EMRFD Message Archive 8187

Message Date From Subject
8187 2013-01-31 20:08:49 pgmrdan Introduction.
I'm new here but I've been a ham for a bit. I'm getting back into the hobby after a hiatus. I've got the desire to build something but I don't want to jump the gun.

I know a little bit about soldering and I've made a couple of wire antennas (Do I hear, "Oh, no! Another one of those."?) Where should I begin?

Is this site too advanced for me so I should just leave and never look back?

Should I put together a couple of kits and then come back here?

Should I just jump right in?

I'd like to eventually build a CW HF QRP station from scratch but I'm willing to take some baby steps ahead of time.

I have several of the W1FB books, the Solid State Design book, copies of the Handbook, other ARRL and RSGB books, and of course the EMRFD book plus errata and CD.

So, I have some book knowledge but very little practical knowledge.

How do I get started?

(If it helps my immediate interest is a DC receiver and suitable power supply.)

8188 2013-01-31 20:13:01 ka7exm Re: Introduction.
Read chapter 1 of EMRFD a few times. That should get you going : ). There are a few figures int he book, simple circuits which would be worth scrounging the parts for to check out. You can fire them up and see if they are working with either an HF receiver or an oscilloscope. Figure 1.32 is a good oscillator to fire up. Kanga US (www.kangaus.com) has had bags of parts for things like this in the past (you might have to inquire with him if you don't see it
8189 2013-01-31 23:41:23 Kerry Re: Introduction.
I was in probably a similar position to yours about 15 years ago; I bought (and still have) all the books you list, read them many times and understood very little of them.

I persevered, melted a lot of solder and now understand ten times very little (which is still not a lot).

There were very few kits then but the QRP movement has produced a lot of simple-to-complex kits.

I would start with a kit or two; a DC receiver would be a very good start.

That will give you confidence and you can then get into making your own devices.

I know little about the various DC receiver kits available in the US as I am in VK; others might advise here.

Whilst W1FB was a great writer & experimenter and is one of my "heroes", his designs using ICs are somewhat "dated" now.

But his writing will never date; I would like to have met him.

Another "must" is an AD8307 power meter; the "original" is in EMRFD. I built the Bob Kopski version (Google will find the QST article I hope) but there are kits available from Roger KA7EXM and others.

I think the Kopski design is useful for two reasons.

The most obvious is that it has both analog and digital displays; I have found this invaluable.

The second is that building it is a great learning experience whilst assembling a kit is largely just reading instructions and soldering.

Bob used strip-board for assembly; I hate the stuff so I used Manhattan construction which is wonderful because the parts are laid-out like the schematic.

Once I built this instrument I began to learn;


I have acquired more-sophisticated instruments (N2PK VNA, VNWA etc) since then but this instrument has taught me more that any other.

So; welcome to the world of home-brewing and welcome to the Group.

Contact me at planningpower at iprimus stop com stop au if you think I can help.

Kerry VK2TIL.