What's the first thing yo do when you get a new radio home?

Discussion in 'Discussions, Opinions & Editorials' started by KF2Q, Feb 19, 2013.

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  1. KF2Q

    KF2Q Ham Member QRZ Page

    OK so you went shopping and now have a nice new transceiver ... what's the first thing you typically do when you get home?

    Fire it up and grab the mic? Listen for a few hours and play with all the filters etc to understand things a bit?

    Study the operating manual cover to cover for every little detail?

    Set up your computer control to handle things there?

    Test it for power output?

    Since I will be bringing home a new one this week, and it is maybe my tenth in forty years, it got me to thinking what it is maybe I do first every time. They say we all insert the same side leg first into our pants every day, just how humans work, and I got to wondering if I have a pattern.

    If I do I'd say I'm the type that reads the manual in front of the rig and operates every control as I come to it in the book, trying to memorize what the heck this thing does. I don't get it permanently placed initially but rather have cables everywhere for a week while I figure out what to do, then I make it a nice neat home in the shack. Fun stuff!
  2. KD3NE

    KD3NE Ham Member QRZ Page

    Find out where the wife is! ;)
  3. KB1NXE

    KB1NXE Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    First thing I do is take it out of the box!

    After that, I hook it up and then spend a few hours withy it and the manual setting all the menus items and getting to know the controls and functions.

    Then I put it on the air.
  4. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Depends how complex the rig is and how user friendly its physical user interface.

    Last "new" rig I bought was a few years back, a Ten Tec Jupiter. It came with a nice manual.

    I unpacked it, connected it to my station, and was making contacts with it about 60 seconds after plugging in the power cable.

    After 2-3 weeks and a few hundred contacts, I looked at the manual.:eek:

    Yep, it said pretty much what was evident from using the rig.

    Love it when a plan comes together.

    Now, I couldn't do that at all with my latest "hand held VHF transceiver" purchase, or several others prior to that. Without the manual, it would be nearly impossible to know how to use it. Most of these things are so user-unfriendly that unless you program stuff to them almost every week, most would forget how to even do that and would need to open the manual again. The "quick set-up" instructions generally suck and aren't very quick.

    Same went for the little FT-857D I purchased. Without experience using one or reading quite a bit of the manual, that thing's about as intuitive as flying a 747.:p And IMO its manual is terrible; I don't even like the way it's indexed.

    The Ten Tec manuals are pretty brilliant, very clearly written without redundancy...and the rigs are so intuitive by design that the manual is almost superfluous.
  5. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    the first three things;
    Read the manual.
    Make sure it is completely functional.
    Take it apart, see what's inside and how well it's built.

    I do this with everything.
  6. N5YPJ

    N5YPJ QRZ Moderator QRZ Page

    Make sure the coast is clear for the wife. Unpack it, check for functionality, toss the manual off aside and get to playing with it making contacts. Then later on if I have a problem consult the manual.
  7. KK4JSJ

    KK4JSJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Well....instead of bringing it home I had to wait for the UPS man. I had downloaded the Owner's Manual before hand and read it for the 3 days it took to deliver. Actually I read the Owner's Manual for months before purchasing.

    So..after unpacking it from the box....I proceeded to put it together. 2 hours later...I got to test my new KX3 on the air....and I've been extremely happy with it the last few weeks :)
  8. N5YPJ

    N5YPJ QRZ Moderator QRZ Page

    I can't stand the idea of my new gear getting slammed around the truck all day since we are on the end of the route so I pick it up at the terminal before it is loaded onto a delivery truck. Makes sneaking it in the house easier also! :)
  9. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Subscriber QRZ Page

    I just underwent such a process. Arriving home from HRO with a NIB FTdx5KMP, I first checked to see if the WIFE was home. Next, I REMOVED the existing radio and hid it in plain sight. Now the FT-107M is sitting out in the living room. Still haven't decided what to do with it. Would make a great Field Day radio, but I already HAVE a whole bunch of Field Day radios!!! (TS-830S, IC-745, IC-730, etc. etc.)

    The TOUGHEST job was getting the radio box into the radio room. The doorway only opened so far and it was narrower than the box. I had to BRUTE FORCE it through the doorway openning, and then lift it into the radio room chair. Now it was time to unbox it. The rig was carefully placed onto the radio desk and slid into place, with not so much as a MILLIMETER to spare! In fact, I scratched up the top of the SM-5000 getting it into place (I just HATE scratching a brand spanking new radio!!!!!)

    Now it was time to hook it all up. There are ALL sorts of cables to hook up, and it took many hours before it was hooked up enough to run.

    But this isn't just a GARDEN VARIETY radio U can just turn on and use. It took quite some time to figure out enough to get it to run, messing with the Manual and the NIFTI Quick operating guide.

    I forget what the first contact was, but one of the first was the NEW YEARS DAY QRZed NET!
  10. WA6MHZ

    WA6MHZ Subscriber QRZ Page

    I usually take the rigs apart to QC them too, but this was an exception. In fact, I didn't even take off the side panel to do the MARS mod. Will wait till it is out of warranty for that. It works Fine in the Ham bands so that isn't a neccessity. I trust Yaesu's QC dept (UNLIKE MFJ) so I decided if it worked, it probably was OK. It worked.
  11. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    Lessee now....that would be somewhere around 1976 as I recall. Nope, that was a used rig too, come to think of it.

    Sorry...can't help you there.
  12. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I did leave out one part of the new radio ritual.

    After the box is opened the aroma of new electronics is savored for a while. Then the manual is opened and read.
  13. KG6MZS

    KG6MZS Premium Subscriber QRZ Page


    Open box. Inhale. ahhh!

  14. W6UV

    W6UV Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Well, let's see -- remove it from the box, connect it to the antenna and power supply or wall outlet, and then spend some time listening. I'll usually spend at least a day or two listening and familiarizing myself with the controls before attempting to transmit.

    For any new piece of equipment I've bought in the last 15 years, I've always downloaded the manual from the Internet well before buying it and have read it cover-to-cover a few times before buying the rig.

    My last rig, an FTdx-5000, was a Christmas present from my wife, so no need to sneak it into the house. My wife and I have separate "hobby" budgets anyway, so I never need to try to pull the wool over her eyes even when I buy new rigs myself.
  15. KG6MZS

    KG6MZS Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    1st dibs if you ever get a divorce.
  16. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    On the rig or the wife?
  17. KD0CAC

    KD0CAC Ham Member QRZ Page

    " Don't turn it on , tear it appart " - Dave EEVblog saying .
    If it does not have one of those stinken tamper proof seals , I like to see the insides .
    Another funny saying when Dave is doing a teardown and he suspects some covered up stuff ,
    " There's some porn inside that black-box / cover "
  18. K8JD

    K8JD Ham Member QRZ Page

    The last NEW all band 100 W HF rig I bought was a TS520, Read the manual and hooked it up, listened for 15 minutes on the various bands and immediately got on the phone and ordered the CW filter !
    Before I retired I bought a variety of VHF fm rigs. I usually took them to work and put the new rig on the bench , hooked up a service monitor and made sure they met or exceeded specs. Then I put them on the air.
  19. KL7AJ

    KL7AJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I saw a great T-shirt a while ago that said:

  20. AF6LJ

    AF6LJ Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    There often is p0rn in the radio. Those last minute glued in parts on the bottom side of the PC board.
    The ones that are not in the schematic. They usually can be found in the circuit that will fail first, the part of the radio that was designed on a Friday afternoon before going to the packaging engineer the following Monday.
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