Re: Hilltopper 20 Kit Excellent quality!

Charles W. Powell


I was using the computer to trigger the keyer, so the memory function comes from the computer not the ATMEL 328PU.  But a small outboard chip might be a more elegant solution and they are only a few bucks.

Chas - NK8O

On Aug 23, 2019, at 12:47 PM, Dave Benson <davek1swl@...> wrote:


The Hilltopper microcontroller IC runs ~ $1.80 in quantities of 100.  That's the 'raw' IC, and I installed the Arduino bootloader to keep the cost down.

That said,  'project fatigue' had set in by the time I wrapped up the Hilltopper firmware.  Getting iambic mode B right cost me a few grew hairs, and I'd had enough.  As a practical matter, it's possible that adding a message memory would require an additional pushbutton input to trigger a message playback.  Certainly do-able, but with impacts to both the PCB and enclosure layouts.

73- Dave, K1SWL

On Thu, Aug 22, 2019 at 11:04 PM Leland L. Bahr <w5drc@...> wrote:

OK, Curt, you convinced me at our today's eyeball meeting.  I just ordered a Hilltopper 20.  Won't start it until I get my 40 meter Organic W8DIZ (Kits and Parts rig up and running.)  I still wish the Hilltopper keyer had a memory.  For me, it seems almost useless without it.  Most likely will use an outboard keyer with a memory so the internal one won't be used.  Why call CQ over and over again when a memory keyer with the CQ stored in it will do it for you.  Don't understand the reasoning for no memory when a chip costs around $5 with a memory.  Will also take your advice and use Vishey bypass caps.  (I threw the green ones away in the Organic 40 and used good quality Vishey there too.)  Other then that, I am looking forward to getting a Hilltopper 20 on the air.

Lee, w0vt, w5drc

On 8/18/2019 12:27 PM, Curt via Groups.Io wrote:
Just want to thank whoever packs these kits with bagged assembly groups keyed to the instructions and the bom.  It makes assembly a real pleasure.  Someone spent a lot of time, effort, sweat thinking through and packaging this kit.  I am only on group 3, but the journey has been fun.  Any misnakes will be my fault :-o

Curt KB5JO

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