can switch the antennas myself -- for example, to go back an forth between a beam and a vertical.  Hamation has a small app that runs remotely via a TCP connection to allow you to see which antenna is selected, which mode (auto or manual) and if needed allows you to click on an antenna to switch manually.  Go to hamation.com for more info.  I also had to install an S-Box or Y-Box on the back of each K3 to provide the extra com ports to connect the SM-8 band decoders and the remoterig boxes to the K3.  N6TV makes those boxes.  73,  Dave, N4QS

Re: Using a Bug key with the K3s

Larry K8UT <k8ut@...>
 

Don,

Regarding your number 3: I recently experienced problems with my KPA1500 tripping on a high reflected power fault on 160 meters. To assist in my troubleshooting process I modified my freeware FANticipator program to supply continuous monitoring of reflected power, SWR, and amplifier efficiency. These added fields revealed a gradual increase in SWR and reflected power with each long high power transmission (RTTY and FT8). Not sure if it would be any assistance to you in your troubleshooting process, but you're certainly welcome to give it a try.

www.hamprojects.info/fanticipator


-larry (K8UT)

------ Original Message ------
From: "wb6bee" <wb6bee@...>
Sent: 2019-01-14 08:50:08
Subject: [Elecraft-K3] Using a Bug key with the K3s

I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

Using a Bug key with the K3s

wb6bee
 

I have had three instances of unexplained events, using a Bug key with the K3s.   I am 100 % cw and only use a bug.   My speed is about 26-27 wpm on the key.   

1.  Event one:   I added the TXMON to the P3 to see if I could use it for evaluating keying, hoping it would show things like scratchy dots, etc.   It didn't show much at all, actually.   What was odd was the with some regularity, but no consistency, the display would go from the keying envelope to a line of static, similar looking to band noise on a spectrum analyzer.   A friend of mine, also using a Bug with the TXMON, was experiencing a similar situation.   I reported it to Elecraft Tech. They sent me, one component at a time, a new TXMON.   Nothing changed, the unit continued to have the erratic display.   Being somewhat useless, I put the TXMON in the box of unused parts.   Elecraft tech never followed up with the issue, probably not that many bug users with the TXMON.

2. Event Two:  Noted in this relfector some weeks ago.   Minor frequency shifts ( a few hertz) while keying with a bug.   

3. Event Three:   I have a new KPA 1500.   Twice now, when in a long transmission, the amp will kick out.   No apparent reason, but my keying in the CW monitor would sound like something was wrong with the bug, loose weight or something.   Then, the amp would be in a fault condition.   In both cases, the fault log would show an overdrive condition.  My normal drive for the KPA from the K3s is about 30 watts or so (depending).   The default log showed drive at over 65 watts.   The first time it happened, I thought perhaps I hit something on the front of the K3s.   The second time, no such possibility (probably  not the first time either).   The first time was 160 meters.  The second time was 80 meters.   A common denominator is the 68 ft vertical antenna used for both bands.  

These could all be related, or they could not.   Elecraft tech indicated they were going to try to use a bug to replicate the last event.   It is so irregular that I don't that would work.     However, K3s are so popular, maybe other owners have had issues with using a bug with the K3s

Don
WB6BEE

Re: Remote antenna switching

Larry K8UT <k8ut@...>
 

I built my own - a remote Raspberry Pi controller that uses 4 of its GPIO ports for BCD band decoding, and SainSmart relays for antenna control. A Windows console communicates with the Raspberry Pi controller via TCP packets. My software is free. The hardware will cost you about $75.

You can read about FreqEZ here: www.hamprojects.info/freqez

-larry (K8UT)

------ Original Message ------
From: "Jeff Wheeler W7JW" <w7jw@...>
To: "Elecraft" <Elecraft-K3@groups.io>
Sent: 2019-01-13 16:15:53
Subject: [Elecraft-K3] Remote antenna switching

For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Remote antenna switching

Martin Sole
 

I built my own, a BCD to one of x decoder chip that I pulled from something else. I used opto-couplers on the input to isolate the K3 ACC socket band select pins, transistor switches on the outputs to drive relays in the antenna switch box. A little hardware programming with links gets you the same antenna on some bands or a different one as needed. Antenna selection follows band change without intervention. Control box has a manual select switch as an override. Maybe $10 for the bits I didn't have on hand.

Martin, HS0ZED



On 14/01/2019 00:15, Jeff Wheeler W7JW wrote:
For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Remote antenna switching

Mark Morin
 

I second Jim KE8G’s comment that the KAT500 and its matching remote control software (free from Elecraft) is a great solution. As my increasingly complicated array of antenna choices grows, I find that I can’t limit myself to 3 antennas. So, I use a Raspberry Pi running RemoteQTH software to remotely control additional antenna relays. The RemoteQTH server presents a small web page allowing me to remotely select the state of up to 24 relays. It also allows me to monitor the temperature (and turn on a heater if required), and remotely reset just about any device that might require it. It’s been running reliably for a few years now. I believe they do sell some antenna switch hardware, but I just use the (free) software and home-brewed the rest. Here is the link for the free remoteqth server software (disclaimer: I have not connection with RemoteQTH besides being a long-time user).


Mark VA2MM

Re: Remote antenna switching

Joe Subich, W4TV
 

Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
Several ... the Elecraft KRC2 reads band via the Elecraft Aux Bus (ACC
connector). The microHAM Station Master reads frequency via the CAT
(RS-232) port. A simple BCD to 1 of 10 decoder will read band via
the ABCD signals on the ACC port.

73,

... Joe, W4TV


On 2019-01-13 4:15 PM, Jeff Wheeler W7JW wrote:
For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas? Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Remote antenna switching

Dwight Bosselman <NS9I@...>
 

I use Green Heron GH Everywhere Wireless Base and Remotes - they work great.

73 Dwight NS9I

On 1/13/2019 3:15 PM, Jeff Wheeler W7JW wrote:
For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Remote antenna switching

Jeff Wheeler W7JW
 

Tnx Jim, I should have been more specific. How do KPA1500 users (with only 2 antenna ports) switch between multiple antennas?
 
Jeff W7JW
 

Sent: Sunday, January 13, 2019 4:24 PM
Subject: Re: [Elecraft-K3] Remote antenna switching
 
Hi Jeff,
It all depends on how you are running it remotely.  I have the KAT500 and use the program that Elecraft has developed.  I can switch to any of the 3 antennas, tune and watch SWR remotely.
 
I'll let other chime in on how they do it.
 
73 de Jim - KE8G
 
On Sun, Jan 13, 2019 at 4:15 PM Jeff Wheeler W7JW <w7jw@...> wrote:
For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Remote antenna switching

KE8G
 

Hi Jeff,
It all depends on how you are running it remotely.  I have the KAT500 and use the program that Elecraft has developed.  I can switch to any of the 3 antennas, tune and watch SWR remotely.

I'll let other chime in on how they do it.

73 de Jim - KE8G

On Sun, Jan 13, 2019 at 4:15 PM Jeff Wheeler W7JW <w7jw@...> wrote:
For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Remote antenna switching

Jeff Wheeler W7JW
 

For the guys who run their K3 remotely, how do you change antennas?  Is there an antenna switch/interface that reads the band from the K3 available?
 
Tnx Jeff W7JW

Re: Transmit Phase Noise

Rob Sherwood
 

Hi Dale,

I don’t know, but I doubt the type of transistor is significant. The really close-in noise is affected by the cooling fans, an issue that N0QO and I found a year ago.  Elecraft supposedly fixed that with an electrolytic capacitor addition to filter the electrical noise from the fans.  I had to do the same thing with my aftermarket fan cooling kit for the IC-781.  

Rob. NC0B


On Jan 13, 2019, at 4:23 AM, dalej via Groups.Io <dalej2@...> wrote:

Rob,

How about the K3 with the old bipolar transistors?  Is there much difference or none at all?

Dale, K9VUJ



On 12, Jan 2019, at 12:06, Rob Sherwood <rob@...> wrote:

Here is some data I have at both 100 watts and 30 or 35 watts for six rigs.
Different lab, different measuring equipment, different rig samples, so don’t expect absolute correlation with ARRL data.
ARRL lab data only measures phase noise, not composite noise (phase and AM noise).
Data from Contest University presentations of mine.
Note: While the listing are sorted by column 1, the ranking varies with frequency offset.
Rob
NC0B
 
Transmit Composite Noise Rig Comparisons 20 meters
Best at maximum power output, but degrades at lower power levels
 
Rig @ 100 watts                10 kHz offset, dBc/Hz     20 kHz offset, dBc/Hz     100 kHz offset, dBc/Hz
K3S                                         -141                                       n/a                                         -143
IC-7300                                 -130                                       n/a                                         -132
IC-7851                                 -129                                       n/a                                         -138
IC-7610                                 -127                                       -129                                       n/a
TS-890S                                -120                                       -129                                       n/a
FTdx-3000                           -120                                       n/a                                         -121
 
Rig @ 30 watts                   10 kHz offset, dBc/Hz     20 kHz offset, dBc/Hz     100 kHz offset, dBc/Hz
K3S                                         -132                                       n/a                                         -140
IC-7851                                 -123                                       n/a                                         -133
IC-7610                                 -122*                                     -124*                                     n/a
FTdx-3000                           -117                                       n/a                                         -117
TS-890S                                -113*                                     -122*                                     n/a
IC-7300                                 -112                                       n/a                                         -120
 
* = Power level was 35 watts
n/a = data not available
Rev D
 



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