{Collins} Asking advice on HF amps




Hi Folks – I’m a 69 year old “new” ham and old antique radio collector who has had my ticket (General) for a year now.   I’m hoping to get a little Elmer advice. 

My rig is an S-line 75S-3 xciever, 32S-1 xmitter, 512F2 pwr sply, and 312B-4 station controller. 

It’s taken a most of the past year (and a lot of expert help) to sort things out but I think I finally have the Collins gear working as it should, on the correct frequency and in a reliable way.   

I run the rig barefoot into a 33 foot dipole tuned for 20 and 40 meters at a height of about 35 feet and it has become apparent that, if I want to work DX ( and I do,) I’m going to need an amp or a lot better, bigger, taller (much more expensive) antenna system.   

Stations as far away as Spain and Venezuela have heard me but have been unable to copy most of what I’m saying on SSB.   I’m under the impression that if I had more power they’d be able to copy me.   Am I on the right track here? 

I think the best way to go for now is to get an amp but, although my Collins rig is pristine and looks impressive on the vintage, grey metal desk I acquired for it, I think that, instead of paying high dollars for a vintage Collins amp, I’d be better off getting something less glamorous in favor of practicality. I could go up to $1,000 if it included shipping but, of course, wouldn’t complain about spending less.   

I have access to 240 volts in the shack.   

If you have recommendations I’d sure like to hear them.   A solid-state Auto-Tune might be nice as I also have plans for an over-the-trees long ant for 75/80 meters and a yet put together 10 meter Yagi for my little tower. 

Also:   I’m not clear on the antenna relay systems used with an amplifier.   Would a new amp I bought have detailed instructions on this?   I assume this is a relay with RF connections that I could buy separately, right? Do any of the ARRL books address this? 

Tnx, Ken B. 




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