Indoor apartment antenna


David R. Sullivan:
I hope all is doing well!  I was wondering if a quick question could be answered?

I own an ICOM MkIIG.  Because of a job change, I moved into a small apartment in Boston.  Due to the lack of space, and of course, no longer having a yard of any sorts, I can no longer access the HF bands.  My goal is to simply listen (receive) to the HF signals.  I was told that you can simply hang speaker wire along the ceiling of the apartment, splice the end of the speaker wire, and simply insert the spliced wire into the back of the radio as an indoor antenna. 

Before I go ahead and try this, is there anything else that anyone could suggest?  Is this safe for the radio?  Has anyone tried this, and if so, how was your signal? 

Thank you for all of your help, I greatly appreciate it.

Steve Katz:
For receiving only, everything is safe for the radio.

But where are you in Boston, exactly?  I lived in the North End in a condo for about 18 months and did great from there on HF (transmitting also). 

There's no such place as one you can't transmit from and make contacts.

Dale Hunt:
Quote from: KB1JCU

...Has anyone tried this, and if so, how was your signal? ...

Sure, lots of times.  You can just connect any stray piece of wire (the longer the better, to some
extent) to a banana plug and insert it into the center conductor of the antenna jack.  You can
use speaker wire if that is what you have handy, but DON'T use the normal adaptors:  you only
want one side connected to the center of the antenna jack with NO connection to the ground
side of the wire.  (You want to use both wires in parallel as if it is a single wire, not like a
transmission line.)  Also it helps if the speaker wire is NOT shielded, unless you are connecting
the shield side to the antenna pin.

It might not be the best antenna in the world, and you'll likely hear lots of electrical noises from
other electronic devices in the building, but you should also hear plenty of signals if the band is
open.  Signal strengths may not be as strong as with an outside antenna and you may have to
turn the volume up a bit to hear signals, but they should be there.

There is absolutely no danger to the rig, unless someone plugs the other end of the wire into
an AC outlet by mistake...

Jorge Rodriguez:
I have several years hanging on the roof, the antenna "CliffDweller II", I use it for my hobby SWL, also serve to transmit, when there are storms and disconnect the external antenna, use this on HF bands, with very good results.
73 george

David R. Sullivan:
I want to thank everyone for their suggestions.  I went to Home Depot today and purchased 100' of speaker wire.  I'm pretty impressed, the signals are coming in pretty strong. 

Thanks again for all of your help, I do appreciate it!

All the best,


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