Longwire antenna suggestions

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hawkeye32

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So been browsing on ebay, and thinking of getting these dipoles, my question is i am just going to be receving only not transmitting. My receiver i have is a ICOM R71A, which also has a universal M-900 decoder hooked up to it, my question is , is it necassary to have a tuner? this is what i would like to get, but before i do i would like recommendations and feedback before i buy. My location is in windsor ontario canada, and mainly want to listen to Utlitity stuff ( MilAir, Aero, coast guard etc..)

SUPER LONGWIRE& 9:1 BALUN, 80' ALL BAND ANTENNA - eBay (item 180496528103 end time Apr-26-10 20:23:06 PDT)

G5RV "DOUBLE" Antenna For Ham Radio "ALL HF BANDS" - eBay (item 140346366630 end time May-13-10 18:40:17 PDT)
 

ka3jjz

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Either one should serve your needs, and I doubt either will need a tuner for receiving applications. The first one is likely to be better (it looks more like a 4:1 balun that is commonly used in ham apps, but you can never tell with eBay...) if you are in a noisy environment. Remember to properly ground the balun (if it has a slug for it) for best results. A good RF ground is not easy to come by - there's lots that has been written on the subject...

Be sure to waterproof the coax at the jack where it attaches to the balun. Coax Seal or a double wrapping of electrical tape with a silicone sealant will keep the water out. Coax can easily suck in the moisture ...

73 Mike
 
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kb2vxa

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$66.95 for an un-un* and 45' of wire??? I was going to say you've got to be kidding, then I noticed Grove is the seller famous for their Barnum philosophy. $49.19 on e-Pay is a little better but not by much. A G5RV antenna is a dipole meaning it has coax hanging from the middle and for $82 the jerk can go and hang himself with it! Get with the program people, you can BUILD any of these antennas for only a few bucks, it's not rocket science, it's a hank of wire. <groan>

* I don't know why they insist on calling it a "balun" when that device is a horse of a different color entirely.
 

k9rzz

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For listening you don't need the G5RV, go with the wire and un-un.

For those of you who think that making antennas is 'cheap', try pricing out parts. Cost's have gone WAY UP lately if you want to build something that's going to last. Sure, you can pull wire out of an old vacuum cleaner motor and use milk cartons for insulators, but try to duplicate what folks are selling on ebay and you'll be surprised.

(Shameless plug - I'm working on my own site for selling antennas. Ebay costs have also shot WAY UP, so I'll be flying my own flag soon)
 

RadioDaze

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I like this idea, but do you know a place that sells these that accepts paypal? tried searching on ebay but can't find one
Try the source:
EF-SWL Antenna | PAR Electronics | Filters for the commercial 2 way market, MATV, FM broadcast, laboratory, marine industry, amateur radio, scanner and short wave listening enthusiasts

I didn't buy from them direct because they have a production cycle that would have made me wait a few months. Grove had it in stock. But that was a month ago so maybe you could get the next production run. Maybe they'll take P'Pal.

I chose to buy off-the-rack instead of build partly for k9rzz's points, and the "time is money" concept as well. I am not averse to building antennas, and already have a few in process.
 

CLynch7

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I've got to agree with Warren, build your own! As for wire, ask around at construction sites, car audio places, or other places that sell wire if they have any remnants they'll let go for cheap or free. These places usually will have pieces that are too short for their needs. Cut insulators out of plastic milk jugs. Good tv coax can usually be used in recieve applications. Plus, you will have built something yourself.
 

hawkeye32

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I've got to agree with Warren, build your own! As for wire, ask around at construction sites, car audio places, or other places that sell wire if they have any remnants they'll let go for cheap or free. These places usually will have pieces that are too short for their needs. Cut insulators out of plastic milk jugs. Good tv coax can usually be used in recieve applications. Plus, you will have built something yourself.
Thanks for the info. I have already built a antenna myself with the help of someone else. Just a standard long wire with insulators, just want to improve reception. I know proporgation has alot to do with it. But i did buy this:

SUPER SLOPER ALL BAND ANTENNA, HEAR THE WEAK ONES! - eBay (item 180497738860 end time Apr-27-10 07:20:49 PDT)

I'll see how this new antenna performs, and post back with results as soon as i receive it. I appreciate all who have responded and guided me.
 

Fast1eddie

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Yeah, string up something that looks like cr**p in your yard that looks ghetto...good way to make points with the neighbors.

Can see it now-100 foot wire with milk cartons and spliced audio cabling remants, just waiting for the first strong wind to blow it down.

Geez.
 

hawkeye32

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Yeah, string up something that looks like cr**p in your yard that looks ghetto...good way to make points with the neighbors.

Can see it now-100 foot wire with milk cartons and spliced audio cabling remants, just waiting for the first strong wind to blow it down.

Geez.
True yes, plus no room for 100 foot wire anyways, maybe 50 feet thats pushing it. With this sloper hopefully it will go good, way i look at it, It will either be a good 60.00 investment, or a waste of 60.00. Either way if its bad at least it wasn't a expensive mistake.
 

raisindot

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I STRONGLY recommend this longwire if you can afford it:

PAR High-Performance Shortwave Antenna

I'm getting a noise floor as low as zero with it.
I've got the PAR as well. Maybe it is pricey, but I'm not an antenna builder and I like the convenience of having the transformer inside a box and all the connectors (particularly the grounding connectors) easily accessible.

That said, I never get a 'noise floor' (if by that you mean the level of noise between strong stations or 'interfering' with weaker stations) anywhere near zero. I never compared using the PAR with using a longwire without it, but after having the PAR mounted outside my basement window and thinking that electrical noise was causing problems, I've just moved the thing about 50 feet away from the house, burying LMR 400 cable. This improved reception considerably, but didn't wipe away the noise. So, on the advice of someone, I installed a ground block near the house and now have the antenna and coax grounded at the PAR with one ground rod and the ground block grounded to another ground rod where the coax comes into the house. I'm still not noticing anything near a "zero noise" floor, although I will say that that 'good' signals sound much clearer than before. Maybe that's the best I can get with this setup.

Jeff
 

RadioDaze

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By "noise" I was referring to the background hash/static present when no station is transmitting. By "zero" I didn't mean "none" literally, but simply an amount of noise that reached less than 1 on the S-meter. Different bands, at different times of the day, may have higher noise levels, but usually no more than S3. With a simple random wire, I'd have background noise levels averaging S7.

By experimenting with which grounding screw I use, I was able to get a higher signal level on transmissions, but with higher noise. The lower noise level choice makes it essentially a pleasure to listen to stations even with a lower signal level. I am unable to place my longwire any further away than immediately adjacent to my condo. In fact, I actually removed the supplied wire, and use a 15-foot, 16-gauge wire to connected to a horizontal rain gutter that runs about 30 feet. That is as close as I can get to stretching anything out. I have the coax-side ground screw on the PAR connected to a cold water pipe with about a foot and a half of 16-gauge. I'm on the 3rd floor, so that's the best I can do for the ground. If I connect to the wire-side ground on the PAR, or both with the jumper, that's when I get the higher signal along with more noise.

It would have cost me more in time than I spent on the EF-SWL if I tried to build this setup, by the time I chased down the parts and pieces that I don't have on hand already.
 

raisindot

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.

It would have cost me more in time than I spent on the EF-SWL if I tried to build this setup, by the time I chased down the parts and pieces that I don't have on hand already.
Oh, I've already spent WAYYYYYYY more than the EF-SWL on new cables, connectors, ground rods and grounding clamps. It's its own little money pit right there. Next thing I'm going to try are ferrite donuts on my coax and power cables. I'm gonna lower that $^#&*@ noise floor or else!

Jeff
 

hawkeye32

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well here ina couple days should have that sloper, and i'll post back the results, hopefully they are good
 
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