Dial Cord Restringing

(many have suggested using braided fishing line for the dial cord along with a fishing knot; Walmart #: 553756023 Glow-Vis Braid 65# also recommended)

From the Ten-Tec Reflector March 19, 2006

Restringing the dial cord for non-digital Ten-Tec transceivers…..

I recently restrung the dial cords for my Century 22 and Argosy (non-digital) transceivers (same exact physical layout). It isn't a particularly difficult procedure other than getting the main cord's length right and tying a couple smallish knots (thought it would have been nice had I learned to make fishing flyies!).

Preparation: Get the restring kit from Ten-Tec. It is only a couple of dollars and includes sufficient lengths of the main cord and the flex cord to redo at least two transceivers. It doesn't come with instructions.

The main cord is the longest cord and is non-stretchable.

  1. Remove all front panel knobs (two different allen wrenches are needed). You may want to place them on the desk in the pattern that they were removed to make re-assembly easier due to different set screw positions.
  2. Set aside the two felt washers that were under the main tuning knob. You will use them on the re-assembly.
  3. Carefully pull off the calibrated main tuning dial skirt. It is snug but pressure fit.
    • Note: There is a 'D' shaped wire clip on the back side of the calibrated skirt. This is what actually holds the skirt on the shaft. Do not loose it. You will use a strong piece of thread, or old dial cord, in a loop around the open flat tip of this clip to temporarily open the clip a bit during the re-assembly. One the skirt is back in place you can release one end of that thread and it will pull free. This is a tricky process that may take you a few attempts to accomplish but as long as you don't loose that clip or forget how to re-insert it into the sleeve you will do ok. Also, many of the Ten-Tec manuals include an illustration showing a different procedure to replace the dial skirt using a flat piece of metal. Either process works, but the dial cord is readily at hand.
  4. Remove the four corner screws that are now holding the front panel in place. (Remember to not over tighten these upon re-assembly or you will crack the panel.).
  5. See the Note below and then carefully pull the front panel forward until it is fully released. Set aside the front panel.
    • Note: There is a small LED glued into the ALC panel hole. The long leads of this LED go into a floating two wire jack that protrudes through a small hole in the under metal front panel. These wires are all that is actually holding the panel in place at the moment. There is not problem removing the panel. You simply must remember to pull that jack out of the hole a bit during the re-assembly and make sure the LED wires are inserting themselves properly before pushing the panel back in place. Otherwise no LED indicator! I can't see you accidentally flipping the jack over as there really isn't enough room for that to happen so wire polarity shouldn't be an issue.
  6. Turn the main PTO fully counter-clockwise.
  7. If the old cord assembly is physically intact just too stretched to work make a drawing of their path beforehand. Carefully remove the old dial cords There are two bent clips on either end of the stretched cord. You may want to salvage them although the Ten-Tec kit includes one set.
  8. There is a black plastic cam center bottom of the front panel. Push this fully counter-clockwise which is the position it must be in when you make the final length of the long cord.
  9. Note the sliding pointer assembly itself. There are two tie points on this sliding pointer. Take one end of the new main cord and tie it tightly (use a good knot here) around the right tie point. Carefully cut off the excess piece of cord close to the knot.
    • Note: The tie point on the right has double duty as both a tie point and rigid pulley of sorts. You will probably move this back and forth during the cord tying process… BUT IT IS INCREDIBLY IMPORTANT THAT THIS SLIDER BE ALL THE WAY TO THE LEFT once the main cord is tied into place. This positioning sets the proper left to right travel for the pointer.
  10. (Read this carefully, especially if you did not have an old cord to make a drawing of.) There is a shiny fixed pulley immediately to the right of the rectangular dial window. Run the long dial cord over the top of this pin and then back to the right tie point of the pointer slider. You route the cord clockwise around this tie point and then back to the right all the way across the inner front panel to a movable pulley. Run the cord in a clockwise direction over that pulley and then downward diagonally towards the black cam.
    There is a small fixed pulley point on the right corder of the cam and a much larger fixed pulley point at the axis of the cam. This larger point does not have a flange but don't worry as the front panel keeps the cord from coming off this larger fixed pulley point.
    Route the cord clockwise one half turn around the bottom surface of the cam's smaller pulley point on the cam and then one-half turn counter-clockwise over the top surface of the larger cam pulley point. Continue the path of the cord towards the inner, larger, shaft portion of the PTO shaft assembly.
  11. Wrap the cord one and a half turns in a clock-wise direction around the PTO inner shaft assembly. Note the small pin extending outward from this shaft. You will tie off the long cord at this small pin. Read the following Note first.
    • Note. Before tying off the long cord on this PTO shaft pin make sure:
      • The sliding pointer is all the way to the left.
      • The long cord is routed correctly from the sliding pointer to the small shinny fixed pulley, back around the right-most pin on the sliding pulley, back and over the large pulley on the top right of the front panel, down diagonally to and around the two points on the cam, and then one and a half turns clockwise around the inner PTO shaft itself.
      • The final length of the cord must be just long enough to allow the sliding pointer to just make it fully to the left with the PTO fully counter-clockwise. If the cord is short then the pointer will not travel far enough and your dial calibrations will be high. If the cord is too long then there will be slack with the pointer all the way to the left and the PTO fully counter-clockwise and the cord will come off one of its pulley points (not good). You may have to experiment with this procedure a few times till you get the length right.
  12. Tie off the long cord on the PTO shaft pin (once again refer to the above note). Make a good, small knot and cut off the unused portion.
  13. Wrap a free end of the elastic cord tightly around the left-most pin on the sliding pointer. Use a small piece of aluminum as a wrap to snuggly squeeze the elastic cord around that pin so it won't come off easily.
  14. Route the elastic cord downward diagonally to the left around the two pulleys on that end of the front panel assembly. You are just going over the pulleys and 1/8 of a turn and not around them.
  15. Continue routing the elastic cord to the right towards the PTO shaft. Originally the end of the old elastic cord terminated at the left PTO mounting screw immediately to the left of the PTO shaft itself. If you haven't already removed that screw that had a looped small solder lug on it, do so now and straighten out that solder lug to reuse or use the new one Ten-Tec provided.
    It the next step you are going to terminate the flexible cord at this screw/solder lug location. The length of the flexible cord much be just short enough to apply adequate return pressure on the cord assembly to pull the sliding pointer fully to the left with the PTO fully counter-clockwise. Too little cord return pressure and the pointer won't come fully to the left. Too much pressure and there may not be enough elastic cord length to allow the dial to go fully to the right with the PTO cranked fully clockwise. The elastic cord length isn't terribly critical as long as you get proper pointer travel. Remember this elastic cord will stretch over time and if you have it tighter than really necessary it will stretch sooner.
  16. Set the length of the elastic cord following the directions just mentioned.. Use the tab end of a small solder lug as a tie around the cord itself. Snuggly wrap the free lug end several times around the cord at the termination point. Cut off the excess elastic cord end. Use the small screw to mount the terminated elastic cord length on the left PTO mounting point.
    • Check your work.
  17. Replace the plastic front panel. Make sure the ALC LED leads are inserting into the floating jack extending from the inner front panel.
  18. Once the front panel is fully into position secure it there with the four corner phillips screws. DO NOT OVER TIGHTEN THESE SCREWS.
  19. Replace the main tuning calibrated dial skirt on the inner, larger PTO shaft. Recall the information regarding this procedure. Use a piece of dial cord of strong thread to temporarily open the 'D' clamp around the inner shaft of the dial skirt. Holding the dial skirt firmly in one hand so it doesn't rotate, apply pressure on that string to keep that 'D' wire clamp slightly open while pushing the skirt onto the PTO shaft. Once fully into position (about 1/16 of an inch or so from the panel itself) you can release the pressure on the string and slip it out by pulling on one and.
  20. Replace the two felt washers on the PTO shaft.
  21. Replace the main tuning knob. It should compress the felt washers somewhat.
  22. Replace the remaining knobs. Don't get too close to the front panel otherwise rotating the knobs will scratch or rub the panel finish.

At this point you should have a working dial pointer assembly. The kurrled edge of the pointer cam can be felt just inside the lower center bottom of the front of the transceiver. Moving this cam will allow a degree of string calibration. It may be necessary to move this cam slightly in the future as the elastic cord ages and stretches somewhat.

These instructions work for the Century 22 and the Argosy's and probably on all the earlier non-digital Argonaut, Triton, Delta, and Omni transceivers.

Hope this is useful.

Jerry, KG6TT