The question of legally or illegally operating an amplifier based
on its fulfilment of the rules for FCC type-acceptance is moot.
All the rules for how much amplification an amplifier can have in
a single stage are included in the Standards for type acceptance
of external RF power amplifiers (Part 97.317). So if type
acceptance is not needed for operation, then the rules do not
The requirement for type-acceptance rests with the manufacturer.
FCC Part 97.315 (b) says:
This requirement does not apply if...
(4) The amplifier is sold by an amateur operator to another
amateur operator or to a dealer.
(5) The amplifier is purchased in used condition by an equipment
dealer from an amateur operator and the amplifier is further sold
to another amateur operator for use at that operator's station.
The clear implication is that it is a requirement for a
manufacturer to gain type-acceptance. It is not impingent upon
an amateur to utilize type-accepted equipment, since he or she is
always responsible for the ultimate output of the equipment,
whether commercial, modified, or home-made. If someone will sell
you any amplifier, you can use it. The seller may get into hot
water with the FCC, but the amateur is simply required to ensure
that the emissions from the equipment are within legal and good
According to the rules, a dealer can even sell a homemade
amplifier built by an amateur operator, although it is not
Of course, you run a full spectrum analysis of each piece of
transmitting equipment you have on every band, don't you (please
take this comment as tongue-in-cheek).
FAQ on WWW: http://www.contesting.com/tentecfaq.htm
Administrative requests: tentec-REQUEST@contesting.com