Gutter Dipoles

Discussion in 'Antennas, Feedlines, Towers & Rotors' started by K9BZY, Dec 21, 2017.

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  1. K9BZY

    K9BZY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hello Everyone,

    I live in an HOA with super heavy restrictions on antennas, and I was planning on buying a wire dipole to fix under the eave of my roof right under my gutters. My gutters are painted over and worn down, so I don't know how well they conduct, but I am not planning on using them as the antenna, rather the dipole that I plan to buy. I also live right where lightning strikes just about everything, so I need something that won't increase the risk of my house burning down on the spot. Just wondering if any hams out there have any suggestions about stealthy antennas with HOA restrictions to send any ideas my way.


  2. KC8VWM

    KC8VWM Ham Member QRZ Page

    Last edited: Dec 21, 2017
    W4IOA and AK5B like this.
  3. K9BZY

    K9BZY Ham Member QRZ Page

    Oh, that's fine for me. Its behind my house and nobody's going to see it but me. It just cant be up in the air. Thanks.
  4. KW1K

    KW1K Ham Member QRZ Page

    Hi Om:

    I am an attorney and although I can't provide legal advice in your state, I can provide some legal guidance [more latter].

    If you own the land around your unit, a Hustler BTV vertical fits nicely inside a 2 inch PVC pipe to make a flagpole. If you do not wish to deal with radials, there are off center fed flagpole antennas commercially available, or you can build your own. Magnetic loop antennas are also a reasonable choice although these have narrow bandwidth and require frequent adjustment. There are several commercially available as well as several discussion groups for homebrew.

    Now for the law part. If the flag your HOA is prohibiting is the good old stars and stripes, the HOA is probably out of line. Your right to display the United States flag is protected by federal law. The “Freedom to Display the American Flag Act of 2005” makes it illegal for an HOA to restrict owners from displaying a U.S. flag. See

    In addition, there are state laws. Here in Florida there is a state law allowing me to erect a 20 foot flagpole and display both the US and Florida flags. Illinois also has such a provision: ' ... for any homeowner, property owner or townhome association that is incorporated as an Illinois Not-For-Profit Corporation, the Illinois Not-For-Profit Corporation Act (805 ILCS 105/103.30(a) and referred to as “NFP Act”) contains language permitting owners in such associations, regardless of what language may be contained in the applicable declaration, bylaws or rules of the association, to display the American flag and military flag on the owner’s property. The manner and placement in which such flags may be displayed by owners can be regulated by the Board through reasonable rules and regulations.'

    Again. I can't provide legal advice, and suggest you consult a local attorney but I hope this is some encouragement; there are very good solutions available regardless of what the HOA rules state since both Federal and State law takes precedence.

    Best of luck & 73.

    K9ASE and AK5B like this.
  5. AG1W

    AG1W Ham Member QRZ Page

    Have a Princeton Antenna 35ft EF Dipole and performs very well in my valley. Can hear most of Country and contacted 17 States on 100 Watts . Read the description, they claim had it installed under eve (wood) just stoked up and performed great. I purchased through R&L
  6. K3UJ

    K3UJ Ham Member QRZ Page

    If your gutters are aluminum and you hang the dipole too close, you will get some coupling, detuning the dipole.

    That can be overcome, just be aware of what is happening.
  7. KE4OH

    KE4OH Ham Member QRZ Page

    FWIW, I just worked a chap the other day who was loading up his rain gutters AS the antenna. He had a nice signal, too.
  8. K8JD

    K8JD Ham Member QRZ Page

    I hear a lot of "rain Gutter" antennas on the CW bands, Not sure how they connected to make them work but I am sure it is not just haphazzard . Must be some work involved in getting the signal to couple with the gutters.
  9. WD0BCT

    WD0BCT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I have installed two stealth antennas in my neighborhood. I say stealth because they are close to invisible, however, our HOA board has been fully appraised of what I am they are not stealth to our HOA board. They fully support what I am doing so far. In fact they would allow me to run a wire into the trees on our green belt behind my property. I have decided not to do this for reasons I'll cite below.

    My first attempt was an under eave long wire with an exterior tuner. It worked....I could actually tune 40/20/15/10M with this arrangement. However, I erected a temporary inverted dipole further away from the house in my backyard and got even better results. I am convinced not only was the dipole a more efficient radiator, but getting away from the house improved efficacy also.
    So...I developed a more stealth dipole (without a separate structure to support it) that has worked very nicely for me although it only covers 40/20M. Any more than a pair of dipole elements starts to be too visible. I use the highest eave of the house for support and use bird feeder stanchions to connect the guy ropes to. If you know what to look for you can spot them from a green belt walkway, however, from the street they are very hard to see.

    I maintained both antennas for a year and decided to abandon the undereave long wire. I am sure a wire up into the trees or even using the trees for dipole support would work even better. I don't go there for the following reasons:
    1. The trees are not on my property.
    2. Obtaining a good reliable connection in the trees would be difficult.
    3. The HOA does landscaping in the green belt (mowing, tree trimming, etc)

    So I chose not to extend my antenna to the greenbelt. Although the HOA board would allow it...I wish to avoid liability issues of an antenna not installed on my property.

    To answer the OP....a dipole away from the house outperformed the undereave wire. Results may vary!
  10. WD0BCT

    WD0BCT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    This is zoomed in from the bike path. To the naked eye one can just barely see the wires going down to the bird feeder stanchions. Can't see them in this photo. You can see the coax going up to the dipole support just under the eave. It's on the far side of the bay window.

    from path large coax.JPG

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