160 meter inverted L for smaller size lots.
Every winter, I plan to try to get on 160 meters and never get it done. This year I was determined to do it. I was considering a 1/4 wave inverted L, something like this design by WH2T:
A tip from Pete W5PEH about adding a loading coil made it possible for me to easily build and put up this antenna on my small size lot.
It is an inverted L, with 25 feet of vertical wire and 65 feet of horizontal wire. At the top of the vertical wire is a big coil. Take a 5 foot 1 1/2 inch pvc pipe, I used thin wall to keep the weight down. Mark 3 inches from each end. Now mark every half inch. Next get some double sided tape. I used 4 strips the entire length of the pipe. This will hold the turns in place. I then drilled a small hole on each end at the 3 inch marks.
I took a roll of 18 guage solid wire that I got from radio shack for 6 bucks and stuck one end through one of the small holes in the end. I pulled about 6 inches of wire out of the end of the tube. Next you wind the coil. When you get to the end, you run the wire down through the other small hole and out the end of the pipe.
Next get some spray paint. Pete used 2 cans, I only used 1 as it was all I had. After the paint dries, pick an end of the pipe to be the top and drill a hole for the hoist rope. That will be the top end. Now solder on 65 feet of wire to the top of the coil. Solder 25 feet of wire to the bottom of the coil.
Feed it with coax. Center pin to your 25 foot vertical wire and the shield directly to your ground rod. I just took a SO-239 and soldered my vertical wire to the center pin and a short braid to the shield. Clamped the shield to the ground rod. On the first test, it was usable with swr of 1.7:1 on 1.820. I shorted my vertical wire a couple feet and added some to the horizontal wire to get the sweet spot on 1.820. My swr is 1.5:1. My Kenwood auto tuner will tune all bands, but works exceptionally well on 40 meters!
Oh yea, I am feeding it with 100 feet of coax even though the feedpoint is 8 feet from my rig. Some have reported tuning problems with coax lengths less than 50 feet. Since building mine, I have added some more ground radials and tapped those radials into a couple separate sections of chain link fence. That really helped drop the noise level and now I can hear things that were lost in the static before.
This project is fun, easy and doesn't cost much to try. I hope you will give it a try and see for yourself how well it performs. Thanks to Pete W5PEH for helping me with it!