Foot Switch

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KX5ALC, Sep 18, 2021.

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  1. KX5ALC

    KX5ALC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Okay...........finally got my radio and ordered a Behringer XM8500 mic. Now I need a foot switch. I'm not so much asking "which one" but talk to me about pros and cons and what to look for in a switch. My shack is carpeted, so I'd imagine I'd need to put the switch on a piece wood or some solid surface. Do bargain switches work as well as expensive ones? Push down in the front or down in the back? Opinions?
     
    KA4DPO likes this.
  2. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    The one that Radio Shack sold was cheap and works just fine.

    I use mine on carpet with no problem.

    Enjoy your New Radio.
     
  3. K2CD

    K2CD Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    My operating style is to use a headset and a foot switch, and I've been doing it that way for decades. I really like having my hands free to do other things while I talk.

    I've only had one foot switch in the past 30 years, a Heil single circuit, I guess equivalent to the current FS3. It's never failed or needed any attention. It stays put on my carpet. I've flipped it over a couple of times in my haste to make a contact, but it still keys the radio upside down. I really can't say anything bad. I see it's listed at one of the large ham radio vendors for $26.95, so not what I'd really consider expensive. My advice is to read some reviews from a few sources and see what folks are saying about the ones currently available. There's also a double circuit switch available that can key a linear BEFORE keying the rig. Good luck with your choice and have fun with the new rig.
     
    KX5ALC likes this.
  4. KA9JLM

    KA9JLM Ham Member QRZ Page

    That is a nice feature.
     
  5. W9RAC

    W9RAC Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Art I guess you probably know Behringer XM8500 that's a XLR connection. 73 Rich
     
  6. W9RAC

    W9RAC Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    To add some I use and always have used VOX however I do wear headphones. 73 RAC
     
  7. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    Yes, any "studio" type mike, most of which do use an XLR connector, may need to have the user wire up his own microphone connector for the "radio" end. Some of that stuff is available on line already assembled. Heil Sound sells a variety of XLR cables with "transceiver" connectors already installed at the radio end, which break out the PTT line as a separate "tap" on the cable assembly so you can plug in a hand switch with a push button, or a foot switch or any kind of switch to handle the PTT.

    The Heil footswitches are quite good (I have one) but any kind of SPST switch works. Sometimes hams use old "sewing machine" foot switches, which work fine and some of those are very heavy-duty as the operators stomped on them hundreds of times a day for many years without breaking them. I've seen these at surplus stores (Salvation Army, Goodwill, whatever) sometimes for a dollar or two and that would be a good deal.
     
    WA8FOZ likes this.
  8. AG5CK

    AG5CK Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    The lightweight cheap switches were a complete waste of money for me. They slide around on carpet and aren't reliable.

    I use foot switches for industrial machinery. They have a textured bottom and are heavy enough to work well on carpet.

    There are also dual stage models that will key your rig and amp in sequence. They can often be found cheap on ebay or Amazon as surplus or open box items.
     
    AE5DX and N9DG like this.
  9. KS2G

    KS2G Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I find that my foot switch works better on carpeting -- the friction keeps it from "wandering" as much as on a hard surface.

    Cheap ones work fine.
    They may not hold up as well under heavy use-- but you can by two or three replacements for the price of an expensive one.

    I use this one:
    https://www.guitarcenter.com/Proline/Standard-Metal-Sustain-Pedal-1424791392272.gc?rNtt=sustain pedal&index=15

    Push-down-front, or rocker-back is a matter of personal preference.
    Most folks I know prefer push-down-front.
     
  10. K6CPO

    K6CPO Ham Member QRZ Page

    The sewing machine foot switches I've seen all had a rheostat in them to control the speed of the machine. They weren't SPST switches, even on an industrial sewing machine.

    I use a Heil headset and foot switch on my iCom IC-751A. It's connected to the radio with one of Heil's adapters. Since the floor is carpeted, I put some hook-side velcro on the bottom of the switch to keep it from moving around.
     

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