Sunday, November 25, 2012

Good News With the OHR100A

Well as soon as I started to worry that the OHR100A was lost forever in the vacuum of the postal ether I get a note from the Royal Mail telling me they have a package for me, but the bad news is I have to pay the sum of £35.50 for Customs and RM handling charges! £8 for handling charges, crazy! Anyway at least it's arrived and I know that soon I will  be once more happily getting stuck in to another building project.

The TH215-E has definitely shorted I found that the fuses J1,2,3 and 4 have all blown so something has caused it to fail. To be quite honest unless its a simple fix like an audio amp replacement I may just give up and buy myself another 2 meter rig off Ebay, we'll see.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Lost OHR 100A and TH-215E Problems

Still no sign of the OHR100A! I contacted Marshall at Oak Hills Research and he advised me to wait another week, before approaching USPS, but I have to admit I’m beginning to worry, I have ordered a few items from the US and they haven’t taken this long.
My only hope is that the package is stuck in the UK customs and it will hopefully arrive in the next couple of days. Looking on the USPS website Marshall kindly gave me a tracking number but all I see it that it was last seen in Jamaica NY on the 04/11, after that there’s no further information. It’s typical you build yourself up ready for your next project and then it doesn’t arrive!
Whilst waiting for the OHR100A I’ve been trying to figure out what is wrong with my old 2M TH-215E handheld. It switches on fine and even transmits ok but there is no sound coming from the speaker.
Using the MMD I’m getting output from the speaker and if I hold it close to my ear I can just make out the squelch, so I think it’s more likely it is the pot playing up. I’ve dismantled the radio and have attempted to give the pot a really good clean with some switch cleaning lubricant.

 The disassembled radio, on initial inspection all looks ok.

I’ve checked the PCB and can find no cracks or any sort of damage so at the moment I’m slightly at a loss as to where to progress from there. 

I've given the pots a really good clean but they are sealed units which does not help, so it's a case of gently feeding in the lubricant and turning the pot back and forth.

The speaker looks ok and I've checked the connections with the MMD and am getting output.

I suppose the options are that I make sure the extension speaker plug is not cancelling out the internal speaker, check all the traces to the speaker and last case scenario try and find another pot and replace the old one. ................Anyone had a similar problem let me know!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Audio Amplifier Kit

Still waiting for the Oak Hills Research 20 meter kit to arrive although strangely the LED kit turned up the other day, but nothing else. 

So I’ve been tidying up the shack and getting all my soldering irons cleaned up in readiness for the big day. I also purchased an audio amp kit this time with a bit more power 7 watts, my home brew audio amp is fine but lacks oomph. The new amp works well with the RMs and just means I can listen out to who is around when out of the shack in my other workshop.

I've also had ago at installing the CW filter I bought from Hamshops, and although it works  I don't think I've set it up correctly. when I add a 9v battery there is no change in sound so the small amp doesn't seem to be working. Without the battery the filter continues to work but all received signals are just quieter and there doesn't seem to be any filtering. I suspect when I originally built the filter I messed up the soldering of the amplifier hence its not working, however I will carry out further tests and see if I can find out the problem.

All three RockMites are now safely in the shack and used most days when I have the chance to play radio. I've had some good contacts especially with the 20 meter RM where I've gone over 1k miles which I'm pretty pleased about. The 30 and 40 get good contacts with Europe and the average distance is around 500 miles which is nothing to be sniffed at.

In fact the shack is looking pretty good a the moment and I'm amazed how it slowly filled up with various bits of kit. So I had a bit of a spring clean and re-organised things especially as I know I'm going to have to find room for the extra OHR 100A. In my haste to clean up I dropped my old Trio 2 meter handheld, it still switches on but there is no sound I've checked the speaker connections and they are all working so I suspect it's something a little more serious, never mind it will keep me occupied during those winter months, or it's an excuse to go out and buy myself a new one!

Do you like my old Royal Enfield in the top right corner?