Sunday, December 21, 2014

Copper pipe loop for 40m

Inspired by the work of Peter, VK3YE, I visited the local hardware store to get bits for a 40m loop antenna. Purchased a 3m length of copper pipe, some hose clamps, some copper saddles, a piece of dowel, and a plank of wood. Here's the result:

The variable capacitor is clearly not going to be able to stand much power but at 20W it doesn't appear to be arcing. This capacitor has a reduction drive and I'm using a switch to add a bank so that I can tune both 40m and 20m. Joining the tuning shaft to a dowel rod with a piece of plastic pipe and cable ties worked out quite well although there's a little slippage.

Matching stub:

Tuning is incredibly sharp but a very low SWR is achievable.

The offset of the tuning stub was a guess but seems to be reasonably close to 50 ohms. I had a pre-arranged contact with Stephen, VK2BLQ who could hear me reasonably well.

Reception seems excellent and of course the very narrow bandwidth leads to nice low noise.


Had a visit from Bob Bray who liked both the shed and the loop antenna, although I suspect he wasn't impressed with my impression of a circle.

Robert John Bray is a prominent astronomer who has been honoured by having a main belt asteroid named after him.

Update - motor drive tuning

I've changed capacitors and added a 36RPM motor drive and a box to switch direction. The drive is still way to fast and now I'm looking for a reduction gear or multi-turn capacitor of some sort.

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