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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
I'd like to gather opinions on options for getting on top band if you have a really small garden. I've tried many.. all of them are poor solutions.

The garden is, at it's longest point, merely 45ft long, so you can imagine the problems. I currently run an inverted L from a mast on the chimney, to the end of the garden mentioned above, so taking into account the distance from the centre of the house where the chimney is, in total, that probably gives me 60ft tops. The inverted L actually works well on 40 and 80. It's not great for DX, but then again, I'm not really interested in DX on the lower bands. I just want a solid inter G and Europe signal. However... Loving a good natter online, top band would be great.

I've read all the usual stuff of course, but I'd love to hear from others in a similar situation that have found a workable top band solution. What has worked best for you, and how much space do you have? I'm just getting a bit tired of trying things one after the other only to find it's a rubbish solution. I'm aware that anything I have is going to be a compromise, but if anyone in a similar situation has found a top band solution for reliable inter G working, I'd love to hear your story, and possibly see images of how you've got around the space problem.

Thanks.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:01 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
Sounds like another job for GM0ONX. But you will have to feed the antenna from the base of the 'garden' end, not the 'house' end.

He's on here. Helpful chappie. He'll pop up soon.

http://www.i1wqrlinkradio.com/antype/ch58/chiave6.htm

See page 3.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:07 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
G6CSL wrote:
Sounds like another job for GM0ONX. But you will have to feed the antenna from the base of the 'garden' end, not the 'house' end.

He's on here. Helpful chappie. He'll pop up soon.

http://www.i1wqrlinkradio.com/antype/ch58/chiave6.htm

See page 3.


That's basically the exact inverted L I use now, yes, and followed his design. It's fed from the end of the garden... with as much copper buried as I can get away with, and a MFJ-926B remote tuner right at the base of the antenna. Works OK on 40 and 80. It's a good antenna for my needs.

I know he also published a 160 version, that basically extends it with a 80m trap etc, but I just don't have the length for the 160 section unfortunately. :(

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:16 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
G0SLV wrote:
G6CSL wrote:
Sounds like another job for GM0ONX. But you will have to feed the antenna from the base of the 'garden' end, not the 'house' end.

He's on here. Helpful chappie. He'll pop up soon.

http://www.i1wqrlinkradio.com/antype/ch58/chiave6.htm

See page 3.


That's basically the exact inverted L I use now, yes, and followed his design. It's fed from the end of the garden... with as much copper buried as I can get away with, and a MFJ-926B remote tuner right at the base of the antenna. Works OK on 40 and 80. It's a good antenna for my needs.

I know he also published a 160 version, that basically extends it with a 80m trap etc, but I just don't have the length for the 160 section unfortunately. :(


Just 'lose' the extra length around the eaves, front gutter if plastic, or even round inside the loft. As you know, it's the part at the high-current - 'feed' end that gives it 'clout'.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:20 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
Distance of wire from 7.1mhz trap is 6.55M ( i crossed out the 8.55M for some reason, think it was amended )
hen 3.5mhz trap then 8.54M of wire.

PW jan 2005.
I use the single trap version. Works on 6mtrs as well.

Phil

Just found an e-mail from Len GM0ONX, he mentioned the error.


Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:23 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
G7BZD wrote:
Distance of wire from 7.1mhz trap is 6.55M ( i crossed out the 8.55M for some reason, think it was amended )
hen 3.5mhz trap then 8.54M of wire.

PW jan 2005.
I use the single trap version. Works on 6mtrs as well.

Phil


Len told me that it was pretty 'flat' on 30m too, if you're that way inclined. Certainly within the range of an auto-tuner.

Yes, it is 6.55m. just a blurry PDF.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:26 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
G7BZD wrote:
Distance of wire from 7.1mhz trap is 6.55M ( i crossed out the 8.55M for some reason, think it was amended )
hen 3.5mhz trap then 8.54M of wire.

PW jan 2005.
I use the single trap version. Works on 6mtrs as well.

Phil


It's the 8 metres after the 80m trap that's a problem. The end of my current 2 band version is only 4ft from the mast that supports it, so essentially, a 3 band version would need to extend 8 metres past the chimney towards the street :) I actually tried bending it through 90 degrees and dropping it back down into the garden at the side ( I have gardens on three sides of the property), but it wouldn't tune, and worked terribly.. in fact, it worked no better than forcing my current 2 band version into tune with the ATU.. which it just about manages.. but clearly, it's rubbish on 160 like that.

I need a rethink, and I'm just tired of being up a ladder :) I was just hoping someone with an equally small garden has found a novel solution. I'm not after DX... no interest.. but reliable inter G rag chewing on 160 appeals to me.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:29 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
I too fancy getting onto 160mtrs for inter G. I chase anything that i can hear elsewhere.

I have both the PW articles. And i too have too short a garden to get the 160mtr section in.

Phil


Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:34 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
It's a while since I've been on topband but several years back helically wound verticals using either a capacitance hat or top loading wire were common, if I remember right M0VEY used one and had the plans how to make it.

Edit; here's a Yankee version http://www.hamuniverse.com/k6mm160metervertical.html

Another edit; the "short based loaded sloper" in g7sse's link.

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Last edited by ei9ju on Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.



Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:45 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
There comes a point where you just have to do the best you can. My back garden is half the length of yours, so 160m is totally out.

When 160m was 2m, then the 'normal' blokes who lived in Coronation Street-style houses just used to use an inverted 'L' with a big tapped loading coil at the bottom.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:49 pm
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
http://www.mds975.co.uk/Content/amateur_radio_antennas_02.html

Some ideas here that might be worth a look.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 8:51 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
Sorry. I'm missing something.

You are not going to be using thunderbolt power on top band, so what is wrong with simply laying some 'invisible' insulated brown wire onto the tiles down the front of your roof, then turning 90 degrees and hiding the rest under your front gutter?

Unless you live in the smallest house in Britain, I make that at least 10m-12m. As long as you keep the end away from anything conductive, it should work.

Stealth, old bean :)

Be a secret agent....

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:20 pm
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 Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens 
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
When I lived in east London with a small garden, this loop used to work very well:

http://www.qsl.net/g4lna/pages/myant.html

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:29 pm
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
G6CSL wrote:
There comes a point where you just have to do the best you can. My back garden is half the length of yours, so 160m is totally out.

When 160m was 2m, then the 'normal' blokes who lived in Coronation Street-style houses just used to use an inverted 'L' with a big tapped loading coil at the bottom.


Chris, years back I spoke regularly to an english guy on topband, he was using a wire from his upstairs bathroom window wound on a pulley contraption and brought to resonance using a large capacitor made from layers of foil Take-Away carton lids sandwiched between layers of bubble wrap....bloody good signal he was too.....I kid you not :)

edit; his callsign just came back to me, it was this guy.

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Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:30 pm
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Post Re: Effective Top Band antenna for small gardens
Think they would notice if i loaded the phone line up ?

Phil


Mon Jan 25, 2016 9:43 pm
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