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New ham coax questions

Sep 12th 2016, 01:26

W4RTA

Joined: Sep 4th 2016, 01:36
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
Hello everyone. I'm a new ham and I'm finalizing my first base antenna. I'm currently running a FT-7900r with a mag-mount 2m antenna on a cookie sheet, it works but it's an antenna on a cookie sheet haha. Anyway I'm planning on putting an antenna on the side of my house and my desk sits along the same wall the antenna will be mounted (from my understanding from a couple of friends I'm fairly lucky I get an entire spare bedroom to dedicate to this). So now my questions. I'm planning on running RG8x because it's fairly cheap and I'm fairly broke. Would this be a good feed line to at least start out with? And question 2, would it be better to buy precut length with PL-259 connectors already on or should I buy spools of cable and learn to soder the connectors myself? I'd like to learn to solder anyway and bought a small iron with some lead free rosin-core soder to practice with. Thank you very much in advance.

73s

Bobby W4RTA
Sep 12th 2016, 14:53

W1VT

Joined: Apr 4th 1998, 00:00
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
A small soldering iron typically won't deliver enough heat to properly solder PL-259 connector--I typically use a large iron intended for soldering stained glass windows together. Many hams have switched to crimp type PL-259s--it is now easier to find the proper crimp tool than to get a big enough soldering iron--and the results are typically more reliable.

Zack W1VT
ARRL Senior Lab Engineer
Sep 12th 2016, 15:15

WA0CBW

Joined: Apr 4th 1998, 00:00
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
You didn't say how long your coax run is so you may want to compare different types of coax for their loss at 2-meters. I agree with Zack about the soldering iron. You may want to buy the coax with the connectors installed until you have some experience installing them and have the proper equipment ( soldering gun/crimping tool).
Bill
Sep 12th 2016, 16:54

W4RTA

Joined: Sep 4th 2016, 01:36
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
I would only need about 20-25 feet of coax for the base antenna I think but I like the idea of having more around because I'm planning on building some portable antennas because I like the idea of making something like that.
Sep 13th 2016, 15:26

AI4BJ

Joined: Sep 2nd 2003, 12:14
Total Topics: 0
Total Posts: 0
Good advice above. One advantage of attaching the connectors yourself is that you can get away with drilling a much smaller hole through your wall, particularly if you use RG8X.

Mark

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