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Spinning REEL for Pneumatic (spud gun) Antenna Launcher ?

Discussion in 'Antennas, Feedlines, Towers & Rotors' started by WL7PM, Oct 14, 2021.

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  1. WL7PM

    WL7PM Ham Member QRZ Page

    I have constructed a compressed air antenna line launcher from PVC pipe (spud gun).
    Looking for a recommendation for a fishing reel to hold around 200 yards of 30 pound spider line.
    The launcher works well, but my copy of a 16 dollar Chinese reel from Ebay did not last long.
    I am not a sports fisherman, so have nearly zero knowledge of what features constitute a usable reel for this application.
    " Help Spend My Money "
    W2VW likes this.
  2. K8HIT

    K8HIT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Just about any reel can hold that amount of spiderwire. I bought a clearance reel for 25 bucks. Works just fine. Cabelas has pretty good deals in the bargain cave.

    I have fishing reels that cost a couple hundred bucks. No way that kind of quality is needed for a spud gun.

    Try a Diawa closed face spincast reel in the 30 to 50 range.
  3. KO4CQ

    KO4CQ Ham Member QRZ Page

    I got an open face spinning reel from Walmart for about $11. The reel works fine. The problem I have is that the line (10 pound test, which seems strong enough) was improperly loaded onto the reel, so that the line twists and kinks. There are videos showing how to properly load the reel. It might be good to buy a reel without the line, and load it yourself after watching the videos.
    WZ7U likes this.
  4. K8HIT

    K8HIT Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    Fishing line usually has installation instructions on the box to avoid twist. Spiderwire should have instructions, it's a premium line.
  5. K9XR

    K9XR Ham Member QRZ Page

    I don't fish much any more but from my experience I would suggest a closed reel (spincast) over an open reel (spinning) reel. Spinning reels sem to have a lot more problems with tangling than spincast reels. YMMV
    KD2TTM likes this.
  6. K9WW

    K9WW Ham Member QRZ Page

    Look around yard sales or resale shops for an old Zebco 33 spincast reel. I put one on a Wrist Rocket slingshot. Works great. 200 yards of heavy line, though, seems a bit of overkill unless you're going to shoot lines over 300 foot trees. GL & 73.
    Last edited: Oct 15, 2021
    K9XR and KD2TTM like this.
  7. KD2TTM

    KD2TTM Ham Member QRZ Page

    As a life-long fisherman, I concur with the advice of the last couple of posts... look for a spincasting reel. An old Zebco model should work well and cost very little.
  8. NC5T

    NC5T Ham Member QRZ Page

    I also agree with, and have used, a spincasting reel for this type of antenna hanging system. A word of caution on the 30lb spiderwire...not sure of your tree/ support situation, but you might want to use something a little lighter that you can easily break if the shot goes wild and the weight gets hung up. There is still a 5oz sinker 50 ft. up in an oak tree at my old place...along with about 30 ft. of line I couldn't break.
    K9XR and W9IQ like this.
  9. KD2TTM

    KD2TTM Ham Member QRZ Page

    And not only is it nearly unbreakable, it will slice through you like a scalpel if you pull it hard with your bare hands! Use with caution.
  10. WA7F

    WA7F Premium Subscriber QRZ Page

    I use a large closed face reel and 20 pound monofilament line. It has made many 120’ vertical shots. I avoided spinning reels because it’s so easy to bump the bail closed. Also the line tends to unwind off the spool if it’s not held tight. Closed face reels have their issues as well but, I think they are more reliable for this application.

    My line preference for shooting antennas is monofilament over braided. It’s slicker and braided line tends to cut into things like tree bark and fingers.

    Another thought, with the 20 to 30 pound line it’s a good idea to use a 2-3 foot leader in the 10 pound test range. That way when you get hung up beyond hope just break off the leader and retrieve your line. This avoids leaving a hundred feet of fishing line in the tree and blowing in the wind.
    Last edited: Oct 16, 2021

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