EMRFD Message Archive 9613

Message Date From Subject
9613 2013-12-29 16:44:09 eric_ke6us RF Power Meter
Just finished the RF Power Meter from EMRFD with  simplifications from VE7BPO (QRP/SWL Homebuilder).

Pictures in the Photo Section. It's all build Manhattan style right on the back of the front panel. Everything inside is heavily shielded. because this thing is very sensitive to stray RF from outside. The meter is from an old EICO VTVM that packed up a long time ago. It's stamped "Oct 1966". I liked it because it is big and easy to read. Since it represents a big RF hole, I covered the whole back side in copper foil used by stained glass artisans for something or other. It has an acrylic adhesive that is made to tolerate heat so soldering doesn't bother it. No idea what the stuff costs as it belonged to my wife.

The scale was done with Tonne Software's Meter program. In a few minutes you can have a professional looking custom meter face from your inkjet printer. Very easy to learn yet it does really sophisticated meter faces. I'm probably going to add a mV and mW scale so it can also be used to make quick conversions.

The instrument could have been half the size with a more normal meter (the panel is 5x7", but I like test equipment that has some heft to it so it doesn't get knocked all over the bench. Just for fun, I build a quick little "orange crate" out of some scrap walnut. It looks different, provides protection and took all of about 30 minutes to make three of them. It's the woodworker's version of Ugly Construction. Make something that works. Don't worry about how it looks.

I'm probably going to use one of the other orange crates to house an 8640 Jr. and I'm thinking of putting a bunch of Elecraft Minis in the other. They're easily stackable and stand upright or lay on their backs on the bench.