So much for the oscilloscope

My dead oscilloscope is still dead.  After spending some time poking around the innards, I’m starting to think the issue is on the high voltage side that provides power to the CRT.  I’ve checked the voltages at connectors where the PCB is labeled with voltages, and those match up.  It seems like the rest of the scope is probably working except for the CRT side of things.

I think at the moment, the scope is beyond my ability to fix.  Guess I’ll shelve it for now and maybe go back to it when I’ve gained a few more skill levels and higher level items.

Off to the next project!

Diving into the oscilloscope

With the power supply repaired, the next item to go on the bench is the dead oscilloscope.

Hitachi V-1060 oscilloscope
Hitachi V-1060 oscilloscope

Undoing four screws on the sides of the scope let me slide the top cover off to reveal the innards.

Under the cover
Under the cover
Side view
Side view

The top circuit board looks to be the power supply board, and probably a few other things. Undoing a bunch of screws holding the top board down and a bit of fiddling around (discovered the board is on a hinge) let me lift it up to reveal more of the scope’s innards.

Beneath the power supply board
Beneath the power supply board
Beneath the power supply board
Beneath the power supply board
Power supply
Power supply

Three screws hold the cover of the power supply section.

Power supply
Power supply
Power supply
Power supply

A few dust bunnies inside, but overall everything looked to be in fairly decent condition (aside from not working).

First look around the inside didn’t reveal anything obviously wrong. No blown caps or scorched areas.  Whether this is something I’ll be able to repair or not is still up in the air. This scope is probably going to be spending a while on the bench.

Power supply: Fixed!

Yay, the power supply is fixed!

Thomas/LA3PNA suggested I look at the input and reference voltages going into the μA723 regulator, so while I was at it I looked at all the pins in the empty socket. The only unusual thing I found was about 0.1V where the output pin of the regulator went. I’m guessing the voltage regulator probably didn’t like having that much voltage on its output pin, and that’s probably what was killing them.

Pin 10 went to the anonymous red transistor type thing, which in turn was connected to the pass transistors and Vcc.

Mystery transistor
Mystery transistor

Consulting with Thomas again, he said it was probably a Darlington transistor or something similar that failed. The μA723 output turns on this transistor, which is then able to provide more current to turn on the pass transistors than the μA723 alone would be able to.

Took the transistor thing out and connected the μA723 output to the base of the pass transistors and everything worked! Got a stable 13.7V at the output of the power supply, and I could turn it off and on again without any problems.

Found a TIP31 power transistor in my collection of parts and put that in place of the dead red transistor and it looks like this power supply is back in business.

TIP31 replacement transistor
TIP31 replacement transistor

It’s a pretty ugly soldering job, but I think it will hold up. Still need to test it  under a load though.

Power supply: Still dead

That power supply that I thought was working again after replacing the fuse? Yeah, not so much. I turned it on again a few days later and the ammeter instantly went up to 27A while the output voltage was only around 2V.

Spent some time poking around some more, but it’s been sitting on the table since then. Last week I ordered some μA723 voltage regulators to fix someone’s Astron RS-35M power supply. Since I had a few extras (ordered 10 of them), I popped one into this dead power supply. Fortunately it’s socketed, so replacing it was pretty easy.

Plugged the power supply in, turned it on and much to my surprise, the power supply seemed to be working again! 13.7V at the output and seemed pretty stable.

Thinking everything was good again, I turned the power supply off and unplugged it, put the cover back on, plugged it back in and turned it back on.

Poof, back up to 27A and no voltage.

Well crap.

Went back in, put in a new μA723, turned it on and it was back to 13.7V. Left it running for a few minutes, turned the power supply off, turned it back on a few minutes later and it was back to 27A and no voltage.

Well double crap. So it looks like there is a deeper issue with the power supply that’s causing it to kill the voltage regulator.

Field Day 2018

This year’s Field Day was a pretty good one.

Started off doing the first hour of Field Day at home running the radio off battery power. With the radio running 25-50 W, I racked up a few good contacts tuning around 10m, mostly from up and down the east coast.

Field Day antenna setup at the house
Field Day antenna setup at the house

Then it was off to the usual Field Day on the USS Yorktown with the  club. This year we were operating with 2 stations plus a GOTA station that appeared to attract some interest.

The GOTA station was run on battery that was being charged by a solar panel, and also featured a couple of VHF go kits and some Morse code keyers to play with.

At the usual operating locations, people were busy making Field Day contacts. I spent about an hour at the phone station operating, but listening to the band chaos wore me out pretty quickly, so I switched over to logging for a bit.

WA4USN CW/digital station
WA4USN CW/digital station
WA4USN phone station
WA4USN phone station

Spent another hour operating Field Day from home on Sunday morning and was able to score a bunch more contacts fairly easily. Then it was back to the Yorktown to finish off the last couple hours of Field Day and then pack everything away.

At home, I ended up with about 25 contacts over the two hours I was operating. On the Yorktown, the club ended up with 582 contacts spread out over 4 bands and 4 modes. Pretty good this year. Maybe it was the sacrifice of AJ4UQ’s HT to the ocean that helped this year.

We were lucky enough to have a couple of CW operators who were going at a pretty steady pace both days. It was fun to watch them operating. Some day I hope to be there doing CW.

Sunday CW operating for Field Day
Sunday CW operating for Field Day