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Old 22nd August 2011, 07:40 PM   #21
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thaumaturge View Post
From the initial kits they refer to on their website, I wouldn't get my hopes up.
But as alluded to on their site, that's what they are starting out with, and are asking for ideas from DIYers for additional kits.

Quote:
Nowadays I don't see them likely to offer any kit that has spots that would hurt like @#%%^ if one of their customers touched them. Like tube amps with HV supplies.... or even anything with exposed line-mains power leads.
This *has* entered my mind for the past few years as I thought about the disappearing hobby of electronics among young people but especially, our litigous society.

Sometime in my late 20s I realized that back when I was getting into the kit building hobby, I built several projects that required 120 volts supplied by the local outlet, and I was only 12 years old! I don't remember being particularly worried though - maybe because I had already been shocked a couple times as a child, once when accidently touching the blades of a lamp plug while pushing said plug into the outlet - and do remember taking extra care to follow the manual's directions exactly when dealing with circuitry in the kit that used 120V. All of my 120V kits* worked properly the first time AND I was never shocked.

FYI: though it didn't require 120V, the "Goofy-Lite" p-box kit (page 143) I built used a high voltage circuit to activate the 5 neon bulbs it used, and if you touched one of the bulb's leads, you could receive a rather unpleasant ZAP that you most definitely didn't want to repeat!

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With luck we might get a Nuvistor based preamp out of them.
Being a major novice concerning tubes, I had to look these up - whoa those are small! Though transistors at the time were still smaller, except for the current needed to heat the filament, I bet a Nuvistor could provide some strong competition to their SS counterpart in certain types of equipment.

I guess if they really wanted to stay out of the high voltage end of the hobby but still wanted to have some kits that required a long-term power source, they could sell kits that came equipped with a solar panel and a lithium-ion battery pack.....



* Radio Shack color organ; Heathkit touch-activated on/off switch; 5 volt power supply supplied to me by my junior high school electronics class

Last edited by River757; 22nd August 2011 at 07:44 PM.
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Old 22nd August 2011, 07:55 PM   #22
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BTW after checking out some tube-amp kit suppliers, it looks like my initial guesstimate of a $150, 20 watt per channel power amp was way off the mark. $300 seems more realistic now.

The closest I've come to building a tube amplifier kit was one of Radio Shack's p-box kits that I mentioned above, in this case a battery-powered, single tube AM radio. Unfortunately I never found out if it worked because it required, if I remember this correctly since it was back in the late 70s, a 22 volt battery. I found them at K-mart of all places, but the first - and the second one - I bought had no charge. I wasn't exactly surprised since both had the look of a piece of merchandise that had been sitting in that display case a looooong time.
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Old 24th August 2011, 11:24 PM   #23
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Unfortunately I never found out if it worked because it required, if I remember this correctly since it was back in the late 70s, a 22 volt battery..
http://radiorestorer.com/burgessdata.PDF

Now about $45 each. I know this because I have a custom built precision low ohm meter (range 1 uOhm to 10k Ohm) that calls for FOUR of them and two 3V lantern batteries... that I'm currently sweating out converting to AC power.

Doc
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Old 25th August 2011, 05:25 PM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by thaumaturge View Post
http://radiorestorer.com/burgessdata.PDF

Now about $45 each. I know this because I have a custom built precision low ohm meter (range 1 uOhm to 10k Ohm) that calls for FOUR of them and two 3V lantern batteries... that I'm currently sweating out converting to AC power.

Doc
Forty five dollars - yikes!! I'm really surprised they even manufacture them anymore, since the market for them seems like it would very limited.

Is that ohm meter a vintage design or a modern design used to test specialty products?
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Old 25th August 2011, 05:59 PM   #25
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Daisy chain 3 9V batteries together and zener it to the correct voltage ...
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Old 25th August 2011, 06:07 PM   #26
labjr is offline labjr  United States
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I'm wondering if they will have any cell phone kits? I'd love to build a nice android phone on my kitchen table.
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Old 25th August 2011, 07:32 PM   #27
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The least expensive way to get 22V or 45V is to build a "boost" switching power supply and follow this up with a linear regulator. House the thing in a Hammond box (aluminum) to keep the switching transients from radiating all over the place. (You can always use a small cookie tin as well.)

I have a Genrad hand-held sound level meter (from the stone age) which uses a set of 4 "AA"s and a switching power supply.
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Old 25th August 2011, 08:36 PM   #28
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WOW, WOW, WOW... a big part of my history. I still have a bunch of their test gear. The AJ-15 was one of the first digital and the greatest FM tuner, around 1968. Excellent company - at the time. Not expensive, then. All kinds of audio goodies and test equipment.

I still have their crystal radio (with a diode and two tuning caps, not cats whiskers).

Wow.

Ben
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Old 25th August 2011, 10:05 PM   #29
JoeDJ is offline JoeDJ  United States
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Here's the Heathkit AA-1640 amp I assembled back about 1975.
I even went for the optional (pictured) meter kit.
My "JBL L-100" speakers loved it!

$530 was a lot of money back in 1975. I used to bring home only about $300 a week back then.

However, considering there was not all the electronics and entertainment services we now "need" to spend our money on, $530 was not that much to spend on audio which was the center of entertainment back then.
I was an audio "nut" even then
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Last edited by JoeDJ; 25th August 2011 at 10:29 PM.
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Old 25th August 2011, 10:46 PM   #30
labjr is offline labjr  United States
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In the day, building heathkits was neat. But I've since noticed that some of the designs were not that impressive even compared to other equipment that you could buy assembled back then. Heathkit seemed to have a simple way of designing everything.

As recently as 20 years ago I built a frequency counter which I still have. Physically it's built like a Brick you know what. However, it's made using all discrete TTL logic chips and the specs weren't half as impressive as a Chinese one made with one VLSI chip that sells 30% of the Heathkit. I went with the Heathkit because I liked having nice looking stuff.
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