Building a Field Strength Meter

I am working on some projects now that I will be documenting more fully in the coming days and weeks. First up is the addition of a field strength meter to my test equipment inventory. I found a kit on Ebay for $20 that ships out of Thailand. I went for this mainly because it is very hard to get all the parts needed for this for less money. There are a few downsides to this circuit but as with everything compromises have to be made. Here is what you get in the kit:

s-l1600

Note there is no case. The meter is about 2 inches deep so none of the project cases I had would accommodate it at least without being really much larger than the application needs. I decided to use a 4x4x2″ outlet box (such as I used in the magnetic loop project) as they are readily available at Home Depot. I have made all the cutouts and will be soldering things up soon. Here is the basic layout:

Photo Nov 02, 9 27 09 AM

I put in a 1/4″-20 insert in the bottom so I can mount this on a tripod. This is an active circuit so it needs a 9V battery for power. The meter ought to be a bit more sensitive but at the cost of not being self-powered. One additional bother with this kit is that the BNC connector has no nut to mount it to the case. I have one on order to use the nut from. I don’t expect any issues with this circuit as it is simple enough. Most of the work is in the packaging.

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