[Top] [All Lists]

[TenTec] 555 Scout. User report.

To: <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: [TenTec] 555 Scout. User report.
From: ham@w3eax.umd.edu (Scott Rosenfeld [NF3I])
Date: Mon, 29 Sep 1997 23:40:27 -0400 (EDT)
I was wondering abt this...you were heard this morning (pm your time) at
1145z on 10.110 or thereabouts.

I was mobile, trying to call you, but you were S9 here and there were lots
of folks who could hear you, apparently...

* Scott Rosenfeld NF3I Burtonsville, MD FM19mc QRV 80-10/6/2/440 *
*** 6m 80 grids worked on 8 watts *** HF 140 cfmd * QRP-L #147 ***
** QRP ARCI #9054 ** DXCC/WAS/WAC *** 100% dipole powered HF/6m **
*** 301-549-1022 h / 301-982-1015 w ** Life is one big hamfest ***

On Tue, 30 Sep 1997, Catholic Education Office wrote:

> Well, after years of dreaming about owning a Ten Tec rig, the smallest of
> their siblings arrived. I purchased it second hand, and it was everything
> the vendor said it was. It was in excellent condition.
> However there are a few comments which I think are pertinent to prospective
> buyers;
> 1) The audio hiss with no signal applied is annoying as many before me have
> mentioned.
> 2)The audio jack on the front, does exhibit a tone on low volume when using
> 8 ohm headphones. Yeap.... the volume is much too high... for head phones,
> and the head phones will need padding as many have reported previously.
> A real shame the designers did not think of this, as most, if not all CW ops
> use headphones.
> 3) The rig is far from full QSK. I have only used QSK on the japanese rigs,
> and their QSK is far superior. This scout is some where inbetween semi break
> in, and full QSK. ( I would rather have one or the other.) I see the AGC
> response can be altered by changing C 19 on the IF board. I would love to
> try this.. if I could find the darn C19 they mention. It is mentioned in the
> text, but not indicated on the pictorial view of the board, that comes with
> the manual.
> 4) The rig has awful SSB audio if the voltage runs at about 12 volts, plus
> it does indeed drift about a bit. ( I use a small motorcycle battery when I
> go portable.) This makes no sense to me...as ...if I want to run the full 50
> watts, when portable...my 12 volt source will not be sufficient. I backed
> off the rig to about 5 watts and this cleaned up nicely for QRP operation..
> (Irrespective of the current.) At 13.8 volts (AC power supply) the rig's
> audio is magnificent when using the full 50 watts. Reports were excellent !.
> 5) I have noted no frequency drift at all on CW or SSB, when using a
> 13.8v,(10amp) supply. It is rock solid.
> 6)The PTO mechanism leaves a great deal to be desired. This brings my major
> criticism. As the PTO drives an iron core through an inductor it is indeed a
> precision instrument. However, when tuning a station there are three things
> to content with. i) The FLS system. (not a real problem.) ii) The turning of
> the main dial itself. iii) And the change in frequency which occurs when you
> take your hand off the main dial.
> Hence, when you tune in a station on CW,then take your hand off the dial,
> the CW station is often lost as the frequency has changed. Further
> inspection noted that any slight pressure on the PTO knob, changes the
> frequency of the rig.
> I opened the rig, and saw that when tuning the dial, you in effect place
> some force on the PTO shaft on the iron core. This obviously flexes some
> what, causing a frequency change. Matter of fact, even some slight pressure
> on the top cover causes a frequency shift. I cannot fathom.. why ten tec
> designed this as such.  A small rig like that should be able to handle
> handling when it comes to frequency netting.
> 7) In order to try over come the above, I attempted ( and attempted is the
> operative word here) to take the knob off, and place a felt washer behind
> it, so the inward force would be minimized.
> Well this knob initself is a story. In short the rig did not come with an
> allan wrench.. and finding an allan wrench of that size here in VK is posing
> to be a real problem. In short... a local tool and die maker ( who sells
> allan wrenches of all types and sizes) has never seen one that small. So the
> knob remains as it is.. until I can find one... I may have to ask Ten Tec
> USA to assist.,
> 8) The 30mx module poses some problems here in VK. The 30mx band here is a
> popular mobile SSB band. (Yes we are allowed SSB here on 30mx.) However, our
> conventions are such that 10mhz and above we operate USB. The scout operates
> LSB. Not an enormous problem, but a nuisance as one cannot even monitor SSB
> activity.
> 9) The receiver is excellent. The scout hears signals, that my large Kenwood
> barely discerns. An excellent receiver, and the jones filter system is
> effective, and a delight on CW.
> 10) On CW the the keying characteristics are "hardish" and makes for
> excellent copy at the other end. The make and break of the CW is clean, and
> with out chopping. On the scope it has an excellent waveform.
> 11) The internal keyer works beautifully.... but a shame there was not an
> outboard "regular - potentiometer type" control for the speed. As... if you
> need to adjust the speed after contacting a station, you need to flip the
> switch etc, and this in effect changes the frequency again, as it brings
> some pressure on the front cover of the rig, which in effect forces the PTO
> assembly.
> Ten Tec are reknown world wide for their CW keying. This means they will 
> attract
> CW operators. The sense in this.. is that one would think ten tec would have
> all the CW aspects of the rig perfectly designed. My scout... and I stress
> this.. this individual scout in my possession... is far from perfect.. even
> at times.. it's far from acceptable. 
> Right now, part of me is disappointed, and the other half of me is
> delighted. It is a bitter sweet sensation which is hard to sit with. I hope
> in time.. to do a few mods which will make the operation of the unit more
> acceptable... again a darn shame one has to do this.
> As far as i know this is the only scout on air in VK. Over here they sell
> for about $1200 with only one module. They are far from cheap. The question
> is... are they value for money at that price?? And I could only respond
> honestly if a VK asked for an opinion on the scout. I wish I could give a
> better testimonial. 
> Because the local new price makes them cost prohibitive, I obtained mine via
> other second hand sources.
> I would appreciate any advice.. if anyone feels inclined to do so.
> But........I still yearn for the omni 6 plus!!
> 73
> Maurie.("moz") VK3CWB.
> --
> FAQ on WWW:               http://www.contesting.com/tentecfaq.htm
> Submissions:              tentec@contesting.com
> Administrative requests:  tentec-REQUEST@contesting.com
> Problems:                 owner-tentec@contesting.com
> Search:                   http://www.contesting.com/km9p/search.htm

FAQ on WWW:               http://www.contesting.com/tentecfaq.htm
Submissions:              tentec@contesting.com
Administrative requests:  tentec-REQUEST@contesting.com
Problems:                 owner-tentec@contesting.com
Search:                   http://www.contesting.com/km9p/search.htm

<Prev in Thread] Current Thread [Next in Thread>