Radio W4KAZ

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K2 Impressions – Part 7 – Adding 160m

Finally got around to the K2 to assemble and install the 160m module. I’m not sure why they chose to make 160m a separate add-in, unless it seemed superfluous for a QRP rig in its original form. So maybe it was added as an afterthought. Anyway, after a lot of procrastination on my part caused by too many things to do, I decided to squeeze out an hour or two here and there to give it a go.

The 160m board itself has only a handful of components. These went together easily enough, but I would recommend changing the instructions to install C6 after installing the 14 pin header. It was very difficult to solder the end pins on the header with C6 already in place. I may have spent more time on those two pins than on the rest of the board. Maybe it only seemed that way.

Before beginning, my only real concern was the mechanical dis-assembly of the bottom of the K2. That turned out to be less difficult than I anticipated, but it does require a bit of patience. Since I had not done the original assembly of the kit, I didn’t really know what to expect after reading the instructions on disassembling the heat sink. This was fairly tedious, but not as complicated as it first seemed. Someone who had assembled the kit from scratch would not have had a problem.

The project took about three hours from start to final tune-up. I split that over three sessions, so it seemed like less. I have not really been on the air with it yet, but I’m looking forward to trying out the RX antenna input. Thats a bit of an issue, as the RX input uses a BNC jack. This really begs for a BNC to UHF jumper cable, because an adapter adds too much length and puts too much physical stress on the rear of the radio for my preferences.

Even if I were not to operate on 160m, the RX antenna jack is adesirableaddition to the K2 for my methods of operation on 80m. Here in the KAZshack the separate RX antenna is used frequently on 80m, and I expect to add another RX antenna soon.

Maybe today…….

-more- at the K2 Impressions page.

2 comments to K2 Impressions – Part 7 – Adding 160m

  • Chuck Shefflette

    Very good series. I considered the K2 but ended up with a K3. I now have 2 K3s, the second acquired from another ham that had suffered a lightning strike. I went through it and fixed it, it works like a top. I am one of those hams that absolutely deplores the UHF connector. So much, in fact, that I routinely replace the UHF connectors on equipment with BNCs or “N” depending on the use/power/band. Both my K3s have BNCs for all the RF connections and my FT-901DM that sits next to them also uses BNC for its antenna connection. Good luck, hope to hear you on the air! – Chuck

    • Thanks.

      The K3 is certainly a fine radio. I see the K2-K3 as a choice between a good pocket knife or a leatherman tool. Lots of times I would rather have the multi-tool, but the pocket knife does its one job very well.

      I’m agnostic on the RF connector situation, use mostly UHF as a matter of cost and convenience. Its the inter-series adapters that drive me nuts. Just can never find the one I need.

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