[TenTec] [Ten Tec] OCF Antennas - Which commercial antenna is gest?

k8mp at aol.com k8mp at aol.com
Wed Sep 23 06:21:21 EDT 2015

Great stuff Rick. I am officially anointing you as the Go-to Guy on Windoms and their history. 
Maybe you can explain why an ocf antenna I once had worked on 160. I called it "My accidental 160 meter antenna." 
It was a full wave on 40, (i.e. 130 ft) and fed with coax, 1/4 wave in from one end. I intended to use it only on 40 but I discovered it was resonant on 160 also.
Any idea why it worked? Or was it just pure luck?
Thanks, Joe, K8MP

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-----Original Message-----
From: Rick - DJ0IP / NJ0IP <Rick at DJ0IP.de>
To: 'Barry LaZar' <k3ndm at comcast.net>; 'Discussion of Ten-Tec Equipment' <tentec at contesting.com>
Sent: Wed, Sep 23, 2015 03:55 AM
Subject: Re: [TenTec] [Ten Tec] OCF Antennas - Which commercial antenna is gest?

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<pre style="font-size: 9pt;"><tt>Good Morning Gang,

Indeed there is some historical perspective

...1.  Loren Windom did not invent the Windom
...2.  The Windom was
NOT designed to be a multi-band antenna
...3.  It definitely NEVER was fed at
the 1/3 point

Everything Barry write below that I agree with.

Guys, there
is no need to guess at this stuff.
MOST of it was written up in QST and ALL of
it is online in the ARRL
archives to read.
I will list some of them at the
bottom of this email.

...1.  The Windom, named after Loren Windom, was the
result of a two part
studies/paper as a project in order to obtain a college
degree (from Ohio
State University).  

Part 1: was led by John Byrne
(W)8DKZ, together with Ed Brooke (W)8DEM -

Part 2: was led by John
Byrne, together with A. Crawford (was also a ham but
I can't find/remember his
call sign) - 1927/28

There was actually a Part 3: where Byrne turned the
project over to John
Ryder W8DQZ. I could not find any information on what
Ryder did.  

The (assistant) Professor overseeing the project was William
Loren Windom (W)8GZ was best friends with John Byrne and together they
one of the hottest ham radio stations at the time. It was on the air as
(later W8GZ) running 250w, which at the time was considered as a
Kilowatt" is today.

The projects goal was to find a better way
to feed a Herz antenna.
You see, these guys were having similar problems we
"enjoy":  RF in the
Shack and feedline radiation.

Loren Windom and others
felt they could find a sweet spot to [single wire]
feed the Herz where the
feedline would not radiate. Windom failed to find
this point, but later Byrne
and Co. found it.

Windom himself had been working on this a few years earlier
and gained fame
from his own research work.  You can read details of his
research and
(flawed) results in a July 1926 QST article written by Robert
Kruse, the QST
Technical Editor at the time.  The article, entitled "Feeding
begins on page 8 and Windom's work is described on page 11.

professional paper on this research work was published in the IRE in
October of
1929, one month after Windom's QST article.  The IRE article had
been submitted
first but took longer to get published.  That's why many
people think Windom
was the creator, when indeed he begins his paper by
clearly stating that it is
not his work but rather the work of John and
others (listing them
Everitt's name also appeared on the IRE paper, listed first as it
tradition to list the Professor's name on papers written by students.  As
result, many people credit Everitt as being the true inventor of the

To be fair, IMO they all as a team are the joint inventors.  Windom
(a law
student and later lawyer) and Everitt were out in the field assisting
lunch breaks and evenings.  

HERZ ANTENNA" (on its fundamental
frequency) was the goal of the Windom. There
was no attempt to find a
harmonic antenna.  
A radiation-free feed point was
indeed found, but not by Windom.  The
antenna was named after Lorem by a twist
of luck.  

A Windom (antenna) was a very special, very narrow-banded
However without Internet and few people having telephones in the
information was spread by other means - mostly on the air in the
community.  The original concept was not understood and that part of
story was dropped.  

People begin building this antenna (as described in
an article Loren wrote
on page 19 of the September 1929 QST) and then began
"improving" it.  

They tried it on harmonic bands.  It worked. Worked?  Yes
they made QSOs but
it wasn't working as a Windom, it was working as something
in between a "T"
and "Inv.-L" antenna, as described in detail by John Nagle,
K4KJ  in the May
issue of HR.  I won't elaborate here. You can read the article
if you want
to know more.

I personally built this harmonic version in 1963,
right after moving from
Germany to Oklahoma.  I was the new kid on the block
and didn't know
anybody.  Within one week of erecting my "Windom", I had met
all of my
neighbors!  (hi)
Yes, I too called it a Windom, even though it was
not the original as Byrne
and Co. had defined.

...3.  As I stated in an
earlier email, a feedpoint was found but not at the
1/3 mark.  It was found to
be in a formula with a coefficient with respect
to the diameter of the wire. 
The coefficient was defined for two wire sizes
as the feed point position "D",
in terms of feet from one end of the aerial.
It was defined as (Length of
Aerial in ft.) x (Coefficient) / 180.

For #14 wire, the coefficient was
defined as "25".
For #24 wire, the coefficient was defined as "30".
The wire
itself was a one half wavelength Hertz.
As you see, there was no mention of
"1/3" anywhere in the Windom paper or
the professional IRE paper.

On a side
note, Harmonic Resonance was found to be 2.07 x Fundamental.
So a Herz cut for
3.500 MHz would be resonant on 7.245 MHz. 
Higher harmonics were resonant
outside of the band.
Using the antenna that far off resonance resulted in
strong feedline
This was exactly the thing the Windom concept was
trying to eliminate.
So any contention that a Windom antenna is a harmonic
antenna is false.

However, the beast that hundreds of hams were using as a
harmonic antenna in
the 1930s was being called a Windom, when indeed, according
to K4KJ (see
article) was in reality just a bent longwire.

As we all know, a
longwire antenna can be used on harmonic bands.  It also
needs radials or a
counterpoise; the coax-fed OCFD does not.  These are two
entirely different

Over the years the saga has been modified and few people have any
idea what
these pioneers actually did with the minimalistic means they had to
with.  I found it fascinating researching this topic and for those of
who are also interested, here is a list of interesting reading:

..> "The
Hertz Antenna at 20 and 40 Meters" by Howard Williams, (W)9BXQ -
QST, July,
1925 p.24.

..> "Feeding the Antenna" by Robert Kruse - QST, July, 1926

..> (Original Windom Paper) "Notes on Ethereal Adornments", by Loren
(W)8GZ - QST, September, 1929 p.19

..> "The Windom", by Drayton
Cooper, W4WXY - 73 Magazine, July, 1962 p.34

..> "Further on;  The Windom" by
W3AFM   - 73 Magazine, August, 1963 p.76
NOTE:  At the bottom of that document
you will find a list of 13 related
articles from various sources, dating back
to the late 20's and up to 1962.

..> "Windom Antennas" by John Nagle, K4KJ -
ham radio magazine, May, 1978 p.


73 - Rick, DJ0IP
Frankfurt am Main)

-----Original Message-----
From: TenTec
[<a href="mailto:tentec-bounces at contesting.com?">mailto:tentec-bounces at contesting.com</a>] On Behalf Of Barry LaZar
Wednesday, September 23, 2015 1:04 AM
To: <a href="mailto:tentec at contesting.com">tentec at contesting.com</a>;
<a href="mailto:Rick at DJ0IP.de">Rick at DJ0IP.de</a>
Subject: Re: [TenTec] [Ten Tec] OCF Antennas - Which commercial
antenna is

I think there is some historical perspective that is
missing in some our
discussions. First open wire was used in the early days of
radio as there
wasn't much else around. You could run a wire from your antenna
directly to
your transmitter's output, but there were really few other ways to
go. Coax
came into being somewhere around 1940, and this can be disputed, for
purpose of running a transmission line through a ship's steel bulked. 
50 Ohm number came about because that is what resulted from the material
hand, or you can supply another

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