• You can now help support WorldwideDX when you shop on Amazon at no additional cost to you! Simply follow this Shop on Amazon link first and a portion of any purchase is sent to WorldwideDX to help with site costs.

Pride DX300 on the 80-meter ham band? Say it ain't so, Joe.


Analog Retentive
Apr 3, 2005
Louisville, KY
So here's a problem we see only on rare occasion. The Pride DX300 was sold as a legitimate 5-band ham linear. The design will in fact tune all five bands and perform as claimed.

But most of them ended up on 11 meters. Go figure. Oddly enough, the FCC tightened the restrictions on RF amplifier sales in 1979 and put an end to this product.

The front-panel Load control does not have quite enough capacitance for the lowest band 80 meters. The band selector will connect this oddball capacitor in parallel with it.

Begs the question. What's wrong with this picture?


The aluminum chassis deck is the ground side of the capacitor. The large brass plate is the hot side. The white teflon dielectric is less than 1/16 of an inch thick.

The problem occurs at the sharp corners of the brass plate. The tiny radius of a square corner piles too many volts per cubic millimeter of air. It will literally drill through the teflon.


This is why the edges of plates on an air-variable capacitor are rounded. It increases the voltage that will ionize the air and cause it to break down.

Got more than one corner.


This corner was clearly next. Hasn't quite drilled all the way here, yet.


The lesson here is that if you really want to use this amplifier on 80 meters, remove this capacitor plate, round the corners and file them smooth before you put it back.

Or choose a different aux Load capacitor. This one has problems, as delivered.



Sr. Member
Mar 9, 2006
seems like a variable trombone capacitor commonly seen in linear amplifiers might be a good replacement.
  • Like
Reactions: NZ8N

Help Users
  • No one is chatting at the moment.
  • @ BJ radionut:
    3Y0J: Update January 29, 2023: Ken estimates Marama should arrive at Bouvet on Monday evening just before sunset. He says he anticipates a good weather window for at least two days then. The team will attempt to move the equipment and supplies onto the island using the zodiac then. They have two zodiacs. They are hoping to accomplish it in those two days. :cool:
  • dxBot:
    bulldog69 has left the room.
  • @ BJ radionut:
    Live @ 10:00 AM EST