Your favorite/most useful bench accessories?

Discussion in 'General Technical Questions and Answers' started by KB1KIX, Jul 18, 2007.

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  1. KB1KIX

    KB1KIX Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hello all,

    I've really been busy building kits, making projects from schematics and such this year.

    The more I travel around and see what other hams are using - I'm amazed at the amount of really neat, home-built accessories many of us have in our shacks.

    Though, most of my projects are QRP!

    I saw a nice LC meter at Dayton this year - me thinks I need to get crackin' on one of them.

    What is your favorite/useful shack accessory (home built)?

    Looking for future ideas.

    Jonathan
     
  2. WA9SVD

    WA9SVD Ham Member QRZ Page

    1. Obviously, a DECENT digital multimeter. (NOT a $10 wonder.) You want something with a semblance of accuracy and repeatability.
    2. A variable voltage power supply, at least 0-20 Volts.
    3. Oscilloscope.
    4. A signal generator, preferably a decent calibrated one with choice of waveforms (e.g., sine, square and probably saw-tooth.) At least through 20 kHz; better if it goes into the RF region.
    5. SWR/antenna analyzer.
    6. Frequency counter; (may be part of #5.)
    7. Analog Multimeter of decent quality. There are times when an analog meter can tell you more information at a glance than a DMM.


    That's a start, I'm sure others will have other suggestions and priorities. But the DMM should be the first acquisition.
     
  3. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

  4. KG4RUL

    KG4RUL Ham Member QRZ Page

    That little device with the alligator clips that you use when soldering.
     
  5. KC0W

    KC0W Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I just can get enough of my Cold Heat soldering iron..........I enjoyed it so much that it's new home is now a local land fill.


    Tom kcØw
     
  6. K7JEM

    K7JEM Ham Member QRZ Page

    It's called a "roachclip".
     
  7. KC4UMO

    KC4UMO Ham Member QRZ Page

    My note pad and pencil.

    So I can write down all th ideas I see here on the Zed....
     
  8. WB7DMX

    WB7DMX Ham Member QRZ Page

    well, lest see.
    you want home built right.
    how about the digital signal generator and frequency counter like the FCC-1 and the FCC-2 from nor-cal.
    0 to 60 meg.

    and a digital milliwatt meter with lcd display in watts, rms voltage and dm from -70 to 2 watts and a 10, 20, and 40 db power tap for the watt meter to extend the range to 100 watts.

    oh and a dummy load to go with it.
    also a return loss bridge 0 to 500 meg.
    then there is a spectrum analyzer that covers 0 to 70 meg.

    and then the AADE digital LC meter.

    thats just some of my home brew equipment that I use the most.
    also home built a gate dip meter. but don't use it too aften.

    commercial bought items that are use the most is the scope and fluke meter and several power supplies,
    the top item that impressed me the most is the mfj antenna analyzer, that has saved me a lot of work and time

    and a must have is a good computer with the necessary software to fill your needs.

    this is just a few of my toys.
     
  9. WC5CW

    WC5CW Ham Member QRZ Page

    KB1KIX, et al...

    As I approach senior citizenship, my OptiVisor headband magnifier is my most used (useful) bench accessory.

    Next would be my Wavetek 27XT DMM with its large LCD display, typical resistance, AC/DC voltage and current scales but also its inductance, capacitance, and frequency counter features that all work well.

    FWIW

    Bruce
    WC5CW
     
  10. W8ZNX

    W8ZNX Ham Member QRZ Page

    got one of those free
    el cheap o multi meters

    bought a soldering station
    from them and got a free meter
    hell it works great

    yes number one is a good multimeter
    all others are in 4th or 5th place

    still have and use a 40 year old Simpson 260 VOM
    it is like a old friend

    Mac
     
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