[Antennaware] Help! Which One

K9AY k9ay at k9ay.com
Wed Sep 23 07:33:00 PDT 2009

> I also have a 65 foot vertical made from 3/4 inch copper water pipe at 
> ground level. It has no radials, only a ground rod, and it well...sucks, I 
> hardly ever use it unless I don't want to make a contact. I do think 
> though that if I invested the time into putting a number of radials down, 
> the vertical would begin to work better. I highly doubt though that it 
> will ever outperform the zepp antennas.
Paul (KG7HF)

Radials for verticals make all the difference in the world, just like height 
does for horizontal antennas. Before writing off verticals, note one of my 

In 1985 after moving to Colorado, the first antenna installed was a 40M 
rotatable dipole, but only at about 35-40 feet. It was dead ... like Paul's 
vertical with no radials. Radiating straight up is no better than putting 
power into lossy ground.

I re-arranged the antenna as a classic ground plane with a 1/4-wave vertical 
section starting at 25 feet and three sloping radials. This was a fine 
one-element antenna. Later, I added a second ground plane spaced about 165 
deg. with five phasing settings. For DX, the array was only slightly behind 
other local hams with 2 element beams at 70 feet.

I might note that the array was designed with the help of MININEC on an 
early Compaq PC -- 4.77 MHz CPU clock, and one of the floppy disks upgraded 
to a 5 MB hard drive!

73, Gary

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