Aerials

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toujoursdan

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I recently dug out the Panasonic RF-2200 and RF-3100 I boxed up in the early 1990s and had them cleaned and restored. As noted on other threads much as changed in the world of shortwave since I put the radios away and I'm going through the threads in order to play catch-up.

One thing that has changed for me personally is that I moved from western Canada to New York City. Now I live in a brownstone where space is an issue and don't have an option of stringing out a long wire like I used to. I also suspect that static is far more of an issue here than suburban Calgary.

Would anyone have advice on what kind of aerial would work best in a cramped space? Are active antennae ever a good option, or should I make due with stringing a wire around the baseboards or even out the window?

(Are will still near solar minimum?)

Many thanks in advance for feedback.
 

ka3jjz

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No, we're slowly climbing out - not quickly but solar activity has been a good bit higher than in previous years

Not only are you going to have issues with noise, you will have additional issues with the sheer RF density in NYC. I can't think of an area more HF unfriendly, depending on where you are in that area. Neither radio is set up for a coax input, and worse, both have plastic cases that let in any noise or other signal, no matter how well shielded your antenna would be. I can almost guarantee you will have some MW or FM showing up in the HF bands (the 2200 was very famous for cross-talk issues across the bandswitch which caused this very problem; I had a 2200 for many years...).

Probably your best bet would be an active loop - one that has some, but not too much, gain. The Kaito KA33 is one example, as shown here...

Kaito KA33 Active Loop Antenna KA-33

The advantage here is that this comes with a clip lead that allows you to clip the output right onto the whip. Be VERY careful - if you happen to hit a little static charge when you touch the whip, you run the risk of blowing a small amplifier that's usually connected to the base. Trying to replace that would likely be very difficult, seeing that those radios are rather old.

It's inexpensive, the loop has some selectivity since you have to tune it, which should help somewhat with images. Take care with the gain - not too much, unless you're having trouble hearing something. Both radios are pretty sensitive as it is - too much gain, and you'll overload them.

best regards..Mike
 

ka3jjz

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I'm unsure if it would work well, frankly - the gain might be a bit too high, and there's no coax input, so you would need to pigtail the connections. Not the best way to go, frankly. Remember these are very old radios...best regards..Mike
 
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