vrijdag 16 mei 2014

Bitx20 V3"Dead Bug Style" Making the call.

A few weeks ago I changed my shack and put in a new floor,new wallpaper etc,etc.So all my gear,projects and rigs temporary had to move to the attic.When it was time to install my rigs in the new shack,I saw my Bitx20 "Dead Bug Style"and I realized that I never posted the results of all my hard work.So this is what I did.I plugged in a antenna and gave my Bitx20 some juice.The band was crowded and it was not difficult at all the get some stations thru.At one moment while I was listening,I heard DH7SA calling and I answered his call only with 500mWatt or so.This is what happend.

This QSO was made on the 16th of May using a HyEndFed antenna.

Multiband Bitx: The VFO

After the succsesfull reception tests I did with the Multiband Bitx on 20 Meters using the IK3OIL VFO,it was time to decide what kind of VFO I would use for my project.There where several options.The first one that came on my antenna HI,was the N3ZI DDS VFO.Another option is the VFO by DXkits.This VFO was specialy build for use with the Multiband Bitx.It`s a great VFO with build in band switching outputs for the low pass and bandfilter PCB.So this was an excellent choise for me.After a quick study of the manual and components ,I saw that this VFO was actually the PA0KLT design with the band switching outputs edit.Because I`d like to keep my hobby cheap,I decided to buy the PA0KLT A-kit VFO from SDR Kits.On the picture below you see the finished VFO and the Rotary switch.I also purchased the aluminum dial for the VFO.It`s heavy and it looks also great.
For me it was the first time that I had to solder SMD components.If you follow the manual that you can download from SDR Kits,you will find no problem at all to build this VFO.Because this VFO is not equiped with the band switching outputs that the DXkits VFO offers,I first will use a rotary switch which switches the voltage to the correct filter of the low and bandpass filter..After that stage I will make a PCB for the automaticly VFO controlled band switching using the HEF4028 BCD to Decimal Cmos decoder.

Screenshot of the excellent G6LBQ VFO by Andy.

All the parts for the band switching outputs.
On the picture above you see the VFO by Andy G6LBQ.More than half of all the components on the PCB are needed for the band switching outputs.I allready purchased a HEF4028 and the transistors BC547,BC640 and a few diodes.When my project works fine with the Rotary switch,I will make the right side of the PCB,because the PA0KLT VFO already controls these ouputs in the firmware.
Rotary Switch.
You can find a lot of information about this Multiband Bitx project on the Yahoo G6LBQ Group.On the next blog I hope that I`ve started the build of all the PCB`s in the case.

vrijdag 9 mei 2014

X-Phase II Noise Canceler

This week I started the build of the X-Phase II noise canceler.Because I have a lot of QRM on the HF-bands,especially on 160 meters.The biggest problem maker is standing one floor below in my living room.Yes,you`ve guest it right,it`s my Panasonic plasma television.Normaly I have a S7 QRM at night on 160M.When I turn on my plasma the signal becomes a S9+30dB.Here you can see what I mean.A local HAM by the name of Ramon (PE1OUW) who lives just accros the street had the answer.He had succsesfully build the X-Phase II V1.4 and showed me some footage of a test he did with this noise canceler.After I saw the results of this device,I wanted to own one of myself.So Ramon gave me some links and I started the build.You can find some information on the site of the German  DARC.More information can be found on this and on this site.So,first thing I had to do was the making of the PCB.It was 5 years since I made my last PCB,so hopefully all my materials where not over due and my equipment worked.
Here you see the stuff I made my PCB`s with.A face tanning lamp which I bought on a fair for €1,50 and a few containers for the developer and etch.A nice site for telling you how to make your own PCB,can be found here! After a few lousy attempts,I succsesfully made three PCB`s.
After that,it was time to finish the PCB with a protective photolack and I had to drill the holes for the parts.On the picture bellow you see the un drilled PCB.No proffesionel quality,but I think it will do the job.

After five years my Proxxon drill came to live.I used a 0,6mm drill for the standard holes and a 0,8mm for the potentiometer holes.
On the next picture you see that I started with the placing of the components.Because I don`t have all the parts on stock,this is where I had to stop and wait for the missing parts.