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Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Community Veteran
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Registered: 06-11-2007

Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Some of you may know, I am a "SWL", and I am thinking of experimenting with different types of aerials (antenna to some)... what I have in mind, is to build SIX different aerials, and need to be able to switch them remotely to connect to the radio(s) in the shack...
The easy way would be to run a cable from each aerial back to the shack, and use a plug board type system, (home brew of course), however this means using 6 times the amount of cable, with the consequent 6 times the cost.
As a Yokshuman, I am loathe to spend money, unless I have to... so considered using only one incoming lead, (which will be more acceptable to `er indoors , as the shack is in the house) .from a remote (weatherproof) box where all the aerial downleads would terminate on a rotary switch .  What I need is some kind of internal switch system, that powers up a step motor (?) or similar, to select the relevant aerial by remote.
any ideas on switch type or motor type, and application? (the aerials will not be carrying any power, as they are passive listening aerials only used for reception).
13 REPLIES
pierre_pierre
Grafter
Posts: 19,757
Registered: 30-07-2007

Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

I have an AV remote switcher 6 in one out operates from a IR control, havnt a clue where I got it, the only details is a part number that seems to be maplin, but it might be Keene  I still use it to switch between DVD, Sat ,freview etc to my TV
Keene do ll sorts of weird switch units
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

had a look at the site.... couldn`t see anything like what could suit my application.
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Registered: 15-06-2007

Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

I assume you have already looked in RS Components which is where I go for odd ball electronic items
Community Veteran
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Hmm... No I haven`t... not really sure what I am looking for, apart from, possibly,  a 6/8/10/12 way 1 pole rotary switch, some kind of motor to actually turn the switch via levers or direct, and some kind of remote control unit, ( e.g. another copycat rotary switch) and psu,...I suppose... and then I just "cobble it all together"...
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

http://www.dxzone.com/cgi-bin/dir/jump2.cgi?ID=3768 ?
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Community Veteran
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Seems to be some interesting ideas there on the DXzone.... TKS vm OM. Wink
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Are these guys ok price wise? http://www.hamradio.co.uk/acatalog/Accs_Switches.html
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Can I ask why you need 6 ariels ? Are you planning to have 6 simple wire ariels of different length balanced/unbalanced or are we talking about something more complex ?
What bands are you usually listening on ?
I Take it you have got an attenna tuner ?
http://www.ehow.co.uk/how_7916226_build-shortwave-antenna-tuner.html
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

@ AlaricAdair...... I did emphasise CHEAP ! ! ... by that I mean less than a tenner... for the whole switch setup !...
@ gleneagles.... Yes, sort of... what I have in mind is to make 4 or 5 different length "broomstick" aerials, which initial experiments of one 20 mtr and one 60 mtr (approx wire length) compared to a single long wire of abotu 80 feet, reduce the noise level dramatically, and the CW / HF fax signal is much cleaner.  This, is using 50 ohm feeder direct to a dual switch to select receiver 1 or 2, and give the signals to compare on same freq on different aerials. No ATU, at the moment, but am considering building one from some scrap bits I have sculling about in a box.... ! the idea is to still have a "long wire" and to have the "broomsticks mounted on a baseboard (say about 3ft square) somewhere suitable in the garden...("modern art" will be the answer to "what`s that in your garden?" )
I am listening all across the HF band from 1.7 to 30 mc/s .... generally for CW RTTY HF Fax, and of course all the ham bands, for digital signals...
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Consider using 6 normally open switches, but make sure only one fo them is closed at any time, so only one of the wanted signals is connected to the wires coming into the house.
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Community Veteran
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Yes, I had in mind a 6, 8, 10, 12 pole, or whatever, rotary... (as I can`t find a slide switch with sufficient contacts)  for the aerials !.. but the problem is how to actually remotely control that switch from inside the house (shack location)..
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

All this talk of Ariels reminds me of a time years ago when I had a B40D Reciever, It weighed about 40 Lbs and was full of valves & stuff,  all easily accessed as the front opened.
I Guess the thing must have come out of a ship but gave me hours of fun and was the door to me getting into amateur radio.
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Re: Simple.... Cheap (VERY) remote switching ideas

Yes, the B40 was a "standard issue" ship radio for the RN... were very stable in operation and were built to withstand tremendous shock.... (e.g. broadside gunfire that shook the ship). never really liked them much, as the band change switch was connected to a "turret" system, and needed lots of effort to turn....... Generally though, this was not a "frequent" requirement of operating them.  Much prefer the Eddystone "desktop" type receivers... (680, 740 and 750)
still need some ideas on how to control the remote switching (turning the rotary switch at the aerial base)..... ?