With the Diplexers and Wiring Harnesses completed, it is time to do the easy part – the physical antennas. (for the Diplexer & Harness Build see Building Microdiplexers with Victor KC9NWB )
Looking locally for the 1/8″ diameter common brass rod VE2ZAZ designed his antenna version around neither the quantity nor price-point were very attractive. Little short pieces and expensive.
Found that McMaster-Carr has the rods at a very good price in 6 ft lengths. They must have a special deal with their shippers as the shipping charge was very modest as well. I also bought the CPVC tube and Vinyl End Caps from them, to top up my order above minimums and for ease of shopping. Those prices were also very very good, though I don’t know what I am goingto do with all the extra vinyl end caps, given that the minimum order quantity was 100 pieces!
Did find that my circuit boards are a hair oversized, and I will need to make a decision whether to go to a larger boom or if I am going to add a “Diplexer Pod” externally. I am leaning to the Pod and exterior wiring, with the idea of using the Pod as a future attach point for a receive preamp.
Mechanically I am looking at ways to make the elements easy to remove and reinstall. Thinking of trying a couple ideas with scrap materials before drilling the booms.
Thinking of using an epoxy putty ball with a small plastic cross-pin through it applied to each element on one side of the boom and then using elastic rubber bands to hold the elements in place when assembled. Would provide for positive indexing and I could use letter stamps to mark each element for location. Have a couple other ideas with heatshrink tubing and a clip.