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G5RV

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dougdoug

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Just curious if anyone uses a G5RV antenna. I realize that a multi band antenna will be a compromise however was wondering how they work? I am still saving money for a new rig but the transceiver and power supply will exhaust that savings. I am currently working 10 meters only off of an inverted v. It works great, has good SWR, and if I can hear them can usually work them, but I am limited to 10.

Yes I know I could string other dipoles, fans, multiple dipoles with remote switches, etc., but I would rather save my money for a good tri band (10-15-20) beam and rotor.

The idea of the G5RV sounds good if they work and would get me by until I can afford the beam. They seem to get pretty good reviews depending on manufacture.

So I guess I have two questions. First, do they work, and secondly, can you use an auto tuner as in the LDG IC-100? Most all advertisements say they require a tuner but don’t specify what type. I am guessing that because they transition to coax that the auto tuner will work?

Thanks
 

902

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First, do they work, and secondly, can you use an auto tuner as in the LDG IC-100? Most all advertisements say they require a tuner but don’t specify what type. I am guessing that because they transition to coax that the auto tuner will work?

Thanks
The short answers, sure and sure.

I had one in the Midwest. It was a good performer. Not earth shattering, but it was low maintenance and did its job just fine. My configuration had the ladder line coming down to the coax termination and then about 60 feet of RG-8 back to the shack where I had an MFJ-949D tuner. There's no reason why you couldn't use an automatic tuner.

Good luck and hope to work you some day!
 

Nighthawk424

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Well I have heard the the G5RV is technically not resonant on any band. Sure you can still get a low SWR but that being said it will not perform as well as a mono band dipole such as the 10 meter inverted
V you have now. However your idea of saving for a tri-band beam is great. We know that coax and wire is not cheap these days. Make sure you keep an eye on the the clubs and nets in your area in case you hear of someone selling a beam.
 

n9mxq

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I had one up for a couple years.. Was a great compromise antenna. Use it with my Kenwood tuner, and later with my Icom AT-180..

Always a good performer here where I had it.. Peak was about 50 feet..
 

popnokick

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The ZS6BKW is said to be an improvement over the G5RV:
http://www.w0btu.com/g5rv_antenna.html
 

prcguy

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I agree and I replaced a couple of G5RVs with ZS6BKWs and have been very happy. The G5RV is a great antenna for 80 through 10m since its a good 75% of a full half wave on 80m and is still fairly efficient. On 20m you get a little gain cause that's what the antenna was designed for and on higher bands you get some lobes with gain and some nulls, so you if you work a lot of the higher bands its best to look up the patterns and orient the antenna as needed. The only real problem with the G5RV is the match is lousy on all bands except 20m and when you add a bunch of coax the system loss goes way up beyond the textbook coax loss.

The ZS6BKW is a modern computer designed variant of a G5RV and has a good match on 40, 20, 17, 12, 10 and even 6m. The match on 80m is similar to a G5RV and an LDG tuner or many internal radio tuners will handle it. The ZS6BKW will have lobes similar to a G5RV on the higher bands so be aware and install it to make the best use of the lobes.
prcguy

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The ZS6BKW is said to be an improvement over the G5RV:
The Truth about the G5RV Antenna
 

dougdoug

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I see the ZS6BKW is a variation of the G5RV. The photos I see have a transition to coax (SO239). Is this a balun or do I need to purchase a separate balun? You would think that since the antenna is in an unbalanced configuration that a balun would not be needed. Are there any thoughts on this?
 

prcguy

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Both the G5RV and ZS6BKW should have a 1:1 choke balun at the junction of the balanced line and coax. Otherwise the outside of the coax can have a lot of RF on it causing the coax to radiate and bring RF back into the shack.

You can use many different commercial 1:1 choke baluns or make one for a couple of $ by running about 10 turns of coax through an appropriate toroid core.

For high power use I use an FT-240-43 core and RG-142B/U Teflon coax but you can also use RG-58 or 8X. This guy has a pic of the typical winding so the input and output land on opposite sides of the core: IZØJXG RadioStation

For lower power use I use an FT-140 or 140A core and RG-316 coax.
prcguy


I see the ZS6BKW is a variation of the G5RV. The photos I see have a transition to coax (SO239). Is this a balun or do I need to purchase a separate balun? You would think that since the antenna is in an unbalanced configuration that a balun would not be needed. Are there any thoughts on this?
 

dougdoug

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Thanks for the replies. I guess I could have answered my own question about the balun with a little more research. Some manufactures suggest a coax (ugly balun) for a RF choke. I just spent my Christmas money today on a new TS 590, power supply, and desk mike.

It will be awhile before I can afford the antenna I want, so I may just pick up one of these. HRO has the RADIOWAVZ Jr. (6-40) for $32.95.

That should work for awhile.
 

prcguy

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The Radiowavz Jr will cover 40 through maybe 6m ok but not 80m. You can make a G5RV or ZS6BKW that will work fine down to 80m for about the same price as the Radiowavz Jr, plus the Radiowavz version does not have a choke balun. An ugly balun is not very broad band and will not adequately choke across the entire range of the antenna.

I think there is a G5RV Jr buried in the garage somewhere and you can have it for shipping if I can locate it, but I would rather see you buy or make something better.
prcguy


Thanks for the replies. I guess I could have answered my own question about the balun with a little more research. Some manufactures suggest a coax (ugly balun) for a RF choke. I just spent my Christmas money today on a new TS 590, power supply, and desk mike.

It will be awhile before I can afford the antenna I want, so I may just pick up one of these. HRO has the RADIOWAVZ Jr. (6-40) for $32.95.

That should work for awhile.
 

SCPD

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I've used G5RV's twice with good results.
From Michigan, I've worked all over the US, and into Europe.
The first time, I had the ladder line hanging straight down, the second time the ladder line was horizontal.
Seem to me the antenna "played" better the second time.

Both times were just quick installs for November sweeps, and took down next spring.
 
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