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Re: using a K3S with a Q5Signal 144MHz transverter

Sandor wetsel
 

I cannot answer to the model trans you are contemplating but:
1) My K3/XV144 transmits to 147.995, so in transverter mode using the the ACC line for control mine will.
4)  the 10M IF is great for me.  I use my Elecraft transverter every day, but your mileage may vary. 
Sandor KG4FET 


GOD SAVE OUR NATION!

On Thu, Feb 25, 2021 at 11:20 AM, Bob Novas via groups.io
<bob.novas@...> wrote:

I’m contemplating a http://www.q5signal.com/  144MHz transverter to use with my K3S. Does anyone have experience with these devices?  I’m thinking of buying the 75W version.  Some questions, if you can answer them:

 

  1. To cover the 144-148MHz band, does the K3S run 28-32MHz?
  2. How is the PTT signal to the transverter supplied? Can it just be plugged into the Key Out jack?
  3. When the manual says: “XVn PWR sets maximum K3S power output for the current transverter band, in two ranges: L .01-L1.27 specifies a power level in milliwatts;” (for the low power range), does that mean .01mW to 1.27mW?
  4. Is the 28MHz IF the right IF?  Is 50MHz – 54MHz better?

 

Thanks,

Bob – W3DK


using a K3S with a Q5Signal 144MHz transverter

Bob Novas
 

I’m contemplating a http://www.q5signal.com/  144MHz transverter to use with my K3S. Does anyone have experience with these devices?  I’m thinking of buying the 75W version.  Some questions, if you can answer them:

 

  1. To cover the 144-148MHz band, does the K3S run 28-32MHz?
  2. How is the PTT signal to the transverter supplied? Can it just be plugged into the Key Out jack?
  3. When the manual says: “XVn PWR sets maximum K3S power output for the current transverter band, in two ranges: L .01-L1.27 specifies a power level in milliwatts;” (for the low power range), does that mean .01mW to 1.27mW?
  4. Is the 28MHz IF the right IF?  Is 50MHz – 54MHz better?

 

Thanks,

Bob – W3DK


Re: ERR KP1

w3qt_mike
 

Good suggestion, Dennis.  It is the cable that came with the K-Pod.

73,
Mike, W3QT


Re: MH2 Modification

David Ferrington, M0XDF
 

Or adjust the trigger point - my VOX only triggers when I speak.
73 de David, M0XDF (K3 #174, P3 #108)
-- 
The lame man who keeps the right road outstrips the runner who takes a wrong one. The more active and swift the latter is, the further he will go astray.
-Francis Bacon, essayist, philosopher, and statesman (1561-1626) 

On 25 Feb 2021, at 15:40, Geert Jan de Groot <pe1hzg@...> wrote:

Sorry for being dense, but isn't the point of VOX that you doin't need to push the PTT, and if you don't want the VOX to trigger on shack noises, you switch off VOX and enable PTT operation instead?


Re: MH2 Modification

Geert Jan de Groot
 

Sorry for being dense, but isn't the point of VOX that you doin't need to push the PTT, and if you don't want the VOX to trigger on shack noises, you switch off VOX and enable PTT operation instead?


Re: ERR KP1

Dennis Moore
 

Are you using a data cable other than the one supplied with the K-Pod? I ran into issues when I tried to use a longer generic cable. Keyed the mike and watched the frequency drift while I was speaking. Made for a fun contest until I figured it out.

73, Dennis NJ6G

On 2/24/2021 11:56, w3qt_mike wrote:
Problem solved.  Simple solution often the best.  A Mix 43 toroid on the lead to the K3s and and the p.s. seems to have alleviated the problem.


73,
Mike, W3QT


Re: ERR KP1

w3qt_mike
 

Problem solved.  Simple solution often the best.  A Mix 43 toroid on the lead to the K3s and and the p.s. seems to have alleviated the problem.


73,
Mike, W3QT


MH2 Modification

w0rw
 

This an old microphone but it was causing me issues.
The mic element was wired so that it was always connected.
That allowed shack noises to trip the Tx on in the VOX position.
i rewired the mic element (white wire) to connect to the unused NO PTT switch terminal.
Now it is wired like a Motorola Mic. The mic element is only connected
when the PTT switch is closed.
Paul    w0rw


ERR KP1

w3qt_mike
 

Just developed an issue this past weekend during the CW contest.  I now get an ERR KP1 message on 20-10 meters.  I bought the K-Pod less than 2 months ago, and this is the first I've noticed this issue.  Firmware for both the K3s and K-Pod are the most recent versions.  Does anyone have any history with this error or suggestions how to deal with it?  Thanks.

73,
Mike, W3QT


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

Robert
 

Good morning Rich and all,

I did the adjustments in CONFIG this morning.
The temperatures: Room = 22.7°C, FP = 23°C and PA = 23°C.
Thanks for your help.

73, Robert (W4BCZ)


Re: Sundays 80 meter net

Lance
 

Sorry I missed the net. I talked with Paul on 3.817 about his
antenna being a problem.

Did not check 3.822 for the net, after that. Should have know
better.

73, Lance
WNØL

On 2/23/2021 2:10 PM, Paul Van Dyke wrote:
Many apologies for the missing Net Control. about 15 mins before it was to start, I kicked 80 meter on and had a mindblowing SWR.. went out and had a branch come down on it. I tried to make the 40 work on 80 (knew it would not do it well.) I contacted ?? and I told him that I was unable to do the net.  I cut the branch the next morning and got the antenna up to normal height and swr.
Very sorry ... it was not planned
See you next Sunday or on the air
Paul  KB9AVO


Re: Any news on the K3 2 meter transverter?

Paul G4KZY
 

Hi William,

Where are you based?

The going rate for a 50MHz or 144MHz here in the UK is maybe £100 to £150, so perhaps £130 to $200.  I bought a pair of them for £210 on ebay recently - the 50Mhz one was good and the 144Mhz one had a blown GasFet in the receive front end but was otherwise OK.  The GasFets are not available any more so it required some surgery but is now working well - probably better than the original design,.

I would be interested in your 70cm transverter if the shipping costs are not unrealistic.

73,

Paul
G4KZY


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

Robert
 

Rich,

Thank you, I must have overlooked it in the Manual.
Will do it tomorrow morning after the K3 and myself had a good rest.
Stay safe.

73,
Robert W4BCZ (Sarasota/FL,)


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

ve3ki
 

The temperature calibration procedure is in the User Manual. In the K3 user manual rev D10 it's on page 51, near the end of the section on calibration procedures.

73,
Rich VE3KI


On Tue, Feb 23, 2021 at 06:30 PM, Robert wrote:
Hello Rich,

Thanks for your comments. I made those measurements starting at 10:15 am today, after the radio was off since about 11 pm yesterday.

Today I switched on the K3 after several hours off-time.
I read the following temperatures immediately after turn-on:
Amb = 77.1°F (25°C), PA = 33°C and FP = 28°C. Here again the temperature gradient between PA and FP was 5°C. This indicates that there is obviously a misadjustment in the temperature calibration (I didn't yet find it in the CONFIGURATION) if there is such a thing at all. Why should PA be higher than FP, when the transmitter has not been activated at all.

Repeating the test after more than an hour off-time with Amb = 77.3°F (25°C) the PA and FP values were the same as just described above.

BTW, my K3 draws 0.91 A at 13.9 V (according to the display), which means 12.6 W power dissipation in receive mode.

I notice the same 1°C (or 1 K, to be precise) drop of PA when transmitting into a 50 Ohm power attenuator (50 W adjusted and reading 60 W on my calibrated home made power meter) only for the duration of making a reading on the display. This might be due to supply voltage dependency of analogue circuitry including the AD-converter (discrete or in the MCU).

I didn't yet find the temperature sensors and their associated circuitry in the K3 schematics.
I would like to check the temperature stress on the transistors in the final amplifier.
For this of course I would need to know the thermal resistance of the heat sink as well.

Thanks for sharing your experience with the radio.
73, Robert (W4BCZ, aka HB9BCZ)


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

Robert
 

Hello Rich,

Thanks for your comments. I made those measurements starting at 10:15 am today, after the radio was off since about 11 pm yesterday.

Today I switched on the K3 after several hours off-time.
I read the following temperatures immediately after turn-on:
Amb = 77.1°F (25°C), PA = 33°C and FP = 28°C. Here again the temperature gradient between PA and FP was 5°C. This indicates that there is obviously a misadjustment in the temperature calibration (I didn't yet find it in the CONFIGURATION) if there is such a thing at all. Why should PA be higher than FP, when the transmitter has not been activated at all.

Repeating the test after more than an hour off-time with Amb = 77.3°F (25°C) the PA and FP values were the same as just described above.

BTW, my K3 draws 0.91 A at 13.9 V (according to the display), which means 12.6 W power dissipation in receive mode.

I notice the same 1°C (or 1 K, to be precise) drop of PA when transmitting into a 50 Ohm power attenuator (50 W adjusted and reading 60 W on my calibrated home made power meter) only for the duration of making a reading on the display. This might be due to supply voltage dependency of analogue circuitry including the AD-converter (discrete or in the MCU).

I didn't yet find the temperature sensors and their associated circuitry in the K3 schematics.
I would like to check the temperature stress on the transistors in the final amplifier.
For this of course I would need to know the thermal resistance of the heat sink as well.

Thanks for sharing your experience with the radio.
73, Robert (W4BCZ, aka HB9BCZ)


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

ve3ki
 

Were you expecting something different?

Your ambient temperature was around 24 C. Your starting temperatures were quite a bit higher than that. Either the temperature sensors should be recalibrated, or the radio was not truly at ambient temperature when you started. The manual description of the temperature calibration process suggests waiting 15 minutes with the radio off before recalibrating, but I would suggest that that is a serious underestimate of the time required. In my experience, it can take a few hours for the temperature to get all the way back to ambient. In fact, if I were doing the temperature calibration and wanted it to be accurate to within the precision of the display (1 C degree), I would leave the radio off overnight and do the calibration immediately after turning the radio on in the morning.

With the radio in receive, it is still consuming energy. According to the display, mine uses about 1.15 A at 13.7 V, which amounts to nearly 16 watts of energy to be dissipated. It's not being transmitted, and it's not coming out appreciably as audio, so virtually all of that 16 watts is being turned into heat. The majority of the dissipation in receive is taking place in or near the front panel (microprocessor and DSP), which is why the FP temperature rises faster than the PA temperature.

For comparison, when I turned my rig on, the FP temp read 17 C and the PA temp read 19 C. The difference between the two is calibration error (it's been 12 years since I did the calibration). The actual values seem reasonable; we keep our thermostat at 20 C, the shack is in the basement, and although the shack is next to the furnace room, which keeps it warm in cold weather, the furnace was not running at the time. It's unseasonably warm here, plus 2 C outside,. 18 C is not an unreasonable estimate for the ambient temperature in my shack today. After 15 minutes in receive, the FP temp had risen to 24C and the PA temp had risen to 20C. After another 15 minutes the FP was at 27C and the PA at 22 C. These temperature increases over 30 minutes are not all that different from yours.

Transmitting of course uses a lot more energy, not only as transmitted RF, but also as dissipated heat. Based on the displayed voltage and current, when I transmit a steady carrier at 49 watts, the radio consumes about 150 watts, of which about 50 watts appears at RF and 100 watts is dissipated as heat. (Incidentally, I don't set the transmitted power to exactly 50 watts - that's the power setting that results in an automatic TX gain recalibration, which should be done into a 50 ohm load, not into an antenna.) Transmitting at 100 watts, the power consumption is close to 200 watts, i.e. 100 watts RF and 100 watts of heat dissipation (the finals are more efficient at full power). At either power level, that 100 watts of extra heat is mostly dissipated in the PA, so naturally the PA temp rises quite quickly (the FP temp also rises somewhat, as everything in the radio gets hotter). The fans are set to come on at various speeds as temperature set points are reached; I'm not going to try to quote exact threshold values here, you can find them by experimentation.

One oddity in my radio is that the PA temperature sensor reads higher in receive than in transmit, i.e. when I first start to transmit and before the temperature starts to rise, the indicated temperature drops by a degree or two, perhaps due to the drop in voltage when the PA draws more current from the power supply. Anyway, that means that there can be a period during operating when the fans come on during receive and turn off again during transmit, at least until I have transmitted enough so that the fans stay on full-time. If you let the transmitter stay on for longer, the fans speed up as the temperature rises, and they can get quite loud. I treat that as an audible warning signal.

73,
Rich VE3KI


On Tue, Feb 23, 2021 at 12:06 PM, Robert wrote:
Purchased a used K3 (excellent condition), studied the "Owner's Manual" (Revision D10),
installed "K3 Utilities" and updated the firrmware to 05.67 (the latest).
Bellow the Temperatur vs. Time I logged with no transmit intervals and CONFIG: KPA3 = nor(mal):

Time T(amb) T(PA) T(FP) FAN
0 (start) 74.3°F 32°C 27°C no
15 min 74.4°F 33°C 31°C no
30 min 74.6°F 35°C 35°C no
45 min 74.8°F 36°C 36°C no
60 min 75.2°F 35°C 37°C no
75 min 75.2°F 36°C 38°C no
90 min 75.5°F 36°C 38°C no

After this, transmitting a carrier for about 10 seconds with 50 Watts output, the FANs start to run for a short while.
Any comments are appreciated.
73, Robert (W4BCZ)


Sundays 80 meter net

Paul Van Dyke
 

Many apologies for the missing Net Control. about 15 mins before it was to start, I kicked 80 meter on and had a mindblowing SWR.. went out and had a branch come down on it. I tried to make the 40 work on 80 (knew it would not do it well.) I contacted ?? and I told him that I was unable to do the net.  I cut the branch the next morning and got the antenna up to normal height and swr.
Very sorry ... it was not planned

See you next Sunday or on the air

Paul  KB9AVO


Re: Temperatures vs. Time

Robert
 

Sorry, I meant to type "below" and "firmware".
Robert


Temperatures vs. Time

Robert
 

Purchased a used K3 (excellent condition), studied the "Owner's Manual" (Revision D10),
installed "K3 Utilities" and updated the firrmware to 05.67 (the latest).
Bellow the Temperatur vs. Time I logged with no transmit intervals and CONFIG: KPA3 = nor(mal):

Time T(amb) T(PA) T(FP) FAN
0 (start) 74.3°F 32°C 27°C no
15 min 74.4°F 33°C 31°C no
30 min 74.6°F 35°C 35°C no
45 min 74.8°F 36°C 36°C no
60 min 75.2°F 35°C 37°C no
75 min 75.2°F 36°C 38°C no
90 min 75.5°F 36°C 38°C no

After this, transmitting a carrier for about 10 seconds with 50 Watts output, the FANs start to run for a short while.
Any comments are appreciated.
73, Robert (W4BCZ)


Re: Does work the contact form?

Geert Jan de Groot
 

The figures are better than -10dB, but it's not a stellar product. Especially the 2m version isn't entirely bad (for 70cm, the 28 MHz IF is just too near; IF should be >>10% of the output frequency)

Having said that, they interface well with the KXV3.

And the Elecraft transverters, especially the 70cm / 2m one also have serious design issues. There is a paper in one of the VHF/UHF conferences explaining the grounding issues.

In my case, I found the frequency drift of the 70cm model problematic, so I replaced the LO with a GPS locked LO, see https://forum.amsat-dl.org/index.php?thread/2832-432-28-mhz-transverter-from-transverters-store-com/

I suspect the transverters became end-of-life because of design issues. K3 modules "only" became end of life because of the introduction of the K4.

I guess the choices are between a product that won't be re-introduced (Elecraft), a product that needs work (transverters-store) and completely rolling your own. In my case, I can make the transverters-store solution work for me.

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