Nicely Done Lee... - Mike
[mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org]On Behalf Of Lee Buller
Sent: Friday, March 30, 2007 12:06 PM
To: TowerTalk Reflector
Subject: Re: [TowerTalk] Radials - What is the big deal?
My, this is a all consuming issue here on tower talk. What kind of wire to
use? Conductive wire. Anything will do that conducts like copper. I would
not put down nichrome wire...but I would use just about anything. There is
no magic here. Use coax if you have it....just use the outer braid... or
short the two conductions together. Use electric fence wire. Use
steel...watch out for rust...and it will rust away after awhile. Use
Here is what I am using right now....because it was FREE! Two conductor (18
gauge) garage door opener wire. You know, the wire that goes from the
button by the door to the opening unit. The stuff that is wired to the
sensors. They give about 200 feet in each opener kit. The garage installer
has gobs of the stuff laying around. I bet I have 15 rolls of the stuff. I
just twist the ends together and solder them with a gun. Down on the ground
they go. And yes, they work OK...I radiate...the MFJ 269 says everything is
good to go...and I make gobs of contacts with it. I don't bury it...I don't
strip it....I just lay it in the grass and use home made (cheap) lawn
staples about every 5 feet.
For radials....use conductive wire. Use as many as you can....32 seems to
be the magic number but also I've heard 50 or 60 as well. If you cannot get
a quarter wave each on the ground....do what you can....cut it off at the
Bond them together with just about anything. Remember, you will have to
pull maintenance on antennas anyway....so revisit this often throughout the
year. When metals are out in the elements...something is bound to corrode.
Use anything conductive.... wire, pipe, railroad track, I-Beam ir H-Beam.
What ever you got that is handy or cheap. I would not use chain link
fence or chicken wire. The connections are good enough between the links in
my opinion and dirt can cause problems in the radial.
Remember, HR is not rocket science....do what works for you...what you can
get away with...what you can afford...and remember not everyone has a super
station or the dollars the installations is done perfectly. The idea is to
radiate enough to work someone.
Lee - K0WA
In our day and age it seems that Common Sense is in short supply. If you
don't have any Common Sense - get some Common Sense and use it. If you
can't find any Common Sense, ask for help from somebody who has some Common
Sense. Is Common Sense devine?
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