My station wouldn’t be complete without a few accessories. The main two are the amplifier and the ATU.
My amplifier is a Linear Amp Uk Ranger 811K. The K defines it as a kit model, originally supplied as a diy box of parts. The H model was ready built. The actual design is exactly the same, with the same parts but as it is a home build, the quality of assembly is down to the buyer. You either throw it together or take your time over it. Mine was built by a technical officer from the Home Office Radio Investigation Service and he took his time over everything. The assembly is fantastic, even so far as to have all the interconnects laid out in straight lines rather than just soldered on randomly. The actual amplifier has 4x 811a tubes in it with an anode voltage of 1.6kv. The amplifier is capable of more than the UK legal limit, topping out between 700w and 800w. I am considering swapping the valves at some stage for some 572b tubes to give better duty cycle operation for RTTY and PSK.
The ATU is an early model Palstar AT2K. This is the version with the built in balun. I bought this to replace an MFJ 993b auto tuner as the MFJ did not have the power handling capability that the Palstar has. It works very well, tuning any antenna that I have connected to it, even loading my cast iron rain gutters on the house to work on 40m.
I have this thing for external metering. I like Welz meters. I have a fair collection of them now of various models. I like the early models mainly because of the build quality and the price. I have managed to collect them from various E-bay auctions, not paying too much for them. I give them a check over and make sure that they are within calibration spec before using them and I also add in a light to make the meter more visible in the dark. I have this thing about blue LED’s and tend to fit them into most bits of equipment that I own once the warranty has expired. With the meters, the warranty ran out years ago so drilling a hole in the back for a socket and adding in the extra wiring isn’t an issue. All interconnects are made with RG213 and I make them as short as possible, within the limits of RG213! I thought about changing them for short Ecoflex leads but whilst the station is working I can’t justify the expense.
At the moment there is nothing else attached to my station although I am looking to either build or buy a remote switch so that I only need a single feeder to the tower. The cost of high power relays is prohibitive so I am waiting until something comes along on the second hand market.