[CQ-Contest] Ameritron AL-811 for Contesting, OK or not?

David Hachadorian k6ll at adelphia.net
Wed May 31 01:19:38 EDT 2006

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Paul Roche" <rochep at comcast.net>
To: <cq-contest at contesting.com>
Sent: Tuesday, May 30, 2006 11:07 PM
Subject: [CQ-Contest] Ameritron AL-811 for Contesting, OK or 

>I am exploring options for a cheap amp for CW contesting, 
>choices are new
> AL-811 with 572 tubes (about 700 watts out) or an old 
> SB-220 that I have to
> re-tube and provide the "standard mods" to (about 1 KW 
> out).
> Can an AL-811 handle contesting, say for 6 hour stretches 
> at a time? (Family
> reasons prevent more than this). I must stay CHEAP, and 
> the AL-81 DOES cover
> 160, but I want a reliable amp for my first one.
> Ideas?
> Paul K3STX
You should be able to find a nice SB-220 with good tubes for 
$600 or less. Add Electronic Bias Switching to reduce plate 
current to zero between dits and dahs (Ameritron will sell 
you a circuit board for $50). The SB-220 should give you 
1200W easily on cw, probably 1500. EBS will ease the load on 
tubes and transformer. I don't think you need any other 
mods. I have one that I will sell for $600 (w/ebs), but I 
don't want to ship it.

Dave Hachadorian, K6LL
Yuma, AZ


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