Re: {Collins} Step-start for 30L-1 - Good idea?


First, the power switches on the 32S-series and 75S-series are also made of unobtainium, or a very similar rare substance.  Use of those switches which remain working needs to be such that they are not what close the circuit for powering up the associated rig.  There are a few viable, reasonable cost options that would allow you to leave the power switch on the rig always "on", yet control power externally.  You may have to use a bit of creativity, but to me, that's just another of the great aspects of ham radio.

For equipment running on 120 volt power, there are manufacturers making power strips with separate switches of each outlet on the strip.  These power strips usually have an added benefit of built-in surge and over-voltage protection via MOVs included within their design.  These strips are generally rack mount, but could be used in a desk top installation.  You could cut off the rack ears if desired.  These are sold primarily to the pro audio folks and are available from several vendors.

If you are running the 30L-1 on 240 volt power, you can buy heavy duty DPST lever toggle switches at most of the big box home improvement stores and industrial electrical distributors.  If you mount one of those switches onto a suitable box with an appropriate outlet for the plug of the 30L-1, you could even include the step-start (if you still want it) inside the box, thus eliminating the need to do anything to the amp itself.  Just leave the integral DPST front panel switch in the "on" position and use the heavy duty external switch to do the job.

A third approach is to do what I am working towards: I have 120/240 volt 4 wire service run to multiple locations in the shack.  (4 wire = 2 hot + 1 neutral + 1 ground)  I will be mounting a 240 volt disconnect on the side of the operating desk and using a heavy duty cord (12 ga.) between the disconnect box and wall outlet.  When thrown to the "on" position, the switch in the box will apply power to 120 volt and 240 volt outlets arranged on the back of the desk.  All equipment power switches will be left in the "on" position unless I do not wish to use a particular item.

There are several other ways to do what you want.  Don't overlook non-ham sources, such as pro audio and industrial electric, for solutions.

73, Dale
CCA Member        

-----Original Message-----
>From: Mark Pilant <n1vqw@xxxxxxxx>
>Sent: Nov 5, 2014 7:07 AM
>To: 'Collins List' <collins@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
>Subject: Re: {Collins} Step-start for 30L-1 - Good idea?
>Hi David.
> > Just use a switched outlet and the power supply will not need any
> > modification....and retain its value.
>Very true, and a very good solution.  I had considered it as well.
>The one big reason I opted for the relay is I had to rebuild all
>the power supplies anyway, and the change is 100% reversible.  The
>other reason is with the number of rigs I have with "unobtainium"
>power switches would make it a little difficult to find convenient
>homes for all the switched outlet strips.
>It does indeed sound like there is a likely mechanical failure mode
>which would argue for the power strip choice.  As far as I know this
>is not the case for the Drake TR-3 / TR-4 and Collins 32S-1 and KWM-2
>I currently have going.
>- Mark  N1VQW
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