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What is the WORST rig you've ever had?

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio News' started by WF7I, Jul 2, 2002.

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  1. Guest

    Guest Guest

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (w0ktx @ July 05 2002,10:39)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">w0ktx wrote:

    While compared to most of the posters here, I'm still a new ham. I haven't had any terrible experiences, but I will say that the rig I hated the most was the HTX-202. This thing had no out of band capability, birdies on every other repeater frequency, low transmit power (unless plugged in), and weighed a ton! I replaced it with a VX-150 which is an awesome rig![/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    I got my license in June last year and promptly went out to buy a handheld. I bought a VX-150 and have to agree with you opinion of it. I have no complaints about it. It didn't cost a fortune, doesn't give me any trouble and best of all it works.
  2. Guest

    Guest Guest

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (KE6DII @ July 06 2002,23:53)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Ditto on the Kenwood TM261. I had one when I lived in the Palm Springs, Calif. area. It would not tolerate the summer temperatures and would shut itself down when the ambient temperature got too high. I had no trouble with Icom or Radio Shack 2-meter mobile rigs under the same conditions. Someone did me a big favor one day and stole it.[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    This is a good reason to insure your gear, especially the mobile gear. Then when the piece of junk is stolen you can take the insurance money and buy a good rig.
  3. NT7C

    NT7C Ham Member QRZ Page

    There have been some radios over the years that stand out in my mind as 'lacking'.

    Early on in synthesized HT's was a Kenwood model that had a poorly designed batter mounting system. The bottom of the HT had a small lip that held against the battery contact spring pressure. The lip was prone to fracturing.

    Many of the early mobile synthesized rigs suffered from PLL going out of lock, usually because they were pushing the limits of the varactors of the day (remember, that's why they had the lock lights on them in the first place).

    Today's current radios? I have a problem with the Kenwood TM-V7A. The blue display is difficult to see in daylight at any sort of an off-axis viewing angle. Also, in Arizona, it is impractical to keep the interior of the car cool so that the display works upon re-entering the car. Icom? Great little radio in the W32 - must be why they discontinued it. Actually, it is not that easy to operate without a lot of experience or the manual handy. And Kenwood, you still have battery problems with the TM-79 and similar battery pack radios. Any pressure on the bottom of the radio and the power cuts out.

    Overall, the radios have become better electrically. But with the plethora of features, it becomes difficult to operate from the half dozen front panel buttons. So, how many radio manufacturers actually have hams test a radio and comment before it is mass marketed?
  4. K9FE

    K9FE XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    Those that complained about the Kenwood TM-241 are right about the display problem.  I think there are 3 or 4 in the house, each one had to have surgery to repair the display connectors and each one had to have the coin-cell memory batteries changed...not a terrible job to do yourself.  

    I do have one that on simplex is great, repeater and offset is great, just don't add a tone or it buzzes worse than an electric fence.  Worked for weeks to track down the cause, much longer than the radio is worth. I think it is holding up the front of my old Dentron amp now.

    The worst radio I had was a Yaesu FTdX-570...loads of power...(500 watts+) and 21 tubes to heat the shack.  You learned to leave it on so the drift was minimal.  Good audio, but did not like the receive sensitivity on 10.  On RTTY or SlowScan you had to run around 100 watts since the power supply was too light and the drift got unbearable as the voltage sagged. (then everything went south...stability, sensitivity and your nerves) It had to be the prettiest radio however with that large and heavy looking all chromed front panel with the texture in the surface.  

    Replaced it with a FT-101E that a local CBer was selling pretty cheap so he could fix his car.  The FT-101E was not all that bad and I used it mobile!  Was ok on 15 and 20...but 10 seemed a little insensitive and slightly under powered. The drift was not too bad and seemed very supply voltage related as well as the fan speed. The unit did keep having cooling fan failures for the entire time I owned it.

    My 8 year old Yaesu FT-840 is a great ragchew radio, not as sensitive and quiet as the Kenwood TS-430s, but is so easy and fun to use.  I also have an Icom IC-746 that is ok for CW contesting, but don't like the SSB receive audio and the 430s is still more sensitive and quieter.  Have all 3 of the big manufacturers, and althought I was a Yaesu op way back I find that the 3 I have are pretty well equal after you weight the pros and cons.

    If there was a perfect radio the others would be out of business, but I think that will never happen.  At least we are having fun though!
  5. N7TJX

    N7TJX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Whoa, what a timely topic!  I may get blasted for my response but here goes, the WORST rig I have ever owned was my FIRST (aka current) HF rig, an Icom 706 MkII (no G).  Why you ask?  Long story, but yes, I bought it used.   As with most electronics it was sold "as is" which should have been warning enough but I am not that bright.  In this case, "as is" means having the capability to blow perfectly good finals on the HF side for no apparent reason, and it does it every time you get it fixed.  It has been to Icom service twice, both times for a total of over $240, thats one hour labor, and two HF finals.  both times the finals lasted long enought for me to check the power meter.  Again both times I was assured by Icom that the rig was in perfect health when it left the service center.  I get it back, plug it in, and still no power out on the HF side.  My fault?  I doubt it.  My brothers 706 works flawlessly over here, on my supply, on my antenna, and with my tuner.  My identical radio dies instantly.  so now I have the MOST expensive all mode 2m on the planet, that comes with a HF scanner! [​IMG]
  6. V73GOD

    V73GOD Ham Member QRZ Page

    [​IMG] I actually could not wait to get home from the morgue today and read what other great rigs have reached the lofty heights of all time stinker. I was reminded of a simpler time in my life when I had an antenna that required me to go outside and move the coil tap every time I QSY'd on 40 meters or changed bands. This was back in 1978 and I lived in Barre, Vermont. My neighbors thought I was nuts climbing a ladder in the snow to fiddle with it. Luckily an ice storm put us both out of our misery. I think the only thing left useable was the "roach clip" attached to tap. The remnants were sent to the Telescope Casual Furniture Co and turned into a chaise lounge. You do get what you pay for and sometimes quite a bit more. This is a great thread. Can we have a contest using only these stinkers? The Swans could do crossband without benefit of a second VFO. The 7 Drift Tree, haven't heard that since it was a door prize..ahh, stop, at the country store swapmeet in Puyallup a few years ago. Bert
  7. Guest

    Guest Guest

    i would have to say an Icom IC-2GXAT 7 W  2 M  HT.
    because i had a cheap ass battery contactor.  the radio itself is build like a tank and was the best performing handheld i ever owned even compared to an HTX 202 or 404.  but i winded up selling it off because i had to keep replacing the frale battery contactor.  but what do you expect people.  all these radio are cheap Jap radios.  hunks of junk.  crapola.  they are built like modern cars,  deliberately designed to brake down and have problems after the 1st 6 months of buying them.  i say we ought to make these radios in america and not in japanese swaet shops where 12 year old kids are working for 6 cents a week.  american radios, like the older motorola's (now made by the japs and chinese)  work like a charm after over 10 years w/out seeing the shop even a once.  what can i say people,  we pay to much for jap radios that are nothing but scrap metal and plastic.  i'm an american,  & want only american radios not JAP CRAP. W W 9 W W W said that .-.-.-
  8. WD8BIL

    WD8BIL Ham Member QRZ Page

    Beyound a shadow of a doubt; Dentron's HF200A.
    A total piece of junk. Drifted faster than most scanners. Mobil work was impossible. It jumped frequency at every little bump. The HFACS power supply was way under powered. With the high current output unregulated it was impossible to control the power output
  9. K5YY

    K5YY Ham Member QRZ Page

    </span><table border="0" align="center" width="95%" cellpadding="3" cellspacing="1"><tr><td>Quote (wd8bil @ July 09 2002,04:37)</td></tr><tr><td id="QUOTE">Beyound a shadow of a doubt; Dentron's HF200A.
    A total piece of junk. Drifted faster than most scanners. Mobil work was impossible. It jumped frequency at every little bump. The HFACS power supply was way under powered. With the high current output unregulated it was impossible to control the power output[/QUOTE]<span id='postcolor'>
    I have an ORIGINAL NEW manual for this radio! INterested? Thanks. Medicineman :D
  10. N7UO

    N7UO Ham Member QRZ Page

    And I thought I was the only ham in the world who felt inadequate when it comes to programming those damn 2 mtr rigs!  

    I've got two IC-2100H's.  I swear, it would challenge a computer programmer to make the damn things work.  I finally broke down and got the computer programs for them just to make the damn things work.  I haven't had any operational problems with them, just don't hit the wrong button when you're turning them off or you're back to square one again. Unfortunately they've co-located the power switch and the memory write buttons. one fat finger and it's party time. (@*%$&%)!!!

    Probably the easiest programmable HT I've had is the Alinco DJ-191. It was a breeze to program.  I had to replace both of them after I literally wore them out.  They had a weak pot metal mounting for the antenna connector that worked loose and broke the feed line from the mounting stub out of PC board, shorting the surrounding components.  

    The VX-150 is probably the best HT I've had.  The caveat with them is to ensure that you have the computer program for them too.  I'm unconvinced that you can actually program them using the key pad.

    A great and mature thread of view points here.

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