W1GHZ 10 GHz Transverter Project

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Internal Desription

Just for fun I decided to build one of W1GHZ's 10 GHZ transverter boards and make a working system out of it. First I lashed it all together on a piece of aluminum for easy testing, got it all working then built it into a box. I wanted it to be a self contained unit with a horn antenna attached and the I.F radio mounted on the lid for mobile & portable operation.

Equipment details:

The system consists of a 17db horn connected to a 2 stage VK3XDK LNA (through an SMA relay) into the RX port of the W1GHZ transverter, down converted to 144 MHz by the mixer, over to a Ukraine I.F. attenuator board from eBay (atten bypassed on RX) then out to the FT-817 I.F. rig.

The local oscillator is a Q5 Signal DigiLO set to 1.136 GHz. That gets multiplied by 3 to 3.408 GHz and again by 3 to 10.244 GHz by a W1GHZ "10 GHz Personal Beacon" board. That gets added to the 144.1 MHz I.F. signal in the mixer to end up on 10.3681 GHz. I added a Bliley 10 MHz OCXO to keep the L.O. stable and on frequency.

The SMA relay is a Ducommun latching type so there's a W6PQL latching driver board mounted on the left side of the enclosure.

The right side has a 5v regulator mounted on an aluminum heatsink to power the 10 MHz Bliley OCXO.

There's also an 8v regulator beside the terminal strip to supply the MMICs on the W1GHZ Transverter and Multiplier boards.

The orange relay taped to the transverter board switches the 8v between RX and TX. Everything else runs off 12v.

It's a bit cobbled together but I will eventually tidy up the wiring and replace the .085 flex coax with some semi-rigid when I get time to bend them up.

Just connect 12VDC and it's good to go.

The RX is pretty hot with the 2 stage VK3XDK LNA so the next step will be to add a 1 or 2W PA to balance out the performance.

First Tests:

Here's a video of the first RX test of the proto lashup: W1GHZ transverter RX Test.

This is a video of my first 2-way contact using the W1GHZ transverter from inside my car: I went to FN03cn and Peter VA3ELE was at FN03an, only about 11 km apart but good enough for a first test. Peter had a couple of watts at his end, I had 10 milliwatts straight out of a MMIC. First QSO using W1GHZ transverter.

I loaned this rig out to Andy, VA3CW to use in the 2020 10 GHz & Up contest and he managed to make several contacts including one with K0SM at 219 km. Pretty remarkable for 10mW !

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