Topband: Beverage Below Power Lines

by way of Bill Tippett <> topband-bounces at
Sat Feb 24 08:16:45 EST 2007

From: "Chet Moore" <ChetMoore at>
Subject: Re: Topband: Beverage Below Power Lines
Date: Sat, 24 Feb 2007 01:07:22 -0500


I am extremely rx antenna challenged on 160.  I live on a small 
residential lot surrounded by houses on all sides.  My antenna is 
about as far from the ideal beverage described in ON4UN's book as you 
can get. When I asked AA1K what antenna I should try to improve my rx 
situation his recommendation was that I put a for sale sign in my 
front yard.  Right now anyway, moving is not an option.

I run a BOG (beverage on ground).  It goes 120 feet at 3 feet off the 
ground.  drops to the ground where it crosses the street (yes cars 
drive over it)  and at this point it is on the ground 30 feet 
directly below the phone, cable and power lines. It stays on the 
ground for the 20 feet it lays on the ground going across the 
road.  Slopes up from the gutter for 70 feet to a 3 foot privot hedge 
and runs parallel but about 2 feet from a chain link fence for  the 
remaining 70 feet.  It hears Europe when I can not hear Europe on my 
inverted L at 70 feet.
It is Much quieter than the L.  I ran this same antenna down the 
street to the south laying in the cement gutter to work the HK0, the 
HR2, CE1/w7 and the VP8.  It runs the whole 300 feet to the south 
laying in the gutter along side of the road held down with rolled up 
newspapers so that people walking their dog or backing out of their 
driveway will not hit or trip on the wire. When run to the south it 
is directly under the power lines for 240 feet of its 300 feet.

Unfortunately, I can not leave this antenna out full  time.

This antenna is a temporary antenna which I roll out after dark 
around 6 PM in the evening and roll back up at around 0200 local time 
before I go to bed.  It is 300 feet long and terminated at the far 
end.  I Feed it with RG-6. I roll it up on an electrical cord roll up 
reel.  I could not hear either the HK0 HR2 or the VP8 on any other 
antenna.  300 feet was chosen as the length because that is as far as 
I could go across the street before running into a 6 foot privacy 
fence.  When running this south, it crosses at least 3 other 
driveways while laying in the gutter.  The wire is #20 insulated wire 
(black)  which makes it almost invisible in the dark when crossing 
the street or laying in the gutter.  In the ARRL cw test I worked 44 
countries.  Total cost of this antenna was about $18 dollars, two 
years ago before copper prices doubled.  I think i saw this same 
insulated wire for  $28  for a 500 foot rool at home depot a couple 
of weeks ago.

The first two times I tried this antenna, I could not hear EU and 
thought there was some sort of problem.   Same antenna the 3rd night 
I heard 10 or 12 europeans.  I watch the packet, if I see several 
spots, then I roll out the antenna.   If you try it, give it a couple 
of nights before you give up on it.

This antenna runs out at 10 degrees north of  East.  I was able to 
work the HB0, 5A, TZ ,and  XT2 dx peditions.  I do have a 2M preamp 
on it.  It does not hear anywhere  near as well as the 640 foot 
beverages we have at W3PP. EU Signals that I hear at s3 or 4, I can 
hear over the telephone  at  S 7 or 8  in  the speaker at W3PP. S3 -4 
is much better than not hearing them at all.

The price is right, the labor is minimal.  The worst that can happen 
is that it doesn't work.  My guess is that it will  be a better 
receive antenna than your vertical 90% of the time.

If you can't get it to work at all,  cut the wire up and add it to 
your vertical as radials. Still a win - win situation.

I tried a "snake" antenna made from 240 feet of RG-8x laying on the 
ground shorted at the far end. It is supposed to be a "quiet rx" 
antenna. and found it did not work at all for me.    I can't put 
this  BOG out in any other than these two directions but to these 
directions it far exceeds the reception on my inverted L.

Putting these out in rain, snow and freezing cold is not 
fun   Rolling this back up around 0200 has on several occasions 
alarmed all the dogs on the street.  I'm still wondering how I will 
explain this activity to a policeman if he spots me rolling up this 
wire at 2 in the morning.

What ever you try will probably work better than what I have but you 
will never know if you don't try it.

Press on regardless


Chet N6ZO.

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