Happy Sunday folks,

Since my 6m dipole project didn’t fair so well, I thought i’d try a 20m 1/2 wave dipole.

I cut each leg to 16.7 feet, and looped the extra back onto itself, (about 2 inches), and trimmed an extra 1/2 inch off each leg to account for the insulated wire. Definitely not the most scientific way of doing it, but i’m pretty impressed with the results thus far, it makes me think I should do a 1/2 wave 40m dipole, but then the angle of my inverted V would increase significantly due to the increased leg length. The antenna tuner is taking care of the rest. I also used the 1:1 balun that I just can’t seem to put to good use anywhere else.

Here are a few shots of the dipole:

 

I pushed the balun to the edge here so the legs wouldn’t touch the roof, I had to find some way to squeeze another 18 inches out of my coax, but found it 🙂

 

Taped up the connection
Coax was routed through a vent cap in the roof
Adding PVC insulator here
Had these tie downs leftover from gardening project
I do need to add some egg insulators or some pvc pipe rather than attach the rope directly to the ends, this was just to see if it worked first, I think some black pvc pipe would work nicely.

I’m using a 25 foot piece of LMR240 from the coax switch, and the balun is mounted up top on the roof near the edge. I made sure that the legs aren’t touching anything. I thought this antenna would pickup quite a bit of noise from the house, but so far i’ve been mistaken. I’ve also noticed that when everything is off at night (all the electronics in the house) I generally have a better waterfall display anyways, but this is a 20m dipole, and 20m is best during the day. So i’m pleased with the noise level so far. I’ve used it on SSB, AM & several digital modes, and i’ve gotten great reports on it. Only had it up a day so far, pretty pleased!  I think conditions lately have been pretty good on the 20m band during the day.

I wanted a bit more stealthy antenna that I could leave up during the day. My end feds are too long & noticeable when I have them out & up with the fiberglass push up poles. The Hustler sticks out like a sore thumb, attic antennas suck, the magnetic loop needs to be outside for best results, so this is my best option so far. Here’s a shot of the antenna running on WSPR over the first few hours of having it operating during the day today:

The antenna is pretty stealthy where it sits too because of some trees/vines I have up close to the house. Speaking of trees/vines i’ve spent the majority of my weekend doing landscaping! Have you ever gotten so into ham radio that you tend to neglect your other responsibilities? LOL!

I had a great weekend on the radio, a few rag chews, some JT-65, WSPR, got the dipole up, all in all a very accomplished weekend. I was scheduled to take the extra class exam this past Saturday, but I was not yet ready. The extra class question pool is a tad bit larger than the others! I really would like to have the additional allocations in the frequencies though so I really need to stop procrastinating!

73 to all.

Keep it Weird.

K5ACL

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