Topband: My clix problem

Iowaguy earlham at
Sat Dec 24 12:16:08 EST 2005

Having a chance to be on vacation this past week and stop my continuous
business travel has given me an opportunity to be active.  During the course
of the past week I've had some reports of nasty key clicks.  I ordered the
INRAD clix mod kit for my FT1000MP, and despite my most careful efforts,
somehow messed up the rig in the process such that I lost all transmit (zero
RF out).  So, I borrowed another MP from N0NI, our local contest station.
This rig already had the INRAD clix mod.

As I continued to operate, I got intermittent reports of nasty clix.  W5UN
last night assisted me with some preliminary testing.  I tested more today
and found what appears to be the general source of the problem.  When I
transmit on my elevated feed quarter wave vertical (slightly sloping, hung
off the 120' guy ring off the rotary tower) I had no clix, even with full
QRO.  When I went to the 4 square (slightly sloping vertical wires hung off
of catenary ropes suspended from a 190' Rohn 25) with full QRO I immediately
had clix.  Transmitting on 1828, my clix were audible at N0NI (abt 30 miles
from here) clear down below 1800.  When I dropped the power below about
1200w, the clix disappeared.  So somewhere out on the tower there's a bad
mechanical joint.  I will start work on the tower on Monday.

In the meantime, I will run lower power and try to keep the band clean!  My
thanks to those of you who alerted me to the problem (VE3DO and others) and
have helped in the testing.

73 and Merry Christmas...

P.S.  Turned out I'm not in VQ9LA's topband log after all...another time.

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