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[TowerTalk] WX0B/Array Solutions/Stackmatch

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Subject: [TowerTalk] WX0B/Array Solutions/Stackmatch
From: (Richard Thorne)
Date: Wed, 03 Mar 1999 12:41:18 -0600

Jay helped me with a problem with the same great customer service attitude.  To
make a long story short it was operator error on my part.  But Jay was still
willing to do what he needed to fix my problem.

Fatchett, Mike wrote:

> I would like to thank Jay for his valuable assistance last night without it
> I might still be pulling out my hair.
> On Thursday, I called Jay and ordered a Stackmatch.  It arrived Monday.
> Tuesday, got home early after a dentist appointment and installed the
> Stackmatch on the tower.  I have a C3 and 10-4CD that I wanted to stack.
> The goal will be to stack another C3 or two,  But I wanted to play around on
> 10 for the ARRL DX contest.  Installing the Stackmatch is a breeze.  Wired
> up the control box in the shack and it was time for the big test.
> I fired up the box and the SWR curves were awful.  Both antennas were acting
> odd.  I could hear just fine.  Tried the C3 on 15 and 20 and it worked fine.
> Checked the wiring of the box again.  No change.  Climbed the tower again
> and checked the box.  Looked fine.
> Placed a call to Jay.  Not home (Rats!)  wait a while for a call and then
> decided to go home about 7PM.  The station is located about 5 miles from my
> house at my parents house.  Wife was on the phone and said a call came in.
> No message.  Looked at the caller ID box and decided what the heck maybe it
> was Jay.  Most solicitors block their numbers right?   The chance paid off
> Jay was there.  Turns out he is on the road!!!  This is about 9PM Mountain
> time and He is on the East Coast.
> Proceed to explain the situation to Jay.  He gives me some ideas to try.
> Ohm out the coils, try moving the antennas to different positions in the
> Stackmatch.  Put a dummy load on the Stackmatch and run the SWR analyzer on
> it.  He said it I got frustrated that he would have another box expedited
> out in time for the contest.  We talked about why it worked on 15 and 20 but
> not 10.  He made a comment about getting a great deal on some feedline.
> Turns out the feedline worked great about 21Mhz but at 28Mhz the SWR across
> the cable was 1.5:1.
> Ok decide that I need to go back to the station and do what I can.  The
> Stackmatch is attached to the tower at 50 feet.  Not looking forward to
> climbing at night.  Full moon though.  Is that a good or bad omen?  Check
> the coils they are fine.  Now the eerie part.  I get the crazy idea to
> disconnect the feedline from the rig switch to the cantenna (My age just
> showed!) dummy load in the shack.  Turned on the analyzer.  At 28Mhz the SWR
> is 1.7-2.0:1?!?!?!?!  Bingo!!!!!!!!!!!!!  We have a problem, but where?
> After tearing apart the shack and taking out the switchbox, the amp, the
> wattmeter I finally find that the coax jumper from the amp to the wattmeter
> is acting odd.  Replace it and SWR on 28Mhz is back to normal.  Reassemble
> the shack and everything is working great.
> When I put the 10-4CD on the tower last weekend I noticed that the SWR curve
> was off.  Checking the Spec's noticed that the Gamma match shorting strap
> was no where close to what was called for in the directions.  Took the
> Analyzer up the tower and adjusted it.  Windy as heck that day so I settled
> for 1.2:1.  Got in the shack and tested it and the SWR was 1.5:1.  This
> should have been my first clue.  The antenna seemed to work great.  Tested
> it out and got good reports.  Never gave the higher SWR another thought.
> Thanks again Jay for your assistance!  Taking calls at that ridiculous hour
> and generously offering to send me another unit without hesitation is a true
> sign of someone who cares about his products.  I offer my opinion solely as
> a satisfied customer and have no financial interest in Array Solutions.
> See you all on the Air!
> 73,
> Mike
> W0MU
> --
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Richard Thorne - N5ZC (Ex. KA2DSY, N2BHP, WB5M)
Amarillo, TX

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