Author Topic: Can I use stranded stainless steel wire as a receiving antenna?  (Read 437 times)

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Offline Terry BitesTopic starter

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I've got loads of 1.5mm stranded stainless steel wire and gripples galore (I'm very tense).
Could I use this kind of wire to make a receiving antenna for 100k-30M.
I suspect that strands rubbing together with a bit of water and grime will generate noise.
Will that be an issue or is it just going to be LF nosie?
Anyone?
 

Offline CaptDon

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Re: Can I use stranded stainless steel wire as a receiving antenna?
« Reply #1 on: May 20, 2024, 12:39:52 pm »
I have not used stainless stranded but have used stranded of other materials and I don't think there was any difference vs. solid conductor. Chances would seem that any noise generated within the wire from physical activity would be at least 30 to 50 dB below local EMI at those frequencies.
Collector and repairer of vintage and not so vintage electronic gadgets and test equipment. What's the difference between a pizza and a musician? A pizza can feed a family of four!! Classically trained guitarist. Sound engineer.
 

Offline LaserSteve

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Re: Can I use stranded stainless steel wire as a receiving antenna?
« Reply #2 on: May 20, 2024, 02:55:30 pm »
Go for it.

Use a  good compression splice or  braze / silver solder a terminal on for the lead wire. If you braze or solder, make sure the metal is actually wetted by the filler material.  So possibly an acid flux is required. I'd be weary of crushable aluminum splices over time.


Terminate at both ends if possible.  I hate loose strands.

An Ohm Meter is your friend here. If you have a good DC connection you'll be fine.

With it being multi-stranded, that will help with the skin depth issues. Traditional ham antenna wire is copper flashed steel. The flashing is mainly for connecting, not conducting.

You could always use it as a carrier for copper, but I doubt you will need to do that.

HF is a bit dead/weak/ wierd these days due to peak solar cycle, so expect higher frequencies then usual to work better during the day, and go down band at night. Check your daily  space weather and propogation forcasts before before blaming your antenna.

We're getting hammered by Solar Flares. I never expected to see an Aurora in North East Ohio, but we did.

Steve
« Last Edit: May 20, 2024, 03:38:18 pm by LaserSteve »
"What the devil kind of Engineer are thou, that canst not slay a hedgehog with your naked arse?"
 

Offline jwet

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Re: Can I use stranded stainless steel wire as a receiving antenna?
« Reply #3 on: May 21, 2024, 05:34:49 am »
Ham's use copper clad iron/stranded steel wire for antenna's all the time.  It has a nice combination of strength, good conductivity especially when the copper is fresh and low cost.  After a few years, the copper corrodes away mostly and leaves the iron/steel for most of the life of the antenna- the conductivity is marginally lower but in the gran scheme of things- its very good.  Stainless is at least as good.  Another data point is sailors that use the standing rigging on their boats as an HF antenna.  A backstay with insulators and an antenna tuner makes a great antenna.  Go for it.
 


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