Sunday, November 2, 2014

Pardon Me While I "Take Five".......

Spent all day Wednesday on the Iowa troubleshooting a receiver/coupler/antenna issue, and then all day Thursday and Friday down at the Maritime Museum repairing the Amateur Radio station located on the second floor.

A week or so ago we had an Icom PS-30 power supply that went casters up, so one of my friends and I replaced it with an Astron RS-35. The original power supply had been installed almost 30 years ago when the station was built, so we definitely got our money's worth!

After we pulled the operating bench away from the wall, we were horrified at the state of the wiring. Cables had been run without any regard to wire management, and were crisscrossed every which way, and many were tangled knots of AC power, DC power, Coax, and control cables.

We also had FIVE plug strips that were daisy-chained all along the floor.

First order of business was to remove everything, trace it back, and label both ends of the cables. Then we mounted a Rig Runner DC distribution block, installed Power Pole connectors on all the DC leads, and remove all the plug strips.

There were already four plug strips mounted under the bench, and connected to master switches on one end of the operating bench, but I guess it was just easier to run new ones than use the existing ones.

All the AC distribution wiring was cleaned up, all the AC plugs were labeled, the existing (old) plug strips were labeled, and many feet of jumbled up coax and control cables were shortened, coiled up, and labeled.

And we also removed the original barrier strip that was used to distribute the DC power from the defunct power supply.

The original installation, modified (poorly!) over the last 30 years, would definitely be on my top five "World's Worst Wiring Kluges".

So it's finished, and I made up a nice 11"x17" Visio drawing to go into the station operating manual, and the archives we keep detailing (usually!) the modifications made over the years.

So pardon me while I kick back and "Take Five".......


  1. Ah yes... Wiring kluges... Shudder...

  2. It was a total mess back there. A radio could have fallen off the desk, and you wouldn't have been able to find it.....


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