mfj934 manual
MFJ-934 Tuner/Artificial Ground
Instruction Manual
MFJ-934 Antenna Tuner/Artificial Ground
IMPORTANT: PLEASE
READ ENTIRE MANUAL BEFORE ATTEMPTING TO OPERATE THIS
EQUIPMENT. THIS UNIT DOES NOT PROVIDE A DC OR LOW FREQUENCY EARTH
GROUND FROM THE COUNTERPOISE TERMINAL. A SEPARATE WIRE MUST BE
CONNECTED FROM THE STATION GROUND BUS TO AN ELECTRIC GROUND. THE
LONG WIRE AND BALANCED LINE TERMINALS ON THE BACK MAY HAVE AREA.
DO NOT PLACE ANY COUNTERPOISE OR NON-COAXIAL FEED WIRES NEAR
METALLIC OR RF SENSITIVE DEVICES.
General Information
The MFJ-934 is a 300 watt (175 watts on 160 meters) RF output power antenna tuner and
artificial ground system that will match any transmitter or transceiver to virtually any antenna. A
special circuit in this tuner cancels the reactance of a ground lead or counterpoise, and reduces
problems caused by RF "in the shack". Forward power, reflected power, ground current, and
SWR can be read on the wattmeter's illuminated cross-needle meter.
The MFJ-934 tuner section uses a "T" network and covers all bands between 160 and 10 meters.
This network will work with dipoles, inverted-vees, verticals, mobile whips, beams, random
wires, and many other antennas. The MFJ-934 has rear panel connectors for coaxial, single wire
or two wire feedlines. A built-in 4:1 balun allows the use of balanced open wire, twinlead, or
twin-axial feedlines.
SWR/Wattmeter and Ground Current Meter
An illuminated cross-needle meter measures the FORWARD and REFLECTED power, ground
current, and the SWR. The meter's full scale forward and reflected power range is controlled by
the right METER RANGE switch. If your transmitter has more than 30 watts of output power,
set this switch to the 300W (button in). If your transmitter has less than 30 watts of output, use
the 30W switch position (button out).
Forward power is displayed on the left-hand FORWARD meter scale when the FORWARD
CURRENT button is out. Read directly from the scale in the 300 watt position.
In the 30W position the forward power scale must be divided by 10.
Reflected power is read on the right-hand REFLECTED meter scale. This scale indicates 60
watts full scale when the 300W power sensitivity is selected, and 6 watts when the 30W forward
power range is selected. This scale must be divided by 10 when using the 30W power range
position.
The most accurate power readings occur in the upper half of the meter scales. To accurately
measure power with a less than perfect match, the reflected power should be subtracted from the
forward power reading.
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MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
SWR is measured by observing the crossing point of the forward and reflected power needles.
No cumbersome or time consuming SWR sensitivity adjustments are required with this type of
meter. The SWR is read directly from eight red SWR curves ranging from 1:1 to infinity.
Simply observe the red SWR curve closest to where both needles cross, and read the SWR value
of the curve.
Ground current is indicated on the Forward meter scale when the FORWARD CURRENT meter
switch is depressed and locked.
Interconnections
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MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
Installation
1. Locate the tuner in a convenient location at the operating position. Avoid placing the tuner
near microphones, speech processors, computers, TNC's or other RF sensitive devices.
WARNING:
If random wire or balanced feeders are connected directly to this tuner, position
the tuner so the rear panel terminals can not be accidentally contacted by
persons or conductors. When transmitting with random wire or balanced lines,
the rear panel burns. These high RF voltages may also damage anything
contacting or within a half inch of the terminals.
2. Install the MFJ-934 between the transmitter and antenna as shown in the interconnections
diagram. A 50 ohm coaxial cable is used to connect the transmitter to the SO-239 (UHF
female) connector labeled TRANSMITTER on the back of the tuner.
3. Connect a short heavy wire from the post labeled GROUND to the station ground bus that
connects the transmitter, receiver, and other accessories together.
4. Connect the counterpoise or RF ground to the COUNTERPOISE post. (See the Artificial
Ground operating section and the Grounding Hints section on page 6 for details of suitable
counterpoise grounds and other grounding suggestions.)
5. A coaxial feedline may be connected to the SO-239 (UHF female) connector labeled
ANTENNA.
-ORA random wire (longwire) antenna may be connected to the five-way binding post marked
WIRE. (See the ANTENNA HINTS section for detailed suggestions on bringing a single
wire feeder into the operating position.)
-ORA balanced feedline (twin lead, open wire, or twin-axial line) may be connected to the two
five-way binding posts marked BALANCED LINE. Connect an insulated jumper wire from
the WIRE binding post, as indicated by a dotted line on the MFJ-934, to one of the
BALANCED LINE posts. This connection activates the internal 4:1 balun.
Note: Do not connect more than one antenna to the MFJ-934 at the same time, unless you want
to apply power to the antennas at the same time. If a random length wire is used, be sure
to remove the WIRE to BALANCED LINE jumper connection.
3
MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
Meter Lamp
The MFJ-934 has an illuminated meter. To provide power for the
meter lamp, a 12 Vdc supply such as the MFJ-1312C should be
used. Use a standard 2.5 mm coaxial plug with the center positive
and the shield ground.
Using The MFJ-934
CAUTION:
Never Change The Antenna or Inductor Selector Switch Position While
Transmitting! Never Apply More Than 300 Watts To The MFJ-934.
In any conventional "T" network tuner, maximum power handling and smoothest tuning occur
when the capacitance in the network is as large as possible. In this tuner the TRANSMITTER
and ANTENNA controls have maximum capacitance at position 0 (fully meshed), and minimum
capacitance at position 10 (fully open). Use the highest capacitance possible (lowest number on
the front panel scale) for each band for the smoothest tuning, highest efficiency, and greatest
power handling capability. The chart in the tuning instructions shows typical capacitor settings
that can be used for each amateur band.
The INDUCTANCE switch in the MFJ-934 has maximum inductance in position "A", and
minimum inductance in position "L". The chart in the tuning instructions shows typical
INDUCTANCE switch settings for each amateur band. Less inductance is needed as the
frequency is increased. If too little inductance is used, the tuner may not match the load properly.
If too much inductance is used, the tuner will be "touchy" and power handling will be
compromised.
Most modern solid state transceivers do not require tuning and loading adjustments. If the
transceiver has a built in antenna tuner, be sure it is turned off or disabled. If your transmitter has
an adjustable output circuit, it must be properly tuned to a 50 ohm load at the operating frequency
before adjusting the tuner. This should be done with a dummy load. If you do not have a
dummy load, use the recommended maximum transmitter load setting and "dip" the plate.
Note:
Do NOT change the transmitter's tuning (plate) or loading (antenna) controls until after
the tuner has been fully adjusted. The transmitter can be "touched up" after the MFJ934 is fully tuned.
Set the GROUND MATCHING controls at zero (maximum capacitance) and "L" (minimum
inductance) unless you already know the correct position for the band you are using. Ground
matching is done after the tuner is adjusted for lowest SWR.
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MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
Adjustment Procedure
When using the MFJ-934 for receiving only, simply adjust the MFJ-934 for the highest "S" meter
or signal level. The Tuning Chart can be used as a reference.
1. Select the 30W (out) METER switch scale. Turn the transmitter's power control fully down.
2. Position the TRANSMITTER and ANTENNA MATCHING controls and the INDUCTOR
SELECTOR switch in the bottom Tuning Chart position for the operating frequency.
Tuning Chart
Freq MHz
1.8
1.8
2.0
2.0
3.5
3.5
3.5
3.75
3.75
3.75
4.0
4.0
4.0
7.15
7.15
10.1
10.1
14.2
18.1
18.1
21.2
21.2
24.9
28.5
Transmitter
4-1/2
1
5-1/2
3
9
6
4
7
5
3
7
6
4
8
6
9
8
9-1/2
9-1/2
8-1/2
9-1/2
7
9
9-1/2
Inductor
A
B
A
B
B
C
D
C
D
E
C
D
E
F
G
G
H
H
I
J
J
K
K
K
Antenna
4-1/2
1
5-1/2
3
9
6
4
7
5
3
7
6
4
8
6
9
8
9-1/2
9-1/2
8-1/2
9-1/2
7
9
9-1/2
3. Apply just enough power on CW (or AM / FM / RTTY) to obtain noticeable deflection on
the reflected power meter.
4. Carefully adjust the "TRANSMITTER" and "ANTENNA" MATCHING controls for the
lowest reflected power.
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MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
Note: These controls interact. Adjust the TRANSMITTER control for minimum, then adjust
theANTENNA control for minimum SWR. Go back and forth between these
adjustments as many times as required until the lowest reflected power (best SWR) is
obtained.
5. If a perfect or very low SWR can not be obtained, stop transmitting. Increase the
INDUCTOR SELECTOR control (higher letter) and decrease the capacitance (lower
number). Try the row of chart settings just above the last one tried. Repeat from Step 3.
Note:
If an SWR of 1:1 can not be obtained, repeat Steps 3 and 4 for each new INDUCTOR
switch position. Move the switch towards the end of the alphabet one position at a time
until a match is obtained but always use the highest alphabetical setting possible.
WARNING: Never transmit while changing the INDUCTOR SELECTOR.
6. Increase the transmitter power until the Forward power level is full scale (30 watts) and
observe the reflected power or SWR. If the reflected power and SWR are not satisfactory,
adjust the MATCHING controls again.
Note:
If your transmitter will not put out 30 watts, set it to the maximum power available.
7. After a low SWR is obtained, the transmitter power may be increased to any value up to 300
watts carrier, or 300 watts PEP (175 watts on 160 meters).
The MFJ-934 will reduce the SWR of most antenna systems to 1:1. In some cases, a perfect 1:1
SWR may not be obtainable. If this is the case, the length of the antenna or the feedline can be
changed slightly until a low SWR can be obtained. See the antenna hints section.
In Case Of Difficulty
If this tuner fails to tune, please double check all connections and follow the tuning procedures
again. Be sure you are using enough inductance (highest letter usable for band) and have the
capacitors open far enough (highest front panel number).
The power rating of this tuner is 300 watts on 80 meters and above, and 175 watts on 160 meters.
If this tuner arcs at the rated power levels, please double check all connections and follow the
tuning procedures again. Be sure you are using the least amount of inductance (toward A) and
the greatest capacitance (toward 0) possible to match the load on the operating frequency.
If you are still unsuccessful, but the tuner does adjust and operate when connected to a dummy
load or another antenna, please read the following ANTENNA HINTS text.
6
MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
Grounding Hints
To minimize RFI, single wire feedlines (such as used with Windom or longwire antennas) should
be kept away from other wiring. Radiation will be minimized if the single wire feeder runs
parallel and reasonably close to the wire that connects the tuner to the outdoor ground. The
antenna feed wire should be adequately insulated to prevent arcing or accidental contact.
For safety, please use both dc and RF grounds. It is particularly important to have a good RF
ground while using a single wire feeder. When using a single wire feeder, the tuner needs
something to "push" against in order to force current into the line. If a good RF ground is not
available, RF will usually find it's way back into the power line (RFI), transmitter audio circuits
(RF feedback), or the operator (RF burns).
Water pipes provide good dc and ac safety grounds, but they are often inadequate for RF
grounding because they are long single conductors. RF grounds require large "spread out"
surfaces with direct multiple connections to the equipment ground point. Water pipes, heating
ducts, or multiple ground rods may work (especially if they are all connected together with
jumper wires), but the best RF grounds are radial systems or multi-wire counterpoises.
RF and lightning travels on the surface of conductors. Braided or woven conductors have high
surface resistance to lightning and RF. Ground leads for RF should have wide smooth surfaces.
Avoid the use of woven or braided conductors in RF and lightning grounds unless the lead needs
to be flexible.
Antenna Hints
WARNING:
For operator safety, a good outside earth ground or water pipe ground should
always be installed and connected to the case of the MFJ-934. Make certain the
safety ground connects to the same terminal that connects to the transmitter and
other station accessories.
A binding post labeled "COUNTERPOISE" is provided for counterpoise or
other RF ground connection(s). This post will not provide a safety ground.
Location
For the best performance, an end-fed longwire wire antenna should be at least one quarterwavelength long at the operating frequency. Horizontal antennas should be at least a half wave
long and high and clear of surrounding objects. Good RF grounds help the signal in almost any
transmitting installation, but it is extremely important to have good RF grounds with long wire
antennas.
7
MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
Matching Problems
Most matching problems occur when the antenna system presents an extremely high impedance
to the tuner. When the antenna impedance is much lower than the feedline impedance, an odd
quarter-wavelength feedline converts the low antenna impedance to a very high impedance at the
tuner. A similar problem occurs if the antenna has an extremely high impedance and the
transmission line is a multiple of a half-wavelength. The half-wavelength line repeats the very
high antenna impedance at the tuner. Incorrect feedline and antenna lengths can make an antenna
system very difficult or impossible to tune.
This problem often occurs on 80 meters if an odd quarter-wave (60 to 70 foot) open wire line is
used to feed a half-wave (100 to 140 foot) dipole. The odd quarter-wave line transforms the
dipole's low impedance to over three thousand ohms at the tuner. This is because the
mismatched feedline is an odd multiple of 1/4 wavelength long. The line inverts (or teetertotters) the antenna impedance.
A problem also occurs on 40 meters where the feedline is now a multiple of a half-wave (60 to
70 foot) and connects to a full-wave high impedance antenna (100 to 140 foot). The half-wave
line repeats the high antenna impedance at the tuner. The antenna system looks like several
thousand ohms at the tuner on 40 meters.
The following suggestions will reduce the difficulty in matching an antenna with a tuner:
1. Never center feed a half-wave multi-band antenna with a high impedance feedline that is
close to an odd multiple of a quarter-wave long.
2. Never center feed a full-wave antenna with a feedline close to any multiple of a half-wave
long.
3. If a tuner will not tune a multi-band antenna, add or subtract 1/8 wave of feedline (for the
band that won't tune) and try again.
4. Never try to load a G5RV or center fed dipole on a band below the half-wave design
frequency. If you want to operate a 80 meter antenna on 160 meters, feed either or both
conductors as a longwire against the station ground.
To avoid problems matching or feeding any dipole antenna with high impedance lines, keep the
lines around these lengths. The worst possible line lengths are in brackets. These line lengths
assume a velocity factor of .95 :
160 meter dipole; 35-60, 170-195 or 210-235 feet. (Avoid 130, 260 ft)
80 meter dipole; 34-40, 90-102 or 160-172 feet. (Avoid 66, 135, 190 ft)
40 meter dipole; 42-52, 73-83, 112-123 or 145-155 feet. (Avoid 32, 64, 96, 128 ft)
Some trimming or adding of line may be necessary to accommodate higher bands.
8
MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
WARNING:
To avoid problems, the antenna should be a full half-wave on the lowest band.
On 160 meters an 80 or 40 meter antenna fed the normal way will be extremely
reactive with only a few ohms of feedpoint resistance. Trying to load an 80
meter (or to operate 160 with a 80 or 40 meter antenna is to load either or both
feedline wires (in parallel) as a longwire. The antenna will act like a "T" antenna
worked against the station ground.
MFJ-934 Artificial Ground
The MFJ-934 contains a series L-C circuit that is used to cancel any reactance in the RF ground
system (either a counterpoise or a ground wire). Maximum ground current will flow through the
MFJ-934 RF current meter when the GROUND MATCHING INDUCTANCE switch and
CAPACITANCE adjustment are resonated with the reactance in the ground system. This
resonance (maximum ground current) is indicated by the FORWARD wattmeter needle when the
FORWARD CURRENT meter function switch is depressed and locked in the GROUND
position. The L and C of the MFJ-934 is adjusted for maximum deflection of the meter needle.
Installation Of A Suitable Counterpoise / Artificial Ground
The RF counterpoise system can be as simple as a single wire a quarter wave long (or any odd
multiple of 1/4 wave) or as complicated as several wires cut for different bands. If multiple
wires are used, it is important to keep the last few feet of any wire as far as possible (two feet at
the minimum) from other conductors.
Always insulate counterpoise wires and keep them away from accidental contact with animals,
people, RF sensitive devices, and wiring. Try to position the counterpoise wires in a straight
line. Wrapping a wire up in a ball or zig-zagging them wildly just to "fit in" enough wire will not
improve the ground.
A counterpoise wire must be well insulated, particularly when using an antenna with a single
wire feeder. For best performance, several wires a quarter-wavelength long on different
frequencies should be connected together at the COUNTERPOISE post of the MFJ-934.
When counterpoise wires are located indoors, they can be laid on a floor under a carpet, placed in
an attic, or stapled to a basement ceiling. If you place the counterpoise under the carpet or where
someone may contact it, be sure to use well insulated wire and multiple counterpoise wires.
Insulate the far end of the counterpoise wire(s) with electrical tape to prevent accidental contact.
9
MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
When counterpoise wires are used outdoors, only place them high enough to walk under. Use
multiple wires spaced a few feet apart (at minimum).
DANGER:
Touching a counterpoise wire while transmitting can cause an RF burn. The
wire must be well insulated and the end properly insulated.
Adjusting The Artificial Ground
The goal of artificial ground adjustments are to obtain maximum RF ground current. The current
is measured by placing the front panel FORWARD CURRENT switch in the GROUND position.
Maximum current is achieved when any reactance in the ground connection is tuned out. This is
accomplished by adjusting the GROUND MATCHING knobs labeled "INDUCTANCE" and
"CAPACITANCE". Always set the capacitance knob to "2" before starting this procedure!
1.) Set the CAPACITANCE knob to "2" and the INDUCTANCE knob to "A". Depress and lock
the meter's red Forward CURRENT button.
2.) Apply a small amount of RF carrier from the transmitter and rotate the INDUCTANCE
switch until maximum ground (Forward meter) current is obtained.
Note: If the needle goes off the scale reduce power. If the meter does not deflect, increase
transmitter power. Adjust the transmitter power to keep the meter "on scale".
3.) Adjust the CAPACITANCE knob for maximum current.
4.) If the CAPACITANCE knob produces maximum current at "0", rotate the INDUCTANCE
switch one letter higher (clockwise). The ideal setting for the capacitor is at
one or two.
After maximum RF current is reached, re-tune the antenna tuner section for minimum SWR.
Failure To Obtain A Ground Current Reading
If a ground current reading can not be obtained at full transmitter power, the counterpoise or
ground may not be effective at the operating frequency. If no RFI problems exist, set the
CAPACITANCE to zero and the INDUCTANCE to "A" and operate. If you experience RF in
the shack or other problems, alter the counterpoise or add a different length wire. See the
beginning of this section for details.
There are also cases where very little deflection of the ground current meter are a result of a well
designed antenna not producing unwanted ground currents. Some antennas that minimize ground
current are beams, dipoles, half-wave verticals, and quarter-wave verticals with good grounds.
Even though the meter may not indicate much current, the MFJ-934 can still reduce RF at the
operating position, TVI, telephone interference, etc. If even the slightest ground current peak can
be detected, the artificial ground is helping.
10
MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
Tuning Out Reactance of Long Ground Leads
If the station ground has a long lead, connect it to the COUNTERPOISE binding post of the
MFJ-934. Connect the station ground bus and accessories to the GROUND post. Do not
reverse these wires. Follow the same procedure for maximizing RF Ground Current described
in the preceding "Adjusting the Artificial Ground" section. After maximum RF current is
reached, you may need to re-tune the antenna tuner section for minimum SWR.
WARNING:
This unit does NOT provide a dc or ac safety ground through the
COUNTERPOISE terminal. A separate wire from the station ground bus to an
electrical or earth ground must be used.
TVI and RFI Hints
It is possible for RF to flow down power cables into the house wiring. This may cause TVI,
Stereo, VCR or other RFI problems. As a precaution, a ferrite core can be clamped around
power leads. The MFJ-701 RFI-FREE CHOKE KIT makes it easy to eliminate common RFI
problems. Please call for price.
Technical Assistance:
If you have any problem with this unit first check the appropriate section of this manual. If the
manual does not reference your problem or your problem is not solved by reading the manual you
may call MFJ Technical Service at 601-323-0549 or the MFJ Factory at 601-323-5869. You
will be best helped if you have your unit, manual and all information on your station handy so
you can answer any questions the technicians may ask.
You can also send questions by mail to MFJ Enterprises, INC., 300 Industrial Park Road,
Starkville, MS 39759; by FAX to 601-323-6551; through Compuserve at 76206,1763; or by
email to [email protected] Send a complete description of your problem, an
explanation of exactly how you are using your unit, and a complete description of your station.
11
MFJ -934 Instruction Manual
Tuning Chart
You may wish to remove this page and place it near the tuner. Insert your own values for each
frequency according to your station.
Freq MHz
1.8
1.8
2.0
2.0
3.5
3.5
3.5
3.75
3.75
3.75
4.0
4.0
4.0
7.15
7.15
10.1
10.1
14.2
18.1
18.1
21.2
21.2
24.9
28.5
12
Transmitter
4-1/2
1
5\1/2
3
9
6
4
7
5
3
7
6
4
8
6
9
8
9-1/2
9-1/2
8-1/2
9-1/2
7
9
9-1/2
Inductor
A
B
A
B
B
C
D
C
D
E
C
D
E
F
G
G
H
H
I
J
J
K
K
K
Antenna
4-1/2
1
5-1/2
3
9
6
4
7
5
3
7
6
4
8
6
9
8
9-1/2
9-1/2
8-1/2
9-1/2
7
9
9-1/2
Ground Cap.
Ground Ind.
MFJ-934 Instruction Manual
FULL 12 MONTH WARRANTY
MFJ Enterprises, Inc. warrants to the original owner of this product, if manufactured by MFJ Enterprises,
Inc. and purchased from an authorized dealer or directly from MFJ Enterprises, Inc. to be free from
defects in material and workmanship for a period of 12 months from date of purchase provided the
following terms of this warranty are satisfied.
1.
The purchaser must retain the dated proof-of-purchase (bill of sale, canceled check, credit card or
money order receipt, etc.) describing the product to establish the validity of the warranty claim
and submit the original of machine reproduction or such proof of purchase to MFJ Enterprises,
Inc. at the time of warranty service. MFJ Enterprises, Inc. shall have the discretion to deny
warranty without dated proof-of-purchase. Any evidence of alteration, erasure, of forgery shall be
cause to void any and all warranty terms immediately.
2.
MFJ Enterprises, Inc. agrees to repair or replace at MFJ's option without charge to the original
owner any defective product under warrantee provided the product is returned postage prepaid to
MFJ Enterprises, Inc. with a personal check, cashiers check, or money order for $7.00 covering
postage and handling.
3.
MFJ Enterprises, Inc.will supply replacement parts free of charge for any MFJ product under
warranty upon request. A dated proof of purchase and a $5.00 personal check, cashiers check, or
money order must be provided to cover postage and handling.
4.
This warranty is NOT void for owners who attempt to repair defective units.
consultation is available by calling (601) 323-5869.
5.
This warranty does not apply to kits sold by or manufactured by MFJ Enterprises, Inc.
6.
Wired and tested PC board products are covered by this warranty provided only the wired and
tested PC board product is returned. Wired and tested PC boards installed in the owner's
cabinet or connected to switches, jacks, or cables, etc. sent to MFJ Enterprises, Inc. will be
returned at the owner's expense unrepaired.
7.
Under no circumstances is MFJ Enterprises, Inc. liable for consequential damages to person or
property by the use of any MFJ products.
8.
Out-of-Warranty Service: MFJ Enterprises, Inc. will repair any out-of-warranty product
provided the unit is shipped prepaid. All repaired units will be shipped COD to the owner.
Repair charges will be added to the COD fee unless other arrangements are made.
9.
This warranty is given in lieu of any other warranty expressed or implied.
10.
MFJ Enterprises, Inc. reserves the right to make changes or improvements in design or
manufacture without incurring any obligation to install such changes upon any of the products
previously manufactured.
11.
All MFJ products to be serviced in-warranty or out-of-warranty should be addressed to MFJ
Enterprises, Inc., 300 Industrial Park Road, Starkville, Mississippi 39759, USA and must be
accompanied by a letter describing the problem in detail along with a copy of your dated proof-ofpurchase.
12.
This warranty gives you specific rights, and you may also have other rights which vary from state
to state.
Technical
13
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