Tuesday, January 23, 2018

Warmer Weather Is On Its Way And It's Time To Be Thinking About Our CB Radio and Ham Radio Projects

 Yes in a few more months the warmer weather will be here and we can start working on those cool cb radio and ham radio antenna projects. I know for me I am thinking about a moxon antenna for the cb radio 11 meter band. Now for ham radio, I have been working on a quad antenna for 6 meters and maybe a moxon or loop antenna for 20 meters. It just tough, because as we go from 20 meters to 40 meters, the antennas can get quite large. Then you have the problem of what do I make my antenna out of.
 I had a pdlII cb beam antenna quite a few years ago and it was a fair size when it was all together. It really comes down to what can I fit in a smaller area. I have also been toying with the idea of shrinking the size of the antenna, but to mainly keep it resonant. Hey that is what the hobbies are all about. You experiment and see where you ideas and design take you. You won't find out unless you try and you just may surprise yourself and someone else.
  The other common problem is what should I make this antenna out of. Smaller antennas can be made out of grey electrical pvc pipe. I have also seen antenna spreaders made out of bamboo sticks. Another choice is fiberglass and crappie fishing pole make a nice tool for the spreader or a vertical antenna. So go browsing through your local stores like lowes or home depot and get yourself some ideas.

Saturday, December 16, 2017

Christmas Is Almost Here And So Is The Cold Weather


 I would first like to say Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays to my followers. Yes I wonder how many of us are looking forward to some kind of gift with a cb radio in it. If it's a mobile radio it can easily be disguised in the wrapping paper. Now if it were a vertical antenna, well that's a little difficult to disguise. It really does not matter what it is, because it is the thought that counts.

 So now that the cold weather has settled in, what antenna home brewing project do you have in mind. I myself am thinking what could I squeeze in the yard that does not take up space and is easy to install. I am thinking about maybe a rotatable dipole for 11 meters. I do have some crappie fishing fiberglass poles and a small rotor to turn it. I may experiment with wire and see if it resonates fairly well.

 Most of the bands in Ham Radio and CB Radio have been somewhat quiet lately, which is normal for the winter months. I do hear the truck drivers as they run along the thruway and bed down for the night. Oh how I miss those days back in the 70s when we would get the round robins going, while the cold winter wind whistled outside. I remember my full 5/8 wave antenna humming when the wind blew it just right.

 I think my worst thought back then was I hope the antenna stays on the roof and the pdl II beam stays on the 40 foot tower. I remember working at the school behind the house and looking out the window from the third floor to see if my antennas were still there. Man those were some cold days living in Irondequoit New York by Lake Ontario.

 Eventually we will be looking for a different house, hopefully with at least a few acres of land. That way I can put up my other antennas for CB Radio and Ham Radio. Well I would like to wish you all a Merry Christmas and A Happy New Year !!!

Friday, November 3, 2017

The Best CB Antenna To Get The Job Done


 I can remember in days long ago everyone was asking what is the best cb antenna. Well this question still holds true today. Everybody want to get their signal out there and they want to be heard. This thought holds true for mobile antennas as well as base antennas. Another popular question is should I get a beam antenna, a vertical antenna or both. This comes down to 3 things:
  1. How Much Space Do You Have To Work With.
  2. How Much Money Do You Have.
  3. What Will Your Better Half Let You Get Away With.
 Yes space can be a very important issue. I remember living at home many moon ago and I was cramped for space. Yes our house was small and sat back from the road. I managed to put a pdl II beam antenna on a 40 foot tower and a super perpetrator full 5/8 wave antenna on the roof. My main antenna locally was the ground plane antenna and distance was done with the beam antenna. It was a miracle that I fit that in that space.
 So always be aware of your surroundings. Especially when it comes to power lines, yes they are deadly and will kill you. Also take precautions if there are children in the area. A good idea is if you have a antenna tower bolt wood boards or metal up about 5 feet on the 3 sides of the tower. This way no one can start climbing up it. I would also run your coax cable up high enough to the house, so no one can swing on it. I recently saw the neighbor kids climbing out their back window hanging on the cable tv cable dropping to the ground. The crazy thing is the power lines were only a few feet away. Thank God I have not seen them do that again.
 Okay the third item is what will your better half let you get away with. Yes you always want to keep peace in the house so play nice. Now living at home years ago I had to go with what my mother said. Fortunately my Mom was okay with what I was doing. I am sure she thought I was just a crazy kid. Today I have to make sure my wife is happy, so I don't anything too crazy. I certainly do not want to end up in the shed, it's cold out there.
 So what base antennas do we see these days. Well if you are on the internet searching, there are plenty of resellers with various cb radio base antennas for sale. There are beam antennas made by Gizmotchy, Maco, Hustler and More. There are also plenty of vertical cb antennas available as well and they tend to be the Antron 99 and the Imax 2000 , but there are others as well. I believe the best place to go searching is on Ebay. You can find new antennas as well as used antennas. Just be aware of the seller and there ranking, plus reviews.
 Okay last but not least, what about the Mobile CB Antenna ? Well these tend to fall into 3 main antennas.
  1. The Popular Firestick Whip.
  2. The Ever Popular K40 Antenna.
  3. The Wilson Antennas With A Magnet Mount.
I always liked the K40 Antenna, Because I could take the whip off and cap it, just remember putting it back on before transmitting. Now the Wilson Antennas are rated very well and they may have that removable capability as well. Both of these antennas handle the power, but remember your limited to 4 watts am and 12 watts sideband. The Firestick Antenna has been around for a long time and still does a good job. There are plenty other other cb antennas on the market and they all perform well depending on where they are mounted. Also make sure your swr reading is low, so you get the best transfer of power from your radio and out your antenna. You don't need it coming back down and burning out your finals in your radio.
 Well that's it for now so happy transmitting with your cb radio.

Sunday, October 1, 2017

11 Meter CB Band Seems Quiet

 Yes during the summer months the 11 meter cb radio band does get quiet. It will probably pick up as we get into Fall and then Winter. I can remember those days way back in the late 70s and early 80s when the band was running with lots of skip from the southern states. Yes they would just come blasting in creating all kinds of cross interference.

 Well in today's times is comes and goes. It's not like those old days when you would here various cb radio operators out there on a warm Friday night keeping the conversation going. Yes you had those individuals doing their bunny hunts and others getting together in their clubs. Those days do seem to be gone, but not forgotten. Quite a few of those old timers have passed on and become silent keys through the years.

 Mostly today I hear the truck drivers going down the thruway chattering once in awhile. I also hear that lonesome cb radio operator calling out for a radio check. Oh and yes there is also that person running so much power his nose sounds pinched and his swr is going through the roof. He is also the person crossing 5 channels up and 5 channels down. Don't worry at that rate he won't be around for long.

 What we need is some new rules for cb radio to make it popular once again. Make the transmitting power at least 100 watts. Also make the transmitting distance for am and sideband much further. I would also make people get a license once again and have some rules for using your numbers. We don't need a fee or take a test. Maybe take a test online with some way to prove who you are. Oh well these are only thoughts of mine so take them with a grain of salt.

 Enjoy The CB Radio and 73s  

Friday, May 12, 2017

Study For The Ham Radio Tests....Don't Just Memorize The Answers


 If your thinking of becoming a Ham Radio Operator take the time to learn what Ham Radio is about. That way you can pass your knowledge of Ham Radio on to others and share the fun. Do you really want to be the person that the young child shows up when they can have the answer and not you. Besides you will there are many more paths you can take in Ham Radio such as emergency situations. Someones life may depend on you. Start studying today and remember you have to take the tests for each license in a certain order.
  1. Technician
  2. General
  3. Extra

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