In Introduction to HF — Part 2 , we covered transceivers and offered some tips on buying your first HF radio — Now we move onto the final and most important part of this article and your station : Aerials. In Part 1 , we touched on Skip, the way in which radio waves travel — A low-angle of take-off is desired for working far-away DX stations but a high-angle is more useful on bands like 40m where a more local contact may be desired. If you imagine a ball bouncing up and down, it gets progressively weaker with each bounce — This is much like how radio waves bounce off of the ionosphere. The signals take a long time to reach and hopefully bounce off the ionosphere before coming back down again. Before we get to the aerial, a few words about feeders: Coaxial cable is the easiest to work with, and even the thinner type such as RG58 can be used on HF frequencies. Coax, despite having a centre and outer, is an un-balanced feeder — But an aerial such as a dipole is balanced ie: 2 equal sides, a symmetrical antenna.
Introduction to HF - Part 3 of 3 : Aerials | Essex Ham
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