Building The Small Wonder Labs SW40+

ASSEMBLY: I placed the boards on a piece of Lexan I picked up at Lowes. It has been cut to fit the inside of the Johnson Messenger.

Boards Mounted To Lexan


Just a few things left to do: Mount RIT pot, and RIT toggle switch, work on sidetone (it is not consistent) and figure out why the Digital Dial wanders during transmit. The vfo is solid, but on the lcd display, all digits wander during transmit.

NOTE: After going back over the wiring, I realized that the braid on the coax running from R17 on the SW40 to the Digital Dial input had not been connected (on the SW side). After tacking down the braid to ground, the wandering stopped.

Mounted on Lexan inside Johnson Messenger

Front View

Close Up Of Front Panel


Ok, it’s not even together yet, but I had to do a test. I listened around this morning (3/5/11) and heard a nice strong CQ on 7042.9. I answered it, and N4LQ (Steve) came right back to me from Charlotte, NC. He gave my one watt (give or take a few mw) a 559, and commented that the tone was good. Steve was solid copy on the SW40+, the vfo never had even a hint of any drift, and it was an enjoyable qso. All except for the part about it being my first CW contact in many years, my fist was not so hot on the straight key, and my ability to copy matched my fist! But I copied enough to be able to copy what he said 99%, and had a blast! This rig might be what it takes to light my fire in ham radio again!

Leave a Reply