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Author Topic: Tar Heel Model 100 for Apartment  (Read 4650 times)
KA4NMA
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Posts: 317




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« on: February 09, 2014, 09:09:12 PM »

I have received permission from my apartment to install a Tar Heel Model 100 screwdriver antenna outside my apartment, ground mounted.   My apartment is a series of 4plexes, all single story.  Tar Heel Antennas sell a radial kit with 10 9 foot radials http://www.tarheelantennas.com/accessories
Those radials seem to be very short.

Any installation suggestions? Would it be best to use the standard whip or use a 108" CB whip?

Randy Ka4nma
« Last Edit: February 09, 2014, 09:20:01 PM by KA4NMA » Logged
K5LXP
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« Reply #1 on: February 10, 2014, 06:27:31 AM »

The radial kit comes with 10 but has provision for 20 radials, which is a useful amount so I'd look at adding them even if they're short.  I'm guessing the 9 foot length is a compromise between efficiency and portability.  You can always make them longer.  I made a similar kit for my ATAS screwdriver and it "works".

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
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K7JQ
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« Reply #2 on: February 10, 2014, 10:46:49 AM »

I've used a Tarheel 200HP, ground mounted, for years with excellent results. Ground mounted radials are not resonant dependent, as the ground will detune them anyway. The idea is to use as many as possible (over 60 will usually yield diminishing returns), and they should be at least as long as the antenna is high. 10 radials @ 9 feet is only a starting point to make the antenna work. Of course, available area limitations will dictate as much as you can do. As far as using a longer whip, you'll get more efficiency (as "efficient" as a screwdriver can be), and better performance on 40 and 80 meters, but you'll lose the ability for resonance on 10, 12, and probably 15 meters. See my qrz.com page for pictures.

73,  Bob. k7JQ
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KA4NMA
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« Reply #3 on: February 10, 2014, 09:19:55 PM »

Nice pictures Bob.  How did both of you make your radial system?  I am not going to purchase the tar heel kit.

Randy
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K7JQ
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« Reply #4 on: February 11, 2014, 07:23:49 AM »

I used #14 stranded, black insulated wire...spools available at Home Depot or DX Engineering.com. Attach them however you want to the grounded mount you're using. I also used lawn staples (Home Depot or DX Engineering.com) to fasten them to the ground.

73, Bob K7JQ
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K5LXP
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« Reply #5 on: February 11, 2014, 12:10:42 PM »

My setup is intended to be portable, so consists of a right angle RF adapter that screws into the base of the ATAS antenna.  The adapter has a chassis flange with 4 mounting holes.  I use four sets of three radials, each set crimped to a ring lug, one set bolted to each of the mounting holes.  The radials, adapter, coax, some string and small tent stakes fit in a small box I keep in the car.  I don't have any hard data but casual observation is this 12 radial setup works about as well as with the antenna mounted to the car.

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
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KA4NMA
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« Reply #6 on: February 11, 2014, 02:42:39 PM »

I can run radials into the common area of the apartment complex.  Would the grass staples interfere with a lawn mower?
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K7JQ
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« Reply #7 on: February 11, 2014, 03:23:51 PM »

As per my pictures, my radials are run on desert dirt, so I have no experience with grass. But from what I've read from others, cut the grass real short, lay down the radials, and pound the staples into the ground at decent intervals. When the grass grows, it will completely cover the radials and a lawn mower won't damage them.

73, Bob, K7JQ
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K5LXP
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« Reply #8 on: February 11, 2014, 07:00:31 PM »

You start with the grass cut short, lay the wire down and push the staples in flush to the ground.  The issue with the mower isn't the staples, it's loose wire that can get sucked up so keep the wire tight.  It takes a few weeks for the grass to grow up around the wires.   Before long it will all be below the thatch and out of sight. 

Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM

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KA4NMA
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« Reply #9 on: February 11, 2014, 07:54:50 PM »

I have a bunch of small gauge wire (18-24gauge) that I will be using.  After the snow melts, I need to head to Lowes for those staples.  Since it is in the common area of the apartment complex, they mow the grass.  I hope the grass grows enough before the resume mowing.

Randy
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