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post #1 of 4 Old 01-05-2009 Thread Starter
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SSB antenna: copper foil in headliner?

In previous threads, using copper tape to line the hull for an antenna ground plane has been discussed. I was thinking about how difficult this could be with my boat then I wondered if it made a difference where the ground plane was? It would sure be a lot easier to install the copper tape hidden by the headliner in my boat. Does it make a difference?

Ray
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post #2 of 4 Old 01-05-2009
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Ray:

That would work OK. I recently worked on a large motorsailer with just that configuration (copper strips in the overhead).

Signal strength would probably be as good as if the strips were lower in the boat -- underdeck or in the bilge area. Only thing is you might have more interference that way due to the interaction of rf with other wires and devices nearby -- both on transmit and on receive.

But, if that's the best you can do, try it. You might actually do a trial by just taping the copper strips to the overhead, without fully installing them. That way, you could experiment a bit with numbers and placement. Take time doing this. Check out several bands, and do it on different days to account for unusually bad (or good) propagation conditions.

Finally, if possible it would be good to run a copper strip....or a heavy wire...from the tuner ground lug to the nearest bronze thru-hull. This might help cut down on the noise a bit.

You never know for sure what's gonna be best. I asked a boat in the Bahamas yesterday what type installation they had....boat checks in every day, and has a strong signal compared to other boats in the same anchorage, and general area. Answer: a M710, backstay antenna, AT130 tuner, and a 20' long heavy wire running from the tuner ground to a ground plate. All some 13 years old!!!

Bill
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post #3 of 4 Old 01-12-2009
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Actually, I think it will depend on how much surface area of copper foil you're going to be installing. When it is installed in the bilge, the copper foil generates a capacitive connection with the saltwater around the boat, making the ground more effective. You'd lose this by installing it above the overhead, and probably would need far more foil for it to work properly.

Sailingdog

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post #4 of 4 Old 01-12-2009 Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
Actually, I think it will depend on how much surface area of copper foil you're going to be installing. When it is installed in the bilge, the copper foil generates a capacitive connection with the saltwater around the boat, making the ground more effective. You'd lose this by installing it above the overhead, and probably would need far more foil for it to work properly.
if the head liner foil was connected to a thru-hull fitting, would that make it equal to hull lined foil? or still inferior?

Ray
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