|The main modification I did to the Butternut (now Bencher) HF2V (80-40 meter) VERTICAL
THE OLD GUCKED UP insulator from this antenna..(I bought it
second hand) are shown above. It is a bad idea to use conductive
compound on or around insulators. The guck migrates (creeps) and
conductive streaks are formed and the insulator no longer works.
To the left pictured..the early stages of re-construction of my
Butternut vertical with the NEW INSULATOR or insulating section.
This light brown fiberglass is not a solid fiberglass insulator but
rather a light weight spreader arm from a lightning bolt quad that I
never put up.
Inside the spreader arm..I added a homebrew type of torsion bar I
made from fiberglass fence stays. Details are described below in
this article. It made the whole system strong and secure.
This whole antenna is fairly light and easy to lower up and down.
In bad windy weather..I lay it on the ground for added safety and
The "new" butternut insulator I made uses two quad spreader arms from a
lightning bolt quad..(that I chicken out of putting up in the city). I slid two
arms one into each other..so it is pretty strong and light weight..BUT ..I did
something else that I forgot to take pictures of and that is I made a simple
homebrew type of torsion bar using the fiberglass fence stretchers
available at many hardware stores. I merely taped them together to form a
type of leaf spring inside this hollow insultor. So the insultator is no longer
hollow. I felt this leaf spring would add strength and give me piece of mind.
The insulator runs inside the lower coil aluminum tubing about 8 inches or so and
goes up above the top coil. In the picture above. I cut the fiberglass tubing.
I then went out and bought some larger diameter aluminum tubing at a ham flea
market from an antenna seller and I beefed up the vertical with larger diameter tubing
that fit OVER THE FIBERGLASS tube. Everything is compression clamped with
stainless steel hose clamps.
It has been up in the air now for 2 years. The previous owner had his (thinner)
unmodified HF2V guyed with a guy ring and ropes. He said it can flop around a fair
amount in the wind if not guyed. MY BEEFED UP VERSION does not flop around in the
wind. It does move some. IF its really windy..I lower it down for peace of mind.
I have my overhead hydro line comming to my home that runs within 15 ft of the
vertical..SO..I dont want to take any chances.
vertical in the backyard..notice the hydro feed line. The antenna is about 15 ft from it.
That is why I built it so sturdy and with heavier tubing that I bought. Some of the original
lower section tubing of the original hf2v was used up above th loading coils. The
loading coils were moved up about 7 ft off the ground and a small top loading coil was
added ( a hustler rm15 coil)
Top bracket with an insulator. The 4 by 4 post makes for a strong installation.
The loading coils of the HF2 v were moved up above this point.
This spring 2011..I plan to mount a remote tv rotor to the 4 by 4 post and I plan to
rotate a specially designed top hat assembly above the coils which will (hopefully)
remotely tune the antenna on the low bands..without having to use an antenna tuner.
1.1 to 1 anywhere on 160, or 80 and 40..if it works.
I will be publishing an article about it ..this spring. Stay with hamelectronics magazine
dot com. LOTS MORE OF THESE HOME BREW PROJECTS including my spring 6 and 10
quad antenna and the rotating tuning top hat for hf2v. I have plenty of plans. 73 earl
PS..IF YOU HAVE SOME ARTICLES YOU WOULD LIKE TO WRITE AND HAVE PUBLISHED
..please feel free to contact me..firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com
This is a picture from Feb 2011..the HF2v has been up close to 2 years now. NOTE: the
insulating piece of fiberglass was spray painted an aluminum color. You can see the
ripples in the texture of the fiberglass insulator vs the section of aluminum above it.
A dime is used as a size comparison.
I had to buy 2 6 ft pieces of brand new aluminum tubing from a dealer at a flea market
in order to rebuild the HF2v witha sturdier construction.
BELOW PICTURED.....I put two pictures together to form the lower half of the
modified HF2V as it is today..April 22 2011.
As you can see; the top coils are quite a ways up the antenna. It is more like a
center loaded vertical.
There is another coil right at the top of the verticaal and it is an RM15 15 meter
mobile coil for the hustler mobile antenna.
A bit of top loading as well for the "modified" HF2v.
Below the coil is a coupling with the threaded stud for
the hustler coil and the small aluminum piece from
hustler with holes to allow more hustler resonators to
be added. I haven't tried mulitple resonators on the
top (yet). I did briefly try an RM80 hustler coil. The
antenna then had an swr down the band around the
very lower edge of 80 meter cw band. 3.520 (I think).
With the larger resonator ..the vertical was a bit top
heavy and it flopped around in the breeze a bit too
much for my liking. I have a hyrdro line cutting
through my lot to the house and I have to have a real
good strong vertical antenna.
It is fully self supporting (except for the lower
bracket). I take it down in strong wind storms more as
a precaution than an actual necessity. I like playing it
Actually..when I look at the picture below..the antenna seems long (big)..but when you look out the window or at it from the backyard..it doesnt
look as big. The neighbours have never said anything about my antennas.
I don't have a good picture of the torsion bar/leaf spring that runs up inside the
hollow fiberglass tubing (to add extra strength and flexibility) so I will describe it.
The picture below shows the fiberglass flat piece that I bought from a HOME DEPOT
store. I cut them with a dremel tool. I overlapped them to form a type of leaf spring
and I bound them in good quality electrical tape and then run it up inside the hollow
fiberglass insulator assembly.
Right now..I'm looking to buy a length of fiberglass rod (solid fiberglass rod) about 3
ft long and one inch diameter. That would be somewhat better and stronger than
this fiberglass insulator system I cobbled up..but it has been working good for me.
I have a fairly large backyard for this city of
Elliot Lake. I think the yard is 60 ft wide and
120 ft long.
Because of the garden area and sheds, I dont
have room for full size radials for 75 meters
and only room for a few radials on 40.
I did make a type of buried counterpoise of
copper pipe, copper tubing and copper wire
all soldered in a type of spider web.
For more pictures and details of the ground
counterpoise you can see this page in my site
MY VERTICAL GROUND SYSTEM
Above: two close up pictures of the top fixtures for mating up with the top loading coil. The bracket with the three holes spaced 120 degrees
apart is from a hustler mobile system. It would allow three coils to be mounted on the antenna to allow/produce different resonant points
allowing multiband operation. I did not try this antenna with multiple coils (YET). This may add a bit of a corona ball or hat to the antenna. The
stud that fits into the aluminum tubing is from a mobile antenna. It is some sort of coupler. A compression clamp is also used with this assembly.
One thing I did try at the top of this modified HF2V was an RM80 75/80 meter coil. I thought by adding the 80 meter coil to this 33 ft vertical that
the resonant point would be way down around 3 mhz..but it was resonant at 3.520 mhz! Top loading requires a great deal more inductance to
have a profound lowering of resonant frequency. Just consult the ARRL handbook. There is a loading chart for an 8 ft mobile antenna. The
loading chart shows inductances required for base loading, mid point loading and top loading. You can see the trend from that chart.