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Chapter 4_ Radio3

Chapter 4_ Radio3

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Published by pythagorus_ban
Chapter 4_ Radio3
Chapter 4_ Radio3

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Published by: pythagorus_ban on Feb 07, 2013
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02/07/2013

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Building a Three-Penny Radio.
 A crystal radio is nice becau
 
se it needs no power, and the m
 
aterials canall be hom
 
e-m
 
ade or at least f 
 
ound aroun
 
d the house. Bu
 
t the crystalrad
 
io n
 
eed
 
s a big
 
antenn
 
a, an
 
d a good ground
 
, an
 
d so is not very portable. To get away
 
with usin
 
g a m
 
uch
 
sm
 
aller, portable antenna, we will needto amplif 
 
y the tiny signal it receives. T
 
his requires a portable power suppl
 
y, such as a battery. Ou
 
r next toy is a portable radio. It can be powered f 
 
rom
 
a tin
 
y 1.5 volt battery
 
, or f 
 
rom a battery
 
m
 
ade f 
 
rom copper wire and alum
 
inum
 
 
oilsitting in a glass of 
 
lemonade, a sof 
 
t drink, or a beer, or by a f 
 
ew sm
 
allcommercial solar cells. The heart of 
 
the radio is a special 10 tran
 
sistor integrated circu
 
it in atin
 
y th
 
ree-legged bit of 
 
 plastic. T
 
his circuit com
 
es ready-made withsev
 
eral am
 
 pli
 
iers, the detector, and an Au
 
tomatic G
 
ain Control circuitthat boosts th
 
e lev
 
el of 
 
 
aint station
 
s to match
 
the strong ones, so n
 
ovolu
 
m
 
e con
 
trol is needed. T
 
he
 
inal radio has excellent perf 
 
ormance, pulling in weak stations, and preven
 
ting nearby stron
 
g station
 
s f 
 
romoverwhelming the weak ones n
 
ext to them
 
on the dial. We call the radio a "
 
T
 
hree Pen
 
n
 
y" radio because we use three shiny pennies as an
 
chors f 
 
or the variou
 
s parts th
 
e radio needs. T
 
h
 
is makesthe construction very
 
easy. If 
 
y
 
ou have never soldered any
 
thing
 
 bef 
 
ore, th
 
is is a g
 
reat pro
 
 ject tostart with. It is very f 
 
orgiv
 
in
 
g
 
of 
 
the type of 
 
soldering usu
 
ally done by beginners, and all th
 
e parts are widely separated, m
 
aking the job m
 
ucheasier than
 
with other circuits. Soldering irons an
 
d solder areinexpensive tools you can
 
 
ind at a local electronics store such as R 
 
adioShack. The three-penn
 
y radio needs these parts: (We carry a bu
 
ndle of 
 
all thenecessary parts in our catalog
 
.)
Three shiny pennies
You can clean them up with polish, or you can use brand newones.
 
 
A tuning coil
You can wind one by hand, but in this project we use a muchsmaller coil with a ferrite rod inside, from our catalog
 
. T
 
h
 
e coil inthe photos has on
 
ly two wires. T
 
he on
 
e we ship in the catalog isthe im
 
 proved coil with
 
our wires th
 
at we u
 
sed in the 10 minuteradio.
An MK484-1 AM Radio Integrated Circuit
This is the heart of the radio. We carry it in our catalog
 
.
A Piezoelectric earphone
Also in our catalog
 
.
A tuning capacitor
We use a variable capacitor, from 0 to 160 picofarads. We haveit in our catalog
 
.
A 100,000 ohm resistor
This resistor will have four colored bands on it. The colors will be brown, black, yellow, and gold.
A 1,000 ohm resistor
This resistor will also have four colored bands on it. The colorswill be brown, black, red, and gold.
A 0.01 microfarad capacitor
This capacitor will be marked something like ".01M" or "103".
Two 0.1 microfarad capacitors
These capacitors will be marked something like ".1M" or "104".
A 1.5 volt battery(optional) A 1.5 volt battery holder
 
 
 
Click on photo f 
 
or a larger picture
 We start by placing the three shiny
 
 pennies on
 
an old board where wewill work. An old board will n
 
ot be missed if 
 
a hot solderin
 
g iron burnsa black spot in it. Don't work on a nice tabletop. The pennies should be clean
 
and bright. T
 
his will help the solder stick to them
 
an
 
d f 
 
low onto th
 
eir surf 
 
ace. Solder will not stick to a dirty penny
 
. I used
 
clean relatively new penn
 
ies that I didn't have to clean or  polish. Old pennies can be cleaned with brass polish
 
or by sim
 
 plyleaving
 
them
 
in a mix
 
ture of 
 
vinegar and
 
salt f 
 
or a half 
 
-h
 
our or so. We are going
 
to build the radio "
 
u
 
 pside-down
 
"
 
, so that all of 
 
ou
 
solderin
 
g will be n
 
eatly h
 
idden
 
 
rom
 
view when
 
we turn the radio over when we are f 
 
inished. Select which side of 
 
th
 
e pen
 
n
 
y you want to bevisible, and place that side f 
 
ace down
 
. I chose "
 
head
 
s" to be visible, sothe "tails" side is f 
 
acing u
 
 p in the next photo. The f 
 
irst th
 
ing
 
we will do is ben
 
d the wires of 
 
the integrated circuit sothe outside wires stick ou
 
t like the arm
 
s of 
 
a scarecrow. This m
 
akes thesolderin
 
g m
 
uch easier, sin
 
ce the wires are not close together. The integrated circu
 
it has a f 
 
lat side and a rounded side. The f 
 
lat sidewill f 
 
ace u
 
 p when we are done, so we make it f 
 
ace down while we build our radio upside-down. T
 
he orien
 
tation
 
of 
 
this part is im
 
 portant.

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