[TowerTalk] ground wire thoughts

Jeff Blaine KeepWalking188 at ac0c.com
Thu Dec 24 17:58:26 EST 2020

I guess I'm missing what's the "very bad idea" part of this.  We are 
talking RF here, not lightning.  Right?  Antenna in the middle of this 
field, right?

If I'm following the explanation, the guy is planning on laying out a 
wire that runs from one corner of the plot to another corner, then the 
other way, making a big X.  The bonding those wires at the center of 
that X with a ground rod connecting it all together, and serving as the 
antenna ground point.  And then later, maybe adding a "+" shaped overlay 
of the same.

So he starts out with 4 radials initially, and then 8 later.  If he's 
coming from 0 radials, then that seems like solid steps in the right 


On 12/24/20 4:21 PM, w5jmw at towerfarm.net wrote:
> Jim,what about the crossing of the radials.Isn't doing that not 
> recommended?Right now I can do either.I am confined to such a pattern 
> due to me antenna placement.I have a overhead power run alomg my east 
> fence and a metel fence along my west.I have already attached to both 
> as a ground.really more of a lightning dispersal path.I might point 
> out that I do have pretty good soil.I have very dense clay in certain 
> at abt 3-4 foot.It does stop water sippage to a point.Also we have an 
> aerobic septic system which the spray nozzles are located in thi same 
> pasture...thank you,john
> On 2020-12-24 13:52, Jim Brown wrote:
>> On 12/24/2020 1:56 AM, w5jmw at towerfarm.net wrote:
>>> What I am wanting to do ie to run radials from corner to corner.That 
>>> is to say from ne to sw and from nw to south east.Initially run 
>>> these then go from side to side.The radials will be jouned in the 
>>> middla by a split bolt to a ground rod....I plan on using the radial 
>>> for all the antennas if possible.My question...First Can I do this ?
>> The short answer is that this is a very bad idea. The earth is a big
>> resistor, and if the antenna sees it, it burns a lot of the
>> transmitter power. Radials or a counterpoise provide a low resistance
>> return path for the antenna current; radials, in addition, shield the
>> antenna's field from the lossy earth.
>> An antenna's field surrounds it on all sides, and for radials to be
>> effective, they must extend out from the base, and be connected to the
>> coax shield. An earth connection (ground rod) does NOT make a transmit
>> antenna work better unless it's to an expanse of salt water.
>> Radial systems work best if they are symmetrical and dense, but if
>> available real estate and antenna locations prevent that, the best
>> layout for on-ground radials is to run as many as you can in as many
>> directions as you can. There is no need for on-ground radials to be of
>> equal length. There are many practical ideas about this in a tutorial
>> talk I've done at ham conventions and club meetings. Slides are here.
>> No original work by me, but a collection of great work by others.
>> http://k9yc.com/160MPacificon.pdf
>> 73, Jim K9YC
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