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Author Topic: Verticle Antenna  (Read 880 times)
K3PRN
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Posts: 25




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« on: January 18, 2008, 07:31:56 AM »

I am planning to put up one high end verticle at my new QTH. I am thinking of either the Hy-Gain Hy Tower 18HT or the Stepp Big IR verticle. Which would give me the best results. I will put it up in a clear space,ground mounted area. I will also use 60 radials if necessay. Thanks for your advice.
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WC0L
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« Reply #1 on: January 18, 2008, 07:59:42 AM »

Those are both fine antennas.  You should also consider the Zero Five 43 foot antenna.  Extremely rugged and works very well.

73,
Mike, WC0L
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W5JI
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Posts: 146




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« Reply #2 on: January 18, 2008, 08:01:05 AM »

Depends upon the bands you want to operate and whether you want to easily QSY (say from CW to SSB band areas) and if you want to work the WARC bands.

The 18HT works 80/75 thru 10 natively (not WARC bands) and can be used on 160 as an inverted-L or with a base loading coil. The SteppIR works 40m thru 10 (including WARC bands) natively and can work 80/75 with a loading coil, but not on 160. The 18HT must be tuned/optimized for the freqs you want to work most on 80/75 and 40 and there is not much ability to QSY. On 20m and above, the 18HT is broad banded enough that you can work the whole band with reasonable SWR. The SteppIR can be remotely tuned to your exact operating freq and/or lowest SWR.

The 18HT is self supporting in all but the worse climate conditions. The SteppIR should be guyed in high wind/ice climates.

The radial requirements are the same for either antenna.

In summary, if the WARC bands are important to you, you can cope with low efficiency on 75/80 and you don't need 160...then the SteppIR is a good choice.

If you don't need the WARC bands, reasonable efficiency on 75/80 is important and you want 160 coverage, the 18HT is the best choice.

73.....Jim  W5JI
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WB2WIK
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« Reply #3 on: January 18, 2008, 08:52:48 AM »

I'd want to add the WARC bands, too.

I like the BigIR SteppIR vertical.  With the optional 80m loading coil (which switches completely out of the circuit on the higher bands so it does not impact performance on 40->), it covers ten bands including 60m, 30m, 17m and 12m.  60 radials is likely sufficient in most places, although a neighbor of mine (WA6DKN) kept adding radials under his BigIR until he saw no more change in feedpoint impedance, and ended up using 105 radials (50' long each), for exactly one mile of radial wire.

WB2WIK/6
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N3JBH
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« Reply #4 on: January 18, 2008, 10:50:09 AM »

Hy-Gain Hy Tower 18HT Has no moving parts in it. To me that be a plus as thats one less thing to wear out. It is built strong indeed. And i do not know why a person could not add 12 and 17 meter to it if they  did some home work and figured it out.
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WA3SKN
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« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2008, 11:38:54 AM »

Most any vertical will work well with the radial system you have planned.
The satisfaction obtained with any vertical is directly based on the radial or counterpoise used.
Since you know the secret, pick the antenna that most meets your needs.... WARC bands, no moving parts, autotuner based, etc.
You can even build your own!
73s

-Mike.
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K5ML
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Posts: 25




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« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2008, 12:19:17 PM »

All verticals are not created equal. I have a ZeroFive 43' ground mounted vertical and I work the world with ease. It's simple in design, it's built like a tank and it works.  Look at the ZeroFive reviews on eham and you won't find one less than a "5."

73,
Mick, K5ML
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W8JI
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« Reply #7 on: January 18, 2008, 01:53:26 PM »

The high tower or the Stepp IR will just kill the Zero Five for performance. The Zero Five 43 foot vertical, while it has a good cult following, is really just an end fed vertical. It has a terrible SWR on the coax feedline and also has a very high wave angle above 20 meters.

Both the SteppIR and the HyTower are significantly better antennas if you want to do more than warm the coax on many bands.

73 Tom
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K9KEJ
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Posts: 21




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« Reply #8 on: January 19, 2008, 07:56:17 AM »

I do not mean to offend you Charles, but your description of people who use and like theZERO FIVE VERTICALS is way out of line.
I never have, and never will be associated with a cult, religious or otherwise--BUT, I will gladly stand up and be counted by those skeptics who have a great need to bad-mouth a ZERO FIVE antenna. I live in the Chicago metro area and have been on the air for over 50-years. I've had the big towers and stacked arrays for 20 and 15 meters. Space limitations at my present QTH do not allow for the big antennas any more. Over the years I have chased and worked a lot of DX and have confirmations for over 300 countries. But that's not the issue. I have four of the ZERO FIVE verticals, one of which remains in the jungle on the east coast of Costa Rica. From this location, 30-miles northwest of Chicago, many dozens of DX stations constantly call me and rave about the booming signal I put into their stations--and that's the same story from around the world. I do not work for ZERO FIVE, nor do I own any stock in this service-oriented company, but I suspect you may have a connection, financial or otherwise with StepIR or DX engineering. It's been my experience that when someone dishes out negative comments it boils down to matter of jealousy and/or envy. Your description of of ZERO FIVE users is insulting. Would you like me to purchase one of the ZERO FIVE 43-footers for you?
Orrin
K9KEJ                          
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K9KEJ
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« Reply #9 on: January 19, 2008, 08:16:16 AM »

I meant to address my response to W8JI--Tom

Orrin
K9KEJ
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N3OX
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« Reply #10 on: January 19, 2008, 09:47:15 AM »

K9KEJ,

I think you should look up the phrase "cult following"

especially in the context of "cult movies," etc

If I were to own a Zero-Five, I would feed it at the base with some good matching networks.  I have no doubt in my mind that a Zero-Five 43 foot "multiband" antenna would really pull in the DX and compare favorably if not beat other commercial offerings if you put a high-quality automatic tuner or manual matching networks at the base and put down a good radial system.

With coax and a balun, I'd expect quite a bit of loss on some bands but if you're running full legal limit you're going to still blast through the pileups even with 3, 4 or 6dB of feedline + balun loss... you won't even notice... well, I think people would notice if they tried both ways...

My 40 foot unloaded vertical was a stellar solution for DXing on the lower bands from a limited space, but there's no mystery to it.  You efficiently feed power to a 40-something foot radiator over a good radial field, it's a good DX antenna on many bands.  I pretty much felt about my 40 footer like the eHam reviewers feel about their Zero-Fives ... on 40m I was just blasting signals around the world with 100W... worked the XF4 on 80m, etc.  

Paying $469 for your 43 foot radiator doesn't make it work better electrically... but at least you know what you're getting.  Commercial multiband verticals with traps and various loading schemes are practically impossible to assess in terms of radiating efficiency without doing a field strength shootout.

Plus, it seems the Zero-Five comes with a healthy dose of friendly, fast service and Tom's willingness to do custom work to help you realize your vertical antenna dreams... and seems that half the reviewers feel compelled to use the phrase "built like a tank".  I'd imagine the materials cost for these antennas is a pretty good chunk of the purchase price.  Nothing wrong with spending your money where you want.

But it's not magic.  No multiband vertical is magic.  43 foot sticks of aluminum are not magic.

Seems like DX Engineering has hopped on the unloaded-43ft-vertical-with-a-balun bandwagon... that'll be just what we need... discussions on which gives a louder signal, the DX Engineering DXe-60VA-1 or the Zero-Five multibander.

So, it's been on my site for a while, but to be fashionable I think I'm going to officially announce

http://www.n3ox.net/projects/lowbandvert

as my entry into the 40+ foot multiband antenna shootout, but I'm keeping it open source.  No, you can't buy one from me.  No, I don't think using a Spiderbeam pole to support it makes it louder than using whatever ya got to hang the radiator.

---------

Try the N3OX 40 footer and hang it from a damn tree.  If it falls down in the ice or gets vaporized by lightning, put it back up for a mere three dollars of wire!  It has a low angle of radiation!  Extra exciting ad copy here!  I worked huge DXes with it!  

Wind some wire and add some capacitors and match your DX Engineering, Zero-Five or N3OX-ultra-wire antenna efficiently to coax!

http://n3ox.net/projects/lowbandvert/matching_networks.pdf

Not a "high-end" vertical but it works just like one ;-)

---------

There are lots of good choices out there, even simple unloaded verticals, as long as you feed power to them efficiently.  I actually really liked the single 40 foot radiator as an 80 to 20m antenna *if matched at the feedpoint*.  It's really pretty great if done right.  It's simple. I think you can probably live with the losses in a moderate length feedline + balun configuration, but why would you WANT TO?

The SteppIR is cool, but I think the technology (and therefore the money) is a little bit wasted on a vertical.  On a yagi, it makes great sense... the element lengths are critical both for low SWR *and* inter-element coupling.  On a vertical, it's just a fancy antenna tuner.  It probably helps the most on 80m with the add-on coil where efficient use of the antenna on 80 necessitates very narrow bandwidth at a given length setting.  My 40 footer needed just one fixed network for each band 40 and up  but 80m needed two coil taps to cover just the DX slivers of 80CW and 75SSB, and tuning drifted.  

The Hy-Tower is probably a pretty good choice and the extra height will help some in a marginal-radial situation on 80.  

But as you make your decision, remember that some guy with a tree-supported wire vertical might just be kicking your butt in the pileups even with $500 to $1000 sunk into a single vertical.  That doesn't mean you shouldn't buy one, it just means that "high end" doesn't necessarily mean "high gain" or "high performance" in the way that ad copy might lead you to believe.


73,
Dan


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

Monkey/silicon cyborg, beeping at rocks since 1995.
K5ML
Member

Posts: 25




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« Reply #11 on: January 19, 2008, 02:43:08 PM »


"The high tower or the Stepp IR will just kill the Zero Five for performance. The Zero Five 43 foot vertical, while it has a good cult following, is really just an end fed vertical."

A blanket statement like that displays sheer ignorance. On what bands? I can understand a Hi Tower outperforming a ZeroFive on 80 and 160 due to the size of the radiator. N9ZV, the owner of ZeroFive tells me that the 43' ZeroFive is about an S-unit down from the 66' vertical on 80. But from 40 meters on up, I think the ZeroFive will compare favorably with the Hi Tower. As for the SteppIR, it's a shorter vertical, more expensive than the ZeroFive, with a motor, a loading coil for 80 and more to go wrong. Nevertheless, I'm sure it's an excellent vertical.

As for ZeroFive having a cult following, most hams are too intelligent to believe that. Getting hams to follow in cult-like fashion is about as likely as herding cats.

73,
Mick, K5ML
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AB7E
Member

Posts: 117




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« Reply #12 on: January 19, 2008, 05:27:05 PM »


K9KEJ,

Sorry, but just because someone knocks a particular antenna it does not mean they are jealous or envious.  Half the antennas that get rave reviews on eHam are horribly inefficient and wouldn't compare well with a piece of wire hung from a tree fed against a decent set of radials in a side-by-side test.  I'm always amazed at the absolute pieces of junk that get solid 5's from folks whose only comparison is an even worse antenna, or worse, whose only criteria is that it presents an SWR similar to their dummy load.

I profess no particular knowledge of the ZeroFive antennas but I can assure you that most of the world is envious of W8JI's antennas (and his expertise), not the other way around.

73,
Dave   AB7E
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K3MOV
Member

Posts: 504




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« Reply #13 on: January 19, 2008, 06:56:14 PM »

Tom (W8JI), what is the basic difference between the ZEROFIVE 43' Multiband Vertical and the 43' vertical which YOU sell through DX Engineering??
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K3MOV
Member

Posts: 504




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« Reply #14 on: January 19, 2008, 11:45:15 PM »

In addition to all of the Zerofive antennas and other products having reached cult status by obtaining perfect 5.0 scores here on eHam, I nominate the following products to join Zerofive in its culty status.  Please pay particular attention to the reviews of the Par Electronics antennas which, according to one internet site, should not and could not work.

All Optibeam products 5.0

All High Sierra mobile antennas 5.0

All Par Electronics antennas 5.0

All Array Solutions baluns 5.0

All Elecraft K 2 transceivers 4.9

All Array Solutions Powermaster meters 5.0

All W2IHY 8 Band Audio Equalizer / Noise Gate 4.9

Other nominations to cult status are encouraged.
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