Viking II riding the waves again at last!

Discussion in 'Chat' started by KX5JT, Jan 16, 2015.

  1. KX5JT

    KX5JT Guest

    So when my furnace caught on fire 3 years ago, the boat anchors were stored in a shed. WD5JKO's persistence about me getting my AM going paid off. Thanks Jim. She is sitting on my bench to my left and I have made my first contact with her in 3 yrs to KD6SW, Rich in Redding, CA. Conditions were rough but his Valiant sounded good.

    I had it sitting in the shed with no cover on it, just like I prefer to run it. I like to keep my eyes on tube colors. Something from up higher fell right on top of one of my 807s and broke it. I found a matched pair of NOS National brand 807s from the UK on ebay and took a chance for 10 bucks. They are in and seem to be percolating pretty good. Had to use a Q-tip and Deoxit on the meter switch wafer to get the grid current to settle down. My antenna situation is limited to the vertical ground plane but I intend on putting up a 130 ft doublet and feeding it with window line from the Johnson Matchbox. I already have the window sill MFJ feedthrough job in place and just need to sink a wood mast to get the window line up and over the house and other objects.

    Feels good to make contacts again with a real transmitter! It's neat to see my signal through the TV dongle too and zero my carrier with some visual aid. Truly classic transmitting with modern reception.

    de KX5JT
  2. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    Hey, there's nothing like old fashioned glow in the dark equipment :biggrin:

    You mentioned modern reception and I know a lot of people have gone that route nowadays, but what's wrong with using old fashioned glow in the dark equipment on the receive side as well? The audio quality into the speaker is always better using the old tube stuff so it must be frequency stability, etc. and digital readout that make the modern stuff appealing, right?

    Well, why not just improve those deficiencies in the old tube stuff so you still have the better audio quality the modern stuff cannot produce? My NC-303 will now out receive any modern SS receiver in a heartbeat.
  3. KX5JT

    KX5JT Guest

    Nothing is wrong with using vintage receive. The question should be, "What's RIGHT with using an SDR setup for receive?". MMM... this could open a can of worms but I can brickwall filter, stretch out passed 20Khz bandpass, apply dsp exhalted carrier selectable sideband detection, see the received signals spectrum, bandwidth and purity...... and more.

    Or I can reach over and turn on the NC-300 (if I decide to put it back on the desk and take up a few square feet as opposed to a dongle hanging off of the usb port on my pc. As far as "sounds better"... sometimes 15khz in the clear and piped through a hi-fi sounds a little bit better than 8 khz signal pumped through a few watts of a single ended tube audio stage. Yeah, I have the NC-300 and I have used it and it works great but besides the nostalgic feel and "staying true to the vintage station" (heck the Viking II has been modified for better audio too), there is no advantage.

    But again, there is nothing wrong with using a vintage boat anchor for receive.
  4. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    The advantage is better audio. Receivers like the NC-300 and 303 though need to be opened up a bit by replacing that crappy little undersized stock audio output transformer to a good one. That's where the real limitation is. Other than that, DC regulating the filaments on a few of the tubes completely solves the stability issues.

    I've got another NC-303 I was going to pair up with my Viking II, but I may build a 10-meter amp soon for the converted tube CB and use it instead of the Viking II and the 303.
  5. KX5JT

    KX5JT Guest

    Audio is not a problem with the sweet 2.1 sound system and the EMU USB sound device that is part of my computer. But just because I love tubes too, eventually I'll had a stereo push pull 6L6 amp for it and then I'll have all the advantages of the digital system with the tube sound.
  6. W5HRO

    W5HRO Administrator

    A lot of hams just use the 2/6 meter RCA jack on the back and connect a line somewhere at the output of the detector to drive an external amp. If so I would run it into a cathode follower buffer stage first so it wont load it down. Maybe use the octal accessory converter socket and plugin a buffer tube there. Maybe a triode connected 6V6 with a big resistor from the cathode to ground.