regency rh256b

Forum dedicated to discussion on RELM/Regency/Wilson Radio products
jasonmcrai
Posts: 1
Joined: Sat Jul 10, 2004 7:16 pm

regency rh256b

Post by jasonmcrai »

I programmed this rh256b radio like many of the other 256b radios i've programed and worked successfully. this particular one when you key up the power acts like it comes on a off till you quit keying up then returns normal. odviously this radio will not transmit but does recieve... any ideas? or repair guestimates?
Jason

Andy Brinkley
Posts: 68
Joined: Tue Jun 03, 2003 8:23 pm
Location: North Carolina

Post by Andy Brinkley »

Sounds like the normal bad power switch on the RH256.

Replace the power switch or jump it out and the radio should work properly provided that the VCO is locked
Andy

--------------------------------------------------------------
NC Certified Firefighter III / EMT-A
FCC Licensed Technician / Amateur Call NC4AB
http://www.brinkleyelectronics.com

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KF4SQB
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Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2003 12:42 am
Location: Moultrie GA

Post by KF4SQB »

Jason, you may not want to hack your radio like I did mine, but here's my repair for a bad power switch. I don't use the "day/night" switch anyway, so I just rewire it to be always in "night" mode, and then use the switch for the power switch. The stock switch is a weak point anyway, and the replacement will eventualy go out as well, so why not just use a different style switch and be done with it?
Brett Kitchens
KF4SQB

kf4sqb "at" wetsnet "dot" com

Of all the things I've lost, it's my mind I miss the most.......

Two way repair man
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Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 12:36 pm
Location: Melbourne, FL

Re: regency rh256b

Post by Two way repair man »

Jason,

Andy's suggestion of a bad on/off switch is one good possibility, but there are at least two others. It is possible that the radio transmitter is not tuned just right and is pulling more current then youtr power source is capable of supplying or maybe the fuse is rated too low. Another possibility is a short on the transmit switched voltage.

If the radio only needs alignment, I charge a flat rate of $35 to include alignment and shipping from me to you.

If it needs a repair, I charge a flat rate of $75 that includes the parts, labor, any missing modifications, shipping from me to you, and a 90 day warranty.

Please visit my web site for details.

Regards,

Bill

http://www.billscommsol.com
email: bill@@billscommsol.com

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Wes
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Joined: Sat Feb 02, 2002 8:00 pm
Location: Mount Airy & Winston-Salem/Forsyth County, NC

Post by Wes »

I'll be putting my money on the bad on/off switch.....

I would be interested to see how Brett's fix would work. As long as the day/night switch would not be a weak point like the other, is the day/night switch rated for more or less current than the on/off switch????

Brett how many have you done this way? and how long do they hold up??

Wes
Wes Hutchens
wch36@yahoo.com
911 Telecommunicator / 2-Way Tech.
Mount Airy & Winston-Salem/Forsyth County, NC
http://www.ra-techservices.com

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KF4SQB
Posts: 166
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Location: Moultrie GA

Post by KF4SQB »

Only done one so far. It's held up well for about 3 years now. The contacts in the day/night switch are a lot heavier than what's in the original power switch. Oh, by the way, the one I have modded this way is a 60 watt version. Not that that really counts for anything, as the PA power doesn't run through the power switch.
Brett Kitchens
KF4SQB

kf4sqb "at" wetsnet "dot" com

Of all the things I've lost, it's my mind I miss the most.......

Two way repair man
Posts: 83
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 12:36 pm
Location: Melbourne, FL

Post by Two way repair man »

Wes,

Some of the RH256Bs came from the factory with a modified control board that uses a FET transistor to supply voltage to the radio. The On/Off switch is used to provide a ground to the FET.

All of the RH250s, RH256s, RH600s, RH606s, XLH250s and the Wilson versions that came to the factory for repair received the modified control boards or their existing control boards were modified to include the FET. I guess there is a chance that there are a few RH256s out there that do not have the modification, but it is going to be rare.

Just so you do not think that I am some yahoo that does not know what he is talking about, I spent 25 years of my life at RELM/Regency. 18 years was spent in the customer service department repairing customer radios and providing technician support to customers (dealers and end-users).

The FET transistor mod is the best way to go.

Regards,

Bill
http://www.billscommsol.com

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KF4SQB
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Location: Moultrie GA

Post by KF4SQB »

Bill, I guess we are in the backwoods here. I've never seen one with the FET mod. Then again, there aren't that many of them floating around in this area. Doesn't sound like a bad idea, though. I would think that the stock power switch would live for quite a while without a large current draw.
Brett Kitchens
KF4SQB

kf4sqb "at" wetsnet "dot" com

Of all the things I've lost, it's my mind I miss the most.......

Two way repair man
Posts: 83
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 12:36 pm
Location: Melbourne, FL

Post by Two way repair man »

Brett,

It is not the current demand during normal use that kills the power switch. It is the initial surge when the radio is turned on that causes the carbon build up on the contact pins of the switch. There are several electrolytic capacitors in the radio after the power switch and the surge is a result of charging all of those caps. Also, a salty or dusty environment causes the contacts (when the FET is not used) to arc more and the carbon builds up faster. The switch would last a lot longer if the contacts were completely encapsulated.

When the FET is incorporated the switch only provides a low current ground to the transistor. If the radio is used everyday a switch on an unmodified board will usually last between 3 and 6 months.

Regards,

Bill

I was in Moultie for one of the Farm Expos (RELM had a small booth set up). What a hoot!

motogayzer
Posts: 11
Joined: Wed Oct 27, 2004 12:46 am
Location: long island ny

the portables on your web page...

Post by motogayzer »

will they program on the ham band ? and can you field program the portables ? Is there a low band version for the portables that will program to 29.5 mhz up to 29.7 mhz and is there one to go to or from 46-54 mhz ? is there field programming for them ?

KF4SQB wrote:Bill, I guess we are in the backwoods here. I've never seen one with the FET mod. Then again, there aren't that many of them floating around in this area. Doesn't sound like a bad idea, though. I would think that the stock power switch would live for quite a while without a large current draw.

Two way repair man
Posts: 83
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 12:36 pm
Location: Melbourne, FL

RH256B

Post by Two way repair man »

You can program it for ham band frequencies (144 to 147MHz) but it will not work unless someone has already modified and retuned it for that range. The required mods are listed on my web site. (http://www.billscommsol.com) To retune it you will need a DVM, service monitor, and watt meter.

The SCV32 VHF (136 to 174MHz) portables are field programmable but you have to open the radio flip a mini-microswitch to put it into the programming mode. After programming is complete you must put the switch back into the original position to go back to the user mode. The steps are the same as the ones on my web site for the MPV32D.

RELM had a low band 6 channel known as the PTL56 that came in two bands but it was not keypad programmable. A band was 30 to 43MHz and B band was from 37 to 50MHz.

Please email me directly if I can assist you further by using: lrc2005@earthlink.net

Regards,

Bill

jehiatt
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2006 7:33 pm

Re: regency rh256b

Post by jehiatt »

jasonmcrai wrote:I programmed this rh256b radio like many of the other 256b radios i've programed and worked successfully. this particular one when you key up the power acts like it comes on a off till you quit keying up then returns normal. odviously this radio will not transmit but does recieve... any ideas? or repair guestimates?
Jason
Did the tx light come on and stay on or just flicker once? Those mike ptt switches often make and then breaks contact when depressed until some wd40 is put in it. Put some wd40 on the on off switch contacts also.

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KF4SQB
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Joined: Tue Dec 16, 2003 12:42 am
Location: Moultrie GA

Re: regency rh256b

Post by KF4SQB »

jehiatt wrote:Did the tx light come on and stay on or just flicker once? Those mike ptt switches often make and then breaks contact when depressed until some wd40 is put in it. Put some wd40 on the on off switch contacts also.
WD40? In electrical contacts? Only if you want to really ruin the contacts. WD40 is oil based. In case you weren't aware, oil doesn't conduct. It may work for a little while after you spray it, but the contacts are being pitted and arced over the whole time. The only thing I can think of right off that you have any business using WD40 for anywhere around a radio is to remove adhesive or paint from the case, and I'd be very careful doing that with it.
Brett Kitchens
KF4SQB

kf4sqb "at" wetsnet "dot" com

Of all the things I've lost, it's my mind I miss the most.......

jehiatt
Posts: 3
Joined: Wed Feb 08, 2006 7:33 pm

Re: regency rh256b

Post by jehiatt »

KF4SQB wrote:
jehiatt wrote:Did the tx light come on and stay on or just flicker once? Those mike ptt switches often make and then breaks contact when depressed until some wd40 is put in it. Put some wd40 on the on off switch contacts also.
WD40? In electrical contacts? Only if you want to really ruin the contacts. WD40 is oil based. In case you weren't aware, oil doesn't conduct. It may work for a little while after you spray it, but the contacts are being pitted and arced over the whole time. The only thing I can think of right off that you have any business using WD40 for anywhere around a radio is to remove adhesive or paint from the case, and I'd be very careful doing that with it.
You better believe it - and on relays and corrosion on IC's and boards it is a wonder. I spent mucho money on useless contact cleaners until I found wd40 way more effective and lasting on volume controls and switches, and I do use it for cleaning radio cases. It's great on corroded Motorola mike sockets and board interconnect pins also.
It is oil based, but evaps quickly and must leave a protective film.
For twenty years WD40 never caused any failures but it sure kept a lot of radios clicking along.
On a BTL, MCL and MCH relay I punch a hole in the relay cover with my soldering iron tip and sock it to it. Relay replacement went way down. There is one use I have not tried yet and that is to spray it on an aching body joint.
Try it on the next auto battery post you find a bad connection in before you do any other connection repair.


Two way repair man
Posts: 83
Joined: Mon Apr 05, 2004 12:36 pm
Location: Melbourne, FL

WD-40

Post by Two way repair man »

I use WD-40 for cleaning corroded PC boards, and when we get horizonal rain, (usually during a hurricane), I use it on my AC sockets located on the outside walls when my GFI breaker pops. The WD40 expells the water and then you can use the socket within minutes. I have sprayed it in the cheap switches that GM used on my Malibu and have corrected a few problems.

There is another way of cleaning the PTT switches on the Regency, Wilson and similar RELM mobile microphones. You actuate a relay with the microphone. I built a bud box for one customer and he now has nearly 30 microphones that are in great working shape. Keying and unkeying the microphone several times burns off the corrosion on the silver plating.

Regards,

Bill

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