Will this Antron 99 vertical allow listening on 160-20m? That's kind of an important aspect of all this too. Honestly, I would rather have a good listening antenna, than an OK transmitting antenna. I don't really need to talk that much on 10m SSB anyway. I would rather hear folks from all over the world! Maybe the best solution is two antennas. The 10m vertical and then a dipole for listening. Will that Antron 99 work for 6 meters too? PS, what mode is typical CB radio, AM?
The Antron will work as a receiving antenna, just not like a purpose built antenna for the bands that you want. You could very easily build a fan dipole which will work quite well, not require much of an antenna tuner and supported up in a good tree and spread out and supported in good trees around the yard. A quality center connecter and quality coax will work well. The dipoles should be cut for 80, 40 and 20 and should work quite sufficiently. I have used a couple fan dipoles in the past. One mounted in my attic for 10, 15 and 20 that played nicely. I have used a trap dipole for 80 and 40 with traps home made with door knob caps and the coil wound on a plastic soda bottle form that played nicely.
My current antenna is also another home brew antenna, the off center fed dipole. My OCFD is about 130 feet long and fed with coax with a Buxcomm 4:1 balun and about 45 feet up at the support point. I built it to fit my situation, placement of trees, of which the feed point tree is just about right over my head. It works well for my needs, although I'll get it flying higher sometime, about 65 feet ideally. Still have more trees to work with for other antennas, come fall an Inverted L for 160 is in the plans.
Do yourself a favor and read up on antennas and get a bunch of ideas together and try to avoid anything that is ladder line or twin lead fed. Those will be more trouble for someone starting out and antenna tuners may or may not work on some bands and some antennas.
A KNOW CODE AMATEUR, since 1970. 900's my new band.
Except in times of declared emergency, Amateur Radio should be fun! If it's not, you must be doing something wrong!
I don't answer to "contact."
Don't forget the links I have given you. These are links to downloadable books, not one or two page postings, but full fledged books. Each has over 250 pages of information.
CB radios are mostly AM with some SSB thrown in. The antenna doesn't care which mode you're on. It will work the same way no matter what. The limitation on that is the amount of power you're able to run into your antenna. If you make one from #14 THHN then it will easily handle 1.5KW.
Now put up an antenna and get on the air! Just pick something and you will always have the capability to change to any antenna you desire. Try different thing and see how they work. Have something you can compare the new antenna against the old antenna.
Originally Posted by KO6WB
The second link you gave me, is awesome! its huge and will take a while to go thru it all. Thanks!
As a beginner, I too am in the same boat so I will be following this thread and your progress, but I can tell you that I have just made an OCFD with excellent results, have had great-contacts from here in London to Washington, Caribbean, Brazil and Chile, Algeria and across Europe. Antenna is only 6 metres above ground.
Overall wire length is 20.28 metres split as 31% for short leg and 69% for the long one. Made a simple homebrew 4:1 balun from an 'odd bit of ferrite rod' as Moxon says in his book, but I cannot find out if this is a voltage or current balun; suspect it is voltage as I did get a tingling when my fingers brushed against the ATU! (RF in the shack?) So I clipped a couple of ferrites onto the Westflex coax 10 feet down from the feedpoint and this has cured the problem.
The following bands SWR in on the Yaesu 450D internal tuner without the need of the external ATU:
40,20,15,12,10,6 But 30 and 17 do not, However, all the bands from 40m through to 6 can be tuned to 1:1 SWR using the external ATU.
The wire is loudspeaker wire , not the thin stuff, the medium stuff! Not too much insulation thickness as it's not intended for mains current.
Yep! The whole shabang cost me around $10 US .....haha!
Next proj is to make that Guanella balun and clip a couple of 15 meter band elements on to it to tune 15 m a bit better.
(When it stops raining!)
73s to ya!
I always tell people to pick 1 or 2 HF bands to operate on at first. Reason being that you can build an antenna really cheap, and some antenna sites have a multitude of plans.
For 10 meters I can tell you that a vertical dipole works very well when the band is open. This antenna is easy to make and actually works better than an antron.
For 40 meters I'd reccomend a horizontal dipole. The reason for this is that it can be tuned up on 20 or 30 meters with a good tuner.
40 is a good band to learn on. I equate 40 to the car I used to get my first driving license. It is easy to use, has friendly people, and lots of nets. 40 is kind of a comfortable place, but you can learn how to operate well on HF by listening in.
Some HF bands have groups of people who are resentful of others. They are fools and generally are being left to rot after they clock out. I rarely hear such things on 40.
30 meters is a great band for digital modes. I consider it a lot of fun. You can tune a dipole for 40 to work on 30.
Here is a link to USA band allocations, in case you do not have one. Also, please look at my signature at the bottom of this post. That's what I'd get before I spent a penny on an antenna at a hamfest.
Here is another link on a book I loved reading. This might be the best 22.95 a new person ever spent.
It would really help new amateurs who want to build antennas to find an older copy of the ARRL Antenna book. There are too few explanations and too little data in the current editions. By old I mean say pre-1989. Cruise hamfest tables and Ebay, there are plenty available pretty cheap.
I would also recommend an OCF dipole. I have that here at my QTH. With an antenna tuner, my antenna works very well from 10m-80m. I used 14 ga stranded wire and a 4:1 $10 hamfest balun. It is actually a copy of an OCF dipole a ham friend lent me. It seems to be very forgiving as far as height above ground, and the last 20 feet or so makes a 90 degree bend to fit the yard. I have limited radio time, but so far I have made contacts with pretty much anyone I can hear.
I have played with some specific band dipoles as well. They are easy to build with just pvc pipe for the center connection, and two small pieces of pvc pipe for insulators. I used that on 10 meters, one on 20 meters, and played with one on 40 meters before getting the OCF dipole up in the air. You can find plans for those online.
I also have an Antron 99 leftover from my CB days. It works great from 10 meters SSB, and receives okay on other bands, but once you set up a dipole, you will notice an improvement, especially on bands outside the range of the A-99.
Last edited by KD2AKG; 05-25-2012 at 01:42 PM.
Reason: Added A-99
Not very efficient on 20m when fed with coax. However, if fed with tuner/balun/ladder-line, it can be an efficient performer on all bands 40m-6m. If high enough and in its favored directions, it will beat a monopole vertical.
Originally Posted by N8WWM
73, Cecil, www.w5dxp.com
The maximum power transfer theorem works just as well for a non-resonant antenna as it does for a resonant antenna.
Guys, thanks for keeping this thread alive! I am still leaning to building an antenna over buying one. Everything I have read leads me to the OCF Dipole not only the muti-functionality of the OFC, the ease of design, but I have the perfect spot to hang it too. I am pretty technically inclined so I am not worried about building it, I have actually already started playing with 4:1 baluns. Anyway, I am not disagreeing with the 10m vertical but again, I don't really want to buy an antenna and I haven't really looked around to find a good used one. I have a older Ringo style vertical I got at a ham-fest for 5 bucks, but think its a 6m or 2m (its been modified from factory spec) I guess I need to play with it and see if its resonant with a low swr on 10m. The big holdup right now is that its starting to get into my busy season, so I haven't had a lot of time to dedicate to play radio.
Hams are funny people. They hear all abt using balanced feed lines , radiation patterns ,etc and abt preventing the feedline from radiating then they put up an ocf which is designed to be unbalanced with a radiating feed line (if using a single wire) , :-) .
Its a gud thing that just abt anything will work to some extent.