Wrap Wrap Wrap They Call Me The Wrapper! One of my favorite parts of the ham radio hobby is messing with portable HF antennas. When running QRP, I have built and tried several antenna kits from QRPGUYS.
One of my all time favorite QRP antenna kits is the QRPGUYS Tri-band vertical. The antenna kit was adapted from the original design by Joe Everhart N2CX. My first CW contact was a station in Texas. Not bad for 5 watts from Long Island.
QRPGUYS supplies the enamel wire, torroids, switches and PCB board, you supply the wire for the vertical and counterpoise(s). Find out more about QRPGUYS kits here.
Remembering back, to some of the other portable antenna contraptions I have tried reminds me of the time I wrapped about 33’9”of wire (cut it at 34 feet and trim) around a 20 foot Shakespeare Carbon Fiber Wonderpole which I got from Amazon. Cut the same length of wire for the counterpoise. Like any other homebrew antenna contraption, the fun is to see how many contacts you can log and the distance your signal has traveled.
Wrapping 33+ feet of wire around a 20 foot pole takes a few minutes but you end up with a light weight antenna that can be leaned against a tree or lashed to a fence for quick setup.
To bring the feed point impedance to around 50 ohms, I used an LDG 4:1 BALUN that had lying around from the time I setup delta loops. I think I bought from either DX Engineering or Amazon.
The BALUN got the impedance down to around 50 ohms on 40 meters but you will still need a tuner with this setup if you want to tune other bands. Like any compromise antenna, don’t expect miracles, just have fun.
I am not taking any credit for this antenna since I got the idea from this video by VE3BF some time ago.
Peter has been an Amateur Radio operator since 1960 and has co-owned his Amateur Radio shop since 1973.
With that kind of experience, Peter is one of the few Amateur Radio YouTuber’s I follow.
Of special interest to me, Peter has done several videos related to homebrewing compromise antennas for small spaces.
Small space, compromise antenna projects interest me because I enjoy homebrewing antennas, have a small yard and small space antenna ideas are useful when I activate State Parks for the Parks on the Air program.
The Elecraft T1A is a fine piece of gear. I have owned one for around 3 years now and have used it on outings with several different QRP rigs. As Peter will demonstrate, the features of the T1A extend beyond a simple QRP tuner.
I’d have to agree with Peter. The Elecraft T1A will make a good companion for the ICOM 705. Let Peter explain the T1A and you can then form your own opinion.