Starting Amateur Radio

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Starting Amateur Radio

Postby miabs » Fri Jan 15, 2016 12:09 pm

Hi ,

I am thinking of starting amateur radio, I am still looking into it but one question I have is.....

Do I have to have a large external antenna . I have seen gigantic antennas at peoples houses , some with stability wires.

I don't want to have a massive antenna on the side of my house !!

Can anyone please advise?
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Re: Starting Amateur Radio

Postby m0lsx » Fri Jan 15, 2016 1:52 pm

No you do not HAVE to have anything.
It is perfectly possible to for example work satellites from your back garden using a handheld radio & a small antenna that is either handheld or on a tripod.
For HF (Short Wave) there are a number of options, Nigel M0CVO sells something called the magi antenna & that would fit in a tree of, your guttering, up the side of a gutting down pipe or across your roof.
I have a short antenna in my loft that covers most of the HF amateur radio bands, that is 40 meters (7mhz) to 10 meters (28-30mhz.)
Image

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My outdoor antennas are

Image

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The back antenna is VHF/UHF & the front is HF (Short Wave.)

For portable operation, for example when I set up for the Scouts, Jamboree On The Air, at a local Scout hut, I put up a few meters of wire between the hut & a tree.

So antennas can be as complicated or as simple & small as you want & although it is not a great antenna, it could even be this small.
Image

It is called a miracle whip & is for out & about use & it's not terrible, concidering it's size. I have one & with a decent longish wire attached as a counterpoise (balance to the antenna) they perform OK.

I also have a small loop tuner.
[img]
http://www.mfjenterprises.com/images/an ... _img_7.jpg[/img]

These are not as much of a compromise but only really work on the shorter bands of 20 meter (14 mhz) & above well. But they are a good antenna system. I have worked Poland on 5 watts with the antenna laying horizontally on my bed.
Buy a database from Kimmy JS19 via http://ukscanningdirectory.co.uk/
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73 De Alan (M0LSX.)
http://www.qrz.com/db/M0LSX"
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Re: Starting Amateur Radio

Postby G4RMT » Fri Jan 15, 2016 8:00 pm

Alan has a far more elaborate system than many, including me, and really with amateur radio, it depends on where your interest is. Wire antennas of all kinds look like washing lines, and few people notice, a 60ft tower and huge beam is at the opposite end of the visibility spectrum, but both let you talk to the other side of the world. One does it a bit better. better enough to justify the cost? Only you can say. For my current level of interest, I've got a couple of verticals, and a long wire. I doubt anyone even notices. UHF beams can look like TV aerials. So HF? VHF DX?, UHF chatting? Satellites? What do you want to do? Don't forget it's not about money - some people build really simple very low power transmitters with no gizmos at all, and learn Morse code. To most people, not that exciting, but there are enough people doing it to have clubs and contests.
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Re: Starting Amateur Radio

Postby 2E0KCE » Fri Jan 15, 2016 11:00 pm

I have a Tri-Band with 3 radials on it..it's about 2 metres in length with 3 radials on it..not that intrusive..it's been up just over 12 months and one of my neighbours asked me just before Xmas if I'd just put it up..just shows..Unfortunately I have no space for wire antennas for HF USE so I use the 2 metre 70Cms mostly..give it a go....try the RSGB site lots of info on clubs and training on there..
THERE IS NO SUCH THING AS FRIENDLY FIRE...IT ALL HURTS
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