From: Rarland (Rarland@Microserve.com)
The Heil HC-4 element arrived yesterday afternoon from Reynolsburg, OH (not
Things got interesting when I attempted to replace the existing RS mic element
with the HC-4. This was literaly a case of "the square peg into a round hole"
exercise. The existing mic element that RS furnishes is round and fits snugly
into the moulded plastic end on the boom. The Heil HC-4 DX element is
rectangular and would sit into the hole left by the old element, but the
topwould not fit over the element.
Some deft work with the X-Acto knife and a 35 watt soldering iron on the bottom
mic holder and the HC-4 slid into place. The top section needed to be modified
so that the corners of the HC-4 would not hold the top of the case above the
bottom section. Again, the X-Acto knife did the trick and everything mated up
NOTE: if you are an experienced plastic model builder (I perfer to build German
and American armor of WW-II) then you won't have a problem with this
modification. HOWEVER, if you are not adroit with the tools of a plastic
modeler, then find yourself someone who does this sort of thing and oversee the
The Results: WHAT AN IMPROVEMENT! My first QSO was KY8M, mobile using a
MFJ-9420 in his car driving in Cleveland, OH. Craig and I held the frequency
for almost 20 minutes before the QRM and QSB ended our conversation. Craig said
my audio was nice and "punchy" and cut thru the noise and moderate QRM very
I worked several other 20 meter stations but my big trophy of the evening was
Z30IL in Macedonia. He has a small pile up working and I busted him on the 2nd
try with 2 watts out of the Argo. He commented that my audio had a nice punch
to it and was very easy to copy. He was really blown away when I told him that
I was only running 2 watts from my 509.
I am very satisified with my "poor man's Pro Set". Using the RS MX-50 combo and
the Heil HC-4 element saved me almost half price of the real Heil Pro Set. It
was a very rewarding project, and, as a result of this project, I have, at long
last, added a remote key line and foot switch to the station, which will make
SSB contesting much easier and efficient (I hate VOX!).
I don't know how much longer the MX-50s will be on sale for $49.95, so don't
let any grass grow under your collective feet, if you want to improve your QRP
Look for me during this Sunday's SSB sprint. If you hear me rest assured that
Ill be using my "poor man's Pro Set" to talk to you.
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