RAN Technology

Lakeshore Industries and the Phasemasters

Vintage Ham Radio 0 Comments 02/26/2021 

SSB pioneer company from Manitowoc, WI

Posted By: Robert Nickels (ranickels)

Lakeshore Industries of Manitowoc WI was an early follower of Wes Schum and Central Electronics to supply single sideband transmitters to early adopters of the new mode in the mid-1950s.   Both companies used the phasing method developed by Don Norgaard at General Electric and made popular through articles in QST, CQ, and GE Ham News.



Like most companies, Lakeshore sought to create differentiation in it's product line vs. competition.  Lakeshore did this in two basic ways in their "Phasemaster" line:  1) by increasing the output power by incorporating a 6146 PA tube, and 2) by making it easier to transmit SSB on all bands.     While both generated SSB at 9 MHz and used a 5 MHz VFO plus suitable mixing for the popular amateur bands, Central required an external VFO which they did not supply, only a modification kit for a BC-458 Command Set transmitter, and optional matching dress cabinet.    Lakeshore went the extra mile by removing the precision variable capacitors and VFO coil from surplus BC-458 transmitters and installing them along with the required oscillator and mixer on their own chassis.   This plug-and-play ready VFO was sold separately as the Phasemaster VFO, and incorporated with the Phasemaster II A exciter into an extra-wide cabinet to create the unique Phasemaster II B - a complete 160-10 meter bandswitching and VFO-controlled all-mode transmitter with 65 watts PEP output.    Central Electronics never offered a similar integrated package, moving instead to the highly sophisticated (and much more expensive) 100V which moved the bar well above the Lakeshore offerings.