[amsat-bb] Re: Egg Beater

Mike Ryan mryan301 at comcast.net
Sat Apr 11 14:23:40 PDT 2009

True enough. You don't absolutely need sophisticated or expensive. You just tend to move more and more in that direction as you get engrossed, bitten by the SAT bug, or start pushing for a little more signal, a little lower to the horizon, etc..

My first was also a pair of ground planes. I've used a Jetstream vertical. A pair of Cushcraft ringos (non the ranger model) and they worked pretty well. Tried a home brew Eggbeater (original not with reflector or potato masher), Put up a pair of turnstiles and built a crossed Moxon. They all had their merits and it was a learning experience trying them all out. At the time I was determined to do the best I can with omnis. It was deadly obvious that a preamp was needed. I also worked with The Arrow, the Elk, and the WA5VJB (3 el vhf and 8 el uhf) "cheap yagis". I had planned for the QFH and have all the materials. Just didn't dig into building it yet. 

Where am I now? Using a pair of cheap yagis on an old tv rotor at fixed 20% elevation plus a ARR preamp. Working AO51, AO27, SO50, FO29, VO52 all reliably. Also ISS (when up) and even a couple contacts on AO7. I still use the turnstiles for when I'm too lazy to point the rotor, for high passes, or when looking to collect SSTV from the ISS or AO51 automatically. 


Original Message:
Date: Sat, 11 Apr 2009 15:54:28 -0300
From: Bruce Robertson <ve9qrp at gmail.com>
Subject: [amsat-bb] Re: Egg Beater
To: Steve Bluemel <stevebluemel at gmail.com>
Cc: AMSAT-BB at amsat.org
<49657a760904111154r4389bc68j3d261fe7186ce849 at mail.gmail.com>
Content-Type: text/plain; charset=ISO-8859-1

Steve (and the list):

I can add another data-point for you, as I'm playing with minimal
antennas while rebuilding my station. My latest toy is a simple
three-wire groundplane for 70cm made of #10 electrical wire soldered
directly to a male N-connector. This connector is plugged into one
side of an all-weather switching low-noise preamp, and both are in the
hay-loft of a barn, up about 12' from ground, but with wood, roofing
and hay all around. The preamp is connected to the radio by 100' of
LMR-400 coax.

This has been in place for only 24h or so, but I've listened to a 33
deg. pass of FO-29 and some cubesats with quite decent success. The
telemetry of FO-29 (100mw) was audible always; after about 15 deg. I
could comfortably hear a SSB conversation on that bird. SO-50 was not
quite as successful, but I have a TS-2000 so it's sometimes hard to
get a bead on that bird.

Of course, without the preamp, nada, nothing.

Sometimes I worry that we purchase complex and expensive antennas with
preamps and never fully explore the potential of preamps with very
simple, and inexpensive, antennas. This isn't to say that I'm leaving
this g/p as my only antenna, but it provides a simple, cheap and
effective first step and helpful baseline from which to compare

I also think it might be a good way to get people into this branch of
the ham hobby. And in  that spirit, about a year ago, I posted a video
of a FT-817 receiving a cubesat beacon with a directly-attached 1/4w


73, Bruce

On Sat, Apr 11, 2009 at 1:30 PM, Alan P. Biddle <APBIDDLE at united.net> wrote:
> Steve,
>>>Once i know i can hear, i will build the uplink
> Would that everybody else followed your wise approach! ?;)
> Alan

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