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Flamethrower Galaxy 959

Discussion in 'General CB Services Discussion' started by rabbiporkchop, Jan 11, 2016.

  1. rabbiporkchop

    rabbiporkchop Well-Known Member

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    http://inlandempire.craigslist.org/eld/5298575323.html

    He contradicts himself between his ad and his statement of .22uv noise floor.
    Here is .125 uv noise floor which he thinks can't be done.



    Watch "-125db" on YouTube
     

  2. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    On the first video, I think he is referring to a gasfet replacement for the 1st rf amp stage. They are expensive and have very low noise. Never tried that mod yet; some here have.
     
  3. 222DBFL

    222DBFL Sr. Member

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    You're also talking about 2 differnet radios here. So how can you compare both if they aren't the same?? Like comparing an apple to an orange. Or did I miss something here. And what is the point?? You his saleman?? You been on here for days now splattering every other tech it seems for the one you have and also have made the statement that your radio system is better than most base radios stations with beam antennas and such. Very bold claims from someone who doesn't even know WTF he is speaking about when it comes to radios. Another cheerleader for a tech, a cheerleader that actually knows not very much about how radios and their components actually work, but rather a truck driver. Why don't you stick to truck driving and quit bothering other shops with stupid ass questions and quit wasting their time trying to make your tech look good. Dammit man. We got it, you like your tech!!! Stop beating a dead horse!! Sorry. Rant over. But for real, enough is enough man.
     
    Hurricane95 likes this.
  4. loosecannon

    loosecannon Sr. Member

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    I did a little write up of my experiences and findings working on a flamethrower DX959 (mosfet version).
    This radio was a couple of years old when i worked on it, so i can't say whether or not they are still using the 2999, but the one i worked on did indeed have the 2999 in it.

    The thing about that first stage RF amp is, the gain of the transistor is not the main determining factor in achieving the gain in the circuit.
    in this circuit, the surrounding components have a lot more to do with the amount of noise floor and gain produced.
    I have done so many 2999 mods i can't even count them anymore.
    every single time, the 2999 made very little, if any, noticeable difference.
    the schottkys, however, are very worthwhile in doing, as they make a marked improvement in the sound of the receive.

    nowadays, i don't even bother replacing the transistor.
    Galaxy stepped up to the plate years ago and upgraded this transistor.
    the specs are not quite as impressive as a 2999, but again, in this circuit, you will never know the difference.

    somebody mentioned a GaAsFET mod for this chassis, and i would LOVE to see that, but it's not going to be as simple as replacing a transistor.
    it would involve building a little circuit on a separate PC board in order to work.

    here is the write up i did of the flamethrower radios:

    had a guy give me a 959 flamethrower radio to put channels in, and to lower the deadkey so he can run an amp.
    what?
    lower the deadkey? but doesnt a 959 have a variable RF power pot already?

    yes, and apparently with the "flamethrower" mods, the range it set at 6-12 watts deadkey.
    swing was about 25 at 6 watts and about 30 at 12 watts.

    ok, here are the other "mods/ changes" that make up the flamethrower mods.

    they do not put a "swing kit" in them as far as i can tell, and i did not see any of the AMC components clipped.

    it did look like D103 over near the AM modulator transistor had another diode in series with it, but i think this may have been from the factory like this.
    (maybe someone who has a stock 959 in front of them can confirm this)

    they replaced the AM modulator with a 2SB817, and the transistor in front of it with an NTE153.

    they did the schottky diode/ 2999 mod too.

    the AMC pot was turned all the way up, but thats to be expected.

    the one thing they did that was a bit different to me was to put a dab of silicon on ALL the plastic wire connectors in the radio.
    i guess this is for the truck drivers.

    thats about it, i figure they also give the radio an alignment, but i havent gotten a chance to check whether or not the unit is on freq.

    oh, the clarifier is unlocked too.

    so there ya go. if anyone sees something ive missed please post it here.

    i did expect this mod to be more "hacky", like finding the AMC transistor clipped or something like that, but barring any outrageous findings like bias pots turned all the way up, its not a bad little radio.

    the soldering was decent, but you can tell they work quickly.

    basically, the flamethrower 959 is just a 959 with a few of the more popular "internet mods" done to it.
    i think they charge too much for them, but hey, we all gotta make a living.

    if someone is thinking of buying one of these, the question is, should i do the mods myself and save the dough, or just have them do them for me and pay for it.
    definitely no "magic" or brilliant technical engineering upgrades, but it is a solid radio.

    i still dont llike the minimum 6 watt deadkey, but thats really my only beef with this radio, again, other than the price tag. (but then again im cheap!)LOL

    the clarifier was modded also.

    the radio was on freq!
    the alignment was good, but he turned the "antenna coil" down too much. my guess is that they do this in order to show a quieter receive.
    thats just my opinion.

    now the only thing i can say that was really weird to me was the bias setting for the final transistor.
    the driver was right at 50mA, giving me the impression that it was properly aligned.

    then i checked the final bias and it was less than 10mA. [​IMG]
    not sure why, but as we all know, its a small bump of the VR to get from 10 to 100mA.
    maybe it was just an honest mistake.
    i set it to 100mA of course.

    ALC was set too high, but im very used to seeing that.

    everything else seemed to be just fine.

    my opinion of the flamethrower radios is that the price is too high for what you get, but you do get a pretty good radio.
    (i was expecting to see dual finals also)

    hope this helps,
    LC
     
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  5. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    I have also worked on a flamethrower a couple of years ago. IIRC, the heatsink that they had added to the back wasn't sitting flush against the case, rendering it useless. So, I fixed that and set the final and driver back to stock settings. Seem to remember massive clipping for one, so I threw it on the scope and had to sort out other issues. Had to restore R264 and adjust the modulation

    I also undid the receive mod, the so called 'super ears' mod.

    Seems to me that they used the Defpom 959 page as their guidelines to build this radio:
    http://www.radiomods.co.nz/galaxy949_959ept069610z.html
    Just a few of these mods ar OK to do; but NOT all of them.

    I wouldn't buy one of those flamethrower radios for my own use, even if I used AM all of the time.
    I'd use a Cobra 25 or 29, or a Uniden 76 or 78; much better AM performance IMO . . .

    Mod chart w/my comments in red in right column:

    Galaxy 959 Mod Chart.png
     
    #5 Robb, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016
    rabbiporkchop likes this.
  6. 543_Dallas

    543_Dallas Sr. Member

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    Don't feed the troll. The ignore feature works great.
     
    222DBFL likes this.
  7. rabbiporkchop

    rabbiporkchop Well-Known Member

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    The last couple I heard when I was in California I could barely understand and they disappeared out of my receive about 8 miles down the road. In the flatlands I can generally hear a stock radio a minimum of 20 miles away Mobile to Mobile. The Schottky diodes seem to create front-end overload problems sitting in truck stops with high powered stations nearby. A buddy of mine in San Diego sounds crystal clear when I'm sitting in his driveway running massive amounts of power up close does not overload the front end of my receiver but then but then again I don't have Schottky diodes in any of my radios. It's not really comparing apples to oranges because Mark Sherman gets the same results out of any radio he works on regardless of which model it happens to be. my galaxy 959 with the MRF 477 final performs the same as my Magnum s9 as well as my president hr2510 but then again all of those radios were tuned by the same guy so I would expect similar results between all those radios. All of them have a noise floor at least -125 dB or lower. With the noise floor @ .2 microvolts lower than the flame thrower radio that easily makes a 20 mile difference in how far the transmitting station can get from me and still be heard. That's a huge difference in distance simply by having a lower noise floor. I guess it also explains why it takes an extra 10 minutes for the guy in the truck next to me to be able to hear the guy I'm talking to going in the opposite direction. By the way my President hr2510 has a receiver sensitivity of -166 DB on AM. I have yet to see that level of sensitivity anywhere in the world on any type of equipment.
     
    #7 rabbiporkchop, Jan 11, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 11, 2016
  8. loosecannon

    loosecannon Sr. Member

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    there's really no response for a post like this. You stated what you believe, you stated why you believe it, and you explained why it matters to you.

    There' no point in anyone disagreeing with you, even if they have a solid argument, because you have made it clear that you don't value anyone's opinion besides your tech's.
    that is your choice and you are entitled to it.

    The only question i'm left with is, why did you bother calling that shop in the first place?
    just to waste someone's time in order to have something to post to youtube?
    putting it on youtube just so you can post it to the CB forums?

    What is the point? you aren't the person to have a debate with, as you are just parroting words you heard from your tech.
    If he would like to come on here and have a discussion about noise floors, the effects of lowering them, and how to do it the right way; then we would all enjoy that and we would all learn something.

    you have nothing to teach, and it would seem that your only purpose is to show people that you called some tech and hassled him.
    Is that what you wanted to convey to all of us?
    congrats, you did it.
    now what?
    LC
     
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  9. psycho

    psycho Running a special on our rooms!

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    $330 for a hopped up $150 radio?
     
  10. BigKahuna

    BigKahuna Active Member

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    Rule of thumb - Avoid any stock radio that's been worked on by anyone and then given a stupid name such as "Flamethrower" or "Whackpack".

    In fact don't ever buy anything but a stock radio. I've yet to see anything done by one of these ass-monkeys that was worth the $50-200 they charge.

    "But they made the noise floor lower" - you bought a $120 cheap galaxy as the flagship pride of your station. You really need a low noise floor to hear all those distant channel 6 AM stations?

    "But it now does 50 watts" - you paid $100 for a 4 watt radio to do 50 watts? You could have paid $60 and bought a cheap amp and you could do 150 watts.

    "But it now has blue leds and jeweled knobs"........okay you got me, it's hard to put a value on those kinds of mods so go ahead and buy a flamebroiler...

    Whenever I see a Dodge Neon with a huge aftermarket spoiler on the back I think of a Flamebroiler Galaxy 959 :)
     
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  11. Robb

    Robb Yup

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    Well, that sad truth to this radio - IMO - is that you would have to pay a shop at least another $100 just to undo the 'flamethrower work'. Even if you had it modded just for AM use, you could still do much better with a Uniden or Cobra AM radio.
     
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  12. 543_Dallas

    543_Dallas Sr. Member

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    Its hard to beat a cobra or uniden chassis and the appropriate amplifier for a serious AM hammer. The percentage of exports at a break where money is on the line is much lower than at the truck stop. Bells, whistles and bullshit are strong selling points. A lot of guys won't give up all those extra channels and SSB they don't use for a cheaper cobra 25/29...I used to be that guy.
     
  13. rabbiporkchop

    rabbiporkchop Well-Known Member

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    the whole point of the video was to show that you're getting robbed of receiving distance by paying that technician $150 for his time and effort when you could have easily spent half the amount of money for 5 times the amount of distance in receive capability. With my galaxy 959 sitting at the TA truck stop in the bottom of the canyon in Albuquerque New Mexico having a conversation with a buddy of mine at the route 66 casino over the mountain on the other side of the mountain at the bottom of the valley on the other side I can hear him just fine with a noise floor of .012uv and with my other galaxy 959 with a noise floor of .3 uv I had to drive further east up to the top of Sedillo Ridge to an altitude of 7000 feet in order to hear the same guy sitting in the same place. So I wouldn't say that I'm parroting someone else's words I'm speaking from experience in the real world.
     
  14. rabbiporkchop

    rabbiporkchop Well-Known Member

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    I respect any technician with any knowledge that is capable of accomplishing impressive things. If any technician claims to achieve results similar to what I've described I would love to purchase a radio from that person just so I could do a side by side comparison.. I would definitely like to see proof on the bench first before spending my money. There is another technician in Fontana California that has replicated receiver sensitivity similar to all of my radios but unfortunately his audio isn't as consistently perfect as all of my stuff so maybe somebody could look him up on Facebook and give him some pointers. His name is Ron Damron and he works at CB radio store in Fontana California part time on Saturdays only. He's a really nice guy and very humble and I'm sure he'd be willing to share his receive secrets in exchange for some audio secrets.
    .
     
    #14 rabbiporkchop, Jan 12, 2016
    Last edited: Jan 12, 2016
  15. loosecannon

    loosecannon Sr. Member

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    RPC, real world comparisons are completely subjective, and do not lend any credence to any claims of specs.

    The noise floor that your tech allegedly achieved was into a dummy load, or with no antenna connected, as that's how alignments are done.
    once you hook your radio up to an antenna, you are at the mercy of mother nature and her mood towards RF on any given minute.
    who the heck knows what your noise floor was on either of those days, and really, who cares. All you are doing is telling people what you experienced, while using numbers that your tech gave you from when he performed the alignment. those two things are not connected anymore once you connect your antenna.
    atmospheric conditions, ignition noise, other vehicles' alternators, the position of the sun, amount of dust in the air, and about a hundred other factors will affect what you can and can't receive on any given day.

    your reports about what you achieved as far as distance, are just that, your reports.
    and as such, do not mean much of anything to another user.

    I doubt your tech would have made the same phone call you did, and you just came off like a jerk. it didn't sound like you were teaching, or informing the person of anything, it just sounded like you were giving them a hard time while they were at work.

    If your tech would like to come here, and tell us what he does to achieve his results, then we can have a technical discussion on the merits and results of his techniques.
    other than that, this is just another, "check out my new radio from my new favorite tech" thread.
    LC
     
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