I’ve been thinking for a while about how I might get my antenna to load up on 160m. It’s a 104′ dipole fed with ladder line. I decided to try connecting both sides of the ladder line together and driving it against ground. To match it, I whipped up this tuner in about an hour:
The primary coil is about 8 turns on a CD case, and the secondary is about 50-60 turns on a 2″ PVC pipe. There’s a series varicap at the top of the secondary.
If I had another turn or two on the primary I would have been able to get a perfect match. As it is, I got an SWR of about 2:1 and used the autotuner in the radio to match that.
The band was dead, so no contacts – but I did transmit some PSK31 CQs and used pskreporter to verify that I had been heard up around the Canadian border.