Supplementary S9v43 Installation Tips

 

The manufacturer’s instructions for the S9v43 do cover the procedure and the 19" of pipe to be left above the concrete to form the stub over which you can slip the antenna. There is a hole in the bottom section of the antenna through which you feed the antenna wire. It is led down the outside of the lower section for the remaining 19" and over to either the 4:1 Unun or the Remote Antenna-Tuner. I built a small 24" X 24" X 5" enclosure to cover these added units. Of course you really should also buy the radial plate. It has pre-drilled holes for the stainless steel bolts, nuts and washers for your radials.

In ideal soil it should be possible to drive the steel pipe into the ground as they discuss. However if you want to bore a hole you can rent a T-shaped 6" auger but be sure to also rent a digging bar as you will probably encounter stones or rocks as I did. This is not expensive but is essential. You can use a sonotube to contain the concrete but that is not essential. Your hole should be 4 ft deep to get below the frost line in this area.

You can use either steel plumbing pipe of 1.9" OD or steel electrical conduit of 1.9" OD. Both pipes are sold based on ID, which would be 1 3/4". Your 48" concrete depth plus 19" would require a pipe 67" long. It is sold in 10 ft lengths and most stores will cut it for you. If you cut the 10 ft in half, your 60" lengths will not go all the way to the bottom of the concrete. That has very little impact on the ability of the concrete to retain the tube in the ground so you might share your tube with a friend as I did.

Do not make the mistake of buying the quick dry post hole concrete mix. If you do, you may find that you don't have time to get your post vertical before it sets and you can no longer move it. It may be wise to have a piece of wood inside the tubing that you can guy while you pour the concrete. That guying must be very solid as concrete is heavy and will try to displace the tube as you pour it into the hole. You can drop some rocks in beside the tube to wedge it in place before pouring the concrete. Just be sure to pack the concrete down to fill all the voids before it hardens. You should have ten minutes or so before it sets and it should be quite solid in two hours.

Peter Jago VA3PJ fitted a temporary light plastic sleeve on the tubing when the concrete was poured. (A shower curtain rod plastic cover sleeve is ideal for this purpose). After the concrete sets you could pull out the tubing leaving the sleeve in place. By keeping the concrete down about 1" below the soil/grass surface you now have the ability to remove all traces of the antenna and simply pour an inch of top soil on the base and plant grass. I didn't do that so will have to cut off the tube at ground level with a hack saw before adding the top soil and grass seed to cover the radial plate. If you prefer, the radials and feedline could be pulled up and the slits left just tamped down. In a month they would be grown over.

A square-mouth edging spade is perfect for burying the radials an inch or so. Use of landscape staples on each radial to hold it in position before burial simplifies that process. The feedline should be positioned midway between adjacent radials and should not run parallel. This should be done after the base is poured and the radial plate fitted over the stub before the S9v43 is mounted. Lifting the s9v43 is simple for an adult male as it weighs around 5 kg.