Jan 082018
 
Build a shortwave receiver for as little as $5.00. Also other files of interest to SW listeners. This is the latest (10/15/93) update. All the info you need, including schematics, parts sources, etc., is here.
File SWRADIO4.ZIP from The Programmer’s Corner in
Category Science and Education
Build a shortwave receiver for as little as $5.00. Also other files of interest to SW listeners. This is the latest (10/15/93) update. All the info you need, including schematics, parts sources, etc., is here.
File Name File Size Zip Size Zip Type
AMRADIO.TXT 9508 3786 deflated
ANARC.TXT 3967 1650 deflated
BIBLIO.TXT 4150 1588 deflated
CARRADIO.TXT 6582 2758 deflated
CONVERT.TXT 4860 1813 deflated
CWPRACT.TXT 296 203 deflated
DISCLAIM.ER 1129 630 deflated
ITWORKS.HOW 3608 1523 deflated
MORSE.TXT 1073 262 deflated
POWERSUP.TXT 2688 1091 deflated
PUBLIC.DOM 459 284 deflated
QSIGNALS.TXT 851 347 deflated
READ.ME 6723 3196 deflated
README.1ST 2491 1046 deflated
README.2ND 2104 1093 deflated
SINPO.TXT 761 443 deflated
SWBANDS.TXT 2292 524 deflated
SWMISC.TXT 2534 1104 deflated
XTAL.TXT 2326 1184 deflated

Download File SWRADIO4.ZIP Here

Contents of the READ.ME file


SHORTWAVE ON A LIMITED BUDGET

My ancient S-38E Hallicrafters shortwave receiver died several years ago. I
did not realize until then how much I depended on foreign short wave
broadcasts to keep in touch with world events and to get the news before (!)
it was hot. I could not see spending $75 and up for a new commercial
receiver so that left as the only alternative build-it-yourself converter
kits.

The October 1989 POPULAR ELECTRONICS feature article told how to build a
sensitive shortwave converter with an old car radio and 6' or shorter antenna
for about $10 worth of parts. This had to be too good to be true. I passed
up buying the issue at the time and regretted it later, after the issue was
gone from the stands. Fortunately, the article was reprinted in the 1990
POPULAR ELECTRONICS Annual. This time I bit. The converter seemed simple
enough to build as there was only a bare handful of parts involved and
nothing tricky such as winding your own coils. Even etching the printed
circuit board was not mandatory since you could haywire the thing on a piece
of perfboard, or so the article claimed. Just to be safe, I ordered the
complete kit of parts, including etched PC board, but less crystals, from
the supplier listed for the sum of $10.50 postpaid.

Prior to the arrival of the kit, I had looked for a used car radio at a Ham
Radio flea market. They seemed to be selling in the range of $1 to $10 per.
I bought a fancy one for $5, and as an afterthought, a "junker" for $1.
(Used car radios are available at flea markets, yard sales, and swap meets.)

The kit arrived in the mail a couple of weeks later. Building the kit itself
took all of 20 minutes, no big deal. Figuring out the hookup to the car
radio was something else again (see enclosed text file CARRADIO.TXT for
instructions). Of course I also had to build a 12-volt nicely filtered power
supply to provide the juice for the radio and converter (see enclosed text
file POWERSUP.TXT for schematic and parts list for this).

All right. Everything was built and connected. I cheated and used a 10'
length of speaker wire strung along the ceiling (I was building it in my
basement so I wanted to improve my DX luck). Turning it on and holding my
breath... I was greeted with a loud burst of static that turned into that old
familiar CW beeping as I twirled the dial, and yes, gabbling in foreign
languages, now Spanish, now German and French. The thing worked!

The converted car radio is surprisingly sensitive. The article claims it can
"outperform most under $150.00 shortwave radios". This may well be the case.
In a couple of months of casual listening I logged all of the following
stations: Radio Sweden, Radio Sofia (Bulgaria), Radio Beijing (China),
Deutsche Welle (Germany), WWV time signals (U.S. Bureau of Standards), Radio
Netherlands, Radio Budapest, Radio Moskow, Radio Havana, KUSL (Salt Lake
City, Utah), Radio Canada, VOA, Radio Japan, Radio Austria, BBC, VAE Dubai
(United Arab Emirates), Radio France, Swiss Radio, HCJB (Quito, Ecuador),
Radio Yugoslavia, Radio Denmark, Voice of Turkey, Radio Vilnius (Lithuania).
Not bad for a total expenditure of about $16.

So, how do you, gentle reader, build one of these babies yourself? The easy
and recommended way is to send your check for $10.50 to the following address
for the postpaid kit:
SMALL PARTS CENTER
6818 Meese Drive
Lansing, MI 48911.
[write to them for availability before sending money]

The kit includes the NE602AN frequency converter IC, the IF transformer, and
all the caps, resistors, and the diode, as well as an etched circuit board.
You only need to supply a crystal (if you want to tune more than one SW
band, you need extra crystals). If you can't find crystals at your favorite
electronics store (even Radio Shack sells 'em), you can order them from
Jameco, Digikey, or a host of other mail order suppliers. You can usually
pick up assorted crystals at a Ham or Computer show or flea market for
between $ .10 to $ 1.00.

=============================================================================

A highly recommended source of NE602/s: DC Electronics
($2.50 ea.) P.O. Box 3203
Also try their "NE602 Experimenters Scottsdale, AZ 85271-3203
Package" (cat.# 602EXP) @ $7.95. 1-800-423-0070

Digikey, JDR Microdevices, Mouser Electronics, and other suppliers now also
stock the NE602. Fortunately, it is no longer a hard to find part.

The IF transformer, a 10.7 Mhz submini, can be ordered from Digikey, part
no. TK1501, at about $2, or from DC Electronics, part # 42IF126 at only $.60
each. It can also be pulled from an old transistor radio (it is marked
GREEN), but this requires specialized desoldering tools, and even then the
operation is extremely delicate. The rest of the parts, the caps and diode,
can probably be found in your junkbox, or if not, purchased from a supplier
for only a few cents each.

For novice kit builders, I recommend ordering the kit from SMALL PARTS
CENTER. It only costs a couple of bucks more than the price of the
individual components and comes with nice documentation and an etched PC
board to simplify construction. Experienced electronics hobbyists may prefer
to save money and enjoy the experience of building the converter from
scratch, and for them the enclosed text files give complete schematics and
construction information.

Note:
A CAR radio works best. Any other type of radio might not work as
well because of all the interference from local broadcast stations that
would be picked up since the case is unshielded and because the infamous
loop antenna in most AM radios is optimized for pulling in Broadcast Band
signals. However, I have gotten perfectly acceptable results from an old AM
clock radio that I hooked up with a SW converter. This saves about half the
cost of the conversion and the end result looks nicer. The details of
converting an old table-model or clock radio, or even a portable transistor
radio are given in the file AMRADIO.TXT.

=============================================================================

I would be interested in getting in touch with other SWL's (shortwave
listeners) and also finding out what you think of this particular project.
Your suggestions and/or criticisms would be welcomed.

Send comments to:

Mendel Cooper
3138 Foster Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21224

Again, happy DXing!







Contents of the README.1ST file


SHORTWAVE ON A LIMITED BUDGET

My ancient S-38E Hallicrafters shortwave receiver died several years ago. I
did not realize until then how much I depended on foreign short wave
broadcasts to keep in touch with world events and to get the news before (!)
it was hot. I could not see spending $75 and up for a new commercial
receiver so that left as the only alternative build-it-yourself converter
kits.

The October 1989 POPULAR ELECTRONICS feature article told how to build a
sensitive shortwave converter with an old car radio and 6' or shorter antenna
for about $10 worth of parts. This had to be too good to be true. I passed
up buying the issue at the time and regretted it later, after the issue was
gone from the stands. Fortunately, the article was reprinted in the 1990
POPULAR ELECTRONICS Annual. This time I bit. The converter seemed simple
enough to build as there was only a bare handful of parts involved and
nothing tricky such as winding your own coils. Even etching the printed
circuit board was not mandatory since you could haywire the thing on a piece
of perfboard, or so the article claimed. Just to be safe, I ordered the
complete kit of parts, including etched PC board, but less crystals, from
the supplier listed for the sum of $10.50 postpaid.

Prior to the arrival of the kit, I had looked for a used car radio at a Ham
Radio flea market. They seemed to be selling in the range of $1 to $10 per.
I bought a fancy one for $5, and as an afterthought, a "junker" for $1.
(Used car radios are available at flea markets, yard sales, and swap meets.)

The kit arrived in the mail a couple of weeks later. Building the kit itself
took all of 20 minutes, no big deal. Figuring out the hookup to the car
radio was something else again (see enclosed text file CARRADIO.TXT for
instructions). Of course I also had to build a 12-volt nicely filtered power
supply to provide the juice for the radio and converter (see enclosed text
file POWERSUP.TXT for schematic and parts list for this).

All right. Everything was built and connected. I cheated and used a 10'
length of speaker wire strung along the ceiling (I was building it in my
basement so I wanted to improve my DX luck). Turning it on and holding my
breath... I was greeted with a loud burst of static that turned into that old
familiar CW beeping as I twirled the dial, and yes, gabbling in foreign
languages, now Spanish, now German and French. The thing worked!

The converted car radio is surprisingly sensitive. The article claims it can
"outperform most under $150.00 shortwave radios". This may well be the case.
In a couple of months of casual listening I logged all of the following
stations: Radio Sweden, Radio Sofia (Bulgaria), Radio Beijing (China),
Deutsche Welle (Germany), WWV time signals (U.S. Bureau of Standards), Radio
Netherlands, Radio Budapest, Radio Moskow, Radio Havana, KUSL (Salt Lake
City, Utah), Radio Canada, VOA, Radio Japan, Radio Austria, BBC, VAE Dubai
(United Arab Emirates), Radio France, Swiss Radio, HCJB (Quito, Ecuador),
Radio Yugoslavia, Radio Denmark, Voice of Turkey, Radio Vilnius (Lithuania).
Not bad for a total expenditure of about $16.

So, how do you, gentle reader, build one of these babies yourself? The easy
and recommended way is to send your check for $10.50 to the following address
for the postpaid kit:
SMALL PARTS CENTER
6818 Meese Drive
Lansing, MI 48911.
[write to them for availability before sending money]

The kit includes the NE602AN frequency converter IC, the IF transformer, and
all the caps, resistors, and the diode, as well as an etched circuit board.
You only need to supply a crystal (if you want to tune more than one SW
band, you need extra crystals). If you can't find crystals at your favorite
electronics store (even Radio Shack sells 'em), you can order them from
Jameco, Digikey, or a host of other mail order suppliers. You can usually
pick up assorted crystals at a Ham or Computer show or flea market for
between $ .10 to $ 1.00.

=============================================================================

A highly recommended source of NE602/s: DC Electronics
($2.50 ea.) P.O. Box 3203
Also try their "NE602 Experimenters Scottsdale, AZ 85271-3203
Package" (cat.# 602EXP) @ $7.95. 1-800-423-0070

Digikey, JDR Microdevices, Mouser Electronics, and other suppliers now also
stock the NE602. Fortunately, it is no longer a hard to find part.

The IF transformer, a 10.7 Mhz submini, can be ordered from Digikey, part
no. TK1501, at about $2, or from DC Electronics, part # 42IF126 at only $.60
each. It can also be pulled from an old transistor radio (it is marked
GREEN), but this requires specialized desoldering tools, and even then the
operation is extremely delicate. The rest of the parts, the caps and diode,
can probably be found in your junkbox, or if not, purchased from a supplier
for only a few cents each.

For novice kit builders, I recommend ordering the kit from SMALL PARTS
CENTER. It only costs a couple of bucks more than the price of the
individual components and comes with nice documentation and an etched PC
board to simplify construction. Experienced electronics hobbyists may prefer
to save money and enjoy the experience of building the converter from
scratch, and for them the enclosed text files give complete schematics and
construction information.

Note:
A CAR radio works best. Any other type of radio might not work as
well because of all the interference from local broadcast stations that
would be picked up since the case is unshielded and because the infamous
loop antenna in most AM radios is optimized for pulling in Broadcast Band
signals. However, I have gotten perfectly acceptable results from an old AM
clock radio that I hooked up with a SW converter. This saves about half the
cost of the conversion and the end result looks nicer. The details of
converting an old table-model or clock radio, or even a portable transistor
radio are given in the file AMRADIO.TXT.

=============================================================================

I would be interested in getting in touch with other SWL's (shortwave
listeners) and also finding out what you think of this particular project.
Your suggestions and/or criticisms would be welcomed.

Send comments to:

Mendel Cooper
3138 Foster Ave.
Baltimore, MD 21224

Again, happy DXing!





DESCRIPTIONS OF THE FILES CONTAINED IN THIS ARCHIVE
------------ -- --- ----- --------- -- ---- -------

README.1ST This file.

README.2ND Truth in advertising. Explains how, with just a little
luck, it really is possible to build a shortwave receiver
for as little as $3.00 or so.

READ.ME This is the main doc file. Read this third.

CARRADIO.TXT How to prepare an old car radio for installation of
SW converter.

POWERSUP.TXT How to build a 12-volt power supply (if you do not
already have one) to power both car radio and converter.

CONVERT.TXT Instructions & schematic for building the shortwave
converter itself.

XTAL.TXT What crystals you can use with the converter, and what
bands you can tune with them.

AMRADIO.TXT How to use the SW converter with an ordinary AM table
radio, or even an old clock radio, or a transistor
portable.

ITWORKS.HOW A simple explanation, for non-technical types, of how
the SW Converter works, and why it turns an AM radio into
a short wave receiver.

SWBANDS.TXT A listing of the broadcast and ham bands in the shortwave
spectrum.

CWPRACT.TXT A listing of the frequencies and times for the ARRL's CW
"practice" transmissions. Good if you want to learn
Morse code.

MORSE.TXT The international Morse Code.

QSIGNALS.TXT A listing and explanation of the amateur "Q signals"

SWMISC.TXT Miscellany about pirate stations, where to tune them,
and other topics of related interest.

ANARC.TXT A listing of shortwave & other freq. listening clubs.

BIBLIO.TXT A bibliographic listing of articles in books and
electronics magazines about building shortwave
converters & receivers, and other related topics.

SINPO.TXT How to make reception reports to stations listened to,
in order to get QSL cards.

PUBLIC.DOM Public domain statement.

DISCLAIM.ER Legal disclaimer. So I won't get sued if you cross the
wrong wires and melt your multitester.


 January 8, 2018  Add comments

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