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Good old buzzard mike for a Ranger I and BW-5100??




 
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Author Topic: Good old buzzard mike for a Ranger I and BW-5100??  (Read 372 times)
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K1ZJH
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« on: September 13, 2019, 11:52:50 AM »

I'm getting around to finally building an operating position for the older boat anchor gear, including a Ranger and BW-5100.  I am aware of the cap change in the Ranger to improve the low end, and have notes on problem areas in the 5100.

Just curious if a D-104 is decent?  I kind of like the looks. If not, is there a good cartridge that can be dropped in to improve performance?

Pete  W1BR
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KB2WIG
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« Reply #1 on: September 13, 2019, 12:46:35 PM »



The D 10-4 Mic will do good with the Ranger.  There are a whole bunch 'o mods for the Ranger & D10-4 set up.

klc
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N1BCG
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« Reply #2 on: September 13, 2019, 01:49:17 PM »

I am aware of the cap change in the Ranger to improve the low end...

Yes, but, most important is changing out the 1M grid resistor (R17) on the mic input. This value causes extreme low frequency roll-off when using D-104 microphones. This is beneficial for DXing but not for casual conversation. Ideally it should be 10M or greater.

One of the best features of the D-104 is the built-in presence rise, very important for good quality AM.
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KK4YY
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« Reply #3 on: September 13, 2019, 03:52:55 PM »

Perhaps all D104's were created equal... but, lo these many years later, (with apologies to George Orwell) some D104's are more equal than others. Time, temperature, humidity, and oopses have taken their toll. Find a good one and you're golden.


Don
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W4EWH
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« Reply #4 on: September 13, 2019, 09:54:21 PM »

Perhaps all D104's were created equal... but [after all these years] some D104's are more equal than others. Time, temperature, humidity, and oopses have taken their toll. Find a good one and you're golden.

That seems to be the problem, for multiple reasons: I've been trying to get my old D-104 going again for a while now, and I've discovered a lot of bad news in the process -

  • D-104 were available with either Ceramic or Crystal elements:
    • The Ceramic ones last longer, but they were often used for PA systems, and there's always demand for replacements that fit the existing stands and cables.
    • The crystal elements are sought after by harmonica players, who favor the sound for their instruments.
    ... So, there's a lot of demand for Astatic mics outside ham radio, and we're competing with buyers who have more money to spend.
  • I've been told new crystal elements are unobtainium. If that's true, I'd appreciate hearing about sources for alternatives: one ham told me I could use a phonograph cartridge and glue the needle to the diaphragm, but short of that, I'd like to find a way to replace a crystal element without needing to learn how to crystallize Rochelle salt.

Less expensive mics are commonplace now, but if there's a list of fixes/mods needed to use e.g., a dynamic mic with a Ranger, I'd like to know about that, too.

Thank you in advance. I appreciate your help.

Bill, W4EWH
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Steve - K4HX
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« Reply #5 on: September 13, 2019, 10:48:35 PM »

Actually, it doesn't.

http://amfone.net/Amforum/index.php?topic=8975.0

http://amfone.net/Amforum/index.php?topic=9100.msg67363#msg67363



I am aware of the cap change in the Ranger to improve the low end...

Yes, but, most important is changing out the 1M grid resistor (R17) on the mic input. This value causes extreme low frequency roll-off when using D-104 microphones. This is beneficial for DXing but not for casual conversation. Ideally it should be 10M or greater.

One of the best features of the D-104 is the built-in presence rise, very important for good quality AM.


* d104loadresp.gif (8.91 KB, 400x253 - viewed 19 times.)
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MikeKE0ZUinkcmo
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« Reply #6 on: September 13, 2019, 11:42:11 PM »

I've used the D-104 for decades, with a little balanced input mic amp/driver circuit.   It will drive any transmitter.   I just set the level, select the transmitter and thats it.   the output is transformer coupled, with the ground return picked up at the selected transmitter, to help minimize AC hum pickup.

This is the basic amp equivalent, and I know its over kill, but its worked well for many years and it doesn't matter what rig is used.

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Mike KE0ZU

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w4bfs
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« Reply #7 on: September 14, 2019, 08:56:01 AM »

as I understand it the problem is the lack of microphonium elements and then a suitable matching / driver circus ....

it is hard to beat an electret mic for cheapness but they are wind blast sensitive to the extreem  Grin .... careful covering with foam and close woven fabric in several layers should do the trick ... easy interface to fet source followers, etc .... lotsa room in the d10 4 head

several earbud elements in series .... I tried this 10 or so years ago with good results ... be sure to get them in phase with each other .... also wind blast sensitivity issue as with electret

then there are the $5 shure sm58 dynamic replacement cartridges and others like them .... don't think they will fit in the d 10 4 head but fit nicely in the Astatic dynamic head that fits the G stand .... I just did this by wrapping one of the sm58 cartridges in scraps of cotton batting for a snug fit ....works good

cotton batting?  if you need help with that let me know .... I've been spending time with the xyl quilting ... lotsa fun
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K1ZJH
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« Reply #8 on: September 14, 2019, 10:11:26 AM »

Well, hopefully the original factory element is good in the mike I am getting...

I see W2ENY is selling a drop in electret mike replacement, but I would rather not go that route.

There is another series of D-104 mikes  (UG base??) that have built in preamps with a nine volt battery. If anyone has found a good replacement cartridge that works in the D-104 I may be looking for advice if I need to replace mine.

Pete

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Patrick J. / KD5OEI
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« Reply #9 on: September 14, 2019, 02:40:28 PM »

...I used a D-104 and two big resistors in series for about 15 megs of grid leak back in 1971, and I had 9 Hz seismic vibrations modulating my screen-modulated 6146.

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kb2vxa
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« Reply #10 on: September 15, 2019, 07:56:18 AM »

Yeah, WOWZERS! I remember some years ago an AM Gangsta with a basement shack commenting on subsonic vibrations caused by someone walking on the floor above tripping out the overload relay. I remember a few years ago seeing the Astatic published frequency response curves for the D-104 with a 50K load for a pronounced presence rise and 11M for a widened and flattened curve. Trouble is it faded into history along with the microphone.

I not being able to go out and buy stuff developed scrounging to a fine art. Two of the things I came up with was an Altec mic, the number long forgotten, and a box of old Shure 520 "Radar O'Riley" microphones. One of the stands fitted a UTC O-1 "Ouncer" line to grid transformer matching the balanced mic output to the first audio grid of a tube type transmitter, the PTT switch connected by a pair of unshielded leads. That having been said, why mess around when AMers have been using reasonably priced and scrounged dynamic mics for years?

Ah, you're talking about my old TUG-8 stand that I modified for 12V phantom power supplied by an IC-706Mk2G via the aux input on the rear skirt and a Frankenstein Laboratories adapter. It worked well with attenuation in the output that allowed for a wider swing on the gain pot, the 10-DA head had a good sound for FM and local SSB work, the D-104 head gave punch for working weak signals.

OH! I nearly forgot a way to eliminate phase distortion caused by the Ranger and Valiant driver transformers when you modify them for AM Gangsta audio without changing them for a phase splitter mod. It's much simpler to take the DC off the primary, that greatly raises the La of the transformer. Take the lead off the 12AU7 and the other one off B+, replace them with a 10K 10W WW resistor. Then ground the lead formerly connected to B+ and run the other through a .1uF 600V cap to the plates of the 12AU7 and bye bye rumble in the audio bottom end.



* Altec mic.jpg (175.63 KB, 640x480 - viewed 11 times.)
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K1ZJH
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« Reply #11 on: September 15, 2019, 09:21:12 AM »

At some point no amount of audio chain changes will improve the voice I was born with. LOL.
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