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MFJ 1622 Apartment Antenna?

Discussion in 'Amateur Radio Antennas' started by ZuMBLe, Nov 30, 2010.

  1. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    I've been playing with the idea of building a 11/10 meter loop antenna for my 1st floor apt but I'm becoming quite discouraged. I installed a SWL antenna around my bedroom by the window and can barely hear any 11 meter stations. Which brings me to the MFJ 1622. Anyone have any experience with these? I'd be running a LDG Z100 Plus behind it.



    MFJ Enterprises Inc.
    http://www.mfjenterprises.com/man/pdf/MFJ-1622.pdf

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  2. W5LZ

    W5LZ Crotchety Old Bastard

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    I don't have one, but I've made a few of them. If you do the 'tuning' right, you won't need a tuner. Basically find a tap for 10 meters and one for 11 meters. How well does it work? Needless to say it won't be 'perfect', but it should at least match a mobile antenna of the same length. It should be marginally better than the indoor antennas you have, maybe.
    - 'Doc
     
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  3. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    Good info, as always. It's not easy being a radio enthusiast in NYC. :unsure:

    I figured I'd run the tuner behind the antenna to try to get the best match possible after tuning.


     
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  4. TonyV225

    TonyV225 Supporting Member

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  5. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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  6. TonyV225

    TonyV225 Supporting Member

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    I was referring mainly to the BS-1 LMAO!! I run one of those BS-1 when its storming out Ive made DX contacts with 20 watts pep with one of these BS-1 the ends are 9 foot long. I have it run along a laundry line on our inclosed porch.

    I put the other bigger ham one up as a reference or to list the other options they make for dipoles. :oops:
     
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    Last edited: Dec 1, 2010
  7. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    The ebay listing said 16.5 feet on each side! Haha.

    How would this dipole compare to the bazooka? It's cheap enough that I should just try it out.

    My problem is I'm on the 1st floor of a 6 unit building (2 units per floor). Right across the street are similar buildings so I don't have a clear shot anywhere. =/ I guess the only thing worse would be if I were in the unit at the back of the building or if I lived in a lead box. :blink:



     
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  8. W5LZ

    W5LZ Crotchety Old Bastard

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    ZuMBLe,
    Honestly, A dipole of some sort is about the easiest antenna to make. I'd really consider doing that, making one.
    - 'Doc
     
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  9. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    Do you think a dipole inside would perform as well as the MFJ 1622, outside?

     
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  10. W5LZ

    W5LZ Crotchety Old Bastard

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    I honestly can't say, but I sort of doubt it. It depends on how much trouble you go to in tuning that MFJ-1722. There are two other aspects of that comparison that you should keep in mind. One is that they would be of differing polarity (probably). The dipole being horizontal (maybe), and the '17622 being vertical (no maybe). The other aspect is that the radiation patterns of the two antennas are not going to be the same even if they were both of the same polarity. That difference deals with the length of both antennas. Length really does play an important part in that.
    I tend toward making dipoles as opposed to buying an antenna. That dipole can be strung up vertically (one leg of it anyway), so being inside would be the 'biggy'. That being inside is also going to be a problem with RFI, you can almost count on that.
    The 'trick' to the whole thing is to make something 'fit' the circumstances you are stuck with. That's going to be a compromise no matter what you do, so pick the compromise you can live with the easiest.
    - 'Doc
     
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  11. AudioShockwav

    AudioShockwav Extraterrestrial Admin Staff Member

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    Many years ago when i first started playing radio, i was living in a second story apt. I was using a home brew version of the 1622 hanging out of one of the windows at about a 45 degree angle......it has been a while but I had about ten feet of wire along the floor to act as a counterpoise and it worked surprisingly well.
    You should try a dipole, you can make it out of almost any wire, and tack it up along the ceiling do not be afraid to bend the ends a bit to get it to fit, wire antennas do not have to be completely straight to work, in fact some work better in a L or V shape.
    Do you have the tuner already?

    73
    Jeff
     
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  12. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    Did you have the counterpoise inside the apt or outside with the antenna? How was your antenna setup for DX?

    I have a Radiowavs Bazooka dipole laying around which I will try along with the MFJ1622.

    In terms of tuners, I have a MFJ 934 and I just ordered a LDG Z100 Plus.



     
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  13. AudioShockwav

    AudioShockwav Extraterrestrial Admin Staff Member

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    The wire was inside the Apt, running along the floor, as far as dx, if the band was open i could talk to a few stations, nothing major, but it worked well for talking around town. No amp at that time, I had a President Zachery T Base station, and a CPI Speech Compressor.
    If you have the Radiowavs Bazooka I would sure give it a try.
    I think someone here used to run one.......can not remember who now?

    73
    Jeff
     
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  14. W5LZ

    W5LZ Crotchety Old Bastard

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    Take a look at that 1622. The 'counterpoise' if connected on the part of the mount that is on the outside of the window, so that's where it would normally hang from... outside. It wouldn't really hurt anything if it were inside on the floor, that'd work too. One of the things about any antenna is that there is some fairly high voltages present on the ends of the elements. If you put that counterpoise inside then it's a fairly good idea to insulate the end of that counterpoise to keep it from touching something that wouldn't enjoy being shocked, or getting an RF burn. And not just the very end, but for a ways back from the end. Using insulated wire and covering the end of it with tape (whatever) is a very common way of doing that. The end of that 'antenna' section is 'hot' too, but is usually far enough out of reach so people can't normally touch it. That voltage is seldom enough to be any danger of setting something on fire unless you are running quite a bit of power. So not a biggy, just be aware of the possibility. Keeping an antenna as far as possible from things that can be affected by RF s a pretty good idea (TVs, other radios, etc.) so why not toss that counterpoise outside.
    Jeff's right, there's all kinds of bends/wiggles you can put in an antenna and it not affect it all that much. If it's too long to 'fit', bending the thing so it will is okay. I don't think I'd bend it back onto it's self, or coil up the 'extra' length, but almost anything else will 'work'.
    It's just a thought, but while waiting for that '1622, why not use that bazooka. Run one leg of it up the corner of a room, the other leg along the baseboard. If your ceilings aren't 9 feet tall you'll have a little extra at the top, just fold it along the ceiling or ceiling/wall come together. If you haven't already tried that, you might be surprised. It seems like a good idea to use a corner on an 'outside wall'.
    Lots of possibilities, most of them beat not having an antenna.
    - 'Doc
     
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  15. ZuMBLe

    ZuMBLe Member

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    I think the 1622 is out of the question until summer. I looked outside my window this morning and noticed all the leaves from the tree outside are now gone. The 1622 would stick out like a sore thumb without the tree to hide the whip. What if I spray painted the whip black - would that hurt anything?

    I'll try the bazooka mounted as you described this weekend. I currently have all my radio equipment at my parents' place since that's the only place I can operate. I'll probably move the TS50 with the autotuner in to my apt along with the bazooka and take it from there. =) Worst case scenario, I'll have a pretty good SWL station. :blushing:



     
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