Monday, November 1, 2010


One of the problems with running this blog is that I end up with lots things that I see that I need to do. This is another... I have been putting this off for some time - with the current *very* extended sunspot cycle minimum, my interest in radio projects has waned along with the propagation conditions. Carol on s/v Estrellita 5.10b describes here the installation of the wiring between their SSB radio and their insulated backstay:
We use one of the big wires on that run from the deck to the top of our mast as an antenna for our single sideband radio. This wire is called a backstay, and thus the antenna is called a backstay antenna. In order to use the wire that way you have to also have a tuner to tune your wire during SSB usage.

Below, images from an install that I never blogged about. In order to connect the back stay to the tuner I had to cut the co-ax and reinstall it on the tuner. In order to do that I had to solder a PL-259 connector.

Rrrright. So, I don't know how to solder. Many youtube videos and a borrowed solder gun later, I had a not pretty but the good news is that the ugly solder is so far effective because our signal is good. Let's hope it lasts... The work stations, old & new connectors:

I was then able to open our AH-4 tuner and connect the new cord:

The wire was threaded through the ceiling of the aft cabin to the aft port section of the lazarette space and the tuner was installed there. The antenna wire then went from the tuner, through the cockpit combing to the backstay which serves as our antenna.

I used some nylon rod to keep the GTO-15 wire from touching the backstay. I had the brilliant idea to drill holes prior to cutting it so there would be a notch for the wire to sit into. Alas, it turns out the hole I drilled wasn’t really big enough or necessary. Just cutting the rod into 2” sections would have been plenty.

The installation with stainless still wire nut, nylon spacers connected with zip ties, and although you can’t see it the wire terminates in a ring terminal that has been double shrink wrapped at the connection
So, making standoffs for Eolian's antenna connection is now on the list of projects generated from this blog:

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