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Author Topic: Need some antenna ideas for new home  (Read 2955 times)
K4SKA
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Posts: 43




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« on: June 10, 2010, 08:03:58 AM »

I have a new home and wanted some antenna ideas.  I don't have a lot of cash so a tower is not possible.  I have a 3 acre yard only two big trees.  The big trees are at least 50 ft tall.
The trees that are 170 feet apart, and it is 290 feet from one tree to the end of my backyard.  It is 15ft from my shack window to TREE 1.  I wondered if a basic longwire from TREE 1 to TREE 2 would be good, or maybe an OCF Windom ?

I hope this makeshift drawing, of my yard, comes out in this post.

 <----------290ft---------------------------------> TREE 1  >-----------170 ft -------> TREE 2
                                       _______
                                      |       X | >--15ft-->
                                      |          |
                                      | home  |
                                      |______|

The "X" marks where my ham shack is on my first floor (I have a one story ranch house).
I drove a ground rod outside the window of my shack.
My gear right now is:  Yaesu FT-101ZD with a MFJ-941E VersaTuner II
           
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WX7G
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« Reply #1 on: June 10, 2010, 10:45:08 AM »

If you want something easy, effective, and inexpensive I recommend the Hustler 5BTV vertical. Check DX engineering.

If you want to use the trees, a center fed dipole or OCF dipole with ladder line will work fine. Don't worry about the line not leaving the antenna at a right angle for a half wavelength. Don't worry about line radiation of the OCF. Put it up and and get on the air. You can even use the original Windom with single wire feed. I used one for awhile and at 100 watts the common-mode RF current in the shack and house were not noticed.

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AE5JU
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Posts: 229




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« Reply #2 on: June 10, 2010, 04:23:22 PM »

That's a perfect setup for a 160 m OCF dipole if I've ever seen one!
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AG6WT
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Posts: 448




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« Reply #3 on: June 10, 2010, 09:08:03 PM »

You didn't say what kind of operating you do but if you like DXing on a budget, I'd first put up a OCF dipole in the trees, then a multi-band vertical with a complete radial field in that open space on the left, and finally, with all that acreage, a few Beverage antennas.

Ray
KJ6AMF
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AA4PB
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« Reply #4 on: June 11, 2010, 05:11:02 AM »

I'd do a center-fed inverted-V configuration with the center supported by tree #1. One leg towards tree #2 and one into the open space in the opposite direction. OCF dipoles and end-fed antennas are fraught with RFI problems due to common mode currents on the coax shield. In my opinion, you are much better off to let the antenna be the antenna and the feed line act as feedline to deliver power rather than radiating signal.

Another workable option is an inverted-L, vertical near tree #1 and horizontal over to tree #2. Place an SGC automatic tuner at ground level below the vertical section and bury plenty of radials for the counterpoise. This is obviously more expensive and more work (radials) than the inverted-V fed with coax.

Don't discount the use of traps in the inverted-V in order to get coverage on several bands.
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WX7G
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« Reply #5 on: June 11, 2010, 07:19:56 AM »

I agree with AA4PB. An inverted-vee supported by tree 1 is the best option for a wire antenna.
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K4SKA
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« Reply #6 on: June 11, 2010, 08:00:04 AM »

I have a G5RV that I bought a while ago.  Would that work as the "inverted V" or should I just put together a new wire antenna ?
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NK6Q
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« Reply #7 on: June 11, 2010, 09:43:36 AM »

OMG!!  290 feet?  170 feet?  I can barely squeeze a 40 meter dipole across my lot!!  You are a lucky guy! 

With that much space you could put up a 160 meter dipole, feed it with balanced line into a tuner and work all bands.  I use RadioShack 300 ohm deluxe(?) twinlead for my dipole; it seems to work fine for me.

Bill in Pasadena
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WA9UAA
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« Reply #8 on: June 11, 2010, 09:45:40 AM »

I have a G5RV that I bought a while ago.  Would that work as the "inverted V" or should I just put together a new wire antenna ?

Good Day,
G5RVs work best when the wires are at 180 degrees apart.
73,
Rob WA9UAA
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WX7G
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« Reply #9 on: June 12, 2010, 09:26:38 AM »

I ran a NEC simulation of a G5RV configured as a dipole and configured as an inverted-vee. It works about the same either way. With your tuner any wire becomes an antenna. You can put up wire antenna and when you feel like it take it down and try a different antenna.

As I suggested before - and as I have used successfully - put up an 'original Windom' with a single wire feed. It will drive the "common-mode current is aways bad" folks crazy. For that put up a 130' wire and feed it with a single wire 40' from one end. Use the antenna tuner in unbalanced mode.
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AA4PB
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« Reply #10 on: June 12, 2010, 12:14:50 PM »

Common mode currents on the feed line are not necessarily always bad, but the problem is that most of the time we have little or no idea what the common mode currents are doing. I maintain that it is best to design the antenna system (whenever possible) so that the antenna wire (high in the air and away from the shack) does all the radiating and the feed line simply transfers power to the antenna instead of radiating it into places where we might not want it.

With the original single-wire feed windom, not only does the feed line do some radiating but you also need a counterpoise. If you don't provide one then the chassis of the radio and everything connected to it will try to act as one and you could end up with everything "hot" with RF.
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KY6R
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« Reply #11 on: June 13, 2010, 08:01:55 AM »

As a DX-er, I would put up a 40 Meter 5 element Bruce Array strung between the 170 foot area between tree 1 and 2, and then an inverted L with a switchable loading coil between the other - for 80 and 160.

You could also put up a 40 Meter Bobtail curtain in the 170 foot space for 40M, but the Bruce Array is better IMHO.

The other possibility is to put up a 20M extended double zepp in that 170 foot space.

I feed all of my wire antennas with 450 ohm ladder line to a DX Engineering 4:1 balun and then high quality coax to the shack. This lets all of my antennas work multiband, and usually just with the ATU in my rig - which has a very stingy built in antenna tuner.

If you are not a DX-er, an OCF windom is a good idea - but I think the 170 foot space is the place to play first - and try to keep the wire up at 50 feet - since there is going to be some sag.
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K4SKA
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« Reply #12 on: June 13, 2010, 09:01:05 AM »

KY6R  -  I read the article at :  https://docs.google.com/viewer?url=http://rudys.typepad.com/ant/files/antenna_array_80160m.pdf  about Bruce Array's.  it was from a web link at N6LF page.

I don't even see how to pull one of those Bruce Arrays up in the air.  Too confusing for this beginner amateur, but thanks for the suggestion.

I think I am just going to put up a basic, end fed zepp with a ladder line feed first, and get on the air.  Once I have that working I can decide where to go from there.  Like I said, I have very limited funds at this time.

Thank you to all the hams who made suggestions.  I appreciate it.

73's
KB4AZX - Phil
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K9KJM
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« Reply #13 on: June 13, 2010, 11:09:38 PM »

From a lightning protection standpoint, You will want to some how bond your ground rod to your homes electric (And telco, Cable TV etc) grounds.   Also, It is better to have the feedline enter the building low to the ground.
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KI4SDY
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« Reply #14 on: June 14, 2010, 05:59:41 AM »

Since you are on limited funds, you have two good tall trees and a G5RV, I would use what you have. After your on the air with that, you can add to the farm. The 160 meter doublet suggestion was a good one. I would also suggest a 160 meter loop antenna as a very inexpensive, quiet, omni directional antenna. You can make some supports for the corners of your lot out of PVC pipe, if necessary. Try to get it as high as you can. With a switch box, you can work it against the G5RV for best results in under different conditions. I am sure it will become your primary receive antenna.

If you are not that good at building antennas yet, but want something a little better than the G5RV (mine works great, so I am still using it for many things) I would get the MFJ doublet antenna that is fed with 100' of ladder line for $59.00. It is hang and play. It is worth it just for the cost of the wire and parts.Grin 
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