Progress on my new sat antenna installation:
After a few days of rain, the ground was soft enough for digging. And while I may be the luckiest man alive to have a wife that will come help dig a trench for my ham stuff, no, she did not dig the whole thing. I made lines with my weed trimmer and she is cutting the turf along those lines while I dig... and take pictures.
Here is the house entry and the antenna tripod ends of the 1.25" grey electrical PVC conduit. I used a 45 degree elbow and a small modified vent plate to enter the crawl space through a brick I chiseled out of the underpinning. You may notice where the pipe comes out at the tripod base that it is not straight up and down. I had to tilt it a little to secure the elbow to the base timber. This will probably actually help in forming a drip loop back around to the preamp enclosure which will mount on the section of pipe there in the base of the tripod. What you see coming out of the conduit is a lengthy piece of flexible electrical conduit with wires that my neighbor loaned me from his scrap pile to use as a 'pull rope' when I am ready to run the antenna, power and rotator cables.
Here is an 'after' pic of the trench filled in... and the lawn mowed. With the red clay we have here, the trench will require more dirt be placed on top once the ground settles after several rains. Luckily, I have a huge pile of dirt (background of next picture) for filling in the shallow dips you might be able to see running left to right that settled years ago after installation of the septic lines. (Easier to see the dips in the first picture above.) Hence it was a good time to install the conduit before doing all that. On the right, you can see the preamp enclosure. I've gone ahead and installed it to do a 'dry run'. We are supposed to have rain this weekend and I want to make sure it doesn't leak before installing the equipment or feedlines.
I used some TV antenna mounts to attach the enclosure to the pole. I got the idea for the enclosure from KB5WIA's blog. On the right is a dry fit of the preamps and diplexers. (I am installing the diplexers to act as filters.) The lines from the shack will come in on the left and attach to each preamp. The UHF preamp is in front and the diplexer attached to it has the UHF port available on the right to go to the antenna and a 50 ohm teminator on the VHF port to the left. The VHF preamp is then behind the UHF with some large rubber feet stuck to each to keep them spaced apart. The diplexer attached to the VHF preamp is reversed in direction from the one in front, again with the rubber feet touching to keep them apart. The 50 ohm termination and antenna port line up with the other diplexer since it is turned around backwards. As you can see, I cut holes for each feedline and one for the power wire to the preamps... I still need to find some type of quick connectors for that. The preamps are hanging from a couple pieces of 10 gauge wire soldered to crimp rings than are attached to the top mounting bolts. Again, credit KB5WIA's blog for that idea.
Running the cables from the shack to the tripod will likely be my next project. I'll post more as I get things completed.
1160376 Last modified: 2014-08-08 09:11:43, 4293 bytes
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