Sunday 9 May 2010

Old Versus New

I had a break from the shack this morning as I went along to a classic car show which is held annually in the village. Luckily we were blessed with fine weather, in fact for the three years that I have attended this event the sun has shone.
Looking at the cars from the 1930's up to the 1990s it is clear just how much the technology of the car has evolved. In terms of efficiency, safety and reliability I think it is fair to say that a car from the 1970s would not be able match its modern counterpart.
I don't think we could say the same for our radio transceivers. A Local amateur who I was chatting to over the weekend told me how he had recently purchased a Yaesu FT101ZD from the 1980's. The rig had been advertised as faulty but after getting it home and cleaning it up it seems to be operating well. I popped onto HF to give him a report and I can honestly say that the transmitted signal is as good as any modern gear. Whilst receiver technology has advanced, particularly with the development of SDR rigs it seems that as far as transmitted signals are concerned the old gear can still hold its own!

On the radio front this afternoon heard some EA stations on 10 metres although they were rather weak. It does look though as if the sporadic E season has arrived and it will be worth takinga regular tune around on 10 and 6. Operating on 10 metres does mean switching off the shack computers however as one of then generates around S4 of noise on 10. Thats going to make operating PSK31 on 10 a bit of a challenge!


  1. I love classic cars and always hankered after owning an MG TD, though I'm probably too old for a car like that now anyway.

    I spend a lot of time looking at old radios on eBay. I agree that they have something modern gear doesn't. I could now own radios I could only lust after when they were new. The killer is that my tiny shack just doesn't have room for boat anchors, so I'll probably have to stick with my K3 and get something new and similarly small for VHF / UHF.

  2. Seeing that Corsair reminded me of a MK2 1600E Cortina I once owned, oh and one other 'ordinary' MK2 that needed constant weekend mechanical attention so that I could get to work on a Monday morning...happy days...

  3. I had a corsair, AND an old Ford Transit with the same V4 engines BOTH head gaskets went, and I stripped and replaced both of them - I would not dream of getting into the modern engines now - seems you need a Sun analyser just to change plugs !!!
    I have an MGF I picked up locally - 12yrs old with only 40K on the clock - with documentation I have had new brakes and new front steering arms - cam-belt ??? seems ok... it's the VVC 1.8i runs really nicely and is S OOO comfortable, you'd think you were in a much larger car - with top down it's pure fun.

    73 Peter

  4. Thanks for the comments guys

    Personally of the 60's cars the Ford Anglia is the one for me. Reminds me of the times when as a kid I used to ride in my Dad's old anglia van!
    Paul, my first car was a MK2 Escort which required a liberal spray of WD40 in order to start whenever it rained.

    Peter, talking of head gaskets, isn't the MGF known for blowing them? Happened to a friend of mine at least.

    Julian, I always keep an eye on Ebay for some of the older gear, it does have more "character" somehow.

    73 Kevin