Date   
Re: QCX(-like) for 2m #alignment #vfo

Braden Glett
 

This must be a non-US topic, as there's no such thing as a CW QSO on 2m in the US. Heck, there's hardly even voice traffic on 2m in the US.
It would be fun to do cw on 2m, but impossible I'm afraid, practically speaking.

Re: Circuit Board Drills for cleaning out through-holes: Construction Tip

Ken Evans
 

I have the problem where the plated through hole has had the plating removed (long story, but chalk it up to an over anxious 15 year old.)
 
The holes involved are at T1 on a 40 meter QCX.  Never had this happen - but think the easiest solution may be to run small wire jumpers from T1 leads to close the now open trace.
Any othe ideas?
 
.Also am thinking of changing this QCX from 40 to either 30 or 20 meters.  This will require removing and replacing appropriate caps and inductors.  In addition - when the alignment procedure is started on first time power up - the screen says:
 
"Select Band"
80 M
 
 How do I get back to this point to select band?
 
Thanks for all ideas in advance.
 
Ken
W4DU


Re: QCX 40 UP Cooked. Top line block display only. #40m #qcx

Hans Summers
 

Hi Jim

I already emailed you about this and sent you the necessary files.

73 Hans G0UPL 

On Sun, Sep 8, 2019, 17:06 Jim W8JD <jimd2002@...> wrote:
Thanks Alan and I did drop him a note but I know he is a busy guy.  Thank you

Jim D W8JD

Re: Persistence seems lacking...

Jim W8JD
 

Well I don't have that many years of experience but I did do 30+ years of component level troubleshooting in an avionics shop with some pretty awesome test equipment before I retired .  As a follow up to my original post about my cooked CPU, I forgot to mention that the only issue I had communicating  with the ATmega 328 using an Arduino as the programmer and Averdudess was I had to select MCU ATmega328 for the original chip and ATmega328P for the new processor. Also, as others have mentioned, the eeprom Write is checked by default in Averdudess but in my case the path to the file was left blank so I was hoping it had ignored this command.  Apparently not.  I suspect once I get past the bricked display I may have additional problems but I am pretty persistent and with the help of the excellent manual and this thread it will be brought back to life.

Jim W8JD  

Re: QCX 40 UP Cooked. Top line block display only. #40m #qcx

Jim W8JD
 

Thanks for your response Hans.  I just found it in my “Junk” folder for some reason but all looks in tact. 

Thanks again and of course I would never share that file.

 

Jim W8JD

 

Jimd2002@...

 


From: QRPLabs@groups.io <QRPLabs@groups.io> on behalf of Hans Summers <hans.summers@...>
Sent: Sunday, September 8, 2019 7:29:22 AM
To: QRPLabs@groups.io <QRPLabs@groups.io>
Subject: Re: [QRPLabs] QCX 40 UP Cooked. Top line block display only. #40m #qcx
 
Hi Jim

I already emailed you about this and sent you the necessary files.

73 Hans G0UPL 

On Sun, Sep 8, 2019, 17:06 Jim W8JD <jimd2002@...> wrote:
Thanks Alan and I did drop him a note but I know he is a busy guy.  Thank you

Jim D W8JD

Re: QCX 40 UP Cooked. Top line block display only. #40m #qcx

Stephen Farthing G0XAR JO92ON97
 

Jim,

Please check the “fuse” settings when you program the chip and make sure they are the same as in Han’s instructions. I had a similar problem when I got the settings wrong. 

Regards,

Steve 

Re: Persistence seems lacking...

ian liston-smith
 

Probably with better eyesight and/or bigger single-sided boards with more space to get in there without doing further damage, I would have persevered. I've just fixed an intermittent problem on an old Heathkit HW-9, and a deaf HW-8 - both relatively easy to work on with space to safely move test probes around and where components can be easily removed.

I built and successfully carried out fault-finding on two of the QRPLabs U3s rigs. I've also deigned and built various electronic devices (and won the 2019 NARC construction contest) so I consider myself relatively competent.

I know, hankering after 1970s and 80s Heathkits or similar construction (and performance) isn't the way ahead. Hans has undoubtedly produced some remarkable technology at an amazingly low price, introducing many constructors to QRSS, WSPR, FT8, Hellschreiber, etc. But I think as I get older (and the majority of radio amateurs are over well over 50 I believe), I perhaps don't have the patience or dexterity I once had to scrabble about amongst densely-packed components on double-sided boards to fix a fault on something I've barely even switched on.

Maybe I too am getting grumpy in my old age...

Ian, G4JQT


From: QRPLabs@groups.io <QRPLabs@groups.io> on behalf of Roger Hill <rhill@...>
Sent: 08 September 2019 14:17
To: QRPLabs <QRPLabs@groups.io>
Subject: [QRPLabs] Persistence seems lacking...
 

Hi all,


I must confess I am dismayed at the number of postings on this group where hams have built a kit that develops a fault and are throwing in the towel far too easily. Surely ham radio is all about self-education: and self-education can only happen if there is a failure - you never learn anything if it all works first time, every time.

I know there are different classes of licence, but surely all of them require at least some basic knowledge of electricity, and how to use a voltmeter?

On the other hand there are those on this group who are willing to help, have the skills and the knowledge, and are free with their advice...so why wouldn't you persevere and make it work? And Hans writes excellent manuals and troubleshooting advice.

I must be getting grumpy (or grumpier) in my old age.

Flame suit on.

Roger


--
***************************
Roger Hill
G3YTN, 8P6RX
(ex 8P6CB, VP6WD)
***************************

Re: construction tips

terryhugheskirkcudbrifght@...
 

photo attached

as described
another hint - i drilled small holes above the alignment pots to get a screwdriver in

terry gm4dso

Re: construction tips

STEPHEN
 

HI,

What is the (L)(W) & thickness of the perspex?

Thanks

Stephen Thornber G6SGA

CFR07434
FRSPH, FBCS, CITP, CISM


Tel: +44 (0) 7917 611082

For more information about the work of Community First Responders or to become one yourself, contact West Midlands Ambulance Service Community Response Manager Noel Orbell on 07980 094808, or the CFR Admin office on 01384 215855 or CFRAdmin@...

-- CAUTION: EXTERNAL EMAIL --
Do not click links or open attachments unless you recognise the sender, are expecting the content and/or know the content to be safe.





On 8 Sep 2019, at 19:13, terryhugheskirkcudbrifght via Groups.Io <terryhugheskirkcudbrifght@...> wrote:

photo attached

as described
another hint - i drilled small holes above the alignment pots to get a screwdriver in

terry gm4dso

<SAM_0461.JPG>

Re: Persistence seems lacking...

Ron VE8RT
 

In the commercial environment I'd say that this is the time to have
apprentices on hand to do the types of jobs that us older techs now
find difficult. In the amateur world, we'd sell this as a offering to
mentor younger upstarts and persuade them that doing the fine detailed
work is valuable learning opportunity while not admitting that we're no
longer up to the task.

Ron VE8RT

On Sun, 8 Sep 2019 14:58:50 +0000
"ian liston-smith" <@IanLS> wrote:

Probably with better eyesight and/or bigger single-sided boards with more space to get in there without doing further damage, I would have persevered. I've just fixed an intermittent problem on an old Heathkit HW-9, and a deaf HW-8 - both relatively easy to work on with space to safely move test probes around and where components can be easily removed.

I built and successfully carried out fault-finding on two of the QRPLabs U3s rigs. I've also deigned and built various electronic devices (and won the 2019 NARC construction contest) so I consider myself relatively competent.

I know, hankering after 1970s and 80s Heathkits or similar construction (and performance) isn't the way ahead. Hans has undoubtedly produced some remarkable technology at an amazingly low price, introducing many constructors to QRSS, WSPR, FT8, Hellschreiber, etc. But I think as I get older (and the majority of radio amateurs are over well over 50 I believe), I perhaps don't have the patience or dexterity I once had to scrabble about amongst densely-packed components on double-sided boards to fix a fault on something I've barely even switched on.

Maybe I too am getting grumpy in my old age...

Ian, G4JQT
________________________________
From: QRPLabs@groups.io <QRPLabs@groups.io> on behalf of Roger Hill <rhill@...>
Sent: 08 September 2019 14:17
To: QRPLabs <QRPLabs@groups.io>
Subject: [QRPLabs] Persistence seems lacking...


Hi all,


I must confess I am dismayed at the number of postings on this group where hams have built a kit that develops a fault and are throwing in the towel far too easily. Surely ham radio is all about self-education: and self-education can only happen if there is a failure - you never learn anything if it all works first time, every time.

I know there are different classes of licence, but surely all of them require at least some basic knowledge of electricity, and how to use a voltmeter?

On the other hand there are those on this group who are willing to help, have the skills and the knowledge, and are free with their advice...so why wouldn't you persevere and make it work? And Hans writes excellent manuals and troubleshooting advice.

I must be getting grumpy (or grumpier) in my old age.

Flame suit on.

Roger


--
***************************
Roger Hill
G3YTN, 8P6RX
(ex 8P6CB, VP6WD)
***************************




--
Ron VE8RT <ve8rt@...>

Re: QCX 40 UP Cooked. Top line block display only. #40m #qcx

Jim W8JD
 

Thanks Hans.  The load went perfectly and asked to select band.  I was able to rotate the tune and select 40 but cant select.  on subsequent re-boots I get Si5351 error message so as I suspected, I caused more damage.  I guessing maybe the 5v pin touched the supply during case assembly.  In any case, I can take it from here and thanks for all your help.  Its probably time to dust off the SMD equipment.

Thanks again
73s W8JD

Re: Persistence seems lacking...

Michael.2E0IHW
 

You make salient observations, Roger and Ron.

However...

Amateur radio has become increasingly black-box and computer centered.
The build requirement for the Intermediate Licence is notional.
Not a few then survive happily without "making" anything further,
not even putting a plug on coax or making an aerial. No need :
see the adverts in RadCom and PW. SPRAT etc are shining exceptions!

QRP does invite self-build, but modern pcb kits are often so compact that they, not least with SMD, "invite" mis-soldering and similar mishaps. Fault-finding often requires high-tech instruments beyond
the means of some amongst us.

Many moons ago, I gained much experience repairing SSB radio telephones in the tropics. With generous component spacing on the pcbs, prodding with voltmeter probes never resulted in a short. I didn't have a scope, but usually got it working again - with *persistence*!

I little older now, I would like to build a QCX, but the difficulties encountered by some, often resulting from the compactness
of the pcb design, would probably apply to me. Hence my suggestion
some time back that a larger pcb version of the QCX, and similar
qrp designs, might be feasible. But with 8000 kits out there,
the few who might be interested are, well, probably too few.
But we can still revel in G-QRP, SPRAT and G3RJV designs!

That said, back-to-basics, within reason, might result in more
persistence and homebrew joy and hence foment more interest. Certainly, help from experienced hams can help a lot; but it must be non-judgemental and borne of patience.

Michael 2E0IHW
.......................................

On 08/09/2019 14:55, Ron VE8RT wrote:
I'm with you Roger!
For a few years I taught avionics maintenance, including the
practical labs. I'd walk into the lab class half way and announce that
I couldn't smell any smoke, and follow it up by saying nothing burned,
nothing learned.
Some interesting things are learned through those bad experiences,
and in my case (not that I make as many mistakes now :-) by ordering
more replacement parts than I needed for the repair I've built up an
inventory of components for future repairs and projects that are not
avaialbe in kit form.
Ron VE8RT (49 years in amateur radio)
On Sun, 08 Sep 2019 14:17:12 +0100
"Roger Hill" <rhill@...> wrote:

Hi all,

I must confess I am dismayed at the number of postings on this group
where hams have built a kit that develops a fault and are throwing in
the towel far too easily. Surely ham radio is all about self-education:
and self-education can only happen if there is a failure - you never
learn anything if it all works first time, every time.

I know there are different classes of licence, but surely all of them
require at least some basic knowledge of electricity, and how to use a
voltmeter?

On the other hand there are those on this group who are willing to help,
have the skills and the knowledge, and are free with their advice...so
why wouldn't you persevere and make it work? And Hans writes excellent
manuals and troubleshooting advice.

I must be getting grumpy (or grumpier) in my old age.

Flame suit on.

Roger

Re: QCX(-like) for 2m #alignment #vfo

Charles Wells
 

Not impossible at all in the US; just very rare.  Here in central Kansas our club had a weekly CW session over the local repeater, and even AM/SSB.  For FM some would use a cpo coupled to the Mic input and a ptt button.  Worked fairly well.


On Sun, Sep 8, 2019, 09:13 Braden Glett <bradenglett@...> wrote:
This must be a non-US topic, as there's no such thing as a CW QSO on 2m in the US. Heck, there's hardly even voice traffic on 2m in the US.
It would be fun to do cw on 2m, but impossible I'm afraid, practically speaking.

Re: Persistence seems lacking...

STEPHEN
 

I’m older but not wiser however I do agree that small nowadays is too small for my stumpy fingers and dwindling eyesight.

PS is anything still driven by valves?




Stephen Thornber G6SGA


CFR07434
FRSPH, FBCS, CITP, CISM


Tel: +44 (0) 7917 611082

For more information about the work of Community First Responders or to become one yourself, contact West Midlands Ambulance Service Community Response Manager Noel Orbell on 07980 094808, or the CFR Admin office on 01384 215855 or CFRAdmin@...

-- CAUTION: EXTERNAL EMAIL --
Do not click links or open attachments unless you recognise the sender, are expecting the content and/or know the content to be safe.





On 8 Sep 2019, at 19:41, blumu via Groups.Io <blumu@...> wrote:

You make salient observations, Roger and Ron.

However...

Amateur radio has become increasingly black-box and computer centered.
The build requirement for the Intermediate Licence is notional.
Not a few then survive happily without "making" anything further,
not even putting a plug on coax or making an aerial. No need :
see the adverts in RadCom and PW. SPRAT etc are shining exceptions!

QRP does invite self-build, but modern  pcb kits are often so compact that they, not least with SMD, "invite" mis-soldering and similar mishaps. Fault-finding often requires high-tech instruments beyond
the means of some amongst us.

Many moons ago, I gained much experience repairing SSB radio telephones in the tropics. With generous component spacing on the pcbs, prodding with voltmeter probes never resulted in a short. I didn't have a scope, but usually got it working again - with *persistence*!

I little older now, I would like to build a QCX, but the difficulties encountered by some, often resulting from the compactness
of the pcb design,  would probably apply to me.  Hence my suggestion
some time back that a larger pcb version of the QCX, and similar
qrp designs, might be feasible. But with 8000 kits out there,
the few who might be interested are, well, probably too few.
But we can still revel in G-QRP, SPRAT and G3RJV designs!

That said, back-to-basics, within reason, might result in more
persistence and homebrew joy and hence foment more interest. Certainly, help from experienced hams can help a lot; but it must be non-judgemental and borne of patience.

Michael 2E0IHW
.......................................

On 08/09/2019 14:55, Ron VE8RT wrote:
   I'm with you Roger!
   For a few years I taught avionics maintenance, including the
practical labs.  I'd walk into the lab class half way and announce that
I couldn't smell any smoke, and follow it up by saying nothing burned,
nothing learned.
   Some interesting things are learned through those bad experiences,
and in my case (not that I make as many mistakes now :-) by ordering
more replacement parts than I needed for the repair I've built up an
inventory of components for future repairs and projects that are not
avaialbe in kit form.
   Ron VE8RT (49 years in amateur radio)
On Sun, 08 Sep 2019 14:17:12 +0100
"Roger Hill" <rhill@...> wrote:
Hi all,

I must confess I am dismayed at the number of postings on this group
where hams have built a kit that develops a fault and are throwing in
the towel far too easily. Surely ham radio is all about self-education:
and self-education can only happen if there is a failure - you never
learn anything if it all works first time, every time.

I know there are different classes of licence, but surely all of them
require at least some basic knowledge of electricity, and how to use a
voltmeter?

On the other hand there are those on this group who are willing to help,
have the skills and the knowledge, and are free with their advice...so
why wouldn't you persevere and make it work? And Hans writes excellent
manuals and troubleshooting advice.

I must be getting grumpy (or grumpier) in my old age.

Flame suit on.

Roger



Re: Persistence seems lacking...

Jim Shepherd
 

One of the problems with the schematics given with the kits is not all of the connections are shown... For instance, on the QLG1  GPS board for the U3s, there are no connections shown for power and ground for IC1. On the Relay-switched LPF kit there are a gaggle of connections marked with X for jumpers/external connections, etc that make it very unsuitable for debugging... Although most commercial radio schematics have a whole lot more detail, they are much easier to read as all the connections to any plugs/jacks are routed to the side and grouped by the plug/jack in numerical number, and jumpers are shown in the default positions, etc.

Jim
W6US

Re: QCX80 power out question

Ronald Taylor
 

Jim, one thing I just realized is you didn’t mention in the first note whether this was occurring when using an antenna or a dummy load. Since antenna impedance varies with frequency, perhaps that’s the issue of in fact the power measurements are made using an antenna. If that is the case please make them again using a dummy load. 

Ron

On Sun, Sep 8, 2019 at 06:26 K2TL Jim <k2tl@...> wrote:
Thank you for the reply and excellent advice.  I will attend to it as soon as the XYL lets me, Hi.  The QCX is in a case and it takes a bit more time and care to get to things.  This problem has been annoying me since I built it about 18 months ago. Nice 5 watts output up around 3650 which does me no good.

de K2TL.. since 1964

Re: QCX(-like) for 2m #alignment #vfo

Steve in Okinawa
 

Surely you're kidding, Brady... It was only yesterday that i thrilled to hear the slow rasp of aurora bounce on 2-meter CW.  Let me check my logbook......  Oops, it was 1958, and the logbook is dust! 

Persistence seems lacking...

Ed Kwik
 

I see that some are hesitant to build a QCX because of the tight component board layout. Others say that they are not building QCXs because they are waiting on the QSX. Some are turned off by the number of issues builders are having. Still others have built one and when it does not work, they give up. I have also heard some say they are not interested in CW or that they want a five band rig and that's why they are waiting for the QSX.

Try to think of the QCX as a practice rig or training for more complex projects. The key is the QCX is only a $50 rig with an incredible amount of bang for the buck with an outstanding manual and documentation. Build one and learn. Learn how to deal with high density board. Learn how the identify parts. Learn how to wind and install toroids.
Learn how to follow instructions. Learn how to solder. If you totally mess up and completely screw up, you are out only $50 but have learned an awful lot and practiced many skills. I think an investment of $50 is well worth the money even if it does not work or you never intend to do CW. Even if you can not get it to work, you have not failed because you have learned and practice build skills.

Here is something no one considers. If you totally mess up you can always get another one. Chances are very good that you will not mess up the second one because of all the stuff you learned and practiced from the first one. I think at $100 a QCX still represents a good value for money performance wise. For those who say they can not afford it, I am sorry but you are in the wrong hobby.
Ed
AB8DF

Re: Persistence seems lacking...tubes

Bill Cromwell
 

Hi Stephen,

You might be interested in a couple fo other lists.

"qrp-l" has some hams who build qrp rigs with vacuum tubes.

"glowbugs" is about tube radios and construction using tubes. Some of those are also QRP. I hope this helps. If you can't find them give me a private bump and I'll send you links in private.

73,

Bill KU8H

On 9/8/19 12:46 PM, STEPHEN wrote:
I’m older but not wiser however I do agree that small nowadays is too small for my stumpy fingers and dwindling eyesight.
PS is anything still driven by valves?
Stephen Thornber G6SGA
--
bark less - wag more

Re: Persistence seems lacking...and patience too

Bill Cromwell
 

Hi Michael,

There sometimes is a lack of patience here too. I feel impatient sometimes when people seem not to bother with looking things up but I try to just keep quiet about it. Eventually I can guess they may not have enough information to even know where to start looking. All of us were in that position when we started. None of us were born with a soldering iron in our hand. More patience to go along with the persistence:)

On 9/8/19 12:41 PM, blumu via Groups.Io wrote:
You make salient observations, Roger and Ron.
However...
---snip----
That said, back-to-basics, within reason, might result in more
persistence and homebrew joy and hence foment more interest. Certainly, help from experienced hams can help a lot; but it must be non-judgemental and borne of patience.
Michael 2E0IHW
.......................................

--
bark less - wag more