I was finally getting around to reading one of the recent SPRAT’s and saw a photo of your magnificent BITX17. Congratulations! A tip of the hat to Farhan for that very excellent design and it truly is a design that has traveled the world and made a radio available to many who otherwise would not be on the air.
It is a very robust design as I scratch built one in 2005 (or maybe 2006) and just for fun socketed every transistor so I could try various devices. I even had a bag of 2N706’s dating back to the late 1960’s. They all worked except for the carrier oscillator where I just couldn’t get enough swing in the oscillator to correctly place the CIO on the filter slope. That I attribute to the junction capacitance of the 2N706. By far the lowly 2N3904 that I bought for 4 cents each worked the best. Back when I built this I was W6JFR. Adding the EI9GQ frequency stabilizer really added a nice touch to the radio.
I should also tell you that when I built the radio my intent was to uses a piece of single sided copper vector board for the main chassis. It was the weekend and I didn’t realize the piece I had was not big enough for the project. So I took a piece of standard perf board and overlaid that on top of a piece of single sided copper PC board –AND hand drilled all of the holes – I went blind, cross-eyed and had a terrible hangover after consuming 6 beers in a short time span! See the photos below.
BTW I also built a 17M SSB transceiver using the bilateral amp stage from G4GXO as appeared in the SPRAT 128. That used a 4.9152 MHz IF and a 23 MHz Super VXO. In the case of the VXO I used 11.52 MHz crystals in the VXO and used a diode doubler to put the LO at 23 MHz. With the doubler –you get the bonus of 2X the frequency shift of the Super VXO. I also had made a custom set of crystals and used a small relay to switch those into the circuit and that essentially gave me almost the full SSB Band coverage. You can see that here
Also I have been using a simple bilateral stage consisting of a 2N3906 and 2N3904 and the results have been amazing. The latest work is a follow on to my shirt pocket transceiver and uses SMD components. See attached.
Here are some videos of the latest –which is now a two bander 40 and 20M. (Originally it was 75 and 40M)
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0UlBX7aznnM&list=UU4_ft4-oTdCMlWlL4XXHScg and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Wa5WiUZ9KoY
Have fun – this is such a wonderful hobby!