Best HF antenna for portable use?

M0LMK

Member #2
Full Member
Staff member
What do you think is the best all round HF antenna for portable use?

I'm currently favouring the linked dipole with a 10M push up mast although the mast can be a little cumbersome.

Any other options?
 

G8TDU

Member #6
Full Member
Quite a while back, i saw some plans for a vertical made from a 7 metre fibreglass fishing rod. The radiating element was a helical coil wrapped around the rod, but the turns spacing varied from one end to another. Due to the varied spacings of the coil, only certain parts resonated depending on the frequency, no radials were used. Ive tried looking for the design again, but no luck.
 

M0LMK

Member #2
Full Member
Staff member
That sounds interesting.

It must have been using the coax as a radial.
 

G8TDU

Member #6
Full Member
Ive asked Brett on my forum to look into this for us, see what he comes up with. I remember at the time thinking how neat the idea was. The radiating element or coil was soldered to each of the fishing pole connecting points allowing the rod to be dismantled to put in the car. Its bugging me now where i saw it.
 

WD5IKX

Member #46
New member
Is this the one? BW

I have been experimenting with a 8 meter "crappie pole" as they are called here and I found this article which gives me some new ideas.

John
WD5IKX
 

WA5SAT

Member #47
New member
I really love using an end fed wire for 10 meter portable QRP ops. To support it, you can throw one end in a tree, or support one end with some type of pole. I found a 14 foot cane fishing pole for $6 and it works great, is very lightweight and breaks down to fit in the car. I also have a 15 foot aluminum pole use to fly banners. Very lightweight and breaks down into 3 pieces. I use RG174 cable, so everything is very light and easy to carry.
73,
Steve WA5SAT
 

VK5NQP

Member #48
New member
G'day fellas, I have been using a link dipole, but lately I have been trying an end fed half wave & using the SOTA Beams matching unit & found it works quite well.
This is mainly on 40m.
As for the query above re the vertical, is it this one you were looking for? - Perite

Rgards
Dave
VK5NQP
 

WA5SAT

Member #47
New member
I do have a Facebook Page for WA5SAT, please check it out and see some pics and videos of portable ops and antennas.
73,Steve WA5SAT
 

M0LSX

Member #49
New member
A couple of ideas that an old broadcast friend developed antenna wise.
An old CB antenna can be found for free on site like Freecycle etc. Strip the coil out, take the jubilee clips off & drill some small holes through the joints , these you can use nails or even bits of twigs in, to hold the mast up & with a stake banged into the ground this makes a great little antenna support for short term use.
Again a free item. Get the old dirty water pipe that runs from the back of a washing machine & cut the inverted U part off. On one end cut two small holes for your antenna wire, then feed your coax through the U, build a centre fed antenna so that the joint of the coax & antenna pulls inside of the U, with the antenna coming out of the sides of the pipe. Once the centre fed is made, you can seal the end of the U that the coax does not come out of & the holes the antenna wire comes out of. The open end of the U can be sat over a pole for portable operation. Now improve your design by attaching a coat hanger to it, so your antenna can now be hung from a rope over a branch or even hung on a branch by the coat hanger it's self.
The above is probably not the best description. But as a multi use centre fed antenna it really is a neat design.
 

G4YVM

Member #58
Article Contributor
I use a simple wire thrown up a tree with a counterpoise, fed to the KX1 ATU. So far so good, but I know there's better to be had.

David
 

M0LMK

Member #2
Full Member
Staff member
Wow. Some great options here!

I like the multi band roach pole designs.

Keep em coming!
 

J69DS

Member #71
New member
Hi All,
Here I use a buddipole setup for portable. from 20 meters upwards I have enough bits to make a full size vertical and use a wire radial. I will shorten the radial to get my swr down to 1:1
This has worked very well for us here. Use it on the beach and on top of mountain with excellent results.
on 40 we use a fibreglass pole run a 32.5 feet wire up the pole and have three radials on the ground, this works a treat also.

Yearly Independence Camp | J6 Portable is one place to see many photos of when we go portable...

rehab is not an option: RF all the way!!
 

G0DZB

Member #84
Award Moderator
For simplicity I go with a 10m Fishing rod vertical and a few radials. I've just got a "Travel Mast" from SOTAbeams which is much easier to transport on my Motorbike!
The KX3 internal ATU will load it up on 80m to 10m, or I'll put a SGC-237 at the base if operating at the end of a length of coax ! I don't like those 9:1 UnUn things :) .

For a "full fat" station I'm currently using a pair of 10m poles to support an inverted delta loop (cut for 30m) and fed with a SGC-237 at the bottom corner.

PeterO
G0DZB
 

G8TDU

Member #6
Full Member
I would be interested in more details on your fishing rod vertical Pete. Thats the sort of thing im looking for.

John
 

G0DZB

Member #84
Award Moderator
There isn't much to it John ! 10m telescopic rod with about 11m of wire up the middle. When collapsed the wire comes out of a small extra hole made in the bottom end cap.
I normally bungy it to a fence post or a section of "angle iron" that I take with me (and a lump hammer to get it into hard ground). I use 1 to 3 similarly sized radials preferably held just above ground level (in a hedge for example).
You can see the bottom of it in the second picture on the report of recent /P activity from Maldon Maldon Park Activation Apr 2015 - Essex Ham

PeterO
G0DZB
 

mu0chn

Member #10
Full Member
I have used a 12m spiderpole and about 40" of wire and a 9:1 unun with a ground stake.
I think it should of been 43" of wire but I didn't measure it till the next day. Not sure how long the coax was but was a fair length laid out on the grass.

Shack-002.jpg
 

G3UNA

Member #88
New member
My favourite is the L antenna, note not the inverted L. This keeps the support pole or sky hook very lightweight as it's not holding up the coax and centre insulator etc. The bottom of the vertical element should be above ground by as much as you can, say a metre or so followed by the horizontal element running along a hedge or held up by a pea stick, bamboo, with an end insulator. You can choose to use a separate matching box of your choice or one built in to your rig for convenience but make the element lengths to be kind to your tuner with a short length of coax to the rig. This reduces losses, especially if the coax is short. You could run 300ohm ribbon all the way as I do with and adaptor on my Elecraft KX1. For multiband operation, an off-centre-fed dipole will give you several bands using a twin core arrangement in the balun. This keeps the losses in the matching unit the lowest. The L also has a slight direction-pointing advantage. 73 David G3UNA
 

KK4UTO

Member #25
Award Curator
I use an end fed dipole exclusively. I bought my first 9-1 unun but then built my next one. I found with my first bought one that if I use a wire about
40ft long it did not need a counter poise. The coax acts as a counter poise. So the unun I built I didn't even put the counter poise option in. I works
great. I run it with a 50ft RG8 coax between the tuner and the unun so that the coax has some room for the counter poise action. I only run 5 watts
and would never think of using this with 100 watts. Here is a picture of my home made 9-1 unun. The bolts on the SO239 have been cut off since the
picture was taken.
20150309_114603.jpg
 
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