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[TenTec] 444

To: <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: [TenTec] 444
From: sales@tentec.com (Ten-Tec, Inc.)
Date: Thu, 13 Nov 1997 15:52:17 Eastern Standard Time
NW9G wrote:
>> Many responses, and thanks guys.  Heard from several of you that the 444 no
>> longer has
>> transistors available.  What would happen if I blew them??  And I will be
>> running it
>> with the power supply made for it.  thanks again guys....Steve

..then WA3JPG wrote:
>>I hear this over and over and it is not true.  I believe Ten Tec
>>told me this a year or two ago, then I found the transistors available
>>at RF Parts down near San Diego.  I called them to tell Ten Tec,
>>hopefully they have some contact with RF Parts to get them when
>>they need them.  I refer anyone who worries about the final
>>transistors for the 444 to RF Parts!

...Dan WD4LUR continues:
>I've seen them too. But you must get very low beta transistors,(For
>Motorola parts you want either a black or brown color dot), or the amp can
>very easily break into oscillation and take your new transistors out. When
>I had one of the 444 amps, Ten Tec agreed that there was a problem with the
>amps design and they refused to repair one. That sucked. My advise to
>anyone that considers buying one of the Hercules 444 amps, is to not pay
>much for it. 

The problem with the design of the 444 is that we designed it around a
specific Motorola device.  Motorola was never satisfied with the performance
of this transistor and discontinued it after two years of production.  The
loss (to Ten-Tec) in time of development, lost sales due to unavailability
of parts and the ill will directed towards us because of this has been
incalcuable.  I'm sure there are hams that have been lost to us forever as
Ten-Tec owners because of this fiasco that was beyond our control.  This 
piece of equipment to this day remains a sticky subject at the factory, 
(15 years after it was discontinued!) as there was great disappointment to 
watch amateur radio's first commercially available solid state linear 
amplifier come to such an inauspicious end.    

>However the Hercules II is an excellent amp. 

The 420 Hercules II like the 444 only in name and shares no common 
characteristics with the earlier Hercules.  We plan to continue manufacturing
this amplifier for a long time to come. 

Scott Robbins, W4PA
Amateur Radio Product Manager 

Scott Robbins, W4PA
Amateur Radio Product Manager

Ten-Tec, Inc., 1185 Dolly Parton Parkway, Sevierville, TN 37862 USA 
  Contact Mon-Fri Eastern time:  Office/Tech (423) 453-7172 9 am-5 pm.  
  Repair (423) 428-0364 8 am-4 pm.  Sales (800) 833-7373 9 am-5:30 pm.
  Fax (423) 428-4483 24 hrs.  E-mail <sales@tentec.com> for sales and
  general product info only.  We presently do not offer repair or
  kit building tech support by electronic mail, please telephone.
  Visit us at <http://www.tentec.com>

  Ten-Tec manufactures amateur radio equipment, military and commerical
  use HF radio equipment, custom aluminum and steel enclosures and has an
  on-premises, fully equipped tool and die facility supplying the metal
  and plastic injection mold industries.  Potential tool and die, custom 
  enclosure or communications electronics customer?  Contact us.

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