Testing: Double Diode Ring Mixer / Product Detector

 

So… I did not check the polarity of the winding on either of the transformers for the DBM so as you could imagine the results from initial testing were very unsatisfactory. I checked to make sure the diodes tested good as well due to messing around with voltages. Once good to go I would two new transformers and installed them correctly, here we see the final testing of that. I also added a 100 ohm trim pot to the ground of the LO in on the PDM so fine tuning of the balance could occur. Looks like I’m good to go. Hopefully. Still working on the intro for the videos so forgive me this time was in a bit of a rush.
Continue reading

Huge Update: Lets Build Something Part One (Lots Of Pics)


I’m still waiting on an order of 150pf caps to finish the audio amplifier as I outlined in the previous post. New updates are that I went ahead with building and built the product detector, a 40m band pass filter, and the bi-lateral amplifier. The dds/pll and 16×2 with rotary encoder was completed before the project started. I still to test everything according to the original plan. I have played around with my new dds and the scope in an attempt to learn how to sweep a band pass filter. I”m not certain if I need a new design or not as of yet. I’m still very novice with the test equipment. Thus far I would have to say this has been quite enlightening. Most certainly a good way to pass a few days or weeks depending on your available time; at least so far as part one goes. I’m a little bit intimidated by part two but Once I get the zero conversion receiver going and a demo video of it I will go block by block until complete. Beyond that for now I just wanted to make sure everyone got to see the pics sooner before later as many esp on twitter have enjoyed seeing the build. Thanks to everyone for taking a look and for the positive motivation and thumbs up along the way.

Continue reading

Let’s Build Something: Audio Amplifier Stage

Last night I finally got around to setting up the work space to start on the Let’s build something project. Initially I had no plans of actually building anything but rather just getting organised maybe making a few sketches on graph paper and then maybe laying down some of the solder squares. Guess Led Zepplin & soldering go together pretty well because once I had it all laid out I just dove in. This is my first project building like this. Everything thus far has been some kind of kit that was thru hole. I have wound instructors for those kits but beyond that it was all insert tab a to slot b rinse repeat. I have to say cosmetically this came out way better than I thought I had potential for it to. I did go back and rework all the grounds since the picture and will post those later when we approach the final tests and use of the receiver portion of the project.

Continue reading

Musical Monday Expanding Horizons: Vangelis: Spiral



So I had eluded to the fact that I really dig Vangelis. So many albums to choose from but I have to say one of the first ones besides alpha and albedo that stuck with me was the album Spiral. I own the complete catalog and re-issues and re-masters thanks in part to my late father and his interest in his music long before I came along. I’m not sure how well received this will be, but I figured I would give it a shot and on occasion present an album or song and possibly in turn the readers might link to things they enjoy in order to share. I’m into everything so as far as I’m concerned nothing is really off limits unless it is encroaching on NC17 XXX type material. SO if you have heard it sit back and prepare to re live that moment, and if you have never heard this album before BEHOLD!

Continue reading

Medical Update: Healthy Liver

So I had an appointment with my digestive disease specialist which was a six month follow up. My sonogram of my liver was unremarkable (never did I ever think in my life I would pray for a result about anything to do with myself or health to be unremarkable) and it appears that my blood work is within tolerances. About a year and a half ago as I out lined in the previous medical update post that was really long I was diagnosed with non alcoholic fatty liver disease, and early cirrhosis. These are very bad things, esp if you have started a decline in liver function as I had. Well I’m very happy to say as of right now things are great and my liver is a happy organ again. I still have a ways to go with the weight loss, but now I do not have the shadow of death following me so closely that I can see his shadow cast in front of mine. I’ve been told that as far as my liver goes I can expect to live an average life time and should not if I continue to do healthy things for myself suffer any further complications and so on that note I go back yearly. Thank god, and thank everyone family, friends for being there for me thru all of this. Now to get the sleep study knocked out at the start of November and I will be up to date medically as I continue to work on the depression and anxiety issues and find my way thru to the future.

Continue reading

The Darksides Of Amateur Radio

Yea we all knew this was coming eventually. I figure we should start off light before we jump into some Captain Dave or the 7.200, 14.313 or 3.840 crowd. Just kind of a good all around video for folks thinking about getting into the hobby or that have just started and are looking for their place in it and maybe are being brought down by a few assholes. I said it. Assholes. That said we have to respect personal property and while some things may not be int he spirit of ham radio the legality of some things like repeaters is incumbent on the owners, clubs and councils that are setup. So this video has made the round in several forms Jay Dighsx is his Youtube handle and honestly I think it should be something every freshly ticketed ham is required to watch right after reading motorola’s book on grounding. I kid and I digress, but his message is a positive one and one that needs to be reinforced often. Since it has not made a debut here at my site well lets just go ahead and rectify that.

Continue reading

Sneak Peak: MeSquares from QRPme.com

Now we can start cooking thanks to w1rex over at qrpme.com my order of mepads arrived. I figured what the heck I”ll go ahead and snap a couple of pics for the ol’ blog. I should have more than enough to get thru not just the receiver aspect of the project but also part II. I’m going to start mapping out the circuits and snapping off some pads and gluing them down. I’m going to try and make sure I take plenty of pictures during construction and testing. Don’t worry I bought plenty fr4 besides the pieces which came as part of a special sale. A few more notes of interest…

Continue reading

Space-Break Friday


I’m a sucker for Vangelis’s music first off. And second anything space or RF/Electrically related I am equally enamored with. This is an oldie but an updated goodie. Many probably will have seen the original, and while this version is of the 2016 vintage I ran across it in my favorites again and decided it was worthy enough to burn a post on. I have included a selection of three videos for the inaugural Space break Friday post series. Not all will be like this, but I figured this is a great way to get started. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did. Just click that continue reading link to see the videos 😀 TGIF!

Continue reading

The CW Operators’ Club?

A friend of mine on IRC has been a student with this group for a short time trying to get his CW skills in order and it made me stop and realize…. Well I hardly made it thru the 0-5wpm series and only attempted a few skeds on air with a couple of other newbies where we completely butchered Morse’s creation. That said we got about 90% copy even with horrible skill and timing. This got me to thinking maybe it is time that I make the last push for cw and get in there and start operating. Now that I am limited to 100w for the time being cw is much more appealing for conversation, rag-chew and as much as I hate to say it a lot of the time a classier crowd. Exceptions to every rule not withstanding I was curious if anyone else has had any results or known anyone who went thru the beginner course and what they had to say about it before and after.

Continue reading

Hantek DSO5072P 200Mhz Bandwidth Hack


Double Post Thursday huh. Okay. So I figured I would outline exactly what I will be doing to the scope thanks to a very long thread on eevblog and special thanks to tinhead the man behind the magic.So it turns out the several of the DSO import scopes are identical internally no matter if 50/60/70/100/150/200mhz bandwidth. There are other differences which I will get in to as I get thru the post, but the primary focus here is turning a low $200’s scope from Amazon that was not bad to begin with 2 channel, dso 70mhz 1GSa/s and 40k memory. For the average joe (me) this is perfect entry level without the worry of playing ebay roulette with a tektronix mainframe. So when I read that a relatively easy way exists without any really difficult hardware modification (depending on variant and production year) I was quite happy. The 200mhz probes are on the way and a signal gen to get a better idea of the performance of the scope pre and post mod.

Continue reading