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Old 08-21-2011, 12:28 PM   #1
W6ZKH
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Default My RV mount for 5'er

I required a better mount for my "hamstick dipole" and optional Hustler 4BTV vertical, and seeing an article in a QST sometime back, I thought I would try and use he method. Basically it is a 4"x4"x30" wooden post (I used pressure treated), which inserts into the "Poop Toob" square carrier on the back of the RV. Mounted on the end of the post is a 1-1/4" Floor Flange so I can screw in the different pipe risers required for each antenna. For the Hamstick Dipole, I use a 19ft Painters Pole, which collapses to around 8ft, and this is inserted into a 3ft piece of 1-1/2" PVC pipe. I use 2 Thumbscrews to tighten down onto the pole to prevent movement. For the 4BTV, I use an 18" piece of 1-1/4" gal pipe, which the 4BTV base mounts onto. Sofar this system has worked pretty well and see attached pictures of the mount and also the Hamstick dipole. If I am amongst some trees where I cant use this mount, I have a old Radio Shack 3ft tripod which I use out away from the RV to get any clearance required. Normally I will guy the Painters Pole, but in the attached photo, which was taken in Manitou Springs, CO, I didnt require any guying, just stakes driven into the holes of the tripod into the ground. Also, I use 4 radials on the 4BTV vertical, which are made from 25ft Harbor Freight retractable tape measures. Recent article in QST showed how to modify to attach the tape to the base of the antenna.

So, just another idea and project I thought I would put out to you'all...

73 de John W6ZKH




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Old 08-21-2011, 03:00 PM   #2
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Some good ideas and a nice job, John. I also noted your idea for screwdriver storage.

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Old 08-21-2011, 04:17 PM   #3
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Now that's cool. Thanks for the ideas and I will be adding that to my repertoire of antenna solutions.
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Old 08-21-2011, 06:13 PM   #4
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Yeah, didnt have any SHIM materials, so had to use the proverbial screwdriver method, hi..

John
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:30 AM   #5
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Default spare tire call/freq cover

Where did you get the cool spare tire call/freq cover???
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Old 08-22-2011, 09:18 PM   #6
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I had the spare tire lettering put on locally here by a sign company. I just bought a "blank" tire cover, since the Wildcat cover had their logo on it. Cost me $50 for the vinyl lettering job. Actually I had seen that tire cover item at this years Quartzfest in January, with a couple of guys from AZ had them on their RV's. I put on the 146.52 freq since that is what I monitor while traveling.
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Old 08-24-2011, 06:04 PM   #7
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I like your set up, John. I might try the same thing but have a few questions. Have you tried an antenna tuner to load the rig up on different bands....with the one antenna. What frequency ham sticks are you using and do you have the part number for the adapter that makes the dipole??

Thanks,
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:03 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N7ZAL View Post
I like your set up, John. I might try the same thing but have a few questions. Have you tried an antenna tuner to load the rig up on different bands....with the one antenna. What frequency ham sticks are you using and do you have the part number for the adapter that makes the dipole??

Thanks,
Hi Bill and thanks for the note. Even though I run single band Hamsticks and try to tune them for lowest SWR, I still use a LDG Z11proII autotuner, as the Hamsticks are usually tuned for the QRP CW portion of the bands. I have 3 sets of Hamsticks, for 40,20 and 17 meters. Each Hamstick has a quick connect on them, as found 3 for $10 at several hamfests...Not expensive like the overpriced Hustler model for $30 now I think is what AES is asking.. Check MFJ catalog for the dipole adapter, but you can also use 2-CB mirror mounts back to back, and ground one side to the ground side of the "hot" mount...

Attached is a picture of the center mount I use. It was a CB dual antenna mount that some truckers use, and of course used dual SO-239 connectors to feed the coax "y" to....on one, I removed the plastic insulator insert, and using a washer, it made good contact with the metal mounting surface to provide the "cold" side of the dipole arrangement. You can see I use an 90 deg Angle connector to drop my coax down with. Again, you could use 2 cheap CB mirror mounts, back to back, and do the same thing. One thing I did later that is not shown in this picture is that I used several layers of electrical tape underneath the mount to insulate it from the aluminum Painters Pole section, to prevent any unbalance in the feedline. I really dont know if I accomplished that, but it made me feel good, hi. You can also see the cheap quick connects I used on each element of the dipole to make quick changes without having to get out the wrenches.



John W6ZKH
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Old 08-24-2011, 09:33 PM   #9
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Thanks for the close up pics John. I've been browsing the catalogs and internet to come up with a scheme that will work. I have been looking at MFJ and the Lakeview site. How well does the 40 meter stick do for you?

I have an MFJ-941D antenna tuner that I use, so I can also use that for the "dipole." I only work CW, so don't need a lot of bandwidth.

Back to the site and catalogs, now that I "think" I know what I am doing

How satisfied are you with the performance of the hamstick dipole?? I've been struggling with Hustler verticals and they just don't do as well as I hoped....hence the desire to go horizontal.

I have a 5th wheel that is very similar to yours, as far as the layout. My ladder is at the slide out end though. Is there a reason you didn't use the ladder as a tie point?? I do like the idea of the wood in the sewer hose pipe !!!
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Old 08-25-2011, 10:23 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by N7ZAL View Post

How satisfied are you with the performance of the hamstick dipole?? I've been struggling with Hustler verticals and they just don't do as well as I hoped....hence the desire to go horizontal.

I have a 5th wheel that is very similar to yours, as far as the layout. My ladder is at the slide out end though. Is there a reason you didn't use the ladder as a tie point?? I do like the idea of the wood in the sewer hose pipe !!!
Hello Bill................First..........is your ladder GROUNDED to the frame of the RV?? 99% of them are not, therefore giving a lousy mounting location. I ran some coax strap from the ladder to the frame of another RV I had before this one, and I too was using the Hustler mobile whips, and when I grounded that ladder, signals improved both TX and RX. So, you might try that also..

The Hamstick type antennas work better for me at least, than the Hustler's. The 20, 17, 15, 10 meter versions are pretty much broadbanded, when using a tuner, and load up very well. The 75 and 40 meter antennas are fairly narrow, maybe only good for 50khz. There are many manufactures of these Hamstick type antennas, from Workman to ??.... I find mine at hamfests for $15-20 each, compared to what AES wants. Talking to the fellow who sells them at the hamfests, he only pays $5 each.....pretty good markup, eh??

I even run a Hamstick on my /Pedestrian Mobile QRP setup for 20M and using a 15ft dragwire as the counterpoise, which works great. see my QRZ.com page for photos. I am going to do an experiment in using a second Hamstick as the counterpoise which would be 90 degs from the vertical section, making it an "L" antenna. This would make it raised above ground some, not dragging behind me. Course then I could use it as a skewer if someone ran into it....guess I better put a flag on it. Going to work on that this week, just as an experiment...

Anyway, try grounding that ladder that you have the Hustler mounted on first, and see if that doesnt improve things, otherwise you know the old saying....."verticals radiate poorly in all directions" hi.

John W6ZKH
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Old 08-25-2011, 11:03 AM   #11
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Well John, I have connected a large wire (#6?) from the ladder to the sewer storage "bumper"....figure the bumper is welded onto the frame. I used a metal hose clamp on the ladder and drilled a hole in the bumper, filed around it, then inserted a bolt into it. I'd appreciate any suggestions to improve that.

Ever since I first got my license I had a lot of success with dipoles and beams....poor results from verticals. So I might be fighting a long term prejudice against verticals

I did order the 20 meter hamsticks last night, a telescoping pole and some coax....looking forward to trying your setup out. Meanwhile I'll keep working on the vertical.

Sadly there aren't any hamfests around here so I'm basically confined to the internet.

Again, thanks for the info.

Whoops, I checked and the sewer bumper is bolted to the fame. I might take one of the bolts out and clean around it to make sure there is a good electrical connection.
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Old 08-31-2011, 05:58 AM   #12
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I hope you enjoy the hamstick dipoles as much as I have. I've been addicted to PSK-31 for about two weeks and you can catch me on 14.070.150 most evenings. If I'm not there, it's because my wife ke5zru has taken over the station for her turn with PSK!
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Old 08-31-2011, 09:48 PM   #13
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Hey Chris...Long time no hear. Hope you two are doing well.
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