QRP transceiver with steering wheel VFO

by OH6DC

Had enough of those ridiculously small VFO knobs in commercial rigs? Want to cruise up and down the bands like driving a Ferrari? This is the solution.

An old PC racing wheel was modified into a 3,5 MHz CW transceiver. The wheel potentiometer now controls VFO frequency (3505 - 3575 kHz). PA transistor is 2N3866, giving 2 W output. Receiver uses direct conversion with SA612 mixer followed by LM386 audio amplifier. In the picture above, VFO circuit is located on the right, RX on the left.

The board lifted up for underside view: transmitter driver, PA, LPF and QSK circuits.

The red push-buttons on the steering wheel are connected to transmitter keying circuit. An external CW key can also be used.

This rig was first used in the Finnish homebrew rig QSO party, called ITE-tapahtuma, arranged by OH3ABN club station.