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Old 11-15-2016, 4:04 PM
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Originally Posted by jim202 View Post
The days of being able to sit at a bench and do component repair on surface mount circuit boards today has killed the available pool of bench techs today. This is a dying skill that is killing the ham community's ability to work on most of the radios out there these days.
There's equipment out there for it. I bought a Chinese IR bonder on an auction website and it works very effectively with a pair of tweezers. It's a very intense light that heats up the board, along with a ceramic element on the bottom so the board is heated evenly. My problem is that sometimes I can't get the parts. It becomes several days of work to wait a week or two to get them shipped in. And, if the failure is an ASIC, you can buy the device and replace it, but if it doesn't have the operating routine on it, it's no good. I used to be quite good at component level repair "back in the day," but it started turning in 1992 or so.

That also seemed to be around the sunset for low band base stations, too. I remember Motorola discontinuing the Micor base and drop shipping Aerotron of all things. We were also replacing the 330 W tube amps with Henry Radio solid state amps back then.

The X9000 radios were super, but so were the Syntor X. Basically the same RF just a different personality board. But you can't find anyone with an R-1800 programmer. Last orange prom I programmed for a Syntor X had to be 15 years ago.
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