Yaesu FT-101E & FL-2100B Tune Up

This week I dusted off my FT-101 line and put it on the bench. It’s been out of commission for about a year and I wanted to make sure it’s still functioning. I’ve missed playing with this awesome rig and wanted to twist some dials on a “real” radio.

After setting it up on the bench and connecting the matching FL-2100B amplifier, I found that I didn’t fully remember the tune up procedure. I remembered about dipping the plate and tuning the preselect, which is the basics, but I couldn’t remember what plate current to watch for or the proper loading settings per the manual. This brought about some experimenting; After following the tune-up procedures per the manual, I discovered that advancing the LOAD setting on the radio produced an additional 10% output on SSB. I vaguely remember hearing another FT-101E user recommending this tactic.

Also, after tuning up the amplifier I found that output was only 250-300 watts SSB. Yes, the ALC wiring is connected to the back of the amplifier. AC power is 117VAC. Is the radio limiting output to the amp too much (ALC) , or is the amp not putting out full power?

If you’re familiar with this radio and amplifier setup, let me know what worked for you.  Here are some descriptive videos:


Idyllwild Cabin Trip

Wifey and I spent four days in Idyllwild last weekend, as we do every year to get away. I set up a modest antenna farm consisting of a 102′ G5RV, Imax 2000 vertical and Arrow 2M/70cm J-pole. The rig, as usual, was my trusty FT-857d, LDG AT100 Pro tuner and Astron RS35M power supply.

I made many HF SSB contacts and also my 3rd CW contact. FM simplex on 146.520 was also very active in this area. I also found my 857d performed well on 3.870 AM, despite what I had heard other 857 owners say about this rigs AM qualities. 30 watts goes along way when you’re a mile high! It’s nice to be included in a roundtable with the big tube radios. I wish I had brought my FT-101E line…

Here is a picture of the setup and my little companion, Bandit:

Rig Setup

Bandit the dog