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Deciding on antenna location, inside or out?

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#1
Hello folks, while studying for my Ham license I have been listening to my Icom 746Pro nightly and have heard many conversations and also a few nets.

I have a Comet GP-3 plugged into the center port and a Radiowavz 20 meter dipole plugged into port one.
I have a 2 story house with a basement, the shack is in the basement, I have a stair case that is U shaped so the middle landing from the floor to the ceiling is about 20 feet or so. Right now the dipole is hanging from the ceiling light at the top of the stairs and the side wires slope down to the window sills, my GP-3 is mounted on the 5ft pole and mast so is about 16 feet tall with it standing on the landing straight up. Yes, the wife IS ready to kill me so I need to decide which way to go soon and then get the needed materials and do it (I need LMR400 for the rest of the run or to replace the RG8X I currently have, which isn't long enough).

Originally I was going to mount these antenna's outside, the GP-3 on the 5ft pole mounted at the peak of my roof and the 20 meter dipole just under the mast mounting using insulators and the side wires being hooked up on the down angle of the roof line 16ft in each direction also using insulators. The pole would be grounded to a sunk ground pole and also the coax would be grounded to the ground pole via MFJ lightning surge protectors.

The next option would be to mount the GP-3 in my attic on it's mast between two trusses and the dipole could be center hung in the attic with both side wires straight out, 16 feet each direction.

Problem is, 1/2 of the attic is hard to get to because of a vaulted ceiling in the master bedroom and there are truss supports all over the place, also, I have no idea how I'm going to get the wires from the shack in the basement to the attic... outside is just plain easier but the neighborhood isn't exactly open to a bunch of antenna's.

I have even considered a flag pole install, with the GP-3 on top, I'll try almost anything here.

Then I have to figure on where to out the long wire antenna after I get the ATU for it annnnnnnd after I decide which long wire to buy...

Suggestions, laughs, comments? :D

73's

Erik
 

k8mcn

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#2
Lets start with the GP3 It is a 2meter/440 antenna--it should ideally be mounted as high as practical. If you are just going to use pretty local repeaters, the height isn't as critical, but if you are going to use SSB, or simplex Fm farther away, the height will help considerably. The GP3 should be fed with lmr400 or better as there is quite a loss on uhf/vhf.

Your 20 meter wire should also be as high as possible, at least 20-25', but if that isn't possible you just take what you can get-hey guys have worked the world loading up their gutters. The feed line isn't as critical at HF frequencies, so you can use some thing a little more flexible like rg8 if you want...I would suggest putting up a G5RV, or some type of multi band dipole if your space limits you to only one dipole.
If stealth is a concern, I would vote for a flagpole vertical opposed to mounting the dipole in the attic.if you need plans for making your own, e-mail off list and i can send you the plans i drew up for mine--pretty simple to make and a lot less than a "store bought one"

Good luck
 
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#3
1. Don't buy a long wire ... just buy wire.
2. It can be pretty thin wire if you're just running 100 watts or so.
3. Outside is better, but attics work.

I've been working Europe from my 100 watt mobile this week on 20 meters, so an attic or low roof mounted dipole should do fine.
 
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#4
I agree with the previous responses. Get those antennas outside, as high as practical and as far as manufactured antennas go, it's a waste of money. I build my own HF antennas, because I like to experiment with them, sloping, flattop, inverted vee, and a whole host of other ideas. That is what is fun about amateur radio, the experimenting helps you understand how it's built and how it works.

The best antennas, and even the worst antennas, are ones you put together yourself. Coax fed, twinlead, open wire, ladder line, I have tried them all and enjoyed the experimenting. My current antenna is a center fed (twinlead fed) extended zepp (170 feet) for 75 meters, works as a gain antenna on the higher frequencies. This works well for me, I hope when you experiment, you will find much enjoyment from construction.
 
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#5
Decisions decisions...

Wow, I posted this at another Ham Forum, got 14 views, no comments. I'm going to go to Home Depot and see what kind of flag poles are available.

I'm looking forward to hearing SW from around the world, 2 meters and 20 meters. Maybe this summer I can add a few other bands to the mix.
 

k8mcn

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#6
viking396 said:
Wow, I posted this at another Ham Forum, got 14 views, no comments. I'm going to go to Home Depot and see what kind of flag poles are available.

I'm looking forward to hearing SW from around the world, 2 meters and 20 meters. Maybe this summer I can add a few other bands to the mix.
Bear in mind you will need more than just a flagpole!!!!! You have to insulate the pole from ground,make a feed point, and also add several (35+)radials...........Also the pole should optimally be at least 25' or so-mine is resonant enough to listen on 6 through 80,SWR good enough to transmit on 10 through 20, but need the help of the tuner to transmit on 40, and all though i can load up on 80 i am mostly heating coax :) Mostly use a bazooka or 80 dipole for that.
 
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#7
Insulating a flagpole from ground? Haven't you heard of shunt feeding or gamma matching? It's been done for years. Try looking this over: http://www.qsl.net/w9rb/webdoc9.htm
http://www.cebik.com/trans/gamma.html

There's lot's to be said for amateur radio ingenuity in today's no-code appliance operator society. Nobody experiments with anything. What makes amateur radio so fun, working with your hands and your brains to put up a better antenna system, is what it's all about.
 

k8mcn

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#8
N1BHH said:
Insulating a flagpole from ground? Haven't you heard of shunt feeding or gamma matching? It's been done for years. Try looking this over: http://www.qsl.net/w9rb/webdoc9.htm
http://www.cebik.com/trans/gamma.html

There's lot's to be said for amateur radio ingenuity in today's no-code appliance operator society. Nobody experiments with anything. What makes amateur radio so fun, working with your hands and your brains to put up a better antenna system, is what it's all about.
So, are you saying that if you don't know or choose to use CW, that it makes you an appliance operator????
I guarantee you that there are thousands of CW operators that cant build an antenna,or work on their rigs,I know a few myself, but I don't look down on them, they are just fine gentlemen who by CHOICE use CW----
and as far as experimenting, you don't need to build a gamma match, if you use some No code ingenuity, You can eliminate any internal wire by insulating the base.. I guess Force 12 ( a leader in prebuilt antennas)must be appliance operators too??? They insulate the base of their poles....
Viking396, the thread starter just said he posted on another site(my guess qrz.com) and no one answered him---the answer you just gave was a typical answer that manages to work in both "no-code and appliance operator" like almost all threads on the ZED do!
73
 

iMONITOR

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.. .----. -- / ... --- / -.-. --- --- .-.. / -... . -.-. .- ..- ... . / .. / -.- -. --- .-- / -- --- .-. ... . / -.-. --- -.. . .-.-.- / .... --- .-- / -.-. --- -- . / -. --- / --- -. . / .-- .. .-.. .-.. / - .- .-.. -.- / - --- / -- . .-.-.-
 
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#10
-. --- - / - --- / .-- --- .-. .-. -.-- / -.- . .-.. .-.. -.-- --..-- / .-. . -- . -- -... . .-. / .-..-. .. - / .. ... / -. --- - / - .... . / -.-. .-.. .- ... ... / --- ..-. / .-.. .. -.-. . -. ... . / - .... . / .- -- .- - . ..- .-. / .... --- .-.. -.. ... --..-- / -... ..- - / - .... . / -.-. .-.. .- ... ... / --- ..-. / - .... . / .- -- .- - . ..- .-. / - .... .- - / .... --- .-.. -.. ... / - .... . / .-.. .. -.-. . -. ... . .-..-.
 

k8mcn

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- .... .- -. -.- ... / .- -. -.. / -... . ... - / --... ...-- / ..-. --- .-. / .- .-.. .-.. / ..- ... / -. --- -....- -.-. --- -.. . .-. ...
 
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#12
k8mcn said:
Bear in mind you will need more than just a flagpole!!!!! You have to insulate the pole from ground,make a feed point, and also add several (35+)radials...........Also the pole should optimally be at least 25' or so-mine is resonant enough to listen on 6 through 80,SWR good enough to transmit on 10 through 20, but need the help of the tuner to transmit on 40, and all though i can load up on 80 i am mostly heating coax :) Mostly use a bazooka or 80 dipole for that.
I thought I was clear, I will be mounting a Comet GP-3 2 meter on it at the top and a Radiowavz 20 meter dipole as well. In this case letting the pole be grounded would be a good thing I think? I never thought about using the flag pole itself. :)
 
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#13
N1BHH said:
Insulating a flagpole from ground? Haven't you heard of shunt feeding or gamma matching? It's been done for years. Try looking this over: http://www.qsl.net/w9rb/webdoc9.htm
http://www.cebik.com/trans/gamma.html

There's lot's to be said for amateur radio ingenuity in today's no-code appliance operator society. Nobody experiments with anything. What makes amateur radio so fun, working with your hands and your brains to put up a better antenna system, is what it's all about.
The experience is definitely part of it, unfortunately I lack any right now but I'm reading. I need to do this as stealth as possible and I'll take pictures of my possible install locations tomorrow, I think a flag pole for the GP-3 and Dipole will work pretty well, unfortunately might not work well for a long wire.

I'm going to the AES Superfest this Saturday for LMR400 PL259's and some advice.
 
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#14
k8pbx said:
-. --- - / - --- / .-- --- .-. .-. -.-- / -.- . .-.. .-.. -.-- --..-- / .-. . -- . -- -... . .-. / .-..-. .. - / .. ... / -. --- - / - .... . / -.-. .-.. .- ... ... / --- ..-. / .-.. .. -.-. . -. ... . / - .... . / .- -- .- - . ..- .-. / .... --- .-.. -.. ... --..-- / -... ..- - / - .... . / -.-. .-.. .- ... ... / --- ..-. / - .... . / .- -- .- - . ..- .-. / - .... .- - / .... --- .-.. -.. ... / - .... . / .-.. .. -.-. . -. ... . .-..-.
.. .----. -- / --. --- .. -. --. / ..-. --- .-. / -- -.-- / - . -.-. .... / .-.. .. -.-. . -. ... . --..-- / .- -. -.. / .-- .. .-.. .-.. / .- .-.. ... --- / -... . / --. --- .. -. --. / ..-. --- .-. / -.-. .-- / ... --- --- -. / .- ..-. - . .-. .-.-.-


- .... .- -. -.- ... / . ...- . .-. -.-- -... --- -.. -.-- --..-- / --... ...-- .----. ... / - --- / .- .-.. .-..
 
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#15
k8mcn said:
So, are you saying that if you don't know or choose to use CW, that it makes you an appliance operator????
I guarantee you that there are thousands of CW operators that cant build an antenna,or work on their rigs,I know a few myself, but I don't look down on them, they are just fine gentlemen who by CHOICE use CW----
and as far as experimenting, you don't need to build a gamma match, if you use some No code ingenuity, You can eliminate any internal wire by insulating the base.. I guess Force 12 ( a leader in prebuilt antennas)must be appliance operators too??? They insulate the base of their poles....
Viking396, the thread starter just said he posted on another site(my guess qrz.com) and no one answered him---the answer you just gave was a typical answer that manages to work in both "no-code and appliance operator" like almost all threads on the ZED do!
73
This can be a pretty intimidating hobby, I just hope to get it right and not blow anything up in the process.... including me. :)
 

k8mcn

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#16
viking396 said:
I thought I was clear, I will be mounting a Comet GP-3 2 meter on it at the top and a Radiowavz 20 meter dipole as well. In this case letting the pole be grounded would be a good thing I think? I never thought about using the flag pole itself. :)
ok, fine business-i misunderstood, thought you wanted to build a vertical antenna out of the pole, not just use it as a hanger for the dipole and mount for the ground plane and:
.- -. -.. / --... ...-- / - --- / -.-- --- ..- -....- -....- -.. --- -. - / .-.. . - / ... -- .- .-. - / .- .-.. . -.-. ... / --. . - / -.-- --- ..- / -.. --- .-- -. -....- -....- -....- -.-- --- ..- / -.-. .- -. / -.. --- / .. - / .- -. -.. / .. ..-. / -.-- .- / -- . ... ... / ..- .--. / -.- . . .--. / - .-. -.-- .. -. --. -....- -....- .. - / .. ... / -. --- - / .- / -.. .. ... --. .-. .- -.-. . / - --- / -... . / .- / -. --- / -.-. --- -.. . / --. . -. . .-. .- .-..
 
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#17
After checking out the yard, not sure if the flag pole idea will be the choice, damn maple tree might block my efforts. Front and back yard is just so friggin small.... maybe if I trim.... nah that would look bad.... nuts, the antenna part sure makes this frustrating!!!
 
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#19
Twister_2 said:
i tried my antron 99 in the attic...the insulation dampered all of the tx and rx. worked better above the garage...put it on your chimney!! :)
I have that craptastic steel exhaust chimney, not something I can mount too, no fireplace either so it's a mast of some kind or attic. I have both in the attic right now, no Tech license so I can't TX right now, but studying so when the next exam session is available I'll be ready for it.

I downloaded all the Podcasts I could find and bouth the ARRL book and a few others. I can't wait to get my Tech, then I'm going for CW and by the end of summer I hope to be General. We'll see if I'm so gung ho in a few weeks, I think I will be.
 
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#20
There are vent pipe mounts available. Here's one I found with a quick Google search: http://www.summitsource.com/product_info.php?ref=1&products_id=5590
Find an local TV store, there still are some and tell them you want these and 5 or 10 foot mast and that's the start of a good antenna structure. And don't do it alone, and stay away from electrical wires. And it can be fun building antennas on your own, but it's better with a friend.
 
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