Topband: poor antenna, rich score

Steve Ireland
Fri, 11 Feb 2000 07:49:21 +0800

It has been nice to see Ivo 5B4ADA, Kele YU1AO/6 and Rys SP5EWY remarks
about supposedly poor cloud-warming antennas.

My 160m DXCC was worked using an inverted-U dipole for 160m at around 13 -
15m high.  Basically, it was an 80m dipole, with 66' of wire hanging off
each end of it, with the ends drooping/sloping down towards the ground.
One of the first stations I ever worked on 160m in Europe was Rys, SP5EWY,
with his 'poor' antenna.

My longest ever long path QSO on 160m was with the late great Jim Dionne,
K1MEM, who used an inverted vee with the apex around 40 - 50'.  We worked
with two 'poor' antennas!!!

My second ever Caribbean QSO (very hard to work from here - still only
worked three stations in total) was with VP5/WA2VYA, who was running 100W
to a dipole 20 - 30' high, I think.

I worked over 130 DXCC countries before recently replacing the antenna with
an inverted vee at 90'.  The higher inverted vee is a better antenna (and
gives me a longer DX window in terms of time) at sunrise.  I would say that
95% of stations I work on the high inverted vee could be worked on the old
inverted-U.  I kept the old antenna up for several months and compared
them, just to check.

Like Ivo says, just get on the band and 'do it'!  Big verticals and four
squares are great, but you don't have to have them to work DX on 160m.

Vy 73,

Steve, VK6VZ

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