Antenna's and accessories, oh my!

Started by Genken, September 06, 2012, 01:27:24 am

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White Tiger

HF antenna = no more mowing?

If you're looking for me, you're probably looking in the wrong place.



Congrats on your plans. I would steer away from the Diamond - especially for any man-portable use. That antenna requires grounding and is going to be a bear to use without that. You have some extremely ambitious plans: What you propose can be done, but I think you need to do some more reading and research before choosing any antennas. For man-portable, one of the good resources I have found is here:

The 857D is an excellent choice. The 817ND is better for packing, but is a true QRP rig so you don't have the power you might need for the shack or vehicle. You will have to run the 857 at the lowest rf output power (5 watts) and even then, it is rather demanding of any power system (don't ask me how I know this). Speaking of rigs, if money is not a problem, check out the Elecraft KX3 here:

Good luck.


cockpitbob: While that is a great option while camping(and I will definitely consider that one for pre-shtf use, or even at a secure location, when you gotta bug out on foot(or even perimeter patrols), I would be leery about starting a fire to begin with. But they definitely look good.

KC9TNH: Yes, this radio definitely eats power in my car. I'm still working trying to learn it. I considered getting the 817, but again, I wanted to get something that had alot of versatility, which of course means just as much compromise. And yes, 100 lbs is 100 lbs, whether it's gold or feathers. I learned that all too well during my first deployment. I will definitely be looking through that link a bit more. Reading it last night on my phone during a smoke break got me interested. I will definitely have to pick their brains. The problem with simple wire antenna's, is that being in the desert of West Texas(and subsequently, current BOL is also similar terrain), that there is nothing natural to put stuff up with. However, I am about 85%-90% complete on a 9 foot take-down PVC mast. Once I'm complete and got some testing done on it, I will put something more in depth up here for everyone. I should have taken pictures during construction, but it's easy enough to tear down and put up, it will be easy to explain what I did. I think the duplexer will go the way of the dodo when I get back from this upcoming deployment(which, btw, couldn't have been scheduled for a worse time). I mainly got the duplexer to allow me to use only one antenna, because even with all the explaining, I was unable to justify the need for more than 1 antenna with the wifey. As far as a ground, I have a nice ground rod one of the generator crews left that I pulled up. It's nice and solid.

AE5J: I actually had an eyeball QSO with a guy here that goes backpacking with HF rigs. He's already on his 3rd Gen setup, and I was picking his brain for a good half hour or so before I had to go. Definitely going to get more info from him as well. But I have seen before, and it's a good site. Pretty interesting. As far as the Diamond, I think I will keep it for field base station use. Yeah, I would definitely grab an 817ND if money wasn't an issue, and I've heard great things about the Elecraft's. But, money is of course, one of the big things. And yes, the 857D is a hungry hungry hippo of a rig.