searching for the perfect shortwave antenna while using the
limitations forced upon myself I have finally come up with a good
all around performer that is easy to construct and requires no
yard space. Yes, the 'House Loop' (or 'Apartment Loop', as it
fits in my case) is here. And boy does it perform like a champ!
I originally heard about the idea in Monitoring Times about a
year or so ago. I have refined the idea and have installed my
own 'house loop' and must say that I was highly impressed with
the initial installation. I think that you will find this a most
adequate antenna for all around shortwave performance if you have
been limited by space considerations in the past.
Installing the antenna is easy. Use any type of wire (or
types of wire). You will need about 50-150 feet of wire, depending
on your own set-up. Start the wire at (or near) your shortwave
receiver and route it around the entire perimeter of your house/apartment.
Try to keep it as far apart from itself as possible. Your objective
will be to make a square (or rectangle) with the wire around your
house. Here is a simple illustration to help you out.
X++++++++++++++ D D ++++++++X
X+ D D +X
X+ X X +X
X+ X X +X
X+ X X +X
X+++++++ X X +W
XXXXXXXDDXXXXXXXXXXXX X +W+
X+ X XXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXXX+
WWW=Window X+ X +W+
XXX=Wall XDDXXXXXXXXXXXX +X
DDD=Door X+ +X
+++=Antenna XSW +X
SW=Receiver X+ +D
Use windows to your advantage whenever possible. If you
have the choice from one point to the next, use windows. The more
of your antenna that you get outside, the better. If you (or your
landlord) are worried about outside wires, try using magnet wire
for the antenna. Magnet wire is extremely thin and relatively
invisible from a distance.
Your antenna can either be low or high. I have mine thumbtacked
next to the ceiling and this seems to work better for me. But
I have heard of others using the floor with equally pleasing results.
Some experimentation may be necessary to determine the setup that
gives you the best results.
After you have completed your loop, use a small lenth of coax
(if available) to connect your antenna to your receiver. Connect
one lead of the antenna to the braid and one lead to the center
conductor of the coax.
I also use an antenna tuner which helps a lot in attenuating
the MW interference that I experience in my area. But the antenna
still provides excellent reception without the tuner.
You may also want to experiment with the antenna connection to
the receiver. The last leg of my antenna runs outside for about
40 feet, so I connected that lead to the center conductor of the
coax. You may also want to leave one lead disconnected from the
ground of the coax, it all depends on your situation.
I have heard of some people using 5 conductor antenna rotator
cable for this antenna with excellent results so you may want
to try this venue. I had to use magnet wire due to my requirements
for an almost invisible antenna, but you may not have that restriction.
My antenna seems to cover from about 5 Mhz to 21 Mhz fairly
well with reception being peaked at around 7-11 Mhz. But again,
your results will vary depending on your installation. My antenna
is also about 150 feet long.
For a receiver, I use a Sony ICF 2001D... and as the famous active
antenna ad goes ('works almost as good as longwires 100's of feet
long) I would have to say the same about this one. And it only
costed me $1.00 for the wire!
If you have the chance, I seriously recommend trying out this
solution to your antenna woes. It should only take about 30 minutes
to construct, and won't cost you hardly anything should it now
work for you.
Adam Gott, 1990, The CatWalk BBS Davie, Fl 305-370-3528 ZyXel
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