I am starting to build a 6 Meter Quad Antenna. I have chosen this mainly because it will fit my area comfortably. The first thing to do is check the internet for as much information as possible. Youtube has a variety of videos out there to get ideas for building the antenna. There are also many sites with excellent pics to get various ideas as to the construction of the antenna. I also tend to write different ideas down on graph paper for future reference.
Once I had a plan in mind I decided as to where I would get materials from. There are places out there that sell fiberglass tubes of varying sizes to make the spreader arms. Some of the places I would suggest are dx engineering and max gain systems. I decided in my case due to a lack of funds I would go with grey electrical pvc conduit pipe. It will not be very heavy due to the small size of the antenna. It would work well for other antennas such as 2 meters. The grey pvc conduit pipe is also uv resistant. The pvc conduit is always available at Lowes and Home Depot.
In trying to make the antenna as light as possible I am extending fiberglass driveway markers out of the 1.5ft pieces of pvc conduit pipe. These are also available from Lowes and Home Depot and are not very expensive. The also have some flexibility which will help in case of wind. I have seen some different techniques for stringing the antenna around the quad ends of the spreaders. What I will try using are two small hose clamps and a piece of the black outer part of some coax cable. Inside the pvc conduit I am going to place a 1 foot piece of dowel rod and mount the fiberglass driveway marker into it. This would also provide some adjustment for the spreaders if needed.
The next part to tackle is what to make the boom out of. Since I am using the grey electrical pvc conduit pipe I bought some 5 way pvc connectors online from the Green House Mega Store online. They fit the 3/4 inch grey pvc electrical pipe properly. To reinforce the grey pvc pipe I am going to try one of two options. I may use a piece of 3/4 inch dowel rod or 3/4 inch metal pvc pipe. I may design a clamp assembly of some sort to clamp the antenna to the mast.
The wire for the quad antenna can be interesting as well. Some individuals use scrap wire or even heavy duty speaker wire. I am going to use 14 gauge stranded copper antenna wire with relaxed pvc insulation for uv protection. It seems to be flexible enough for my situation. This was purchased from dx engineering online. There are a number of other ham radio supply sites out there that sell this wire as well as other types and sizes of antenna wire.
On a final thought once I get this together and tune it properly I will let all my readers know the results. Well everyone out on the air waves take care and 73s.