Primary Modulator Upgrade
Parts List and Application Notes
Primary Modulator Upgrade Kit
1. Bottle of olive oil. Must be EXTRA VIRGIN. Can be flavored if desired with out effecting performance. This can be purchased at any food store in many sizes. Don't bother AES, they are behind the curve, and are not stocking it yet. I talked to Bob Heil about this and he is making arrangements with a supplier in Naples, Italy as this is being written. He plans to include a generous 12oz. bottle with each of his new "Broadcaster" mics. I buy the 8oz. size and find it is good for approx. 350 QSOs. Cost: $2.98 (that's less than a penny per QSO!)
2. A small, nicely styled wine glass. This is very important, the glass must be attractive and of a classic style. Leaded crystal is best. Using a paper cup or a coffee cup will not work, and plastic containers and swigging from the bottle are strictly forbidden. If you are like I am, you probably have several of these on hand in your parts box already, so I am not counting it in the overall cost of the mod.
3. 1/2 cup of marbles. Demosthenese, that famous third century B.C. Greek orator, perfected his modulation and elocution by practicing his speeches with smooth stones in his mouth. This develops the many muscles in the face and throat responsible for good speech patterns. Much the same thing as a baseball player swinging three bats before he steps up to the plate. Since not every Ham has access to a good supply of smooth stones the right size, the modern substitute is marbles. They are the right size for a good workout, and if accidentally swallowed, can be easily retrieved with the aid of a spaghetti strainer and given to the grandchildren. Cost from an "Everything is a Dollar Store": $1.00.
For best results follow this simple procedure:
Initiate the routine each morning after your jog, Thigh Master, shower, coffee, and cigar. Simply place 12 to 15 marbles in your mouth and say common QSO phrases like: "My rig is..., You're an S-8 here in ..., Name here is..., Ok on your..., No, I'm barefoot, Say again, This is CNN, Over-Oooovaaaa, and (most important of all... better repeat it several extra times) How's my audio?" Do this for about 15 minutes. When you first start, it might be helpful to stand over the wash basin; it makes the lost marbles easier to find and the initial drool won't be a problem. Once you have perfected the exercise, you can double up and do the routine in the shower. Be aware that the echo effect from the shower will not translate to the radio. Do not try the exercise while jogging, drinking coffee, or Thigh Mastering, or you will be borrowing the spaghetti strainer from your wife more than you'll want. The last thing you want is for her to ask what you are doing with it. If you are going to be net control that day, you might increase the drill by another 10 minutes. If you are plan to venture on to 14.178Mhz, you just damn well better double the time. This is your first step to superior audio.
This is a proven technique that has been kept secret by professionals for many years. Both Walter Cronkite and James Earl Jones actually carried a flask of the best imported oil with them at all times. Obviously, Dan Rather, as usual, hasn't gotten the message. You can follow in these footsteps of audio greatness by keeping the olive oil and glass at your operating position. Presentation is very important and elegance is the by word. Although Martha Stewart has no protocol for this, placing the oil and glass on a tasteful, hand embroidered doily will set the mood. Pour a small amount into the glass. Before you key the mic, take a small sip of the oil. Just enough to distribute easily all around the mouth and slide down your throat. Immediately you will notice how smooth your mouth feels. Your tongue, lips, and teeth (original equipment or after market) will now perform all the machinations required for that full, smooth sound you want. When making consonant sounds, no longer will your teeth bind on your cheeks robbing your pass band of that high frequency sibilance. The percussive consonants will now be void of the annoying pops, and that foam thingy you have on your mic can be removed. Your lips now work smoothly together and words that begin with "B" and "P" will be clean and sharp. You will gain confidence as the words just slide right off of your tongue. You will sound several years younger and people will not believe you have been a Ham for 45 years. You will find that one application will last for many overs. When you feel that your primary modulator start to distort again, just take another sip.
Without changing anything else in your station, you will be getting the unsolicited compliments on your audio you have been wanting, dare I say, craving for so very long. And you will have all this excellence for less than five bucks (depending on federal and local taxes and transportation charges).
In conclusion, it's probably a good idea to lay off of the spaghetti for a while.