Dipole vs. Bobtail, Pliny and the KWS-1

Last night I came home from work and it was so beautiful out that I sat out on the deck looking at where I can put antennas and what kinds of 40M antennas I could put up. I had a pint of Pliny the Elder, something I haven’t had for a couple of years, and yes, it was very good.

A 40M dipole up only 50′ has the same gain as a Bobtail – or other phased vertical array – so it shows how great a simple wire antenna can be. But when you look at the low takeoff angle of the phased vertical array, then you have a real DX antenna. Phased Vertical Arrays on 40M are really great antennas. Much better than a single vertical – that is for sure. And they are so easy to put up and maintain!

But think about it – its actually a lot for me to even get a dipole up 50′ since my neighbors cut down the very 2 trees that supported the 40M dipole I had up 70′ when I worked my last ATNO to get on Honor Roll – which was to work SV2ASP/A . . .

What I did clearly see is that an all wire element 40M Bobtail will fit in the back yard – but will require some tree trimming. For the KWS-1 transmitter that I will be receiving Monday, I have the Stepper UrbanBeam and the DX Engineer DV-40P, so I have everything I need for a while – this Bobtail will wait for another month – after all of the tall green grass dries up and I can more easily weed whack it.

The Bruce Array pattern is more interesting than I had realized from before. You can see how it covers more of the higher angle than the Bobtail Curtain. Something to consider. On one hand – the Bobtail would reject more high angle noise, but on the other, the Bruce offers the higher angle DX that you do get right when you are entering or exiting a gray line opening.

I will hang the Bobtail from two 50′ trees – one is a tall cedar on my neighbors property and the other a big old California Oak – that already has a line up in it.

I have been working very intense 5 weeks on contract at Twitter. I took the success I had at Credit Karma and have not only kicked it up into much higher gear, in the process I have already re-invented myself in my career. The start of this trail was at Credit Karma – but I could only go so far there – and had to make a move to get to this next step. After 5 weeks of super intense study totally “heads down”, I am feeling some reward, and I am getting my Mojo back – it feels great. Its also the very logical next step – but those last 2 years at Credit Karma were my “launching pad” – what I learned building the Data Explorer turns out to not be the end of the trail – but only the beginning, and I am even starting to feel that rush of energy that I get when I launch in a new direction. Its all making sense and things are falling in place – for the first time this year – these transitions take real hard work to do, but the rewards are always good. This is firmly in my rear view mirror – but what a extremely valuable  experience:


OK – enough about work, its time for weekend fun! This weekend I will get the MFJ-267 set up with the fans, and I will also get the antenna, key and mic cables all set up in anticipation of the KWS-1.. When work goes well – then its much easier to have big weekend fun, and so onward.

I will say this – again, ham radio and my electronics hobby has always been there for me since I was 11 years old – what a great hobby!


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