Another Project Off the Workbench and Into Operation

About a year ago, I bought a CI-V interface kit from K5LXP. The CI-V interface is the half-duplex serial interface that Icom uses to connects its radios to a computer. Putting the kit together was a real challenge.

Unfortunately, it didn’t work right off, and I put it aside to look at later. Well, later turned out to be eight months later. I probed around, and when the results didn’t really make much sense, I e-mailed Mark. He noted that some of the boards were lacking a trace, and that adding a jumper wire should clear things right up.

It took me several months to get to that, but I did that tonight and my laptop is now talking to the IC-746PRO. It’s very cool. My N3FJP logging software talks to the radio, automatically recording the frequency of a QSO.

I don’t know if Mark has any more left to sell, but he only charged me five bucks, so I think I got a pretty good deal. Now, it’s on to the next project, which I think is going to be a regnerative receiver.


  1. Enjoy the blog. I built a nice regen once using my shoebox technique (see Really handy for that sort of thing. One transistor, and a 35mm film can coil.

    73 de WD5GNR

  2. Hi, Al–

    Thanks for your comment. I like the shoebox prototyping technique. Seems to me that it would be easier to construct something using this technique than the Manhattan technique. I’m going to have to start saving shoebox tops and give it a try.

    It occurs to me that it might be worthwhile to build a “shoebox” from single-sided PCB material. This would have two advantages over the shoebox top: It would be mechanically sturdier, and the copper side would provide a nice ground plane. I’m going to have to work on this idea a bit more.

    73, Dan

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