10 GHz LNB Rx converter kit  -  build instructions and alignment

For those who are a little apprehensive, be assured that surface mount components are quite easy to use, once you have got used to them. 'Getting used to them' usually implies the use of an appropriate soldering iron bit and ensuring that you have good visability of the assemby. This latter point may seem obvious, but appears often to be ignored. A stereo microscope, such as the ones sold by Farnell, really make the board and components stand out, and also gives you a good sense of depth, which a single eyepiece cannot do.  There are also head-band mounted magnifiers available that should be OK. In all cases, ensure that you have good illumination. Also, try to work away from the edge of the bench - sometimes a component will ping out of the tweezers and if it goes onto the carpet, your chance of finding it is vanishingly small...
The tweezers supplied with the kit are quite sturdy, and are less prone to component-pinging that some of the finer, more springy ones.

Regarding soldering tip temperature, do not be over cautious - use a relatively high temperature bit, say 800 F (430 C) for the surface mount work, but use a fine pencil bit, and as thin a solder as you have (preferably 0.5mm diameter).

Build information:

mixer top
2nd mixer pcb
450 MHz multiplier
  UHF 20dBm multiplier pcb
x23 multiplier
x23 multiplier pcb
unit assy

There are some components that are not fitted, particularly on the 450 MHz 20 dBm multiplier pcb. This is usually because the components are part of options that are not included in the standard build. These options are discussed at the end of this page, together with comments on the various ways in which the converter assembly can be interfaced with the associated LNB.

A few components, such as tantalum capacitors and the supply series diode, are physically symetrical but also require fitting the correct way round. For these 
components, the boards are marked with a '+' symbol next to the appropriate pad. Both the capacitors and diodes are marked in the following manor:

                   tant marking

Tests and alignment

Some tests should be undertaken before fitting the boards into the unit assembly, and the 450MHz multiplier board should also be fully aligned. So in the case of the 2nd mixer pcb, just check that the 5v regulator is outputting 5v, and that the DC output voltage of the mmic (junction of IC51/R51/C56) is sitting between 3.2 and 3.8 volts.

There are no tests or alignment of the x23 multiplifier prior to fitting into the unit.