Topband: New 4-square

Ron Feutz feutz at
Wed Jul 16 15:23:58 EDT 2003


I recently moved to a new QTH and plan to build a new 4-square.

My antenna field is 175' wide X 500' long, and is heavily wooded.  An 
asphalt driveway runs roughly down the middle of the antenna field.
The long lot lines run directly N/S.  A traditional 1/4 wave per side 4-sq, 
with the sides parallel to the lot lines, would be properly oriented NE, 
SW, etc.  There would be 2 elements on either side of the driveway with 
short radials towards the sides and middle of the lot (E-W) and longer ones 
towards the ends (N-S).  Because of the compromise radial system I would 
want to connect the 4 elements' radial systems together.


1.  My ground system and phasing lines will have to cross the driveway.  I 
can do one of the following:  Run buss wires along both sides of the 
driveway and connect the radials to the buss wires and then either go up 
and over the driveway (about 8' or so) to connect the systems together with 
a relatively few wires, or bore under the driveway ( I don't know how this 
is done or how much it would cost) to connect the systems together.  Would 
the up and over method cause any performance problems or pattern 
disruptions?  It would be easy, as there are plenty of trees available for 
supports (the driveway is only 8' wide).

2.  For the phasing lines, the same considerations apply.  I would probably 
have to use 3/4^ lines if I go up and over.  Any considerations I should 
know about?  Would I need chokes on the lines if that small section were to 
be elevated?

3.  I currently have the Comtek box and am satisfied with it.  The Array 
Solutions box claims a bit more gain, 6db more F/B and no dump power (I 
got  5-10% dump with the Comtek on my old system at resonance).  It seems 
to me that for TX'ing, the slight improvement isn't worth the high price of 
the A/S unit.  The added 6 db F/B may be worth it, as the antenna will also 
be my primary RX antenna and if I truly will get the extra F/B I would 
probably spend the $.  Opinions?

4.  I will also be building an 80M 4-sq.  If I put it inside the 160 array 
to take advantage of a common ground system, I don't think it will affect 
the pattern on 160.  Would I have to detune the 160 array somehow to get 
best performance on 80?

BTW, the 160 elements will be 60' masts with skirted guy wire top loading 
and a fat coil at the bottom to get resonance/matching.

Looking forward to the combined wisdom of the best reflector in ham radio.


Ron - WA9IRV

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