On Saturday, October 29, CVARC hosted its first in-person build event in over three years. Eight builders and many helpful Elmers worked through the morning to complete two different kinds of VHF antennas.
The first model was the time-tested 2m Measuring Tape Yagi consisting mostly of repurposed spring steel and PVC segments. It is a simple but versatile design that makes a great first build project. This was proven out during the event where every builder completed a perfectly tuned antenna on the first try. Directional antennas like these are great additions to a ham’s kit because they are handy for direction finding and boosting signals. This was demonstrated the following week by Victor Zeng-W2AYZ when he used this antenna to check into the morning BORED net from the middle of L.A., beyond line of sight nearly 25 miles away!
The second antenna model was an experimental design by Nathan Eng-W6EN. It takes the classic ground plane antenna and adds folding radials. This allows for compact storage in a PVC mast to ease transport and storage. The crimp and rivet-based construction also creates a more rugged assembly than solder-only designs.
The event was enjoyed by all and allowed many new hams to experiment with a variety of construction techniques. The new set of yagis will also support upcoming portable contests and transmitter hunts. Special thanks to Zak Cohen-N6PK, for organizing the East County Sheriff Station’s Community Room and patio to host the event.
The plans for the measuring tape yagi can be found at KB9VBR’s page here. Instructions for the folding variation of the ground plane antenna are available here and in CVARC.org’s technical article section.