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Adding vhf/uhf to my shack for satellites. What's your setup? Coax length and type?

Discussion in 'Satellite and Space Communications' started by KI4WCC, Apr 1, 2021.

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  1. K2WH

    K2WH Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I had/have 2 beams pointing at the horizon. Both WERE vertical for repeaters but then I went out and got myself a 9700, it took me back to my roots from the 70's working weak signal stuff on two, AM with 20 elements, that was a long time ago.

    Recently, I decided to dabble or try to hear the birds on my tri-band vertical. I heard them pretty good. It was then I realized, my now horizontal beams would probably be better for the birds at low orbital altitudes from my QTH.

    I found that they work fabulously for those low birds and work good even up to direct overhead birds.

    However, I am not entirely satisfied so I decided to build two eggbeaters for the high birds via a switching arrangement.

    Coax to both or all is RG-8u, only about 45 feet for the beams and for the eggbeaters (since they can be mounted just about anywhere), about 20 feet.
  2. KI4WCC

    KI4WCC Ham Member QRZ Page

    Thanks all for the input. I'm still debating on a good solution. I really want to work the birds from my shack!

    I've found myself out in the yard with my two baofengs and my Arrow yagi the past two days and I've been disappointed both days. It's a lot to juggle. Not sure I'd be any more successful with two FT818s either. Tuning for doppler is definitely easier on the Yaesu.

    Im thinking i may shop for a fixed elevation 2m/70cm yagi with an old school rotator. Spend some coin on decent coax and give that a go with my SDR dongle.... IF all works well, i can spend the cash for the 9700.
  3. N4UFO

    N4UFO Ham Member QRZ Page

    Could be as simple as finding a TV rotor and a trip to the home improvement store...

    sat antenna.JPG

    This was not the best design ever thought of... just the first one I came up with. I had planned to add some preamps in those side parts where the coax comes out, but the cheap ones I bought were crap. And honestly, using a 22.5 degree elbow was almost too much. I'm told 15 degrees is better. My point is, it can be done... you'll see some fades as a bird flies straight over you, and don't go over board with the gain... not needed and can work against you on direct flyovers. I worked into EU and AF (Canary Is) with the antennas above.

    If I could have added one thing to the above... it would have been a UHF receive preamp. Well worth it.

    GL & 73, Kevin N4UFO

    Attached Files:

    WE4B and WD9EWK like this.
  4. K4BAD

    K4BAD Ham Member QRZ Page

    My antenna setup has some similarity to Kevin’s.However,I’m using an Elk beam.

    I’ve been pleased with the performance on the FM satellites.Inability to twist the antenna has made it difficult to “find my signal” on the SSB satellites.

    Come to think of it,I got the idea for my ant. setup from Kevin!
    N4UFO likes this.
  5. KI4WCC

    KI4WCC Ham Member QRZ Page

    A homebrew is sounding more and more appealing. I built a 2m, 3 element in the past and had decent results.

    Man. this stuff adds up quick if you go "all in" and just buy everything....... az\el rotator, rotator interface, antennas, pre-amps, coax, and rig......That's about a $3k lick, at least.

    After reading in detail, i answered my own question. the Ioio is for both uhf and vhf if i gather correctly?
    Last edited: Apr 9, 2021
  6. K4BAD

    K4BAD Ham Member QRZ Page

    Yes,if you go “all in” it can be quite expensive.

    However, based on the above posts,it is possible to assemble a pretty good,not too expensive setup that gives good results.

    I believe Kevin’s antenna is an IOIo...Maybe he’ll clarify!

    Good luck!
  7. N4UFO

    N4UFO Ham Member QRZ Page

    The 2m antenna on there is just an IO. (I included the IOio print out for the dimensions, etc. which I believe are in metric.) In front of it is a 7 element cheap yagi. The uhf 'io' does not have enough gain for sat work... even the fellow that made up that printout seemed to think so. :)
    KI4WCC likes this.
  8. KI4WCC

    KI4WCC Ham Member QRZ Page

  9. KB1PVH

    KB1PVH Ham Member QRZ Page

    You can't put a pricetag on a good time ;)

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