Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

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Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Sun Mar 12, 2017 8:59 pm

I wrote in another thread about my search for a signal tracer.  I was trying to replace my Radio Shack Micronta that had served me well for years.  There was actually one for sale, but I bailed when it passed $80.  I bought a Tenma but it wasn't what I really needed.  I wound up with a couple of bucks from selling a microphone and decided to roll the dice.  I put in a high bid of $200 and wound up paying a little more than I wanted For a Heathkit IT12 in perfect shape; But I got the darned thing.
Fast Forward---
Sometimes the universe likes to shove a stick between the spokes and throw you forward on your head:

Just a few minutes ago I decided to check the current signal tracer listings on eBay, just an urge to see what was 'Trending'.  The first listing was a Heathkit IT-12 not as nice as mine, for $99 and 0 bids.  The next listing was for a Micronta exactly like my old one only brand new.  The description says: "Makes noise."  Good enough for me.

Oh yeah, the price?  $44.  It took exactly two heartbeats before I hit the "Buy it now" button.

Magic?  Or just weird- What are the odds? Shocked Cool Laughing Wink
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by John Bartley on Sun Mar 12, 2017 9:48 pm

It's Miss Karma .... sometimes she kicks your ass, sometimes she kisses you Smile Good for you .... I think you just got kissed.

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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Sun Mar 12, 2017 11:39 pm

Sometimes you're the statue and sometimes you're the pigeon.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by John Bartley on Mon Mar 13, 2017 9:17 am

terrydec wrote:Sometimes you're the statue and sometimes you're the pigeon.  

LOL ...

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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:50 pm

Okay-
The new tracer arrived in the mail today. I can't believe it works and I got it for less than $50. I've decided to sell the Heathkit on eBay for $157. Some of you may know that's $10 less than I paid. I don't need both.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Thu Mar 16, 2017 2:55 pm

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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Fri Mar 17, 2017 11:57 pm

In the "How ironic is this" department...apparently the bottom has suddenly dropped out of the signal tracer market on eBay. IT-12s are now selling for fifty bucks.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Tue Mar 21, 2017 2:38 pm

Ouch! I paid $168 for a tester that did not sell for a hundred bucks. Like I said Ouch!
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by Tony V on Tue Mar 21, 2017 5:09 pm

I've done that before so know what you mean.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Tue Jul 25, 2017 5:40 pm

I finally sold the IT-12 for $92. What a soaking. But I needed the ninety bucks. I have a really nice Triplett Model 60-NA FETVOM on eBay now. I'm slowly getting rid of a few things I don't really need.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by Dale H. Cook on Fri Aug 11, 2017 4:02 pm

terrydec wrote:The next listing was for a Micronta exactly like my old one only brand new.
Yours is badged "ASI" and I know that I have seen the identical tracer badged with at least one other brand other than Micronta. I used my original Micronta 22-010 (purchased about 40 years ago) as my field tracer for about 20 years before it was pretty badly beat up. I bought another one which has been my field tracer for about 20 years. Because I have it stored better than the old one it is still in good shape and still in frequent use in the field. The old one still works and is stored at the house as a backup/parts junker (I use an EICO 145 in my home shop).

Dale H. Cook, Radio Contract Engineer, Roanoke/Lynchburg, VA
http://plymouthcolony.net/starcityeng/index.html
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Fri Aug 11, 2017 5:01 pm

My old Micronta, that I had for 40 years, was pretty beat up when it finally died. I had replaced the transistor, added an LED light to remind me that it was on, and replaced the speaker. The new one was a real prize for the price I paid.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Sun Jun 10, 2018 4:30 pm

Good news-

When I was searching for a signal tracer, I bought, and built, a Velleman kit that had a generator as well as a tracer. I built it in a nice box and everything. The generator worked great and had a perfect sine wave on my scope. The tracer, however, was distorted and essentially useless.

Yesterday, I was looking at stuff on YouTube. One of the videos was about how to build an amp using the 386 IC chip. The 386 is the chip in the Vellerman. So I started looking more closely at the tracer. I found a hairline solder bridge across a cap. I removed it and it works perfectly. I'm making a short video about it.

Gee, I really miss Radio Shack. I had to buy parts online. That wasn't so bad. It's the long wait that I don't like. Anyway, a video, dedicated to this forum, on it's way.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by Chas on Tue Jun 12, 2018 8:40 am

Good grief, signal tracers for more than $20! There are several around my bench, a few more that have passed through. All either for free or $5 to $10...

Chas
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Tue Jun 12, 2018 2:48 pm

Chas wrote:Good grief, signal tracers for more than $20! There are several around my bench, a few more that have passed through. All either for free or $5 to $10...

Chas

Guess I missed that. I paid $168 for a Heathkit tracer. I sold it for less than a hundred. I found that tracer I have by accident.
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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by Chas on Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:00 pm

I'm sorry Terry,

It's not nice to chastise someone about paying too much... I'm an "Old School" technician, I had a small audio amp, and a signal generator on the shelf and would use that until a "free" EICO came along. I also have a sundry of little "Buzz it" pen-lite injectors, my favorite is the SPECO, I can sick a crystal earplug into it and listen to RF, IF and audio as well as buzz audio and RF...

He, he, when ever I reach for one of these gadgets, I have to change the battery or some other stupid repair, (sigh)...

The larger hardware: NRI tracer, this is a TRF radio with a input probe!, The EICO and a Heathkit. Sorry can't remember the model numbers but they are all the popular ones.

You may do better at finding this stuff by attending Ham radio auctions/flea markets. Watching the want ads and obits for electronic estates. A bit of adverts in places like the grocery store or FREECYCLE.

Dunno, you may like the hunt or not.

GL

Chas

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Re: Magic Signal Tracer...Weird

Post by terrydec on Tue Jun 12, 2018 7:45 pm

I enjoyed building the kits. And the signal tracer I got is a life saver. I'm making a video of this work.
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