Why are there so few SWAN radios for sale?

Discussion in 'Ham Radio Discussions' started by KP4SX, Jul 12, 2019.

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  1. WA5VGO

    WA5VGO Ham Member QRZ Page

    The stories about drifty Swan radios has been greatly exaggerated. The early 350’s did have issues, but that was quickly corrected. Given they’re a single conversion design, the radios are surprisingly stable. And this includes the six meter transceivers.
  2. WA4ILH

    WA4ILH Subscriber QRZ Page

    In all fairness, I was only familiar with one Swan transceiver, which was located at the Elizabeth, New Jersey Civil Defense office around 1965-67. I don’t even remember exactly which model it was (350?) but it was my job, when I showed up for code practice lessons at 6 PM every Thursday night, to turn on all of the radios so they would be stable by the time the Thursday night nets started. The CD state net started at 8 PM and one evening I had forgotten to turn on the Swan. Needless to say, the “HF guy” was not happy when the Swan was still drifting when the state net started.
    Tom WA4ILH
  3. N8FVJ

    N8FVJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    A lot of Swan tube gear is for sale. The very good performing 100MX is a little rare.
  4. WB2WIK

    WB2WIK Platinum Subscriber Platinum Subscriber QRZ Page

    I was in Springfield (NJ) CD-RACES at the same time; we were "20Victor" stations under John W2IIN who ran the County, and our HF rig for the 75m net was a KWM-2. It didn't drift.

    But when I was a new General and CD member I had access to the "shack" and would go operate there sometimes. The VHF stuff was all Gonset and Clegg gear on AM, but I couldn't resist trying the KWM-2 on CW. We didn't have up a beam or anything, but did have a 75m dipole up high above the roof of the municipal building, so 80m CW here I come.

    That rig actually sucked on CW! It didn't drift, but had some issues. Was really an SSB rig.:(
    KA4DPO and N2EY like this.
  5. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    What were the OO cards for? Chirp? Key clicks? Drift?
  6. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    This. I was always told by my Elmer and others at the time that ANY rig that had tubes in it, even hybrids that used them only for driver and finals, needed 30-60 minutes warm up, that "warm up" did NOT refer to just the few seconds they take to come alive when initially turned on.

    If you do this - turn on a tube rig 30 to preferably 60 minutes before you plan to use it, then go make some coffee or whatever, and leave it on until you are done with it for the DAY, they are a lot more stable than people give them credit for. Modern users just have the wrong expectation, that it should be stable as soon as the filaments come up to temperature and you start hearing noise out of the speaker. No, they don't work that way.

    Of course, some are better than others, and I don't think the later hybrids really needed such a conservative approach, but it's still generally true.
    Last edited: Jul 12, 2019
    KY5U, K4AGO and KJ7MX like this.
  7. K3EY

    K3EY XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    First two, you're right!
  8. W4NNF

    W4NNF XML Subscriber QRZ Page

    I knew that going in. I tried my KWM-2 on CW, but quickly made it my SSB station. :)

    My TR-4 and <gasp> Swan were much better thanks to the nitwitted way CW was implemented on the KWM-2. Much. And were what I used for CW. The KWM-2 with its PTO and beautiful presentation was a wonderful SSB rig, however.
    N2EY likes this.
  9. WD4IGX

    WD4IGX Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Ok. I don't think "drift" is even something that is specifically against any rule as long as you don't drift right out of the allowed band.
    W4NNF likes this.
  10. N2EY

    N2EY Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    What does being a single conversion design have to do with it?

    The reason Swans drift is simple: the VFO is bandswitched AND operates at much higher frequencies than in other rigs. Both contribute to drift.
    K6LPM and WD4IGX like this.

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