Tektronix AM503: Special Adapter and Failed BNC Bullet

The Tektronix AM503 manual specifies a Special Adapter to inject a signal directly into the input connector in place of the A6302 Hall probe:

Tektronix AM503 Special Adapter
Tektronix AM503 Special Adapter

The intricate Amphenol plug might still be available at some phenomenal cost, but I’m willing to just jam a pair of wires into the AM593 connector and be done with it.

I combined a pigtail BNC sporting a male connector, two 51 Ω resistors in parallel, two snippets of 18 AWG wire (an exact match for the 40 mil connector pins!) with the ends filed smooth, and some heatshrink tubing to make a roughly equivalent adapter:

Tek AM503 - Crude Special Adapter
Tek AM503 – Crude Special Adapter

Because the pigtail didn’t quite reach the function generator, I joined it to a longer cable with a BNC bullet, whereupon a slight tug ripped the guts out of the bullet:

BNC Bullet - failed
BNC Bullet – failed

A closer look:

BNC Bullet - parts
BNC Bullet – parts

The center hole comes into play with their equally craptastic BNC tee connectors.

Comparing this bullet with others from the same eBay lot shows the outer shell didn’t get quite enough crimp around the metal ring. Because it’s not an electrical connection, I eased some epoxy onto the internal shoulder where that ring seats, then slid the guts back in place.

Yak shaving in full effect!

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