Friday, June 6, 2008

DIY TV Antennas

Sorry it's been a while since I last posted, but I've been overloaded (to the point of clipping and distortion) with school work and studying for the SAT (I take it tomorrow).

One of my technical obsessions is TV & FM antennas, more specifically, DIY antennas.

In the last year or so, the DIY antenna scene has exploded from just a few nuts to a gazillion nuts.

What could be better? You bring home a fancy new HDTV, and within 1/2hr, for under $10, you can put together a nice down and dirty "4-bay" UHF antenna that will let you get most local stations: all in HD quality.

There are also some more advanced designs, and if built right, could be installed outside and last you a few decades.

So, here's the grandiose list of antenna plans.

First is the basic 4-bay antenna. Has a pretty good set of plans.

DIYers made a significant breakthrough sometime last year. They took an old, obscure UHF antenna, the Hooverman, patented in the late 1950s and used some computer modeling to tweak the performance. The end result: practically the best bay-type UHF antenna ever made. People have done side by side comparisons with previous top performers, the Channel Master 4221 and 4228, and it's grossly outperformed them. Plus, some modelers are working on an even better version.
Here's the main link: The Gray-Hoverman For UHF Television Reception.
The thread for the original thread is here:Generation I Gray-Hoverman Antenna (SBGH & DBGH)
The thread for the new improved design is here:Generation II Gray-Hoverman Antenna (SBGH2 & DBGH2)
There also a bunch of people trying old designs and coming up with new ones.

Here are a couple of "free for all" Antenna design threads.
Modeling Software for OTA Antenna Design & Creation
How to build a UHF antenna...
and finally:
DIY HDTV antenna Lumenlab
For this one, you'll need a user name and password. Thanks to, you have one:
username: surreydistrict36
password: surreygirls

If your looking old obscure antennas, Google Patents is you friend.

I was looking for plans for the mother of all VHF antennas, The deep fringe model of the Channel Master Crossfire, and found exactly what I was looking for:on Google Patents

As far as old designs go, this guy has some good stuff on his Photobucket.

The Worldwide TV FM DX Association also has a good collection of stuff on their site.

1 comment:

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