Building a Dream Novice Station, Kim Johnson, KC0JQH

Discussion in 'Homebrew and Kit Projects' started by W9GB, Dec 13, 2011.

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  1. W9GB

    W9GB Ham Member QRZ Page

    The January 2012 issues of QST features an article by Kim Johnson, KC0JQH.
    Kim creates a late 1950s Dream Novice station, including the construction of an appropriate desk.

    He used a vintage library of 1958 and 1963 ARRL handbooks, three specific QST magazine issues from the 1957-58 period,
    and the ARRL publication, How to Become a Radio Amateur.
    The receiver and transmitter were from B. Goodman, W1DX articles.

    A very good inspiration for Kim's work was the homebrew work on Tom Nickel, KC9KEP
    Tom's beautiful builds of classic radio articles from the 1920s to present can be found here:
    KC9KEP Homebrew Radios

    Homebrew Work in Progress

    Need a Challenge? How about the HBR-12, 50 years later Still have you steel/aluminum chassis punches?


    Here is his version of Ted Crosby's HBR-12 Dual Conversion Super Heterodyne (late 1950's/early 1960's series in QST)

    Last edited: Dec 13, 2011
  2. W8JI

    W8JI Ham Member QRZ Page

    KC9KEP does great looking work!!!
  3. W9GB

    W9GB Ham Member QRZ Page

    The only thing missing Tom is the "smell" of fresh bakelite ....
  4. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    That is really nice workmanship.
    Thank You for sharing that.
  5. N2EY

    N2EY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Both KC9KEP and KC0JQH do great work. Wonderful to see a complete homebrew station - including the desk! - featured in QST.

    At first I thought "that's not my dream station in terms of rig performance, even for a 1958 Novice". But then I realized that each of us has a different dream.

    So...what would *your* dream Novice station consist of?

    73 de Jim, N2EY
  6. KJ6RMM

    KJ6RMM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Wow are those radios beautiful ! What dedicated work. I will want to show some people what can be done, what the spirit of ham radio meant.
  7. KA3ZLR

    KA3ZLR Ham Member QRZ Page


  8. KB7NRN

    KB7NRN Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm not sure what a "Dream Novice Station" is supposed to look like but I do know what a "realistic novice station" looks like. (no, it doesn't come from Radio Shack.)

    I put this station together a while back, a three tube superhet and single tube TX. The receiver has a regenerative detector with a crystal controlled LO, aka: Regenerodyne. The transmitter is my push pull 6SL7 based on a 1930's Frank Jones design. The grey box to the right of the TX is a CW monitor. Also not seen in the photo but essential for proper novice operation is a spoting oscillator, actually two oscillator in one box, one 100kc harmonic osc and a xtal controlled spotting osc. I put my tranmitting crystal in the spotting osc to spot the receiver then put the crystal in the TX and away we go. The other item not seen is a double pole knife switch for antenna T/R changover. The receiver has a muting switch, lower right knob. To transmit the RX is muted and knife switch is flipped to connect TX to antenna. To receive flip both switches back. It actually is easy once you get used to it was standard practice for a Novice back in the day.

    Not a "Dream Novice Station" by any means but a typical or realistic novice station to be sure.


    Attached Files:

  9. K5UOS

    K5UOS Ham Member QRZ Page

    You probably get tired of me saying this but I love your HB gear, John. Black crinkle adds so much.

    N2EY posted....I like his HB tube station, too.

    My dream novice station was one with a RX that didn't drift > 50 cycles a minute. My 1st novice station was so bad! I remember the receiver PS capacitor bursting in a geyser of steam and the look on my wife's face. The 33' 40M vertical on top of the house made her really happy, too!


    I missed the January CW part:

    Classic Exchange "CX"

    January 29, 2012 - CW

    February 12, 2012 - AM - SSB - FM
  10. AB9LZ

    AB9LZ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I'm back working on my modified simple-x-super, anyone have any experience with using oven cleaner or draino to give the bare aluminum that nice satin sheen? Black crinkle is nice, but the satin is what I remember from the handbooks (and the "how to become a radio amateur" series).

    73 m/4
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