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Re: [TowerTalk] More possible RCS8V problems

Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] More possible RCS8V problems
From: "Kelly Johnson" <>
Date: Mon, 4 Dec 2006 19:55:06 -0800
List-post: <>
Well, cleaning the relays is not something I'm up for right now since
I'd have to climb the tower.  If/when I fix or replace this box I'll
move it from its current position at the top of the tower to the
bottom so I don't have to deal with this anymore :-)  In fact, I'd
eliminate the remote switch entirely if it weren't for the fact that I
don't want to drill more holes in my wall to get more coax lines into
the house.

I understand why the "tap with cw" thing happens, but what I didn't
understand was the failure mode where it caused the receiver to
receive S7 to S8 noise on all ports.  This doesn't sound like a
problem with only one port.  It also isn't the same symptom as what I
had before: signals dropped down to S0.  The behavior is "similar" but
different.  Dropping to S0 makes sense to me.  Causing noise didn't
make sense to me.

On 12/4/06, Robert Carroll <> wrote:
> I have two of these switches and they worked reliably for about 6 years.
> Then, one prot at a time, they fell into the "tap with cw to bring to life"
> mode.  I could also bring a position back to life for a while by turning the
> box on and off or slipping through the positions.  A look at the relay
> contacts showed they were bright, and the armature was not visibly
> misaligned.  Checks with an ohmmeter showed the path through the contacts to
> be close to a dead short. Cleaning, using Caig gold, and reseating the
> armature would cure the problem for a few days, but it would reappear
> eventually.  Like Kelly, I moved to another port.  Last year both switches
> became erratic in this way on nearly all ports, and by spring I more or less
> abandoned them in place and worked around them.  My guess is that nothing I
> can do will salvage them, though the relays still look like new.  If anyone
> has found a cure, I'd appreciate hearing about it.
> Bob W2WG
> -----Original Message-----
> From:
> [] On Behalf Of Kelly Johnson
> Sent: Monday, December 04, 2006 7:38 PM
> To:
> Subject: [TowerTalk] More possible RCS8V problems
> I think I resolved my issue of a few weeks ago whereby the signal
> would just start dropping out and a tap on the CW key would bring it
> back to life.  It was either a relay problem OR a bad PL-259 solder
> joint.  I replaced the PL-259 and moved to another output port on my
> RCS-8V and the antenna is working again.  Now, I have a new problem.
> After sitting for an hour or two I start getting S7 or S8 noise.  This
> is similar to the signal dropping out, but this time instead of having
> the signal drop out I get S7 or S8 broadband noise.  The strange part
> is that it affects ALL the antennas this time.  I can switch from
> antenna to antenna and I see the same S7 or S8 noise, even on antenna
> inputs that have no antenna connected to them.  A tap on the CW key
> once again fixes the problem.  This time I'm thinking it is some relay
> that is common to all of the antennas (ie. connected to the input) OR
> it is yet another bad connection but this time on the feedline that
> goes from the shack to the remote switch.  I don't understand what
> would cause this noise.  Anyone have any thoughts on this?
> I'm just about ready to junk this remote switch.  This is the second
> one I've owned and it seems unreliable.
> _______________________________________________
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