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Wire Dipole

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xusmarine1979

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I have a quick question. I am building a simple dipole out of wire. Is it better to use a thicker wire for the antenna or will thin wire work the same?

I currently have a wire dipole on my roof and I can monitor the surrounding counties on VHF loud and clear. It's a verticle mount and it's just attached to some pvc that I got from work. I'm trying to improve my UHF and 800 bands, otherwise very impressive for not spending any money, just used stuff lying around the house. This antenna will not be used to transmit, just to monitor. Thanks for any help.
 

N1BHH

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When asking a question such as this, it's better to know for what frequency you want to listen to. If for HF 18 gauge works, 16 is better, it's best to go as fat as possible, within reason. If you could afford #10, go for it. There just needs to be strong supports for hanging such antennas.

For VHF and so on 18 gauge is fine, even speaker wire and zip cord does it okay. If you are building one, it doesn't need to be fancy either. I have a wire dipole that is just wire soldered to a stripped and separated end of coax and taped up real good and hangs in a tree for low band. It performs very well, not only on low band, but all over the spectrum. Some times it can be good for FM broadcast reception as well.

Don't worry what it looks like, if it works, it works. That is what experimentation is all about. I'm glad to see someone is doing that, because fewer and fewer people are experimenting. I like doodling around with various ideas. I get loads of information right on the internet. Just a simple Google search and you'll find thousands of ideas. There are websites dedicated to the intricate nature of the beast.

Here's a few of my favorites:
http://www.hamuniverse.com/antennas.html
http://www.cebik.com/radio.html
http://mysite.verizon.net/nb6z/nb6zep.htm
http://ac6v.com/
 

xusmarine1979

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Location
Louisville, Ohio
N1BHH said:
When asking a question such as this, it's better to know for what frequency you want to listen to. If for HF 18 gauge works, 16 is better, it's best to go as fat as possible, within reason. If you could afford #10, go for it. There just needs to be strong supports for hanging such antennas.

For VHF and so on 18 gauge is fine, even speaker wire and zip cord does it okay. If you are building one, it doesn't need to be fancy either. I have a wire dipole that is just wire soldered to a stripped and separated end of coax and taped up real good and hangs in a tree for low band. It performs very well, not only on low band, but all over the spectrum. Some times it can be good for FM broadcast reception as well.

Don't worry what it looks like, if it works, it works. That is what experimentation is all about. I'm glad to see someone is doing that, because fewer and fewer people are experimenting. I like doodling around with various ideas. I get loads of information right on the internet. Just a simple Google search and you'll find thousands of ideas. There are websites dedicated to the intricate nature of the beast.

Here's a few of my favorites:
http://www.hamuniverse.com/antennas.html
http://www.cebik.com/radio.html
http://mysite.verizon.net/nb6z/nb6zep.htm
http://ac6v.com/

I thought I had mentioned VHF (144-162MHz), UHF (453-465MHz) and 800MHz. But yeah I love fartin around with this stuff. I'll post a picture once it's done. I kinda have an idea where I want to start so I'm anxious to do it. The wire I can get from the maint. guys at work. I'll try 10guage. Thanks for the help.
 
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n5ims

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xusmarine1979 said:
http://www.hamuniverse.com/ve3vdc2mvertbazooka.html

For recieving, will this work ok on other bands? As in 453-465 and 800MHz... Or should I stick to a dipole?
This should work OK on the other bands, just remember to recalculate the correct lengths (two seperate versions would be needed, one for 453-465 and one for 800 for optimal performance).

Please note that this is an "emergency" antenna, not one for long term use. Water will damage the coax if used for more than a few months. While this can be made to last, the cost would then quickly eliminate any cost savings.
 

N1BHH

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Jackson Square, East Weymouth, MA.
It's a great experimental short term antenna, mainly to test your antenna construction techniques. And get the longest piece of PVC you can get, that way if the antenna doesn't suit you in the future, you can use it again for some other cheap and dirty antenna.
 

xusmarine1979

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Location
Louisville, Ohio
Well I'm back with some pretty good results. As I stated, I wanted to improve 400mhz and 800mhz. I did some more searches in the forums and came accross a thread where someone shortened the off center fed dipole to 13" and 35". So I thought I'd give it a try and let's say I'm very impressed with the 450-460MHz range. I lost a little on VHF(155), but I can still hear every county surrounding us quite well. Anyways, just thought I'd share that.

I used 10guage copper stranded wire attatched to a 6' piece of pvc by some duct tape. I wrapped a layer of electrical tape and then a layer of duct tape. It's fed with some tv coaxial cable I had lying around the house, I cut it down to about 25' and some guys from our I.T. dpt at work put some bnc connectors on and that was pretty much it. As for grounding this, I am not sure what it's called, but I just have the pvc zip tied to the pipe on the roof, I think it's got something to do with the toilet. But what would be the recomended way of grounding a wire dipole? And thanks for reading this.
 
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