My new all-purpose antenna system

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N8TGQ
Posts: 66
Joined: Tue Jun 21, 2022 5:06 am

My new all-purpose antenna system

Post by N8TGQ »

I started out just wanting a dipole I could use on any band-40 to 10 meters. I wanted it to be light and pack away small because I get tomy outdoor radio sites by bicycle or foot.

I used 2 35' lengths of wire. I built winders out of old gift cards to hold them. The winders have "wings" I can use to lock the wire at any point, using a half-hitch knot. The center insulator is another gift card. I use RCA connectors and have converted most of my radios and antennas to RCA plugs and jacks.

I connected the two wires to the center, and used my nanovna to find the resonant points by winding the wires in and out. Once I found the right spots, I tied a knot in each wire to mark it. Now I can just wind the wires out to the right point and be on any band. I also found the resonant points for 2 meters just for fun.

Then I added a 64:1 EFHW transformer to the kit. One wire I went through and found the resonant points for 10 to 20 meters and tied double knots to mark them. Then, by connecting the second wire to the end of the first, using 1 terminal of the dipole center insulator, I could also use it for 30 and 40 meters.

Then, I realized my 35' length of each wire was a pretty good length for a "random wire" antenna using an old SST T1 l-match tuner I had in the closet. The other wire got a set of 3 knots at the 17' mark to us as a counterpoise.

I added a 20' length of RG-174 for feedline and adapters for any kind of antenna connector I usually run into. I also included an old 6' telescoping whip, not as an antenna, but a way to hang the end of an antenna over the many nails people have put into the shelters around here for banners and decorations.

A zippered case from the thrift store holds it all. I think it was a case for diabetic supplies to begin with. I use a refurbished telescoping fishing pole from the same thrift store to hold the antenna up. It took a few months to put it all together becaus I kept adding in more features. But now I'm ready for anything!


Rick N8TGQ
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Rick N8TGQ
K4SWL
Site Admin
Posts: 19
Joined: Tue May 24, 2022 12:44 pm

Re: My new all-purpose antenna system

Post by K4SWL »

I love how simple and compact this is, Rick. Thank you for sharing!
Cheers,
Thomas
K4SWL
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