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[TowerTalk] Sommers Antenna

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Subject: [TowerTalk] Sommers Antenna
From: (Donald F. Lynch, Jr.)
Date: Sun, 4 Mar 2001 19:57:04 -0000
Hi Dan-
                I installed the Sommer XP807 here in 1994 on a 55' US Towers
TX-455 crankup and have been delighted with it.  It replaced a Mosley TA-33
which I had used in a previous QTH in Danville, VA - on the same tower.  I
did a lot of research on beams before deciding on this one, and one of the
most useful pieces of info I had was the series of articles (actually a
3-parter) which appeared in The DX Magazine in 1992 and 1993.  I think you
may be able to get Xerox copies of this from Carl N4AA from his archives at
The DX Magazine for a nominal copying charge.  I also talked by phone and in
person with several other owners in various parts of the country, all of
whom were effusive in their praise for the antenna.  In fact, the only
negative feedback I have heard on the antenna is from people who have no
personal experience with the antenna itself.  There is a Sommer website at
                There are actually several models, the largest of which is
the XP807 (26' boom).  The antenna does work broadside on 40 meters, and is
effective, but not, I suspect, as effective as a 2 or 3 element 40-meter
beam at the same height.  It also has a 30 meter element which works OK, but
is the least impressive feature in terms of effectiveness.  Nonetheless, I
am competitive from here on 30 meters, even against many folks I suspect are
running higher than 200 watts on that band.  I do believe Alf has revised
some of the features of the 30 meter add-on, so my 1994-vintage version may
be out of date
                On the high bands (20 and above) the antenna is dynamite.  I
work mostly CW, and mostly chase DX with some contesting, and do some CW
ragchewing with FOC colleagues.  I've been very impressed with the beam's
performance.  I was the only area ham to work the previous Scarborough
(BS9H) expedition, which was the one which put me on the Honor Roll, and I
generally can work just about anyone I can hear.  I am presently at DXCC
331/340 (I worked the 7O1YGF group also, which isn't included here, pending
approval).  I believe Alf's gain figures are conservative.  I have often
beat out other hams who I know have stacks and big-time antenna farms.
                The antenna is big, somewhat heavy (115 lbs) and relatively
expensive (around $1400, with all the band attachments) but is beautifully
designed and engineered.  It has no traps and an innovative boom
arrangement, which keeps its wind profile very small - I have watched it
ride out several major nor'easters and ice storms here with no problem.  We
do not get the heavy ice that those in the northeast and Midwest get, but I
am told by owners from those areas that the beam handles the ice well.  The
original design was for northern Germany, so that stands to reason.
                I had no trouble putting the together and adjusting it - in
fact, I rewrote the manual for Alf Sommer and could make a free copy
available if you were to purchase one of the antennas.  I turn my XP807 with
a Yaesu G-1000SDX rotor - I had to replace this earlier this year after a
lightning strike - but that rotor seems to handle things well, and it was
lightning and not the beam that did it in.  Several of my elements did get
beat up a little during Hurricane Bonnie two summers ago, but I was able to
purchase replacement tubing from Sommer and repair it.  BTW, It worked fine
despite the several bent elements (In fact I had a ham in Africa tell me -
when I said I was getting ready to repair it - "Hey don't do anything; your
signal couldn't be better here!"
                In the City of Virginia Beach, hams are now restricted to
one tower, so big antenna farms on residential lots are out.  For the
individual who can only have one tower and wants an effective multiband
beam, I believe this is the one.  I have been a ham for 42 years this month,
and have a fair amount of experience with a variety of beams, including such
as the TH6, TH7, TH11, KT-34, TA-33 and 34, A3, and the Force Twelve C3 and
C4 beams.  If I had to choose again, I would still buy the Sommer.
                Check out the website, and if I can help with questions,
drop me a note or give me a call.

Vy 73,
Donald F. Lynch, Jr., MD, FACS
Professor of Urology
Professor of Clinical Obstetrics and Gynecology
Eastern Virginia School of Medicine
Norfolk, Virginia 23507
(757) 457-5181
FAX: (757) 627-3211
Don Lynch MD W4ZYT
also: EI2IM, KG4ZK
ARRL - IRTS - Virginia DXCC - PVRC
FOC 1700 - RNARS 4473 - FISTS 3381
Virginia Beach, Virginia 23452

----- Original Message -----
From: dan r goddar goddard <>
To: <>
Sent: Saturday, March 03, 2001 02:56
Subject: [TowerTalk] Sommers Antenna

> Does anyone use the Sommers antennas.  Like xp 804 with 40 meters.
> Thanks fellows.
> Dan
> --
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