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Author Topic: Carolina windom 80 special - a few questions ?  (Read 6242 times)

Posts: 167

« on: July 05, 2009, 01:30:56 PM »

Okay plan to run the 66 feet off the windom`s length from the very front off my house to the rear fence off my back garden, plan is to run the first leg off the windom about 2 feet above the roof tiles supported by a two foot tv aerial support pole just not sure if I will get away with this ?? the tiles off the roof likely to detune the antenna ?? then I want to have the second leg off the antenna going to a telescopic alloy mast that I will have , the height off the mast is only around 22 feet as opposed to the 25 feet off the first leg off the antenna, any likely probs there ??

will the 25 feet running down to around 22 feet height off the wire still be okay or ideally would I be looking to get it any higher ?? not sure I could actually get teh wire any higher at this particular qth and feel sure this layout would be about the best I could get away with.

have roughly measured out the distance from the very front off the house to the rear fence off the garden and I feel sure I will be short off around 3/4 feet off space to have the aerial totally flat top, will I be okay in having the excess wire at an angle running along the front off the house before it turns to give me a flat top all the way back to the support at the rear off the back garden ??

having never used wire antennas before I am not sure just how directional an anteena running north / south actually is compared to east / west - would there be much off a difference, appreciatte the the design off the windom means that the vertical section does radiate but as I say having never used a wire before just not sure how directional a flat top wire can actually be ??

Posts: 805

« Reply #1 on: July 06, 2009, 01:16:56 PM »

My experience with this one is that it can be sensitive to nearly metal. For instance, it worked well for me in one location as an inverted V with the apex supported by a tree. Not so good with the apex supported by an outrigger off a tower, but I kind of expected that.

But try it. I don't find it to have any significant directionality. No doubt the directionality it's capable of appears when it's ideally mounted. If it matches, it's a reasonable length of wire up in the air and should work alright.

Posts: 212

« Reply #2 on: July 15, 2009, 09:10:48 AM »

I have had the Carolina Windom 80 Special up for over 5 years now, and it works very well on 40-10 meters. But DO NOT expect it work really well on 75 and 80 meters. It is good 10db under a 75 meter dipole in performance. It will tune OK on 80/75 with a wide range external tuner, but there are significant losses compared with a full sized dipole. Like any antenna, keep it as far away from metal as possible, but the external tuner should take care of any problems. You must take extra care to waterproof both the matching transformer and the line isolatorvery well. I had my antenna made up with the extra heavy 13 guage insulated wire, since I live only 3 miles from saltwater here in Sarasota, Florida, and it was worth the extra 10 bucks or so for the corrosion resistance and extra strength in wind. It will get you on 80 and 75 meters, but don't expect miracles. When the other stations are 20 db over S9, it's ok, but when the other station is less than about S9, the antenna is a poor performer on 80/75. It works very well on 40 thru 10, and I even use mine on six meters with pretty good results. Bill Anderson WB4TJH

Posts: 17480

« Reply #3 on: July 16, 2009, 11:51:31 AM »

You can take a lot of liberties with the installation of
wire antennas, though it may affect the tuning.  Bending
the ends around to make it fit, for example, generally
isn't a problem with a half wave dipole but it decreases
the feedpoint impedance a bit and requires a little more
wire.  (Generally it works better to bend the ends rather
than the middle, at least for a half wave dipole.)

Running the wire near a tile roof may also affect the
resonant length, and the losses may be higher (especially
when the tiles are wet.) But this won't be the first time
that an antenna is installed in such a manner.  I've
installed a number of antennas laying on roofs with the
wires tucked under the corners of the shingles.  (This
works best with wood shingles because they absorb less
RF, unless you run enough power to catch them on fire.)
Again, the best advice is just to try it and see how it

With a multi-band antenna this can get a bit more
complicated because the effect of a bend will change from
one band to the next.  Generally the antenna shouldn't
change too much, but you may find, for example, that the
40m SWR curve moves up and the 20m curve moves down.  So
the best you can do is to try it and see how it works.

The radiation pattern will be different on different bands,
too.  When the wire is a half wavelength maximum radiation
will be broadside to the wire, though at low heights
you won't notice much directivity on 40 or 80m.  When
the wire is a full wavelength maximum radiation will be
approximately at 45 degrees to the direction of the wire,
and on higher frequencies the pattern will split into
even more lobes in various directions.  So the best
description will be that it will tend to radiate in a
number of directions, and you'll have to try it and see
if, in your particular installation, the radiation is
in desired directions on most bands.

Good luck!

Posts: 167

« Reply #4 on: July 17, 2009, 02:44:59 AM »

Some great info there guys thank you so much. just a final few questions if you dont mind bearing with me just a bit more ??!!

1/ is there a recommnded length / type off coax to use with the cw80s ?? reason I ask as I noticed within the review section off an owner saying he was using 66 feet of rg8 as per instructions ??

2/ the antenna was bought used and as such the previous owner had removed the coax from set to antenna and as such there is no longer any " coaxseal " on this part, just wonder if one off thse plastic rubber boots slid on the coax / pl259 would be enough to keep out the good old scottish weather ??

the rest off the wire has been well " coaxsealed " just the so239 off the cw80s itself requires sealing between there and the new pl259 / coax.

Posts: 32

« Reply #5 on: July 26, 2009, 09:56:34 PM »

I bought one. If the vert radiator is not at least 22' above the ground it is a waste of cash.

Put up a 135' doublet and buy a tuner.

Posts: 212

« Reply #6 on: July 27, 2009, 10:44:33 AM »

You'd beter water proof ALL the connectors very well. I use coax seal and good quality electrical tape, and I also seal the screw holes and where the wires come out of the balun with silicone caulk sealant. Radio Works has a NEW model antenna out that is only 67 feet long, but will outperform the old 80 Special on 80/75 meters. It's called the Carolina Windom 80 Compact, and it is a full 135 feet of wire, but they fold half the wire underneath and it makes the antenna only 67 feet long, so it will fit into the same space as a 40 meter model. I have the 40 meter version now, called the Carolina Windom 40 Compact, and it fits into about 34 feet of space, but the remainder of the 67 feet of wire is also folded under. It is working quite well at my home about is 35 feet up in some pine trees. I am thinking about replacing my old 80 Special with the new 80 compact for better performance on 80/75 meters.
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