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Author Topic: The Vertical Works!  (Read 1683 times)
W1VT
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Posts: 809




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« on: January 06, 2013, 04:40:44 PM »

I've been testing out my new wire vertical--just worked EA3NE, G0HBK, CT2GMH, and DK9WI on JT65--actually easier than working Europeans on 40 meters in the evening--less competition.   Grin  As a bonus, since it is a vertical instead of an inverted L--it does a great job of rejecting stateside signals so I can hear the DX better.  My new rig has a IF narrow filter--it is really neat to punch in the filter on JT65 and see the DX pop out of the noise!

The vertical is a 36 ft wire hanging off a maple tree in the center of the yard--the top is at 42.5 feet.  I have four 55 radials plus the feedline acting as an elevated ground plane, 8 feet above the ground.  It has a two wire capacitance hat at the top, which resonates the antenna at 3.60MHz.  A transformer at the feedpoint gives me a perfect SWR at resonance, and a 2:1 bandwidth of just over 200kHz.  The ground under the vertical typically floods whenever it rains--we call it "Lake Benson" in honor of the former owner.  It took me about a week to build and two days to install in sunny 30 to 40 degree weather with a few inches on snow on the ground.

Zack W1VT

« Last Edit: January 06, 2013, 04:51:25 PM by W1VT » Logged
NU1O
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Posts: 2594




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« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2013, 05:28:49 PM »

I've been testing out my new wire vertical--just worked EA3NE, G0HBK, CT2GMH, and DK9WI on JT65--actually easier than working Europeans on 40 meters in the evening--less competition.   Grin  As a bonus, since it is a vertical instead of an inverted L--it does a great job of rejecting stateside signals so I can hear the DX better.  My new rig has a IF narrow filter--it is really neat to punch in the filter on JT65 and see the DX pop out of the noise!

The vertical is a 36 ft wire hanging off a maple tree in the center of the yard--the top is at 42.5 feet.  I have four 55 radials plus the feedline acting as an elevated ground plane, 8 feet above the ground.  It has a two wire capacitance hat at the top, which resonates the antenna at 3.60MHz.  A transformer at the feedpoint gives me a perfect SWR at resonance, and a 2:1 bandwidth of just over 200kHz.  The ground under the vertical typically floods whenever it rains--we call it "Lake Benson" in honor of the former owner.  It took me about a week to build and two days to install in sunny 30 to 40 degree weather with a few inches on snow on the ground.

Zack W1VT



I admire anybody who builds their own antennas.  Building an antenna is not as easy as most articles claim. I have built a good number of wire antennas over the decades and some innovation is almost always required. It also gives a sense of pride using something you built versus something bought and it is usually fun.

I recently downloaded the HF JT65 manual and my only question is can you really say an antenna is a winner because you made some European contacts on 80 using JT65?  That is not a very hard thing to do from New England with a dipole at 30 feet without using JT65.

73,

Chris/NU1O
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W1VT
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Posts: 809




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« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2013, 06:15:34 PM »

JT65 is a great mode for evaluating antennas because all the signal reports are done by machine and up on the screen for an objective review, at your leisure.
CW is actually better for working Europeans--it doesn't have the interference issues that can make JT65 a very frustrating mode--you aren't going to get through if the common European you want is constantly being called by other strong Europeans...most of the time it is like a simplex voice pileup that isn't going very fast...

It is also that I'm not looking to work 300 countries on 80--I just wanted something that works DX as easily as my 40 meter dipole for 100 entities on 80--and it certainly seems to be doing so.

Zack W1VT
« Last Edit: January 06, 2013, 06:28:55 PM by W1VT » Logged
N4CR
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« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2013, 08:01:54 PM »

As a bonus, since it is a vertical instead of an inverted L--it does a great job of rejecting stateside signals so I can hear the DX better.

I assume you're referring to it not being NVIS since it's omnidirectional but with a low takeoff angle.
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73 de N4CR, Phil

We are Coulomb of Borg. Resistance is futile. Voltage, on the other hand, has potential.
NU1O
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Posts: 2594




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« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2013, 11:53:18 PM »

JT65 is a great mode for evaluating antennas because all the signal reports are done by machine and up on the screen for an objective review, at your leisure.
CW is actually better for working Europeans--it doesn't have the interference issues that can make JT65 a very frustrating mode--you aren't going to get through if the common European you want is constantly being called by other strong Europeans...most of the time it is like a simplex voice pileup that isn't going very fast...

It is also that I'm not looking to work 300 countries on 80--I just wanted something that works DX as easily as my 40 meter dipole for 100 entities on 80--and it certainly seems to be doing so.

Zack W1VT

I have the seen the reports you write about. 

When I asked if working Europe was really a good test since even a very low dipole will make it across the pond I had in mind W2IRT's very impressive contact with H40FN on 80 meters.

Have fun with your antenna and if you work anything exotic out of Europe please write about it.  JT65 has caught my interest but I had trouble with RTTY the other day. That was likely a case of RF causing my mouse to freeze up but I was running a lot of power.  That will not be a problem with JT65.

73,

Chris/NU1O


 
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W1VT
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Posts: 809




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« Reply #5 on: January 07, 2013, 03:32:04 AM »

As a bonus, since it is a vertical instead of an inverted L--it does a great job of rejecting stateside signals so I can hear the DX better.

I assume you're referring to it not being NVIS since it's omnidirectional but with a low takeoff angle.

Yes, I don't need to hear short skip when working DX on 80.  I don't mind Cape Cod coming in weaker than Germany.   Grin
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W1VT
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Posts: 809




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« Reply #6 on: January 13, 2013, 08:37:27 PM »

I just worked 4Z1UF for my first Asian contact in a couple decades on 80.  Very easy QSO, with 569 reports both ways. Now up to 67 countries on 80M  Grin
Much easier to hear DX on 80 than on 40--even heard T6LG, though watts and the huge pileup I didn't bother calling him.

I worked JA3 from Philly when I  was in college on a dipole at 100ft--quite a surprise to hear Japan considering the high noise level on all bands when operating from the big city.

Zack W1VT
« Last Edit: January 13, 2013, 08:40:39 PM by W1VT » Logged
AF3Y
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Posts: 3695




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« Reply #7 on: January 13, 2013, 08:49:35 PM »

I just worked 4Z1UF for my first Asian contact in a couple decades on 80.  Very easy QSO, with 569 reports both ways. Now up to 67 countries on 80M  Grin
Much easier to hear DX on 80 than on 40--even heard T6LG, though watts and the huge pileup I didn't bother calling him.

Zack W1VT

I Snagged 4Z5CX tonight on 80 meters. Nice signal and my first 4Z on 80. Working on 80m for 8BDXCC, with the other bands finished! This is number 61 on 80m, with 31 confirmed. Grin

73, Gene AF3Y
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KC4MOP
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« Reply #8 on: January 14, 2013, 03:25:52 AM »

I worked a Hawaiian station on 40M better on my 1/4 w vertical than I did on a rotateable dipole 60 feet in the air.
Fred
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WD4ELG
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« Reply #9 on: January 14, 2013, 10:35:16 PM »

Nice snag, Gene!

Fred, that makes perfect sense.  Lower angle of radiation on 40 and that vertical should really knock the dipole off no problem.
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W1VT
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Posts: 809




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« Reply #10 on: February 22, 2013, 04:16:28 PM »

The vertical finally passed thel DX test--it took me 6-1/2 weeks to work 105 DXCC entities with 100 watts and the vertical.

Some of the DX I've already confirmed via LoTW

NH2T, UN1L, EY8MM, A45XR, NH7O, VK2DAG, 4Z5CX, PY2HH, and ZL2IFB.

Lots of fun, but so far, it hasn't really been any harder than getting DXCC on the other bands.
There are lots of really good operators who have dug my signal out of the noise!
I'm now at 116/85, including QRO and QRP contacts made a long, long time ago.

Zack W1VT
« Last Edit: February 22, 2013, 04:26:13 PM by W1VT » Logged
AJ8MH
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« Reply #11 on: February 22, 2013, 05:16:55 PM »

The vertical finally passed the DX test--it took me 6-1/2 weeks to work 105 DXCC entities with 100 watts and the vertical.

Well, I now know for sure...I do live in an RF dead zone.  My very marginal inverted L hanging off the tower at 30 feet has snagged 25 LoTW confirmations on 80 in just over a month.  If it weren't for the stateside stations calling the DX, I wouldn't know the DX was there.  Wink

When I can see the ground, the 40 vertical-dipole is coming down and an 80 vertical is going up.  I'll be ready for next fall!

How did you calculate the top hat?
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W1VT
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« Reply #12 on: February 22, 2013, 05:27:24 PM »

I modeled the vertical with EZNEC. Then, I put it up with extra wire and folded it back--turns out that I used just enough wire for it to resonate at the bottom of the band, where most of the DX hangs out.   Cheesy
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