Introduction: Just Another Antenna
So I decided to create a antenna out of scrap materials I had around the house, the idea was to not purchase any materials if at all possible. I know the common person would not have this much junk lying around but I did so I challenged myself to do this . So you can see in the picture above how it looks , found out that I I have to make some adjustments in materials for rigidity but short of that it worked just fine. I started out with a television that had absolute no signal at all and then added my home-brew results were better than I ever expected. Understand depending on where yo install antenna, location , distance to towers, all mine were within 20 miles and of course how high you install it, my installers a crawl space. If I put it outside as I intended I would have gotten much better gain. Ok so now on with it.
Material list is minimal as seen in the above photo:
I used left over PEX 1/2" tubing about 3'
1/2" Plastic Tees
3/8" copper tubing About 30" divided
3/4" plastic plumbing
Just a note here , probably hard to see but I used the 1/2" tees to couple the PEX and where I combined the 1/2" plumbing pipe I used a 3/4X3/4X3/4 tee for the center.I found some internal 3/4-1/2 reducers to accommodate the center tee . So thats pretty much it for materials you should end up with approximately a 26" circle when assembled .So base your materials on that and you really can't go wrong.
I took some coax wire I had and removed about 8" of insulation, didn't need to do that much but I always find if I have enough material I can afford to make mistakes, besides it's all free now that I have overbought for other projects. So I twisted the cable braid and removed the center core insulation leaving a strip of copper conductor visible .
Ok so now you have all your materials ready , its just a matter of assembly. From the above photo you can see what your objective is . I took the copper tubing from a roll and sort of bent it into and arc to make my circle , you can take something like a round trash can or similar item to help create this arc and then once in the tubing you could just form it or just put it inside of the pex and form the arc, whatever works for you easier. At one end of the copper tubing for each I used a pair of vice grips and just flattened out the end so I could have a way to attach the coax wires .
Step 4: Finishing Up
I bent the copper tubing , inserted into the PEX tubing and connected the coax to each piece of tubing.You can do this in a verity of ways, solder, rivet or just slide wire into tube before you crimp it as I did. The rest is just assembly. I modified a Tee for the center but it wasn't really necessary I drilled a hole to allow the coax wire to extend from the piping. I only put a F type connector on it but feel free to us a matching transformer, maybe you will get better gain. I ended up with over 40 channels on a Samsung 32" LED TV .Some were duplicates but they were from other towers .Great reception and very simple project to do very pleased with results.
Challenge I found with this project was getting enough rigidity for use outside but my application was for crawl space so I did not have an issue there. I used red and blue PEX so I could point but that turned out that direction wasn't and issue seeing how this is a omni directional antenna, experiment with it , can be vertical or horizontal . This is not a new concept by any means, there are many designs on the web like this one, I just wanted to make mine a bit more weather resistant if I were to install it outdoors.