Adventures at the speed of light™

EFHW 40-10 Wire Antenna roof mast and install

Sunday - August 5, 2019

So on to step 4 and 5 which is basically install the roof mast and install the wire antenna.

Gathered up enough courage to go on the roof and install the 20-foot-mast while there was moisture from the earlier high fog, plus 15-20MPH winds. I put the mast together from 4-foot sections and installed the guy ring and prepared the quarter inch Dacron rope for guying. After the difficulty of balancing the mast weight and dangling rope, I finally got the mast into the clamps and tightened it. Then weather-proofed and installed a pulley on the 30-foot Jackite pole with the first two sections removed making it just 25-foot. Placed a couple of hooks and a pulley on the fence and placed the 49:1 transformer, then needled the wire through. Below is an illustration of the install:

After getting the wire up, I went and did some SWR readings and this is what it came up with:

  • 80M (3.800MHz) - 2.30
  • 40M (7.200MHz) - 1.39
  • 30M (10.125MHz) - 4.00
  • 20M (14.175MHz) - 1.48
  • 17M (18.130MHz) - 2.70
  • 15M (21.300MHz) - 1.97
  • 12M (24.960MHz) - 1.36
  • 10M (29.000MHz) - 1.26

The SWR readings are pretty good. However when I called on 40M, I was barely readable by people I have worked before during worse conditions. The fact that the wire is over the roof probably has an adverse effect on the emitted signal. Since the roof is closer to the wire compared to having the wire mounted on the ground on Jackite poles—same height and more clearance below. So, I figured I would revert back to the original configuration on the ground with the Jackite poles.

Son of a beach! :)

Saturday - August 10, 2019
Well, back to the old configuration of an inverted L in the little open space we have with Jackite poles and the antenna seems to be working fine again. I was able to work stations in Southern California, State of Washington, Arizona, etc. So I think I'll keep it this way for a while until I think of something else to experiment with.

Here are the last SWR readings:
  • 160M (1.90MHz) - 4.90
  • 80M (3.800MHz) - 2.30
  • 40M (7.200MHz) - 1.24
  • 30M (10.125MHz) - 4.00
  • 20M (14.175MHz) - 1.31
  • 17M (18.130MHz) - 2.70
  • 15M (21.300MHz) - 2.10
  • 12M (24.960MHz) - 1.33
  • 10M (29.000MHz) - 1.19
  • 6M (50.100MHz) - 1.46

Tweaked it a little and got a good reading for 6M! :D These readings are not too shabby at all. Aside from 160M, 30M, 17M, and 15M having high readings and 80M being marginal, I don't even need to use a tuner :D That's for a resonant antenna less than 50' long.

So what's next? Amplifier?
Due to the bad band conditions in the low part of the solar cycle, I think I need to invest in an amplifier and a tuner that is capable of accommodating the higher power. Stay tuned!

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