gas tube replacement Poly Phaser

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FKimble

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Can the gas tube be replaced on a Poly Phaser? I thought they could but having recently picked up one and installed it (used, no directions), I thought maybe I should go ahead and get a spare. No one list them for sale. And Poly Phasers website doesn't seem to mention replacing them. Now Alpha Delta gas tubes are listed. When the Poly Phaser gas tube dies, I assume it will be obvious, SWR thru the roof and no receive or transmit? Do I have to toss it when the gas tube goes out? Oh I have been searching but luck.

Thank
Frank
 

FKimble

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David thanks. But no real help. One gas tube listed for the "RGT" model. My model is IS-B50LM-C?-MA. Could not find this exact model. Probably an older model. Got it from a new member in our HAM club who just retired from a radioshop. Like any good HAM he has been stockpiling Coax etc. IS-B50L is the beginning of lots of models but no M's. Even tried searching on model numbering scheme but no luck. It has the flange mounting. Your link did show me some Times brand that looked like relabeled Poly Phasers .Several other brands show "replaceable gas tube" in their short description. At this point I am leaning heavily in the direction of "not replaceable".
 

FKimble

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Jim, that makes too much sense. Just got to questioning this late yesterday after hours. May email them Monday morning. Thanks for the reply. Figured as many radio techs as we have here, it would have been a quick decisive answer or two.
 

WA0CBW

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They are not replaceable. You may be able to "roll your own" replacement. I would be wary of using used ones as you can't tell if they have taken one or one hundred surges. Measuring their return loss/feed thru loss will find obviously bad ones but it is one that only has one half a surge left that is hard to identify.
BB
 

FKimble

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WA0CBW, thanks for the info. So it sounds like the "great" PolyPhaser may be giving folks a faults sense of security, especially after a couple thunder storms roll thru the area. Is the Alpha Delta and other brands the same way or do some of them stop passing RF when the tube dies? Maybe put 2 in series, annually rotating in a new one nearest the radios and discarding the one nearest the antenna? Got this one basically free with 75 feet of 7/8 hardline with installed connectors and cut to fit my install plus tower top jumper for about the cost of a new Poly P.
 

mmckenna

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Polyphasers are not repairable. Once they go, you replace them.

As for knowing when they've been 'used', there isn't an easy way. They won't show as a short to ground/shield or anything that would show up on an SWR meter.

Polyphaser does make a tester, however, usually if they are suspect they get replaced.

I would not trust a "used" Polyphaser. Replace it with a new one.
 

prcguy

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I have a lot of Polyphasers in use and none of them have a gas tube. They supposedly will withstand a number of direct hits and if they go bad it will usually have serious degradation of any RF flowing through it.

One VHF repeater I worked on recently had two fiberglass Stationmaster antennas blown apart over the years by direct lightning hits and the repeater was protected by a Polyphaser and we had no damage. The same Polyphaser is still in service and working fine.
prcguy
 

Rred

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I don't think Polyphaser are conning anyone. They're too well known and used by the broadcast industry, and those folks have to remain on the air and running 24x7 with the biggest antennas in the most attractive places for lightning. And regular hits.

FWIW.
 

prcguy

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I agree, they are located in one of the most lightning rich areas of the US and do live testing on their products. I have some of Polyphaser's white papers and training manuals and they seem to know more about lightning than any other company I've seen.

When I visit major mountain top repeater sites in CA, the vast majority of lightning arrestors for the buildings and antennas are Polyphaser.
prcguy


I don't think Polyphaser are conning anyone. They're too well known and used by the broadcast industry, and those folks have to remain on the air and running 24x7 with the biggest antennas in the most attractive places for lightning. And regular hits.

FWIW.
 

lmrtek

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They are a throw away item

When they have been surged hard enough to damage a gas tube, they are usually a molten chunk of aluminum by then
 
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