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Lincs_Flyer
27-11-16, 20:11 PM
I have bitten the ( expensive ) bullet and bought an Icom A6E to replace my aged A3E. I connected it to the aircraft and my Lynx system and transmitted for a radio check. Lovely. Clear as a bell! Happily I fitted the supplied CP20 charger that keeps the battery under charge while flying. I plugged it into the cigar lighter socket that the previous owner used to power his GPS from. Press transmit...........loud humming in headphones. B*&^ER!! Where do I look first please? I'm no radio expert at all! It works fine while on it's battery, but as soon as the charger is plugged in, it's a no-go.

Randombloke
27-11-16, 22:46 PM
I have bitten the ( expensive ) bullet and bought an Icom A6E to replace my aged A3E. I connected it to the aircraft and my Lynx system and transmitted for a radio check. Lovely. Clear as a bell! Happily I fitted the supplied CP20 charger that keeps the battery under charge while flying. I plugged it into the cigar lighter socket that the previous owner used to power his GPS from. Press transmit...........loud humming in headphones. B*&^ER!! Where do I look first please? I'm no radio expert at all! It works fine while on it's battery, but as soon as the charger is plugged in, it's a no-go.

What aircraft, what engine, where is the cigarette lighter fed from, is there a suppression cap in the rectifier output?

Some Garmin GPS units are very tolerant of massive voltage changes, they'll take 8 to 40V. So a working Garmin is no indicator of OK.

Was the engine running? Do you have an indicator of battery volts?

Stage 1 for me would be to run the engine and measure DC volts off the ciggie lighter. Needs to be at least 12V, ideally about 13.2V.

If that box gets ticked, then turn the voltmeter to AC and measure the ciggie lighter again, no, I'm not being silly, if there is hum then it may be due to ripple current on the DC. Ideally you want zero or very low AC.

Plug in the CP20 and measure the output of that, if it's dipping much below 11V you'll have a problem. If your radio runs fine off the CP20 when just listening then goes wrong on TX this tends to indicate a current drain dropping the voltage type problem.

If you have a two stroke Rotax and are running everything that is rectified DC off the smaller 30W lighting coil then this is the problem, it doesn't have the oomph to run a radio drawing 2A+ IMV. A real Rotax technician will doubtless correct me, or you need to check this with someone who knows for sure.

Lincs_Flyer
28-11-16, 00:55 AM
What aircraft, what engine, where is the cigarette lighter fed from, is there a suppression cap in the rectifier output?

Some Garmin GPS units are very tolerant of massive voltage changes, they'll take 8 to 40V. So a working Garmin is no indicator of OK.

Was the engine running? Do you have an indicator of battery volts?

Stage 1 for me would be to run the engine and measure DC volts off the ciggie lighter. Needs to be at least 12V, ideally about 13.2V.

If that box gets ticked, then turn the voltmeter to AC and measure the ciggie lighter again, no, I'm not being silly, if there is hum then it may be due to ripple current on the DC. Ideally you want zero or very low AC.

Plug in the CP20 and measure the output of that, if it's dipping much below 11V you'll have a problem. If your radio runs fine off the CP20 when just listening then goes wrong on TX this tends to indicate a current drain dropping the voltage type problem. I should have said that I've operated the old A3 in it for the couple of years I've owned it with no problem at all. It's just the A6 that is annoying me!!

If you have a two stroke Rotax and are running everything that is rectified DC off the smaller 30W lighting coil then this is the problem, it doesn't have the oomph to run a radio drawing 2A+ IMV. A real Rotax technician will doubtless correct me, or you need to check this with someone who knows for sure.


The aircaft is an X-Air with a 582. The problem occurs before starting the engine. Seems to receive OK when the CP20 is connected, but pressing transmit is when the problem starts. I haven't investigated where the cigar lighter is fed from yet, but it is giving 12.1v off it's connection to the aircraft power. The CP20 delivers 11.1v to the radio. The A6E can only cope with 11.5 volts max. I've still got the feed to the old A3E in situ and measuring that gave me 11.4v tonight....just inside limits, so I might feed the beast from that. I've also ordered one of these http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/261010647412?_trksid=p2057872.m2749.l2649&ssPageName=STRK%3AMEBIDX%3AIT I'll see if I trust it when it arrives! At the moment I can either stick the A3 back when I fly, or use the A6 on it's own battery only.....but I don't know how long that will last.

Randombloke
28-11-16, 11:56 AM
The aircaft is an X-Air with a 582. The problem occurs before starting the engine. Seems to receive OK when the CP20 is connected, but pressing transmit is when the problem starts.

I've got the same plane and am doing the same upgrade, PM sent.

I'd try and test it with the engine running. Voltages will be higher and you may not get the You might want to test it with a splitter in the ciggie lighter so you can see the voltage dip if there is one. Try getting one of these:

13366
And then use one of these:

13367
You will be able to see how much the voltage dips when you key.


I haven't investigated where the cigar lighter is fed from yet, but it is giving 12.1v off it's connection to the aircraft power. The CP20 delivers 11.1v to the radio. The A6E can only cope with 11.5 volts max. I've still got the feed to the old A3E in situ and measuring that gave me 11.4v tonight....just inside limits, so I might feed the beast from that.

I wouldn't. If the voltage then goes over 12V to 13V engine running it could be bad.


At the moment I can either stick the A3 back when I fly, or use the A6 on it's own battery only.....but I don't know how long that will last.

I'm going to have the A3E and power for it standing by too.

Randombloke
28-11-16, 18:22 PM
I'd try and test it with the engine running. Voltages will be higher and you may not get the

Sorry, that should be "Voltages will be higher and you may not get the hum".

Arielarts
28-11-16, 18:24 PM
Don't forget to consider the intercom. Note the OP states a hum in the headphones during Tx. Does the receiver of the transmission also report a hum?

Randombloke
28-11-16, 18:35 PM
Don't forget to consider the intercom. Note the OP states a hum in the headphones during Tx. Does the receiver of the transmission also report a hum?

Very good point.

IIRC the switch settings in the Lynx are the same for A3E and A6E?

Lincs_Flyer
28-11-16, 18:43 PM
Very good point.

IIRC the switch settings in the Lynx are the same for A3E and A6E?

Lynx assure me they are!

Lincs_Flyer
28-11-16, 18:44 PM
Don't forget to consider the intercom. Note the OP states a hum in the headphones during Tx. Does the receiver of the transmission also report a hum?

The receiver reports "noise".

Arielarts
29-11-16, 19:31 PM
When you say it works fine on the battery, can you confirm it still works fine, engine running and (presumably) intercom powered from the aircraft supply?

Lincs_Flyer
29-11-16, 19:51 PM
When you say it works fine on the battery, can you confirm it still works fine, engine running and (presumably) intercom powered from the aircraft supply?

Hopefully tomorrow afternoon I can get her outside and run the engine.

Aerial
29-11-16, 22:58 PM
Just on that point, will you see if everything works as it should with the radio not powered by it's charger? I have a strong suspicion that the radio is trying to take more current than is available from the charger, leading to lower supply voltage into the radio from the charger when on transmit. This will have almost negligible effect on the voltage of the aircraft supply side of the charger but almost certainly leads to poor transmitted signals as you describe. If this is so, don't use the charger in the aircraft but get a proper voltage regulator for the radio or top the battery at home.

Lincs_Flyer
29-11-16, 23:29 PM
Just on that point, will you see if everything works as it should with the radio not powered by it's charger? I have a strong suspicion that the radio is trying to take more current than is available from the charger, leading to lower supply voltage into the radio from the charger when on transmit. This will have almost negligible effect on the voltage of the aircraft supply side of the charger but almost certainly leads to poor transmitted signals as you describe. If this is so, don't use the charger in the aircraft but get a proper voltage regulator for the radio or top the battery at home.

The charger is a CP20, as officially supplied by Icom to suit the radio.

Arielarts
30-11-16, 19:08 PM
But the CP20 might not be getting sufficient power itself...

Randombloke
02-12-16, 00:02 AM
I flew today and measured the voltage at the cigarette lighter.

Used this:

13381

Engine off I get about 12.3V, engine running was between 13.6V and 13.9V, it's the same plane as yours, with a Key West regulator. The A3E was still installed, no point sacrificing flying time to fix something not yet broken.

In the next week I'll install the CP20 and try the A6E.

Then I'll report back.

Trident
02-01-17, 23:44 PM
Hi,
Just reading the thread and I found this on the web: http://www.aircraftspruce.com/catalog/avpages/1103604.php. If you look on the Q&A tab, it states the CP20 should not be used to charge the radio and use it at the same time. This may be because the CP20 can't supply the current required when the radio is transmitting, or RF upsets the operation of the dc-dc converter in the CP20. Either way, the best bet is a proper 11.0V power supply rated at 2 or 3A, as Aerial suggests, preferably a linear one if you can get it because of the lack of RF noise they create.
A6E spec here: http://www.icomuk.co.uk/files/icom/PDF/productLeaflet/IC-A24_A6.pdf

Arielarts
03-01-17, 14:37 PM
Another plus for the Yaesu FTA-550. No such warning against using the supplied cigar-lighter power adaptor. It's rated at 3A output - more than enough.

jetlag
03-01-17, 16:06 PM
Arielarts. Firstly I know next to NOTHING regards this subject so please make no assumptions when replying.

What is the difference between
http://www.cbplus.com/cat/yaesu-fta-550l-p-1240.html at 349 euros and
https://www.amazon.com/Yaesu-FTA550-Handheld-VHF-Transceiver/dp/B00JFJU5Y8 at 199 usd

A fellow French friend advised me not to buy the US version as they "will not work correctly" and this baffled me as an airplane coming from the US surly uses his/her US radio in all countries, remember I know nothing.

If, both are the same, and work exactly the same in any country, does it also follow the US model is valid in the UK and FR.

Is the price difference simply a marketing game??

Thank you in advance.

Phil (de fer)

Gentreau
03-01-17, 16:47 PM
Hi Phil, bonne année :)

One thing to note is that the unit in the USA comes with only the AA (non-rechargeable) battery pack and does not ship to France, while the model at CBplus has the Li-Ion battery and desktop charger.

Another, more important point, is that there are no Yaesu transceivers on the approved list for airborne use.
http://www.osac.aero/docspratiques/Liste_Emetteurs_Homologues_18-11-2016.xls
Only Icom A6FR, A24FR, A6FRII & A24FRII are listed.

Arielarts
03-01-17, 17:04 PM
The crucial difference is the European version has 8.33kHz channels spacing. So it is the ONLY one to buy. Also, as Gentreau says, the 'L' version has a Li-ion rechargeable battery. If you can find the AA battery equivalent, you'll find a price comparable with the American version you link to. In the UK, it is 199GBP, currently on offer for 165GBP. The European model of FTA-550 IS approved in the UK. I would have thought that approval was good for all of Europe. We are one market, after all ;-)

Gentreau
03-01-17, 17:10 PM
.....The European model of FT-550 IS approved in the UK. I would have though that approval was good for all of Europe. We are one market, after all ;-)

Nope, in order to obtain a LSA (Licence de Station Aéronef) for an installed radio, it must be on the OSAC approved list.
The Yaesu could be carried as a pure handportable for emergency use only, but should not be connected to the aircraft power or to an external antenna and cannot form part of the official installation.

However, without an LSA, you have no radio callsign ......

Arielarts
03-01-17, 17:17 PM
Gentreau, of course I know the realities of Europe! My tongue was firmly in my cheek. Why do you think we're opting out? Good job you have your mandatory changeover to 8.33 delayed for a few more years than in the UK...
Best wishes,
Dave

jetlag
03-01-17, 17:24 PM
Hi Clive and a happy new year to you too. Arielarts thank you for your reply.
I have been told it has to have the NF sticker (norm Français) to use in France and that is only issued to approved list units.
Unfortunately/fortunately with regards to the French, they as a governing body frequently do not religiously follow the dictates of the UE depending if they like/dislike the ruling.

Arielarts
03-01-17, 17:31 PM
"Unfortunately/fortunately with regards to the French, they as a governing body frequently do not religiously follow the dictates of the UE depending if they like/dislike the ruling." I've always admired the French for this very reason. In Britain, not only do we follow all Brussel's dictats, good or bad, religiously, we even set up special 'police forces' to make sure the rules are obeyed.

Gentreau
03-01-17, 17:39 PM
.....I have been told it has to have the NF sticker (norm Français) to use in France and that is only issued to approved list units.


That's about it, and you can't even import a plain A6 or A24 from the UK as the FR version has an antenna band-pass filter which must be installed for it to be legal !

Roger Mole
03-01-17, 17:41 PM
But the French list is well overdue for an update Clive, and my guess is that it will be dragged kicking and screaming out of the 1980s into the 21st century at some time soon. So, I may be wrong, but at this time I'd just wait.

Aerial
03-01-17, 22:37 PM
Hi Trident, thank you for finding that little snippet of information which suggests that charging the battery and transmitting at the same time is not a Good Thing. I knew I had read about it somewhere...........

Arielarts
07-01-17, 17:46 PM
Does sound like audio feedback.
If it's more of a 'howl' than a hum, and only occurs when you transmit - and is also reported by the listener.
This is where RF from the antenna or feeder cable is picked up by the microphone, headset cable, intercom box or connecting wire.
This is demodulated by the radio's microphone pre-amplifier and creates a feedback loop.
If it varies as you move the headset about, or the intercom-radio wiring, that's probably the problem.
Also occurs on some frequencies but not on others, sometimes.