Hallicrafters HT37

 I used this hefty 80 pound transmitter for many years before buying a Heathkit Transceiver. The separate transmitter-receiver combination was pretty universal in the years before the Japanese took over the amateur radio market and introduced the transceiver. Not only was the latter much more convenient to use, it became a work of art compared with the very functional design of the older separates. One didn't any longer buy a new rig on the strength of its name but more what it looked like in the glossy brochures, when one usually worked out comparative value by an extraneous feature such as £'s per knob..

The HT37 is down to earth and provides SSB, switchable to upper or lower; DSB or AM and CW. It uses a VFO and covers the old HF amateur bands 80/40/20/15 and 10. The last band is limited to the section 28.5 to 29 MHz unless one plugs in different heterodyne crystals.

Power output is rated at an honest 70-100 watts PEP SSB, 70-100 watts RMS CW, and 17-25 watts of AM.

18 valves are used with a pair of 6146s in the final amplifier. On the front panel are a couple of controls for reducing the carrier and it's possible to reach extremely low levels by turning on the receiver whilst the transmitter is powered up (not forgetting to turn the mic gain to zero!) and nulling out the residual carrier. Voice operated transmit is selectable together with special contacts on the rear for nulling out feedback from a local loudspeaker.

Originally the rig was powered from 115 volts AC but at some time I converted it. I have a recollection of the old transformer failing which would imply that I fitted a new 240 volt type.

Soon I hope to fire up this old rig and again operate it on 80 or 40 meters. I'll use either an AR88 or an RA17 receiver but first I'll have to organise an aerial relay and the external cabling that these, unlike modern transceivers, require before they can be used.

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