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Author Topic: Lightening damage?  (Read 548 times)
W8MSD
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Posts: 30




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« on: June 14, 2002, 09:55:08 PM »

Thunderstorms and lightening are strange animals.Is it possible to recieve lightening damage to my transciever but no apparent damage to my beam, rotor or feedline?
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K0HZI
Member

Posts: 470




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« Reply #1 on: June 15, 2002, 02:22:21 PM »

Yes they sure can, also the front of a thunderstorm creates high values of static voltages, that is more likely to cause damage than a direct hit.  Ground your antenna to a good earth ground using heavy copper wire when you not using the radio equipment or hearing of a thunderstorm forecast for your area.
Check this site for more info: http://www.comm-omni.com/polyweb/hamradio1.htm
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W3UHF
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Posts: 18




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« Reply #2 on: June 28, 2002, 12:48:18 PM »

Back in the 70's when I did antenna work, I once saw a TV Antenna that was hit by lightning. The antenna was destroyed, but here is the strange part: Along just ONE conductor of the 300-ohm twinlead, there were small "blowouts" in the plastic insulation. They occurred along the whole length of the cable, all the way into the house. The lightning jumped across the antenna terminal of the TV set into the AC mains of the house, using the TV set as a "bridge". Several of the home's appliances were damaged, but the TV set worked perfectly!

73, Frank W3UHF
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N2MG
Administrator

Posts: 122



« Reply #3 on: June 29, 2002, 04:45:05 PM »

Direct lightning hits are VERY destructive and generally there's a lot of obvious evidence, but they are rare.  It's far more likely that you will get (or have gotten) damage from nearby hits.  These induce huge voltages, especially in long wires (phone lines, LAN cables, etc.)  While I've never had a direct hit, I've lost on several different occasions, LAN cards, serial ports, modems, and telephones.

It's a good practice to disconnect everything when not in use.
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VA3HIE
Member

Posts: 29




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« Reply #4 on: January 31, 2003, 01:29:44 AM »

My rookie year as a ham I WAS hit by lightning. Here's what happened. The dual-band omni at the top of the tower was sent into a million pieces over a 500' diameter area. The yagis were a write off. The some 250' of 9913 flex coax appeared fine, until I cut it open. It was black inside. All of my computer/radio equipment was toast. Appliances including night lights were garbage. The whole village was in the dark for about 2 hours until the power co. did their work. The next day in the sunlight I could see spots where the lightning had arced between the tower/ground wire to the aluminum siding which was grounded by all of the rain that was pouring out of the eavaes-trough downspout. I had to have an electrician verify the house wiring was still alright to use. The insurance company covered everything, no questions asked with a $500 deductible. Long and the short of the story... Protect yourself as well as you can (surge protectors etc.). It pays to do so!!!!
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