Woo Hoo!

No it’s not what you might think.  I did NOT get an e-mail from Elecraft telling me that my KX3 is on its way.

But I did find a slip in the mail asking me to come to the Post Office to sign for a package.  I checked out the tracking number and it’s the Lithium Ion battery that I got via eBay.  I know I have to be very careful charging it and all; but the smaller size and lighter weight will be a whole lot nicer than carrying around that sealed lead acid battery.

There is also the provision for using the internal battery holders; but I always get the heebie jeebies about batteries leaking and making a mess.  I don’t use them in my PFR3A. I did have them in my K1; but ended up taking them out.  When using internal batteries in the K1, you had to use a different speaker other than the original stock one.  It was smaller to accommodate the space that the batteries took up and I didn’t like the way that it sounded.  My K2 is always used with an external source.

Yes, it would be a lot more convenient to use the internal battery holders while out on a day hike; but the idea just doesn’t sit right with me.  Silly, I know; but what can I say?  I have repaired too many circuit boards in my day where the copper traces were eaten away from leaky electrolytic caps.  My brain knows the likelihood of that happening inside a KX3 are probably close to nil; but I still feel that I don’t need to tempt fate.

So for in home shack use, I rely on my Astron RS-35 power supply.  Yes, I know that a 35 Amp power supply is way overkill for QRP.  But it’s a fantastic analog power supply and I’ve had it for years.  I’ve even repaired it myself a couple of times.  I like to think of it as an old car with a carburetor that I can service myself, if need be.  Way easier than dealing with a switching power supply. 

I had my fill repairing those back in the days when I was in the photo industry.  The Broncolor studio strobes that I used to repair had switching power supplies.  They were good; but did they ever generate RFI!  I suppose that switching power supplies are a lot better than they used to be; but I know for a fact that my Astron generates no RFI at all – period.  As long as it delivers stable DC Voltage, it will be at the bottom of my bench.

72 de Larry W2LJ
QRP – When you care to send the very least!

Larry Makoski, W2LJ, is a regular contributor to AmateurRadio.com and writes from New Jersey, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

One Response to “Woo Hoo!”

  • KQ2RP Chris:

    Always exciting getting a package, regardless of what it contains. Something we probably carry over from our childhood days. I recall checking the mailbox for freebies, Popular Electronics, collectible coins/stamps, electronics parts for projects, Sky & Telescope, Bazooka Bubble Gum prizes, etc.

    Looking forward to hearing how you like the blue battery pack. I use mine often. Some comments –

    The charger makes a racket. If this is charging while you’re on your HF rig, expect to hear it.

    They don’t live up to rated capacity. Expect about 2/3 of the rating.

    They take a long time to charge with supplied charger.

    Radio Shack sells a mate to the output plug that is wired onto the battery, if you wish to keep it on there.

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