Saturday, March 5, 2011

30 meter WSPR up and running

New 30 meter dipole with MFJ Balun
I was able to purchase two used 30 meter Valor pro am mobile whip antennas (20.00 for both) they will be used for WSPR (also CW) and will be heading up into my already crowed attic antenna farm. I have a bracket that will allow me to configure the antennas as a dipole.  I first have to move my Diamond discone antenna to make room for the new dipole not sure where the discone  it is going to end up. The support for the new dipole will be the same as was made for my 40 meter mobile whip dipole. This time I  adjusted the whips for the lowest SWR while the antenna was on the main floor using my MFJ-259B analyzer. The 40 meter antenna was adjusted in the attic that was
Before the second LMR-400 was added
Finished look with the LMR-400
lots of up and down a ladder and climbing around in the attic. Getting a little  old for that stuff.....and according to Murphy "The more you are up and about in the attic the probability rises to you coming through the ceiling" I have found that coming through the ceiling is not as bad as the explaining it to the XYL........that my friends is another whole blogging subject...... I was able to get the SWR to 1.4 at 10.130. I have lots of  LMR-400 around the house so that will be the feed line the interesting part is getting it fished through the wall and into the attic. Where the LMR-400 comes out the wall I have installed an electrical box. That way I can run the coax into the box and place a cover plate over the box as well. It gives the install a nice clean look and avoids an ugly hole in the wall with the LMR-400 coming through.  This time I am going to play it smart and run an a nylon string so I can pull up another LMR-400 line for the final antenna I feel the last antenna will be the MFJ magnetic loop but that is sometime in the future. At either end of the coax as with all my antennas I insert a 1:1 balun  (1110cu) from Balun designs   or the MFJ-915  balun for feed line isolation. I put the antenna up this Saturday and it went up very easily and the feed line fished through the wall nicely as well. I double checked the SWR once the antenna was placed in the attic and it was still 1.4 I did not have time to get the coax into my LDG antenna switch and try the antenna on the air.

15 comments:

  1. Hi Mike, to have an antenna up in the attic is a good stealth solution, and no wind or weather problems. I wish I had space in the attic. Now my daughter have her room there. 73 Paul

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  2. Mike, I hope the new 30m antenna is going to work well. It would be nice to receive you some day on 30m WSPR. Would it be possible? 73, Bas

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  3. Good morning Paul, the attic has it advantages and disadvantages. The main advantage is the antenna is out of the weather. That is a big plus in the winter months if you want to do some adjustments or changes. The main down fall is the type of antenna you can use is limited for sure.

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  4. Good morning Bas, I will be giving the antenna a go today. I did not have time yesterday by the time it was installed in the attic it was time to do some house cleaning. Then it was movie night with the family after that. So Sunday afternoon will be my chance to give 30 WSPR a go. I have made it into Europe on 20m WSPR without any troubles so I hope that will hold the same for 30m.

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  5. Hi Mike, I'll be WSPRing tonight. Hope to catch your signal. Nothing is impossible. 73, Bas

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  6. Mike, just did a database query with your call. See you were spotted by PD7R here in the Netherlands. Strange thing it seems you don't receive anything?
    Result of QRM by the powerlines?? 73, Bas

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  7. Hello Bas, some strange things going on at this end the SWR seems to be up around 2.4 for some reason after it was at 1.4. Also it was funny to read that I was spotted by PD7R as I am not showing any spots here at this end. Yes you are correct as well I am not receiving anything either. I have set up the MFJ-1026 but still nothing. I tried 20 meters and it was good with both spot and receiving. I am now trying 40 meters to see how that looks.

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  8. Hello Mike, it's a pity I didn't copy you. Although it would be possible I think. I can try 40m/20m. I'll see on the activity list were you are. The past night nothing special received or transmitted on 30m. VK6XT immidiatly reported me after my first transmission with 1W yesterday evening. I also spotted him. I did see VE3BDR as only one from Canada. 73, Bas

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  9. Good morning Bas, some strange things going on with 30 meters out this way. I am getting some strange SWR readings and just on 30 meters there is some type of QRM I am going to have to look into. I will also be listening for you as well on WSPR.

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  10. Hi Mike, Is the balun required for the 30 meter antenna? John K2JLM

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  11. Good afternoon John, I put a 1:1 balun at each end of the coax to isolate it from possibly radiating a signal.

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  12. Hi Mike, Where did you get the mount that turns the whips into a dipole? John K2JLM

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    1. Hello again John to answer this question I stumbled across them at a local ham radio dealer. If they are up this way I am sure you can find them on your side of the boarder but you could contact the dealer up here and I am sure it can be shipped to you. The dealer is called Durham radio sales and the page link is ( you will have to cut and paste it) http://www.durhamradio.com/portable-antenna-mounts.html It's called the RVD HD dual antenna mount. They don't show who the manufacture is on there page. Let me know if the link works for you or if you have any other questions.
      Mike

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  13. Hi Mike, One more question. Is your shack on the second floor or the ground floor or basement. I live in a 2 story condo as well. I'm thinking the ground floor or basement would be better as I would have a better chance of getting a good earth ground for the station as opposed to being on the second floor, slim to none. I only have one pathway to run coax from the basement to the attic and that's through 2 closets one above the other. It's going to be a challenge as I already have CAT6 UTP running through there for the network. I can run the coax up the opposite wall but I'm only looking at maybe 4ft of separation for that part of the run through the closets. I could try using those 1:1 balums to cut down on interference.

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    1. Good evening John, first off thanks for stopping by the blog and taking the time to comment. So to answer your question my radio room is on the second (top) floor. My earth ground seems to work well I have a number 6 ground cable from the 2nd floor to a 6 foot ground rod. I have a piece of flat copper bare attached to my desk and all my equipment is grounded to that. My coax (LMR 400) does run through my wall and up to the attic. The grounding number 6 wire follows a heating duct to the basement. I do use the 1:1 baluns at each end of the coax. I use baluns from balun designs and they are very well built and the owner is more than willing to help to get you what you need to have. f you have anymore questions please email me direct and I can do my best to help.
      Mike

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