SailNet Community - Reply to Topic

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > On Board > Gear & Maintenance > SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay
 Not a Member? 


Thread: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay Reply to Thread
Title:
  

By choosing to post the reply below you agree to the rules you agreed to when joining Sailnet.
Click Here to view those rules.

Message:
Trackback:
Send Trackbacks to (Separate multiple URLs with spaces) :
Post Icons
You may choose an icon for your message from the following list:
 

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the SailNet Community forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
Please note: After entering 3 characters a list of Usernames already in use will appear and the list will disappear once a valid Username is entered.
User Name:
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in

Human Verification

In order to verify that you are a human and not a spam bot, please enter the answer into the following box below based on the instructions contained in the graphic.



Click here to view the posting rules you are bound to when clicking the
'Submit Reply' button below


Additional Options
Miscellaneous Options

Click here to view the posting rules you are bound to when clicking the
'Submit Reply' button below


Topic Review (Newest First)
05-19-2012 10:24 AM
SVAuspicious
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Quote:
Originally Posted by hellosailor View Post
Bear in mind that any waterproof cover on stainless rigging is going to hide the rigging, prevent oxygen from reaching the stainless, and if it gets damp in there--the could cause crevice corrosion and failure.
Thus the guidance to pull the tape and inspect annually, just like you do with rigging tape (you do, don't you?) at the spreaders.
05-18-2012 11:13 PM
hellosailor
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Hose clamp, bulldog clamp...Wouldn't a real sailor just LASH IT with twine?

Some antiseize or dielectric paste, either one, should prevent corrosion but I'm not sure that a waterproof cover is a good idea. Bear in mind that any waterproof cover on stainless rigging is going to hide the rigging, prevent oxygen from reaching the stainless, and if it gets damp in there--the could cause crevice corrosion and failure.

Might, could, not saying it would, just raising the question that maybe, on rigging, something breathable like lashing might actually be as good a way to go as waterproofing? (And of course, more yachty. :-)
05-18-2012 03:11 PM
SVAuspicious
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

So clearly the appropriate response, Eric, is for you, Bill, and me to meet up in Annapolis, DC, or Baltimore and hang out a bit.
05-18-2012 01:59 PM
fairbank56
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Quote:
Originally Posted by SVAuspicious View Post
It's tough to find a hose clamp that has a stainless steel bolt - most are mild steel so they corrode. Unless you are going to drill and safety wire vibration will loosen them.
There are cheap ones and good ones as with everything else. I use ones that are all stainless although it doesn't really matter with the way I weatherproof them. As you can see from the photo, no moisture gets in. That one had been going for years on a boat with multiple trips to New England ports. The tight weatherproofing also prevents any loosening of the clamp.

Quote:
the only way to inspect the connection was to take off all the tape and goo...a really messy and unpleasant undertaking, so rarely if ever done.
As you can see in the photo, no mess. A simple quick longitudinal cut with a razor knife and you just peel it off. It's worked for me for years for this and various coaxial connections. There's never been a gooey mess when removing it.

Eric
05-18-2012 01:03 PM
travlineasy
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

I usually agree with both of you, but, this is one particular instance where I do not. The clamps, both types, are not great for making a good electrical connection to the backstay. Yes, both will work, at least most of the time, but I think I may have found a better solution to this age-old problem.

I stripped about 4-inches of insulation from the wire's center conductor, then lightly twisted the wire back to somewhere close to its original shape. Next, I lightly tinned the stripped section of wire with rosin-core solder. After it cooled, I placed a dab of silicone cement to the base of the wire, thereby providing a waterproof shield so there would be no water intrusion between the insulation and wire.

Attaching the wire to the backstay was simple. I merely wrapped the tinned section of wire around the backstay, then tightly wrapped the connection with white, rigging tape. A small, white, cable tie was placed at the top and bottom of the rigging tape to anchor it in place--just to be on the safe side. No big lump from the connection, nothing to get snagged on, and when I have to remove it, which in my case is necessary when the boat goes onto the travel lift, I just snip the cable ties and unwrap the tape--it takes just a few seconds.

I've measured the connection resistance with an ohm meter many times to ensure that it is solid--never had a bad measurement. Additionally, there's no pressure point or chafing of the backstay whatsoever.

I think the biggest problem I see with SSB radio installations is the grounding system. Essentially, this is a longwire antenna, which requires an earth ground to operate at peak efficiency. Most installers have the tendency to attach the ground post of the radio to the negative terminal of the boat's batteries and assume this constitutes grounding--it does not. Even if the engine is an inboard that is grounded to the negative terminal of the battery, the ultimate connection to an earth ground, which in this case is the water, it not always adequate. Sometimes it works, sometimes it just doesn't. The best connection in this instance is an external ground plate, one that is often used for grounding the mast for lightning strike protection. It's a solid, ground connection that makes a huge difference in the reception and transmission of SSB radio signals.

I'll shoot some step by step photos and post them when the boat goes back in the water.

Cheers,

Gary
05-18-2012 11:28 AM
btrayfors
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Eric,

I usually agree with you, too, but in this case do not. Here's why.

I used your method for years, too, but found that the only way to inspect the connection was to take off all the tape and goo...a really messy and unpleasant undertaking, so rarely if ever done.

Maybe, if you did a really super job in the beginning, there'd be little need to inspect the connection, but if you didn't and if water gets in...even a bit...you risk crevice corrosion of the backstay itself. And, as you know, crevice corrosion in any standing rigging is a very bad thing!

With the wire clamp and ring-terminal thing, you don't need anything more. I don't tape my connections or "protect" them in any way, other than a bit of vaseline or other lubricant on the wire clamp. This way, the connection is always open to view, it's clean and tight, and can easily be inspected or replaced at any time.

Different strokes for different folks, I guess!

I, too, would sometime like to meet you after all these years. You seem to hide yourself pretty well in the bowels of the Naval Academy :-)

Bill
05-18-2012 10:35 AM
SVAuspicious
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Hi Eric --

You've been on my list of people I want to meet for a long time. I don't often disagree with you. I do here. It's tough to find a hose clamp that has a stainless steel bolt - most are mild steel so they corrode. Unless you are going to drill and safety wire vibration will loosen them. Maintenance over time generally means 'remove and replace' which isn't terribly expensive but is a pain and a waste.

Clearly you've had a good experience with hose clamps. I have not. Maybe you have sources for better kit than I do.

From an installer point of view, the hose clamp is attractive because you don't have to stock so many different sizes. I do have to keep a lot of different sizes of wire clamps to avoid extra (expensive) runs to hardware stores to buy (expensive) retail parts. I also like a heat-shrink/adhesive/crimped ring connector to the wire clamp. It means a few more cents to the customer but it makes me more confident in my work as I watch them sail off into the sunset (well - usually the sunrise here on the Chesapeake).
05-18-2012 09:41 AM
fairbank56
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

Been using them professionally for many years without problems.

Eric
05-18-2012 09:04 AM
SVAuspicious
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

To reiterate, hose clamps are a fundamentally bad idea. Use a wire clamp.

05-18-2012 08:52 AM
fairbank56
Re: SSB Antenna wire attachment to the backstay

I really don't get the bent bolt idea. Three hose clamps, bolt-washer-nut, terminal lug, and the difficulty sealing this contraption up OR a single hose clamp over the wire. But hey, if you want to make it more difficult than it is, go for it. No disrespect to Bill who generally has good idea's and info

Eric
This thread has more than 10 replies. Click here to review the whole thread.

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 05:24 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.