Last year November 2020 I decided to increase my frequency spectrum as normally I always operated on 10-40 mtr but never on 80 mtr. One of the reasons I never operated the 80mtr band had to do with the limitations of putting a suited antenna for that band. After browsing the World Wide Web and knowing the website of PA0FRI, my eye had fallen on the principal of the ZS6BKW antenna. After contacting Frits PA0FRI and discussing my situation, he agreed with me that the best option at my QTH would be that ZS6BKW antenna. That meant in my case I would be able to hang 2 x 15mtr(2 x 45Ft) with a 10mtr(30Ft) open Transmission line in an inverted V kind of way. After ordering some rugged, strong and highpower antenna wire(DX WIRE FS-2) with some spreaders, I started to built the antenna.
Ofcourse building the antenna was one part of the story, because to let this antenna functioning in a proper way, it meant it needed to be tuned. Within my station I had the option to use the built in Antenna tuner which comes wih the Solid State Amplifier. But the ratio of this Tuner has it limitations. That’s why I decided to order a Palstar AT2K Manual antenna Tuner. During X-mas the antenna built was completed and I finally could experiment on 80Mtr.
Palstar AT2K T-match Tuner
A new world went open with short skip propagation, meaning I was able to contact more stations from my country within a distance of 100-250 Km, which normally I only experienced on 40mtr with the right kind of propagation. Besides the short distance I had been able to work the USA within the DX window of the 80mtr band. Ofcourse working the USA is nothing special as I am continously doing that on 20 mtr and 17 mtr, but doing it by a piece of Wire vs a Yagi is ofcourse something else. So all by all the idea I had foreseen paid off and was I happy that my 80 mtr project succeeded.
After using this antenna configuration with the Manuel Tuner I decided it was time for the next step. One of the reasons for going to the next step is that I am getting more and more lazy with continiously manual tuning. Ofcourse I had made a chart for fixed frequencies so I immediate could Tune the antenna to a specfic frequency. But it was not the same, especially when hearing some stations on a certain frequency, I always needed to Re-Tune manually which costed time and effort.
So what else … ? As I was quite happy with the construction of the Palstar tuner my attention was drawn towards the PALSTAR HF AUTO tuner. After watching several YouTube clips the decission was easily made. Since the last 2 weeks I have been able to play around with this HF AUTO tuner and as advertised, this Tuner is great. After setting up the Tuner, the Autostore will do the rest and memorise all frequencies you have put into. Besides Automatic tuning I had one other criteria and that was the powerhandling. This HF AUTO is rated for 1.800 Watts on HF which in my case is more than sufficient as I never use that amount of power.
Conclusion: After having an idea to increase my frequency spectrum, adding an antenna and looking for the possibillities on Manual and AUTO Tuners I can honestly say that I am quite satisfied wth the outcome on the different experiments undertaken.
If you would like to know more about this topic please do not hestitate to drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org or just use the CONTACT form on this webpage.
73 Roberto PB5X