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Re: [RFI] DigiKeyer II

To: rfi@contesting.com
Subject: Re: [RFI] DigiKeyer II
From: Jim Brown <jim@audiosystemsgroup.com>
Reply-to: jim@audiosystemsgroup.com
Date: Tue, 17 Dec 2013 18:50:01 -0800
List-post: <rfi@contesting.com">mailto:rfi@contesting.com>
Hi Peter,

See comments interspersed.

First, download and study k9yc.com/RFI-Ham.pdf I suspect a Pin One Problem (see the tutorial) on the 746.

On 12/15/2013 2:15 PM, Peter Laws wrote:
IC746Pro, microHAM Digi Keyer II.

One USB cable from the radio to the interface.  One squid from the
interface to the radio with 1/4" plug for CW, a 1/8" plug for CI-V and
a howevermanypin DIN for ACC1.  There are snap-on chokes on the ACC1
cable and the USB cable from the factory.  The interface is connected
to the ground bus and the bus is connected to a ground rod buried
outside the window.

A connection to earth is NOT part of a solution to RFI. Proper bonding of equipment IS. That includes short fat copper (#10, or copper braid stripped from transmitting coax) from every chassis to every other chassis that is interconnected. In your case, that means from the computer to the microHAM to the 746. The rig must also be bonded to the power system ground, and to all other grounds in your home.

  Radio is also connected.  To make sure
(hopefully) there was nothing coming down the coax, there is one of
those Palomar buildityourself chokes on a foot long piece of LMR400 in
the shack.

Useless. See the tutorial. Also see the Power Point on Coax Chokes at k9yc.com/publish.htm Those cores are resonant around 2M. For a choke to be effective at HF, we must move the resonance down to HF by winding multiple turns. Again, study the tutorial.

Interface works OK and I played a little in CQ WW RTTY and November
Sweeps CW.  I use FSK not AFSK so that's hard keyed as is the CW (I
think I set it to use the internal K1EL chip).  All of that works

But when I went to play in SS SSB, I had horrible horrible RF getting
into my audio.

Maybe a Pin One Problem, but also a possible power problem. How are you powering your microHAM? The wall wart that came with it, or from the 12V bus? Use the wall wart, not 12V.

I finally had time today to troubleshoot.  SWR (on three wire antennas
coming through an Ameritron remote switch) was acceptable but best on
the WARC band trap dipole (in fact, I'd forgotten just how well that
antenna works even without the tuner.

SWR has nothing to do with it.

  I went to 17 where I knew the
SWR was good and did some tests. I can hear the distortion through the
headphones with the monitor on.  Unplugged CI-V, no change.  CW, no
change.  Unplugged ACC1 .... no more distortion.  Got on 17 and
chatted with a feller up in Indiana and he heard no distortion either
(though I gather the HC4 in my Heil boomset wasn't doing me any
fidelity favors :)).  Plug ACC1 back in, back to interference.

Is this problem present on all bands, or only on 17M? Take one of your ferrite cores and wind 4-5 turns of the ACC1 cable through it. Do the same with the USB cable.

Interestingly, this unit doesn't power itself off the 5 V available on
the USB connection but off the 8 V available off the ACC1.

I've added two more snap-ons of unknown mix to the big cable from the
interface and this has made no difference.

Again, ferrites do nothing at HF unless you wind turns.

I also suggest that you contact Joe, W4TV, who makes it his business to know the common cause of issues with his products. I doubt that the problem is in his gear -- I think he got them fixed years ago.

73, Jim K9YC
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