Thursday, March 3, 2011

40M and 15M Dipole antenna


Two popular ham bands, especially for Novice and Technician class operators, are those at 7 and 21 MHz. As mentioned earlier, dipoles have harmonic resonances at odd multiples of their fundamental resonances. Because 21 MHz is the third harmonic of 7 MHz, 7-MHz dipoles are harmonically resonant in the popular ham band at 21 MHz. This is attractive because it allows you to install a 40-m dipole, feed it with coax, and use it without an antenna tuner on both 40 and 15 m.

To put this scheme to use, first measure, cut and adjust the dipole to resonance at the desired 40-m frequency. Then, cut two 2-ft-long pieces of stiff wire (such as #12 or #14 house wire) and solder the ends of each one together to form two loops. Twist the loops in the middle to form figure-8s, and strip and solder the wires where they cross. Install these capacitance hats on the dipole by stripping the antenna wire (if necessary) and soldering the hats to the dipole about a third of the way out from the feedpoint (placement isn’t critical) on each wire.

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