WSPR awareness and presentation

Submitted by KD2PGP on Sun, 09/11/2022 - 04:48

Starting September 11, 2022 - Ending September 23, 2022 Expired
Antenna Testing with WSPR Thursday, 9/22/22, 7:00pm JSAR’s Clubhouse at Riverwood Park

 Antenna Testing with WSPR


Thursday, 9/22/22, 7:00pm

JSAR’s Clubhouse at Riverwood Park

Questions Addressed:
What is Weak Signal Propagation Reporter (WSPR) and is it useful for antenna testing?

Do “random wire” non-resonant antennas work and if so how well?

Does an antenna tuner help tune your antenna?

Was M. Walter Maxwell right?

Presentation Description:
This presentation comes out of the work that we (KD2VEZ and KD2VFZ) performed in preparation for the 2022 ARRL Field Day this past June.  We were looking for a different antenna from last year’s field day and had some interest in something called a “random wire” antenna.  This type of antenna is a non-resonant antenna.  A random wire antenna is a length of wire used with a wide range antenna tuner.  As one would expect, a non-resonant antenna exhibits a very high SWR and in the ham radio community the common wisdom is that it should not work or should not work well because the associated antenna tuner does not help tune the antenna and only serves to make the radio “happy”.  

Earlier in the year KD2VVG  mentioned a book titled “Reflections” by M. Walter Maxwell that dispels that common wisdom.  The book covers the RF principles and analysis to prove that an antenna does not need to be resonant and have a very low SWR if an antenna tuner is used. This book caused quite a stir in the club.  The only way to settle this controversy for us was to perform an experiment and do some testing.


This presentations describes the testing performed and the results.