43′ Vertical Antenna Work

I spent some time today working to rehab my 43′ vertical.  Made from lightweight aluminium tubing, I first put this antenna up more than 10 years ago.  It was last used about 6 years ago.   There was so much mud and debris around the bottom I had to dig out the base.  While I was working with it, I noticed the antenna could slide up and down on its mount, so after my digging was done, I put a brick under it.  Tomorrow I’ll bring out the nut drivers and see if I can get it tightened.  There is also a branch about 15′ up making contact with the antenna that I will need to eliminate tomorrow.  I’m going to throw some 3/32″ dacron  over the branch and gently pull it away this medium sized obstacle.

43-foot-vertical-base

I upgraded the 4:1 UNUN from the one MFJ included to a newer version from DX Engineering.  The MFJ UNUN made contact with vertical radiator by way of its hose clamps.  The new DX Engineering UNUN would connect to the radiator by a 7″ piece of copper strapping attached to the terminal coming out of the UNUN.  For some reason, I find this new set-up affords me some greater piece of mind.

I also noted that none of the radial system was not showing any connectivity to ground.  I re-stripped the wires of some radials and reconnected them.  However, there is a great deal more to improve the ground system.  And I’ll be working to tackle that in the next few days.

From a station building perspective, I’m working towards getting the Ameritron 4 position remote coax switch in place.  It will feed a few antennas that have proven to work well for me:

  • 20m Delta Loop.  Mounted on a 34′ fiberglass mast.  This is one of the best wire antennas I’ve ever used and I can’t wait to get it back up
  • The DX-LB.   I historically used this as a NE-SW inverted V.  It’s still up but a tree has fallen on one leg and squished it into a thorny area of scrub brush.  What a pain!  It’s going to take some time to extricate it.
  • The 43′ Vertical described here.  It’s a strong antenna with good low angle performance.  I don’t think I’ve ever given it the proper ground system it deserves.