As mentioned in my last post, I constructed a short mast to support the end of my Ultimax 100 antenna so that it's not lying directly on my shingles. I got it up on the roof this morning.
As you can see, I scraped the base a little when I hoisted it up onto the roof. The Plasti Dip coating came off easily. I’m hoping that as long as it doesn’t get any more scrapes it’ll hold up to the weather.
I tied a piece of 550 cord between the insulator on the end of the antenna, and a loop of insulated copper wire wrapped around the iron pipe serving as the mast. The wire is a piece of the black conductor from some Romex I had leftover from a previous project.
The matching network at the other end of the antenna is attached with cable ties to the mast supporting my Comet GP3 2M/70cm antenna.
You can see the feed lines going over the peak of my roof. They go down to the front left corner of the house, are cable tied to a downspout, and then come into my shack on the ground flood.
As a side note, make sure you use outdoor-rated cable ties if you are exposing them to the weather. When a friend and I installed the Comet GP3 several years ago we used white cable ties, which are for indoor use only. When I put the HF antenna up there I replaced all the white ties with black ones that are UV-resistant. I didn’t need to cut the white ties – they snapped with only finger pressure.
Anyway, elevating the antenna and orienting so that it runs as close to North/South as I could get seems to have improved my reception on 20M. I had a QSO this morning with a ham in Georgia and both Tx and Rx seemed much stronger.