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Author Topic: Antennas for a mini DX pedition to Cook Islands?  (Read 9803 times)

Posts: 4

« Reply #15 on: March 29, 2013, 06:25:54 AM »

When I was on Vanuatu as YJ0VK we used 12m spiderpoles with about 35' of vertical wire with an SGC230 auto atu at the waters edge.
Just fantastic results and we were using TS480HX barefoot, 200w.
We had a small "X" shaped base and about a 3 foot support for the spiderpole.
Have a look on youtube for YJ0VK or search my call, vk3gk.

73 Lee

Posts: 430

« Reply #16 on: March 30, 2013, 07:43:48 AM »

I would avoid SteppIR verticals. Nice antennas when on home turf in the USA, different story when needing a possible replacement part when operating on an island..........Simpler the better. You can't go wrong with a Butternut, Cushcraft, Hustler etc.

 Buddipole's are garbage. Had one shipped to me when I was DXing from Cambodia as XU7XXX back in 2009. Used it for 20 minutes before boxing it up & sliding it under my bed for the next 7 months. Never used it again.

 Good luck. Operating HF from an island is a eye opening experience!!!.

Tom KC├śW



Posts: 233

« Reply #17 on: March 30, 2013, 07:38:14 PM »

According to Array of Light (the book), simple vertical dipoles (collabsable, lightweight) are THE way to go.

Posts: 2783


« Reply #18 on: March 30, 2013, 08:23:02 PM »

I am planning a  trip to Rarotonga, Cook Islands next spring.  I am hoping to get a local ham licence and work some DX contacts while there.

I have Flex3000 and Elecraft KX3  as possible radios to take with me.  My favorite modes are SSB and digital (PSK31, JT65A, etc).
Airline only allows for luggage with max 50 lbs and  62" max total linear dimensions (length + width + height). 
I have done some internet searching for antennas  that would bring most bang for the buck. 
It looks like vertical dipole located very close to beach are most commonly used  antennas for this kind of DX peditions.

I am asking for expert advice here:

1) what bands are best for DX contacts  in early April from South Pacific?

2) what kind of antennas should I pack for this trip given these weight and size constraints?   

3) what else should I do to prepare for the trip?  Any  tips or advice ? 

Mauri  AG1LE

In my holiday-style operations from 8P, FJ, KH6, KP2, and V4, I have used a multiband palm-tree dipole with 140' of wire, fed with 300-ohm TV twinlead using a small MFJ tuner with a built-in balun. Where a palm tree is not conveniently available, I've used a telescoping fiberglass pole as the center support; when end supports aren't available, the dipole becomes an inverted V. This antenna supports operation from 80m through 6m, is light-weight, and is easy to setup and repair. With 100 watts near salt water from a DX location, it will keep you at the pointy end of a pileup 24x7.

You will need a slingshot, some fishing line, and some fishing weights or 5/8" nuts to get a line over the center support; be prepared to explain that you're not hunting birds...


            Dave, AA6YQ (8P9RY)


Posts: 766

« Reply #19 on: April 01, 2013, 11:01:21 AM »

I had lots of successes with K2/10 close to salt water in KP2, SV9, TA... Also recently with KX3 in St George Isl directly over water.

Antennas were wires to a tree or to a fiberglass pole. One counterpoise.

Much less success in CX (close to water) or ZS (not close). In PY success close to water and less not close. Very little success  close to water with 100W in ZL.

Trying to experiment with square beam antenna made of 4 light fiberglass poles as in using 13 ft 8-segment poles weight 1/3 lb each. One disadvantage of beams is single-band coverage.
Bear that KX3 is not that efficient in SSB transmit. About 1 S below of K3 at same power.  Also AT in my KX3 disconnects randomly, more often when used with long wires. 

Ignacy, NO9E

Posts: 4424

« Reply #20 on: April 01, 2013, 03:48:39 PM »

Unless you are wanting to get on 80 and 160, the 31' S-9 fiberglass vertical works well on 6 through 40. Weighs only 4 pounds (!!) and collapses down really short. Wont break the bank either. You will need a tuner.  BTW, I use one (MY ONLY antenna) here in Florida.  Their Website is:

GL and most of all HAVE FUN!! Gene AF3Y
« Last Edit: April 01, 2013, 03:51:33 PM by AF3Y » Logged
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