I have been pushing myself to build some IF filters. I’ve never built a front end of a radio; VCO, mixer, filters.. none of it. I started by buying the Amidon Toroid Experimenters kit #2 and #3 as many of the ARRL handbook samples use Amidon part numbers. I ended up switching to another book to do all my research though; “Secrets of RF Design”. Let me let you in on the secret.. it’s a lot of reading, not all of it stimulating. I also bought the “Island Cutter” from QRPme which is probably one of my favorite purchases of the year… armed with that I started building circuits.
If you’re working about purchasing the Amidon Experimenter Kits.. well I have no regrets. It gave me a good selection of options and even some larger one’s I don’t know when I will use but maybe for a switching supply project or something. I ordered a few other small pieces I knew I’d need more than 4 of just to have them on hand.
I really enjoy the circuits around varactor diodes. I’m building an analog front end but for stability I might just end up wwitching to DDS later on but for now for the VCO is a tank circuit. Next step is the mixer..
I probably should still be working on other things, I have a pile of “to-do”s but I needed a little inspiration to keep me at the bench after all this summer fun. My last summer outing is a 7 day backpacking trip in the northern cascades packrafting! That’ll be some seriously needed unplug time. So stay tuned… I ordered about ~$500 worth of electronics for all my up-coming fun.. looking forward to digging into it. I still need to buy an LCR meter, I’ve never owned one and it would be nice to know my inductors is/are “in the ball field” when I wind something using the tables… I can do the math but I think it’d still be nice for a confirmation before I start soldering and making measurements.