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True Ladder Line and Wire Antennas

Antenna Modeling and the Great Forums Debate

Posted by Brian Duerr WB2JIX on

I have been part of a few, heated discussions on various forums regarding the modeling of an open wire fed, True Ladder Line doublet. After bantering back and forth for weeks on the subject, I decided I had to quit beating a dead horse and move on. Yes, there are people that are quite analytical and NEED to go through the process to prove something however, in the end, it won’t make a bit of difference with a balanced feed antenna.

Can antenna modeling be useful? Yes! Is it the BE ALL END ALL of antenna construction and performance? NO IT IS NOT!

I challenge you to ask anyone that has spent money on any of the applications, this one question; does the final result of the erected and functioning antenna match what the software "told you?" I'll wager any money that it does not.

I have followed up with a few of my customers that literally spent weeks running various scenarios with EzNEC and output dozens of tables and charts and shared many of them with me. When they were finally on the air with a properly installed True Ladder Line antenna, the results were rarely even close to their data.

Some hams actually refuse to believe that the open wire fed doublet can even function at all. This model antenna has been in use since the earliest days of broadcast radio and then amateur radio. There are many thousands of us that are using this antenna very successfully.

It is the most efficient, wire, dipole-type antenna that you can use. It's just a simple, rugged, all-band antenna that just works with no gimmicks, traps, coils, linear loading, coax-matching stubs etc.

Trust me! Put one up properly, use a decent tuner, follow the basic guidelines for using open wire and enjoy excellent all band performance.

I honestly get nothing but praise from every, single customer that has one of these. It couldn't be easier!

The whole modeling hang-up reminds me of an IBM Engineer friend that was on the list to receive the first Toyota Prius that came into a certain dealer in Vermont when they were first off the assembly line. To make a long story short, he spent so much time analyzing the battery life, the motor current draw, the mileage claims etc. He never did complete the analysis to his satisfaction. The dealer got tired of waiting, sold the car away from him and he was now further down the line to get one. Guess what? He had to pay higher than sticker price now because of the demand! When he finally got one, and I was going for a ride with him, I asked him, "so, is it everything you expected?" He replied "more than I expected!” He said he felt it was even worth the extra few grand he had to spend.

Thanks for reading!

  • antenna modeling
  • eznec
  • calculations
  • ladder line
  • open wire
  • doublet
  • 600 ohm