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New Kenwood TM-271A radio

JoesEdge

Active Member
#41
I'd like to put in my .02 cents on this thread. I too have a Kenwood TM-271A. I think it's a great radio.

I've had this radio for a few years now. I use it mostly when I'm volunteering. I'm always told that I'm loud and clear. I've used it to communicate from Rock Pile to Camp Rock Rd. with no problems, although I was using a great big antenna.

One of the greatest features is the front firing speaker. It sounds pretty clear. The Squelch really isn't that big of a deal. You hit two buttons and then turn the knob to adjust. That might be cumbersome while bouncing around in a race vehicle, but for a Chase vehicle it's great!

It's pretty easy to mod too and there are plenty of examples on the Internet with pictures. Just pop off the diode at R119 and the unit will reset itself when you turn it back on. Of course, that is technically against FCC regulations. Use at your own risk.

I have a Yeasu (Vertex) FT-2900R
http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/fm_txvrs/2900.html

It is 75W, and has some nice features. One of them is you can mod the mike so the mic lock switch will lock out the PTT as well as all the rest of the buttons. A good way to not become a Richard Cranium. It has a nice heavy cast aluminum heat sink/case.
I just picked up one of these today. Actually, it just arrived today and it's waiting for me at home. Do you have it modded? If so, how hard was it to do? I have seen examples, but how exactly do you de-solder the pad? I'm not an electronics guy, so I'm trying to figure that part out. When I do solder things, I usually put them together and not the reverse.

Oh, and I'm a new HAM. Nice to see other HAMs here too.
 

Triaged

Well-Known Member
#42
Mine has the tx mod. It will rx on race channels out of the box. I used a solder sucker to desolder the pad. They come in handy when messing with electronics stuff. I have something like this but not as nice. You can find them at most electronics stores.
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#44
Mine has the tx mod. It will rx on race channels out of the box. I used a solder sucker to desolder the pad. They come in handy when messing with electronics stuff. I have something like this but not as nice. You can find them at most electronics stores.
Okay, I'll check out that link. If I can get mod it, I might use the 2900R in my truck and the 271A as a home base. The Yaseu has a way bigger screen, more power and a lockout button so I don't accidentally change the channel. Nice!

All right, another nerdy HAM! We'll have to hit the repeaters up some time.
kj6ixg
KJ6JBZ here!

What repeater do you use? I like hanging around on 147.435. I've been told it can be heard all the way in San Diego.
 

Triaged

Well-Known Member
#45
...The Yaseu has a way bigger screen, more power and a lockout button so I don't accidentally change the channel. Nice!...
On the Yaesu there is a mod you can make to the mic so the PTT button is disabled when you flip the lock switch on the mic. That will keep you from being a "Richard Cranium" without having to unplug the mic. I'll try to find the instructions and post them up. It is just another solder pad deal. The nice thing about solder pads vs. removing components is you can very easily go back to un-modded if you want.
 

dr shaw6

Well-Known Member
#46
Ya, i get the 435 down here. unless I got my beam pointed right at it I cant key up. Most of those local guys up there are running amps and beams just to key over everyone. Another cool 2 meter repeater is th 147.090 @ catalina island (no PL). It gets you out there pretty far. I ve talked to guys up past Disneyland with a S9 reading and im down in San Diego about 60 miles from the repeater.
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#47
i am looking for a new 2-way. i have had 2 1/2 V800. the half is from when i blew the 1st one, i had it repaired. i did not want to wait for it so i bought another one.
worked great until after being on for a while then when i transmitted smoke comes out of the radio and its done. it blows the trans amp. i only use it at races on race freqs. i wonder if it has to do with how i mod them. i just use some flush cutters and cut the diod.

i like the v800 because it is small, has a front speaker, 75 watts, and has a cooling fan. i was told that where i mount mine, it may not get enough air and it over heats when i key up. i may just get a new one, pay some one to mod it and add a cooling fan in my consol.
 

dr shaw6

Well-Known Member
#48
Check your SWR's. You may be burning up the finals or the driver. If thats the case its a very cheap fix as far parts. When I say SWR's I mean the length of your antenna matched up to the frequency your transmitting on. If you have a 2 meter whip, with out cutting it down some, your SWR will be too high. As far as cooling...unless your keyed down for a very long period and the fans are totally blocked, I cant imagin that radio just overheating like that.
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#49
Ya, i get the 435 down here. unless I got my beam pointed right at it I cant key up. Most of those local guys up there are running amps and beams just to key over everyone. Another cool 2 meter repeater is th 147.090 @ catalina island (no PL). It gets you out there pretty far. I ve talked to guys up past Disneyland with a S9 reading and im down in San Diego about 60 miles from the repeater.
Sweet, I'll have to program the Catalina frequency into my radio. I need to program in some popular Simplex frequencies as well. One of the things I'd like to pick up is an Astron power supply so I can setup one of these radios as a base station. I guess a little at a time.

i like the v800 because it is small, has a front speaker, 75 watts, and has a cooling fan. i was told that where i mount mine, it may not get enough air and it over heats when i key up. i may just get a new one, pay some one to mod it and add a cooling fan in my consol.
The front firing speaker is one of the features I like about the Kenwood 271A. I also like that the Kenwood DOES NOT have a fan. I figured that in the dusty conditions we find ourselves in, a fan will just eventually get clogged up. It might not have 75 watts, but 60 is plenty. Also, you modify the radio in the same way (i.e. cutting/removing the diode).
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#50
i had the 1st one repaired. that’s why i have gone through 2 1/2 v8000. all blew the same driver. the guy the repaired the 1st one said the parts where under $5 or $0 bucks, but was a pain in the _--_ t repair. would not want to do it again. if you know some one, let me know. i might consider repairing them. I am still going to use one as a scanner at least.
otherwise, i am looking at the yasi FT2900. it has 75w with no fan. i am going to install a computer fan in my consol either way for cooling.
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#51
i had the 1st one repaired. that’s why i have gone through 2 1/2 v8000. all blew the same driver. the guy the repaired the 1st one said the parts where under $5 or $0 bucks, but was a pain in the _--_ t repair. would not want to do it again. if you know some one, let me know. i might consider repairing them. I am still going to use one as a scanner at least.
otherwise, i am looking at the yasi FT2900. it has 75w with no fan. i am going to install a computer fan in my consol either way for cooling.
I also have the Yaseu FT-2900. I haven't modded it yet though. It's one big heavy radio compared to the Kenwood. The heatsink is pretty hefty. The screen is huge and easy to see. Pretty easy to program too. I would like to get the software and cable to so I can program it on the bench. I just think the mic is a bit dinky, but that can be replaced I guess. Also, the speaker is on the bottom so that could be a problem. I would have liked to mount it on my headliner, but I feel that it might cave in my roof!! Okay, that was a big exaggerated but it is a heavy radio.
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#52
didn’t look at that. i haven’t gone to the store yet and look at them in person. looked up specks on ham radio outlet.
the 2900 is 4.2 lb and the v8000 is 2.2 lb and the yaseu 1900 is 2.6lb
i thought about the speaker thing and i am not really using the radio speaker anymore. i got a intercom and when i am not using it, i have a external speaker i am using. that is a heavy radio compared to others. might just settle with the 55w yaseu 1900. i really would like the v8000 to work. it works so good for everyone else, just don’t understand why i keep blowing them and they are more $$.
I am thinking maybe where I have it grounded is not enough for the power when I key it up?
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#53
didn’t look at that. i haven’t gone to the store yet and look at them in person. looked up specks on ham radio outlet.
the 2900 is 4.2 lb and the v8000 is 2.2 lb and the yaseu 1900 is 2.6lb
i thought about the speaker thing and i am not really using the radio speaker anymore. i got a intercom and when i am not using it, i have a external speaker i am using. that is a heavy radio compared to others. might just settle with the 55w yaseu 1900. i really would like the v8000 to work. it works so good for everyone else, just don’t understand why i keep blowing them and they are more $$.
I am thinking maybe where I have it grounded is not enough for the power when I key it up?
Go straight to the battery for positive and negative. Seems like the most recommended way to connect it. One nice thing about the Yaseu is that it tells you the input voltage coming off the battery. Nice to know. When I'm sitting outside, I also use an external speaker.

I think that last time I saw you was at one of those GMR meets. If they have another, I'll be sure to bring my radios. If you're going to the car show in Norco, then I can bring them there too and you can check them out.
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#54
yea, i am planning on going to the Norco. my truck has been down since june. doing a motor/trans swap to a 01 4.0 SOHC with the 5r55e 5 speed auto trans. its mostly done just waiting in line for a new wire job.
 

Triaged

Well-Known Member
#55
Get the FT-2900. The extra weight is from the big cast aluminum heat sink case that keeps everything cool (and not needing a fan). It is also wider than many other smaller wattage radios which makes room for the big display (why there isn't room for a front speaker either).
 

dr shaw6

Well-Known Member
#56
I would definatly check you antenna and coax connectors. If you have a mag mount its probibly a Lasen NMO150 that comes tuned for 144-147mhz. you need to shorten the whip to tuned for the 151-155 mhz. A antenna thats not tuned will burn drivers and finals allowing a radio to recieve but not transmit, or transmit very bad. I have 100+ watt radios with no fans that get pretty hot when keyed down for a while but never have I burnt any drivers from the heat. It sounds like you have a antenna problem.

Good call on the Yaesu 2900, good rugged radio!
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#57
the guy that did the 1st repairs checked my antenna out after the 2nd one and said it was good. when he open them up, he did say that the drivers should have a little heat sink built on them and neither of mine did.

he said it may have been a manufactures defect. they worked fine for testing the radios but when they were on for a while is when they blew smoke.
so, i am tired od spending $230. for a defected radio and i cant take them back because they have been mod. the yaseu is cheaper so it would less painful.
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#58
the guy that did the 1st repairs checked my antenna out after the 2nd one and said it was good. when he open them up, he did say that the drivers should have a little heat sink built on them and neither of mine did.

he said it may have been a manufactures defect. they worked fine for testing the radios but when they were on for a while is when they blew smoke.
so, i am tired od spending $230. for a defected radio and i cant take them back because they have been mod. the yaseu is cheaper so it would less painful.
I hear ya! Well, doesn't seem like you can go wrong with either the Kenwood TM-271A or the Yaseu FT-2900R.

I haven't modded my Yaseu, but I'd like to. I just need a soldering iron and apparently a "solder sucker" to do it. Here's the link to do it: http://www.worldwidedx.com/yaesu/44185-yaesu-yaesu-2900r-frequency-modification-mars-mod.html

Here's an HRO link to the Kenwood TM-271A: http://www.hamradio.com/cgi-bin/uncgi/ase?ITEM=TM-271A&model=Model

Here's an HRO link to the Yaseu FT-2900R: http://www.hamradio.com/cgi-bin/uncgi/ase?ITEM=FT-2900R&model=Model
 

charlie_brown

Well-Known Member
#59
I hear ya! Well, doesn't seem like you can go wrong with either the Kenwood TM-271A or the Yaseu FT-2900R.

I haven't modded my Yaseu, but I'd like to. I just need a soldering iron and apparently a "solder sucker" to do it. Here's the link to do it: http://www.worldwidedx.com/yaesu/44185-yaesu-yaesu-2900r-frequency-modification-mars-mod.html

Here's an HRO link to the Kenwood TM-271A: http://www.hamradio.com/cgi-bin/uncgi/ase?ITEM=TM-271A&model=Model

Here's an HRO link to the Yaseu FT-2900R: http://www.hamradio.com/cgi-bin/uncgi/ase?ITEM=FT-2900R&model=Model
godd links on the mod. the v8000 is the same but i always just cut the diod. i wonder if that could be a promblem.
i have a friend that has a yaseu 1900 and he just pushes a few buttons on the front each time he turns it on. like a "soft" mod instead of a hard mod.
oh, and when i was at the 500 and blew 2 v8000, i just pluged in his 1900 and did not have a problem the rest of the week.
 

JoesEdge

Active Member
#60
godd links on the mod. the v8000 is the same but i always just cut the diod. i wonder if that could be a promblem.
i have a friend that has a yaseu 1900 and he just pushes a few buttons on the front each time he turns it on. like a "soft" mod instead of a hard mod.
oh, and when i was at the 500 and blew 2 v8000, i just pluged in his 1900 and did not have a problem the rest of the week.
I have attached the document from Kenwood on how to mod the Kenwood TM-271A along with a couple of photos to help locate the transistor.
 

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