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Re: [TowerTalk] Cleaning inside tubing

To: Kelly Jones <>
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Cleaning inside tubing
From: Don Havlicek <>
Date: Mon, 02 Jan 2006 17:53:48 -0500
List-post: <>
Purchase a long, round file that you can mount in a hand-held 
drill/driver.  Use it gently to remove the crud.
Then .. use NoAlOx or some other anti-oxidant between the element pieces.
Good Luck

Kelly Jones wrote:
> Hi TTers,
> I have a Cushcraft XM240 that I think has developed an intermittent loose 
> connection.  I bought this antenna used and put it up this past fall.  What 
> I noticed is that the person that owned it before me must have used some 
> type of "goop" inside the element tubings.  The only thing I can assume is 
> that it was some type of stuff to keep the tubing joints in good contact 
> with each other.  On the joints I took apart, I completely cleaned the 
> outside of each smaller tube as it slid into the other.  However, I had a 
> difficult time cleaning the inside of the larger tube that the smaller slid 
> into.  This was some really nasty stuff and took a boat load of elbow 
> grease and sandpaper (yes, sandpaper) to get the elements cleaned up.  This 
> stuff was really sticky and had all kinds of crud that have accumulated 
> over time.  The stickiness is what caused me the most problem with getting 
> inside the tubes.  Steel wool, fine grit sandpaper, etc. all would just go 
> in and stick, probably causing more bad than good.
> Well, needless to say I think some of that junk is now causing me 
> problems.  I seem to have an intermittent where my SWR will go high, then 
> back to normal, then high, etc.  I'm suspecting that there is an element 
> that has a piece of tubing that's not making good contact at one of the 
> joints.  So my question is, does anybody have a way to clean out the 
> insides of the tubing sections.  I'm obviously going to have to take the 
> antenna down to fix it (in the middle of the Colorado winter!) and I want 
> to be sure I don't have to do this again.
> Also, I seem to recall some talk flying around with regards grounding the 
> reflector to the boom with a strap.  Can somebody point out the reason for 
> this?  And finally, what's the consensus of using an MFJ86 (or whatever the 
> number is) balun versus a coax wound balun?  I have an older W2AU (I think) 
> balun that I'm toying with replacing the MFJ with, but am now thinking 
> about just making a coax one.  Thoughts on this?
> 73
> Kelly - N0VD
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