Sunday, May 5, 2013

A way to mount control knobs right the first time!

Starting to look like a K2
The front panel is now complete I mounted the VFO without any problems...but...On page 32 you are asked to secure the front plate and PC board (via a standoff) with a 4-40x 3/16 flat head screw.  According to the front plate you will see this screw should be beveled. I used the 4-40 82 degree flat head screw here.  Once the front plate and front panel are together  the radio starts to take some shape. It's now time to add the control knobs and I am a fuss pot and want the knobs to be the same height off the front panel plate. I have found a sure way of doing this and it adds a nice finish to the radio when all the knobs are placed the same distance off the front plate. Here is how I do it and it's simple, cheap and works every time!

4-40 82 deg screw in place
I found a washer that's center hole will fit around the shaft of the control pots. I then used my Dremel tool to cut out a section of the washer. If you have a hack saw and vise you can also remove a section of the washer. File the cutout to remove rough edges. To finish things off, on the side of the washer that is going to come in contact with the front panel plate I added some masking tape as to not scratch the surface of the finished front plate. Now that  you have a notched washer that is taped on one side here is what  you do....
1. Set the pots to either fully clockwise or counter clockwise, on some pots one position is better than the other for tightening the set screws. Test it out and see, also I know the manual says mid position all pots but I have found this is not great for securing the set screws with the Allen key. 
2. Place the washer around the "Keyer" pot.
Washer and knobs
3. Now put the plastic keyer knob on (with set screws loosened) until it rests against the washer.
4. Position the plastic knob to either full clockwise or counter clockwise. (however you set the pot)
5. Tighten up both set screws on the keyer knob and then remove the washer.
Note: Put the knobs on in the following order Keyer, Power, AF gain and RF gain. If not you may run into trouble removing the washer. 
6. Now do the same to the RIT plastic control knob.
Washer placement
The VFO knob is not to be installed this way as it has a felt washer put between the VFO knob and front plate. This is to allow the user to adjust the VFO knob resistance, by moving the VFO knob closer or further away from the felt washer.
Job complete not taped side

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