[AMRadio] Got an FT102

Kim Elmore cw_de_n5op at sbcglobal.net
Wed Nov 28 08:31:08 EST 2007

My Dad (W5JHJ  SK) had one. I operated it a few times and talked him 
into getting it completely overhauled by NC4L (Mal Eiselman) who is a 
bit of a legend with these rigs. My Dad's suffered from relay 
problems as well as another odd-ball issue. After NC4L  was done with 
it, it was better than new -- by quite a bit. Mal isn't cheap, but he 
is meticulous and does superb work.

As I recall, Mal explained to me that the rx in the '102 is nearly 
identical in design to the original FT-1000. I don't know if that's 
completely accurate or not, but I recall the radio as being silky 
smooth and having a very nice receiver. I did listen to AM on it some 
and it sounded good, though I never operated the rig in AM mode. It 
makes a fair bit of smoke, too, with the 3 x 6146B set up. Loading it 
on 10 m is a bit tricky as the PA seems to have a lot of stray 
capacitance, so getting the load capacitance small enough can be 
challenging if the load isn't perfectly resistive and 50 ohms. In 
fact, I do recall that the PA tuning is pretty narrow: it isn't happy 
with an output load much different from 50 ohms resistive.

Kim Elmore, N5OP 

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