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Author Topic: lightweight quads?? any suggestions?  (Read 1099 times)
FOXBAT426
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Posts: 274




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« on: October 01, 2007, 04:22:45 PM »

can anyone recommend a good lightweight quad under 30 pounds that i can mount on a mast and turn with a tV rotor. i was going to buy a mini beam, but the quads seem offer much more gain with the same 8 or 9 ft turning radius than the comprimised mini beams. i was looking at the cubex brand quads, but they weight about 40 pounds. thanks n advance, john ki4ucw
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W3LK
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« Reply #1 on: October 01, 2007, 04:25:31 PM »

What frequency?

It's hard to recommend anything when we don't know what you are looking for?

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut
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W5CPT
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« Reply #2 on: October 01, 2007, 04:37:28 PM »

*** The following assumes you mean HF Quads ****

You asked for suggestions. Here's mine:

Don't do it.

You will spend more time trying to keep the thing in the air than you do on the radio. Quads work well when they are up and lousy laying in the yard.


Here's what you do:

String a ladder-line fed dipole as long as you can get it (length is not terribly critical) it as high as you can get it (again height matters but not as much as you have been led to believe) and tune it with an MFJ 949 (or what ever tuner you have or can get that will do balanced feeds) and enjoy the bands as they are. Save your nickles and dimes for when the bands come back (in about 2 years (give or take a year)) and put up a tower and a tri-band beam then.

You will be dollars and hours ahead.

been there - done that - didn't even get a tee-shirt,

Clint - W5CPT
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FOXBAT426
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« Reply #3 on: October 01, 2007, 04:42:58 PM »

looking for an hf quad 20 - 10 meters with warc bands.
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KB9CRY
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« Reply #4 on: October 01, 2007, 05:21:40 PM »

Nope, there are none available to your specs, unless you build it yourself.  Come up with a Plan B.
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KB4EMF
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Posts: 387




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« Reply #5 on: October 01, 2007, 06:51:03 PM »

I played with home made quads many years ago for 10 and 15 meters.  I've built 3 element version and 2 element version.  If you use light weight materials, such as fiberglass for spreaders and aluminum pipe for boom, then all aluminum X brackets, it IS possible to make it very light.

But, you will run into problem trying to turn it with TV rotors.  Relatively large wind load will turn the antenna easily and it might even damage your lightweight rotor.  Also, you will have to place your guy wires minimum of 2.5 meters lower than your boom.  I'm sure you are aware, how large 20 meter quad is....  It won't stay up very long.

Also, being a 3D structure, putting it up without having a stable and climbable pole will make it very challenging to make.  

If you still like to experiment, I'd suggest forgetting 20 meters....  It might be barely possible for 15 or higher bands.  
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FOXBAT426
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« Reply #6 on: October 01, 2007, 06:55:27 PM »

i'm going to try a mono band moxon antenna - good gain and i can keep it light. the fact that it is on a horizontal plane will keep the wind load down. should be interesting. thanks for all your suggestions.
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N6AJR
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« Reply #7 on: October 01, 2007, 07:23:17 PM »

Hello again. look at the Ma5b ( cushcraft) it is 10, 12, 15, 18, and 20 meters, will go on a push up mast if it is guyed, and can use a small rotor, ( but you should use something bigger than a radio shack rotor) and its about $350 or so and works darn well for its size.  hang a 40 and 80 m  fandipole below it and you are set untill you get a 100 foot tower..
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N3OX
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« Reply #8 on: October 01, 2007, 08:00:42 PM »

moxon will be good .  tv rotor will turn that, even at 20m.

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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
W3LK
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« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2007, 09:10:04 PM »

Forget the multi-band quad.

Go for a Hex beam. Smaller, lighter and can be turned with a TV antenna rotor.

73,

Lon - W3LK
Naugatuck, Connecticut
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WA3SKN
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« Reply #10 on: October 02, 2007, 04:36:20 AM »

Cubex makes a rugged quad.
You can make a lightweight quad using bamboo and stainless steel fishing line, that will cover the bands you want.
Lightweight will not weather strong storms well.  Depending on your weather, you might not want to do this.

-Mike.

PS: Quads HATE ice!
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KT8K
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« Reply #11 on: October 02, 2007, 06:04:48 AM »

I don't know where you live, but neither ice storms nor hurricanes are very nice to quads, unfortunately.  And I have yet to see a Moxon design for more than 2 bands (see W4RNL's articles at www.cebik.com for great info).  I'm sure you can get close to your goal, though, without spending an arm AND a leg.
Good luck!  73 de kt8k - Tim
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FOXBAT426
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« Reply #12 on: October 02, 2007, 07:06:05 AM »

i am in florida and can say that hurricanes aren't nice to any type of antenna - no ice here!
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N3OX
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« Reply #13 on: October 02, 2007, 07:26:12 AM »

"And I have yet to see a Moxon design for more than 2 bands"

Yeah, but who needs 15, 12 and 10 right now anyway?

I don't know if Cebik came up with a common-feed 20m/17m design yet, but I built one that works OK with relay switching (an added complexity but worth it for me... I'd rather wrangle relays and little boxes with coils and capacitors than a bunch of extra wires)

http://www.n3ox.net/projects/2017moxon/

It's not very Moxon-esqe on 17m... the F/B isn't as good, but it still models with 3dBd gain.  I can't *measure* the gain vs. a dipole, unfortunately, but I did measure the F/B and the pattern seems right, I got about 14dB 180deg F/B and deeper nulls either side of that, so I think it's likely to be working as modeled.  

It doesn't add much windload or wire stringing to the 20m Moxon... it does take some tweaking to dial in a good match on 17m, plus the reflector capacitor could use some tweaking for best F/B.

If the antenna is right above your roof though, this would be pretty easy.

Dan




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73,
Dan
http://www.n3ox.net

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
WK0F
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Posts: 46




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« Reply #14 on: October 02, 2007, 09:12:50 AM »

I agree with the Hexbeam idea.  Yahoo has a great group and there are excellent ideas on homebrewing your own for considerably less than the cost of the commercial hex.
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