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[TenTec] The Last Radios

To: <tentec@contesting.com>
Subject: [TenTec] The Last Radios
From: JDuffy@aol.com (JDuffy@aol.com)
Date: Mon, 23 Aug 1999 15:26:24 EDT
That's why I like the Ten Tec radios.  Plenty of space to work on the radio.  
I never did understand why the makers of rice boxes kept making desk top home 
radios so darn small.  It just does not make sense.  Mobile is one thing, but 
home units - make 'em big.  More and more of my shack is becoming filled with 
US made radios.  Ten Tec, SGC and MFJ.


Duffy - WB8NUT

In a message dated 8/23/99 1:42:46 PM Eastern Daylight Time, 
AL_LORONA@HP-USA-om33.om.hp.com writes:

<< Reading about the various fixes that Ten Tec owners apply to their 
      radios always gets me thinking: The current Ten Tec rigs in 
      production-- which would include the Scout, Omni VI+, and kits-- may 
      be the last radios which are user-serviceable. That is, we are moving 
      into an era where transceivers, either because of surface mount 
      construction or because of the increasing role of software, or due to 
      other reasons, may no longer lend themselves to the kind of 
      troubleshooting, repair, modification, experimentation, and alignment 
      that so many of us value and enjoy.
      Evidence: The top-of-the-line Kenwood transceiver belonging to a 
      friend of mine developed VCO problems within a month of his buying it. 
      To extract and repair the board, which was loaded with nothing but 
      tiny, unmarked surface mount devices, took him weeks to do. (Kenwood 
      would not replace it under warranty, but that's another story.) It's a 
      good thing that my friend is an electronics engineer with 20 years of 
      experience building satellites at Jet Propulsion Laboratory and felt 
      confident enough to tackle the job, isn't it?
      Evidence: I just read a newsgroup message from a ham whose Icom IC-730 
      went on the fritz. He was soliciting help from other hams. The 
      shocking answer was that the internal battery went dead, which sounds 
      like it would be an easy fix, except that the rig's firmware was 
      stored in *volatile* RAM which was lost forever with the battery 
      failure! I guess Icom figured no one would still be using their 
      IC-730s in the late 1990's; the "throw-away" rig concept. This poor 
      guy is hosed if he can't find a way to re-load the program into his 
      few-year-old transceiver.
      Evidence: How many mods for the Kachina/Pegasus do you think we are 
      likely to see in the next few years? How much experimentation with 
      filtering, keying, front end, audio, aftermarket components, etc., so 
      much of which you see on this reflector? Will all of the modification 
      involve software only? (Way cool, how did you get the S-meter on the 
      lower left of your front panel? Oh, I just wrote, compiled, and linked 
      a new GUI...)
      Hang on to those Omnis, everybody, we may be witnessing the final 
      phase of a fix-it-with-a-paper-clip-and-chewing-gum approach to 
      amateur radio which has proved so rewarding for so many of us.
      What say you?
      Al W6LX >>

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