Homebrew LEO Satellite Antenna

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bReed11091

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Nov 26, 2005
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Battle Creek, MI
I'm working on building some yagi antennas based on the AMSAT instructions, but I'm having trouble finding something to use for the elements. Radio Shack doesn't sell aluminum ground wire anymore and finding it locally has been somewhat difficult. Before I go any further, I want to get some input. This is what I've considered:

Used/bent aluminum arrow shafts
Brass welding rod
Solid #10 AWG copper wire (or lower gauge if I can find it locally)
Stainless steel whip

Any suggestions?
 

James04TJ

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Aug 22, 2004
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I was able to find both aluminum rod and aluminum tube a few years ago at either Home Depot or Lowes.
 

bReed11091

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Nov 26, 2005
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Location
Battle Creek, MI
The sites are really helpful, I didn't come across those in my searches. The material that I use for the elements depends on what is cheaper at the store. I've seen a lot of designs, so I might just take what I like from each and build the antenna how I want it.

Home Depot and Lowes are about the only places I haven't checked. I went to Menards and since they didn't have 1/8 aluminum rod I didn't check the other places.

Thanks for the ideas
 

bReed11091

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Messages
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Location
Battle Creek, MI
Update

Ok, so here is what I have decided to do.

I bought some 1/8" and 5/32" diameter aluminum tubes and used those for the elements. In order to get the right length, I used the 5/32" tubes as "sleeves" and stuck the 1/8" tubes inside. Since I had a bunch of left over connectors from a barrier strip I bought at radio shack (274-677), I just took those and used them to hold the sleeves in place.

For the driven elements, I bought some #10 AWG solid copper wire and slid them in some remaining 5/32" aluminum tubes. I originally was going to only use the tubes to straighten the wire, but I figured it would work better if I just left the tubes there so I could easily straighten it out if the wire somehow got bent. I need to buy a few more tubes since I didn't have enough.

Pics are below, let me know what you think.

Edit: Parts list as of today is below.

1/8" diameter, .014" thick aluminum tubes (SKU 276898)- DoIt Best Hardware
5/32" diameter, .014" thick aluminum tubes (SKU 276901) - DoIt Best Hardware
#10 AWG solid copper wire - Aco Hardware
12-Position Barrier Strip (274-677) - Radio Shack
Male SMA to female BNC adapter - ARGYL Hamfest in Lowell, MI
BNC patch cable - ARGYL Hamfest in Lowell, MI

General set of instructions you can use to assemble the antenna can be found on the AMSAT website (http://www.amsat.org/amsat-new/information/faqs/crow/).

I'll post the total amount of each part you will need when I am closer to the end of the project. Another thing to note is that you can probably find these parts at other hardware stores, and every store sells these parts differently. DoIt Best online and in-store quantities and prices are different, and you can read about that at the links I provided to their products.
 

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