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Old 12-04-2015, 13:50   #1
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New to me Kenwood TS-130

I have just acquired a used Kenwood TS-130 nothing more at this time. Will be cursing SoCal, Mexico, Pacific. Weather, communication on nets, email. Would like to install the radio at the chart table located mid ship. Malaya is a 45' Wylie Cutter constructed in cold molding. At this time I have an un insulated back stay (I do have a set of insulators) don't love the idea of using them but want a good install. Plenty of room the install a tuner (please suggest a tuner for this rig) also would like input on a ground, Malaya has 10,000# external lead with easy excess to keel bolts (monel), hate to add any holes to hull. Malaya, I believe may have had a rig at one time, as there is copper tape running through the rather shallow bilge. I'm sure I have missed information.
Thanks,
Neal
S/V Malaya
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Old 12-04-2015, 14:01   #2
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Neal-
I think you'll find arrl.org has a book on marine ham radio installations, which are essentially the same thing as marine ssb. There are usually cheaper places online to get arrl books, btw. I haven't seen it, but it might be worth reading to get a good overview of the issues and solutions people have had.
If you don't have a manual, Kenwood-USA is online and very helpful, even on older radios.
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Old 12-04-2015, 15:07   #3
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

The seller of the radio is suggesting a MFJ-versa-tuner-ii-MFJ-941d or MFJ-Deluxe-Versa-Tuner-II-model 949D (for Ham) Any thoughts, both are available on ebay
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Old 12-04-2015, 15:10   #4
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

I have the SGC 230 tuner for the ICOM 718, has worked great and needs no connection, other than the antenna lead, to the radio to work. Not cheap as no one seems to discount them much. Assume you know the tuner should be located as close to the Antenna as possible.

As far a the ground plane, you don't need to have contact with the water so no need for holes through the hull. Have run copper strapping from the bow to stern under the deck along each side of the hull. Has worked fine for the sail to Hawaii receiving Gribs and sending email with the Pactor modem, checking in with the MM net and general Ham QSO's. Others have just run the Antenna Tuner ground to the engine, an already existing through hull or used The KISS KISS-SSB TM grounding system to get acceptable signals out. On previous boat, installed a DynaPlate for the radio ground which also worked.

Love those old Wylies. He drew really pretty and FAST boats back in the early days of the IOR.
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Old 12-04-2015, 15:34   #5
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Thanks,
Malaya is fast, but a rare all cruise built boat from Tom, not IOR by any means. There is a photo of her in my folder if you care to peek.
Neal
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Old 13-04-2015, 09:25   #6
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Neal, et al,
I just saw this posting, after I replied to your PM last night....
And, thought it would good to paste my whole reply to you here as well....especially as there may be some/many here that would find the info/advice helpful...
(oh, and this way I don't have to re-type everything!



1) First off, some really good news....
I have a good deal of experience with the TS-130s...
My best friend Joe, KA4WJB (who I've know for > 40 years and with whom I studied with, for our ham licenses > 35 years ago...) has owned / used a TS-130s for > 35 years, and I've not only used his rig at field days, etc., but also helped him repair it a few times...so, I know the radio well...
Even today, his wife uses the radio almost daily to check into some nets, etc., as she finds it an easy-to-use rig...

So, I know the TS-130s pretty well...and it's not a bad radio...BUT...


2) Please forgive my bluntness, but if you can return the TS-130s and buy a different radio, almost any other radio...you'd be MUCH better off...
Please understand that I know the TS-130s pretty well...and it's not a bad radio...BUT...
But, this is not a good choice of HF radio for your application at all...

Here are just a few reasons:
a) It is an OLD (30-35 year old) radio...which means it will have some issues/problems, questionable performance and reliability...

b) It is an OLD design, so even if it was in top shape, and you didn't have any issues with it...it's still a pretty old design..

c) Even new in 1980, it was a simple, entry-level HF ham rig, with good but basic features...and was sometimes susceptible to RF feedback (a really bad thing on-board!)

d) Here's the BIG reason...
It is a "ham-band-only" rig....meaning it cannot even receive anything outside the ham radio bands....so, it cannot be used to receive USCG transmissions of NWS/NOAA Offshore and Hi-Seas weather, cannot receive any WeFax charts, nor receive/monitor any HF Maritime Frequencies, nor any HF Maritime Nets....let alone transmit on maritime freqs...

e) Unlike Icom, Kenwood never made a remote automatic tuner for use with end-fed antennas, etc....
So, your only choice for a remote tuner with this radio is an SGC....such as an SG-230, etc...
SGC has had significant quality-control issues over the last year or three, and I ceased recommending their products a few years ago because of this!

f) The TS-130s, is an SSB/CW only radio, and is NOT rated for heavy-duty cycle modes (such as FSK, etc.) and uses rather old-fashioned trans/receive relays, which although does function in trans/rec switching during TOR modes, but is not too reliable, so while the radio can function for e-mail connectivity (using the proper modem/computer and software), it is NOT a good choice, and will not last too long in this type of operation...



There's more....but I think get the idea...
The TS-130s is not a bad radio, but a fairly bad choice for your use on-board....so, if you can return it, please do so...



Here are some specifics in red....
Quote:
Originally Posted by NRosenthal View Post

Originally Posted by NRosenthal
I have just acquired a used Kenwood TS-130 nothing more at this time.
If you can return it, and acquire just about any other HF rig, you'd be MUCH happier!


Will be cursing SoCal, Mexico, Pacific. Weather, communication on nets, email.
Even if teamed with a good remote tuner ($$$), and installed properly, understand this is a "ham band only" radio...
-- Hence your primary (only?) "weather" is going to be that read outloud by a net control operator on the MMSN and Pacific Seafarer's Nets, on 14.300mhz, and whatever you may get from a few other hams elsewhere...
-- The only "nets" will be those ham nets, MMSN, the morning 75m Sonrisa net, the morning 40m Chubasco and Baja nets, and the afternoon 75m Happy Hour net...
(and your range on the 75m nets will be limited, probably only a couple hundred miles...)
-- And, for e-mail...well you're limited to Winlink only (and unless you buy a > $1000 PACTOR modem, you're limited to Winmor, only!)....with the sporadic performance / reliability of Winlink and limited speed of Winmor...


Would like to install the radio at the chart table located mid ship. Malaya is a 45' Wylie Cutter constructed in cold molding.
If you must use this radio, then mount it where you can best use it....and install an SGC tuner aft....
Understand that I'm NOT recommending the SGC tuner, not at all....just that with the TS-130s, you're limited to buying an SGC tuner...



At this time I have an un insulated back stay (I do have a set of insulators) don't love the idea of using them but want a good install.
As I have said 100's of times...
In all my years of seeing rigging failures, I've never seen a rigging insulator fail....the good ones ARE designed to be stronger than the wire they are installed in (assuming you buy/install the correct size)....

But, if you want to be completely safe, use Hydn Hi-Mod "fail safe" rigging insulators....they are pricey, but are the best!!

Or, if you wish to save $$$, simply construct/install an "alternative backstay antenna"....and you'll be working fine!



Plenty of room the install a tuner (please suggest a tuner for this rig)
If you can in any possibility at all...please return this rig...
If you cannot, and cannot buy a different rig...you are limited to only the SGC tuners....


also would like input on a ground, Malaya has 10,000# external lead with easy excess to keel bolts (monel), hate to add any holes to hull. Malaya, I believe may have had a rig at one time, as there is copper tape running through the rather shallow bilge.
As long as the "copper tape" (strapping) is in good condition, simply clean the connection areas (they should be shinny, like a new shinny copper penny), and connect to your new tuner...

Assuming the distance between the remote tuner and the keel bolts is < 8' - 10' of copper strapping, you're good to go!!

But, in all seriousness, you are going to be pretty unhappy with this TS-130s set-up....so, if you want my real advice, return the TS-130 ASAP....and but a different radio!

As I wrote above, please excuse my bluntness.....but if I gave you any other advice, I'd be a lying jerk...at least this way, I'm an honest jerk!


BTW, if you feel like sharing it, please let me know who recommended this TS-130s for your application??? Or how they came to this??


Fair winds...

John
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Old 13-04-2015, 10:44   #7
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Neal,
In general, when asked about antenna choices/options, I always reply with questions....such as where do you wish to communicate, what time-of-day and time-of-year, on what frequencies, what modes, etc...
When asked this question regarding cruising boats' antenna choices, the answers are obviously quite limited by space / configuration / durability, etc. as well as the primary criteria that the "antenna" not interfere with the sailing / operations of the boat!

And, when asked about radio choices / options for cruising boats the answers are also pretty limited, assuming you want to use the maritime frequencies (which you do)....

You've hit on the best choices / options already....
But, if you could further elaborate on your specific needs / desires a bit, we can be of more help...
As an example you mention e-mail, and if you really look you'll find that unless you need e-mail connectivity at sea for some reason like running a business, etc., then you're not likely to need e-mail connectivity aside from cellular/3G/4G/LTE and/or Wi-Fi....understand that you do NOT need e-mail connectivity to get excellent weather info/forecasts...
Also, you mention "weather"....but not exactly sure WHERE, and when, you are planning on sailing/cruising...

So, more info is needed here, for us to give you better advice/recommendations!
But, until then...


In my opinion, I'd place the M-802 on the top of the list....at a cost of about $1800 new, it's also the most expensive, of the :cruiser affordable" radios!
(and, is the ONLY affordable HF-DSC-SSB Radiotelephone on the market....so assuming you do want HF-DSC capability, it is literally your only choice....the next choice up from there will cost you > $8000....)
{Of course, those with BIG budgets can look at the Sailor / Thrane & Thrane / Cohban 6350....which is a GREAT radio....but will cost you ~ $12,000! and runs on 24vdc!}


Then, in 2nd place, comes the Icom M-700Pro....which although starting to see their age, can still be a reliable radio...although, understand that it (like all of the older maritime rigs and all ham rigs) does NOT have any DSC capability...
You can find them used, in good condition, for about $500 - $750...

And, close in 3rd place would be the Icom M-710....usually a bit more pricey than the M-700Pro, and not as easy to use on the ham bands...so, I place the M-700Pro above it on the list...


If some are looking for a "ham rig" for their boat, not a maritime rig, I still highly recommend the Icom M-802....which is a surprisingly good HF ham rig for use on-board...
But, if that is too pricey....then I'd opt for a used Icom IC-718, with an Icom AH-4, or Kenwood TS-480HX teamed to a SGC-230 tuner (but I'm still not going to recommend SGC...)


Here are some specifics, in red...
Quote:
Originally Posted by NRosenthal
John,
Thank you for your input on the Kenwood TS-130.
The good news is that the seller has agreed to allow me to back out of buying the radio.
So lets start over.
My goal remains the same. A good rig for the discussed comms.
If you could be more specific on your planned cruising, what your need for e-mail connectivity is, and your general communications requirements....it would help...


Let's start with my radio choices: Icom 802 is very popular and costly, I'm told that the Icom 710 would be a good choice, as well as the Icom 700 pro, both can be had for better (lower) cost. Are there others that you can suggest I add to my shopping list?
You've hit the major choices, just fine....




As for "tuner" choices....your best bet is going to be using an Icom remote auto-tuner (such as AH-2 / AH-4...or better the AT-140 or AT-130)....
Quote:
Originally Posted by NRosenthal View Post
The seller of the radio is suggesting a MFJ-versa-tuner-ii-MFJ-941d or MFJ-Deluxe-Versa-Tuner-II-model 949D (for Ham) Any thoughts, both are available on ebay
The major issues with using the MFJ "versa-tuners" (which I also have experience with) or any other manual tuner are:
a) You need to manually tune them every time....and that means you must not only be able to get at them, but you must also need to know "how-to" do this, everytime....and everyone that ever may need to use the radio, also needs to be able to do this, every time, even in an emergency!!!

b) If you place the tuner near the radio, where you can get at it, and adjust it, etc.....then you can end up with quite a few problems...
--- RFI and RF Feedback, especially if you try to feed the antenna directly from the tuner....(because the antenna starts right there!)
--- Difficulty in tuning and excessive loss in the system (both tuner losses and coax losses), if you decide to use coax on the tuner output and feed antenna with coax and/or coax and balun! (understand that some have used this approach, and have had success with it....but these are trained/experienced radio nuts, and remember that these results are not an absolute!)

c) Further, when trying to use any low-quality or mediocre-quality tuner (a category which MFJ fits nicely into), even if everything else is good...you will end up with higher tuner losses, and probably limited tuning range...





Bottom line here:
My recommendations would be based on YOUR specific application and needs....so I'd really need to know more details...

But, until then....
The Icom M-802 (and Icom AT-140 tuner) is probably going to be your best choice...


I hope this helps...

John
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Old 13-04-2015, 10:46   #8
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Quote:
Originally Posted by NRosenthal View Post
The seller of the radio is suggesting a MFJ-versa-tuner-ii-MFJ-941d or MFJ-Deluxe-Versa-Tuner-II-model 949D (for Ham) Any thoughts, both are available on ebay
Neither of these is a "remote" tuner. They must be mounted next to the radio, and you must tune manually. They are popular with HAMS who have a land-based radio shack setup and enjoy "fiddling" with their equipment. They are definitely not made for, nor at all suitable for, the kind of installation that you would want on a boat.

As mentioned, you need to get an SG-230 for this radio.
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Old 13-04-2015, 11:08   #9
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

"...Will be cursing SoCal, Mexico, Pacific. Weather, communication on nets, email...."

Just don't do your cursing on the ham nets! :>)
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Old 13-04-2015, 11:23   #10
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Ok sending messages from my phone will always cause problems for me, between "fat" fingers and auto correct. No cussing. First area of cruising would be SoCal to Mex. to Hawaii, to Alaska, to PNW to SF and home. Second would be outward from West Coast to SpPac.
Noticed in classified a Icom 710 with tuner and more...any thoughts?
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Old 13-04-2015, 11:24   #11
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Neal,
I REALLY wish I could go back and add this to my original posting here....as it should have been right at the top!!

BEFORE you make any radio decisions and certainly BEFORE you buy any radio....please read over at least some of these threads and certainly watch these videos!


https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ZDo_Jk3NB_Bt1y



https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...zdjTJjHlChruyY

Offshore / Hi-Seas Weather data / forecasts



https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...ga2zYuPozhUXZX

New HF-DSC Explanation and LIVE Demonstration Videos



And, specific to the M-802...
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?lis...rC-8QKVyMb4tVr

Icom M-802 use on the Ham Radio Bands




Is an SSB/pactor modem worth it?

Is an SSB/pactor modem worth it?



I do hope this helps...

John


And, for lots of references...
Marine SSB Stuff (how-to better use/properly-install SSB)
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Old 13-04-2015, 11:35   #12
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Neal,
Our postings are passing each other in cyberspace!

But seriously...please read my last post...
New to me Kenwood TS-130

And, at least read / watch the info on HF-DSC...

And, only then will you realize that not having an HF-DSC radio might not really be a good choice for you...


Now, having written the above, let say that the M-710 is a good radio....but is NOT an HF-DSC radio....and as such would not be my choice/recommendation....
Quote:
Originally Posted by NRosenthal View Post
First area of cruising would be SoCal to Mex. to Hawaii, to Alaska, to PNW to SF and home. Second would be outward from West Coast to SpPac.
Noticed in classified a Icom 710 with tuner and more...any thoughts?
So again....please read my last posting and have a look at the videos referenced and read some of the referenced threads as well....and I think you might understand my point better....
New to me Kenwood TS-130


But, until then....yes, the M-710 is a good radio....and it might be adequate for you...
But, again this depends on YOUR specific application....and at this point (having the limited info I have), I still recommend the M-802...

As for this specific M-710 and AT-130??
http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...em-144278.html
$1300 is way over priced!!
And, $1200, is also way over priced!!

I've seen M-710's in excellent condition (w/ 90-day warranty) sell for about $500 - $600....(and haven't seen one over $700 in a decade!)
And, used tuners are usually about 50% of their "new" price....or about $200....

In all honesty, I don't want you to buy a radio until you've watched / read the above referenced info....
EDIT: Upon rereading this sentence, I hope it doesn't come off as being "authoritative"...because it is just my opinion!!!
But, if you want my advice about this specific radio for sale....I wouldn't offer more than $700 - $750 all-in....(the KISS is for all intents-and-purposes worthless, as you can build your own for <$5, and depending on the line/rope used, you can build your own "halyard antenna" for < $50, and maybe for free...)







Fair winds..

John
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Old 13-04-2015, 11:44   #13
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Re: New to me Kenwood TS-130

Now to find an 802 that I can afford
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