After 3 months of playing and working on 2m and 70cm, i decided it was about time i got some use out of the 40m band. My ATAS-25 Antenna does the trick at this but isn’t perfect. After some serious thought i opted for a SOTA beam to work on 2m and 70cm and whilst looking through the Sota Beams website i noticed the Band Hopper II so i purchased one at the same time. The Band Hopper II arrived this morning but i cannot use it until the SB270 SOTA Beam arrives hopefully tomorrow as i need the 7m fibreglass pole that is included with that kit to get the Band Hopper to work correctly.
Anyway it seems very well made and Richard at SOTA Beams has answered all my questions and has been very helpful. The wire is all wound onto wire winders, 2 for the dipole and the other for the guy and feed wire, which is made using RG174 fitted with a BNC fitting, i bought an adaptor to convert this to PL259. It is claimed that a tuner is not required, so hopefully on Saturday i can put the whole thing to the test on my local SOTA summit.
Many had suggested building an antenna myself, i don’t have the confidence yet to tweak and build something so critical as an HF antenna, without an analyser i could do some serious damage to my radio! So i bought i commercially available product, not as much fun i know, but by far the better option for me at the moment.
My SB270 arrived yesterday, it comes with everything you need, with some self assembly required. The package comes complete with the assembly instructions which include detailed text and pictures, which was a good job! I am no dab hand with a soldering iron and the tip has part broken off the iron i do have making soldering small joints hard work with only 2 hands.
Firstly i shrunk the heat shrink sleeving needs to be applied to help identify which part goes where in the field. This is an easy process to follow and achieved using a paint stripping gun, but i do think the same could be achieved with a powerful hair dryer. Once done the assembly of the cable is required to secure the crocodile clips onto the ends and then more heat shrinking sleeves to seal it all up. I then added some self amalgamating tape to finish it off. I have yet to test it, but here are the photos so far.