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A PORTABLE HF ANTENNA 21MHZ-50MHZ
ี่Portable Antenna Frequency Rang 21MHz-50MHz
Work in 27MHz or 10 metre band.
Reference: Jim Valdes,WA1GPO
QST December 2004
The Falmouth Amateur Radio Association (FARA) is one
of the largest and most active Amateur Radio groups on
Cape Cod, Massachusetts. The group has a number of
amateurs who enjoy the construction phase of our hobby—
they are affectionately known as “hackers.” Several of FARA’s
projects have been published and are available on the Web.1
FARA’s latest project is a low cost portable HF antenna, the
FARApole—it’s ideal for low power, multiband transceivers,
like the Yaesu FT-817.
There are a number of commercially available HF portable
antennas. Most, however, are relatively costly and they are frequency
limited, factors that might discourage “casual” operating.
One of our goals was to have an antenna as versatile as the FT-
817 transceiver itself, and the pictures illustrate the flexibility of
The antenna is compact; it will easily fit in a suitcase along
with a UHF-style magnet mount for weekend getaways.
Although primarily intended for low power operation, power
levels up to the 100 W level can be tolerated when it is operated
as a dipole or in a mobile configuration, provided the radio
is located a satisfactory distance from the transmitter. This is
necessary for safety and to minimize RF feedback at the
100 W power level. The operator is cautioned to observe recommended
safe RF exposure limits. [This is always prudent
when operating close to an antenna at moderate power levels.
An excellent ARRL reference text, RF Exposure and You, contains
effective safe guidelines for operation at various power
levels with respect to frequency and distance.2—Ed.]
This is a portable antenna design utilizing readily available
components and it is easy to construct—only simple hand tools
are needed for fabrication. The antenna is base loaded with a
telescoping whip and a “wandering” lead to tap a loading coil
for various bands. The overall length is approximately 7 feet.
With all parts on hand, it can be constructed in less than 15