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Monday
Apr032017

Hard Work Pays Off

Over the last couple of months I've been doing a lot of lot on my VHF antenna system. After I found I couldn't talk to someone 15kms out of town I had to find out what was going on. I knew I used to be able to talk a lot further than 15km outs and the only thing that had change was I added a length coax. I added this length to make way for my tower, so this extra length was needed. 

I had to ask for help from a good friend and they got me to do a couple of tests. These tests found I had a lot of losses and as anyone would know, any power loss will also effect receiving. I had an amateur radio friend offer me some good coax, LDF450 which was being removed off a couple of sites he was doing work at. I replaced the RG213 with a length of LDF450 and noticed the losses power improved greatly. I've now replaced the last of the RG213 with LDF450 and the change was big. The only issue I was having was with my remote antenna switch. So I did a bit of looking around and noticed all the commercial ones were made of plastic and not metal. I thought this was clearly important so it was sit down and redesign mine. I got a plastic box big enough to house everything and changed where the connectors were placed. Again this change has improved things again. Not being an expert but I think the metal box was interfering with the VSWR. So with it now in a plastic box this won't happened. I have even sat down and redesigned my antenna connection box and have made changes to that. 

This whole thing has been a little stressful. I still have a bit more to change but this will happen slowly. I'm currently happy with the progress of things. I'm hoping to have a helper here at Easter so I can make some non-costly changes to my 2m yagi antenna. I'm hoping to get it up a little higher and change the coax I'm using to some 1/4 inch Heliax coax I have here. I'm also hoping to use the same coax on my 27MHz CB antenna and UHF CB antenna. Currently the 27MHz antenna is using RG58 and the UHF I'm using over 30 year RG213. I need a friend to help with work on those two antenna, I need a forklift and a couple of hours of his free time. 

There is always work to be done. Hopefully one day I will be able to get my tower up, again I need help from others. I'm very thankful for those that have helped me out with cable and other bits and pieces that has made all these upgrades and changes possible. As with them there is no way I could afford to replace the coaxial cable with the coax I've used. The LDF450 coax is worth a bit of money, I've seen it for about $10 to $15 per metre. This may not be much for some it's a lot of money for me. The connectors for this type of coax are not cheap either, about $20 to $40 each. Again I've been lucky enough to get the connectors for free. Anyone that says amateur radio operators are not helpful and are up themselves clearly are hanging around with the wrong ones. I've got one that's gotten me in with Broadcast Australia and another one who I had never meet and only spoken to over FB, go out of there way to help me. Of course there are some bad ones out there and yes I've meet them but there is so many more out there that out number the bad ones.

Amateurs are wonderful people.