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Fixed to Cathode Bias switching problems...
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So I built an amp with a fixed/cathode bias switch like that for the Standard project in TUT5. The only difference was that I used a relay in place of the switch and a cap across the cathode resistor, but I've had some problems.

While testing without tubes, I found that in cathode bias mode, 1/2 of whatever the bias voltage was set to showed up at pin 5 of the tubes...fixed bias was fine. Simulations confirmed this behavior, and I found that changing the 2x 30k1 resistors around Q10 to 331k (c-b) and 2.21k (b-sw) ensured the bias didn't leak through anymore. Is that normal?

The second thing is the relay keeps sticking after a couple of switches. I assume this is the contacts welding from the cap discharging when the relay shorts it. Oddly, when I unsolder it and activate it out of circuit with a battery, it no longer remains stuck and works again. This relay looks heftier than the PA66-CR ones, so I expected it to be fine. Is there a way to stop this from happening like soldering a cap across the contacts to take the initial discharge or something?

My solution for now was to just get rid of the cap, but the problem is testing with a sine wave was putting 10W into that resistor (470R 7W). The ones in TUT5 are all 5W, and I realize that a constant sine wave is not like actual playing, but is this a big enough resistor? I'm going to assume that with the cap, all we need to worry about is more or less the idle power...any AC will go through the cap?

Thank you all!
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Fixed to Cathode Bias switching problems... - by liquidair - 08-16-2019, 12:37 AM

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