Antennas for 160 Meters

Antennas for 160 Meters

Antenna: 160 meters, Range: 1.8 to 2.0 MHz

Good 160 meters antennas are easy to build with nothing more than readily available materials. Since 160 meters covers the frequency range of 1.8 to 2.0 MHz you can use a few algebraic formulas to compute antenna sizes. One thing about 160 meters as a survivalist band, you won’t see many others there!

The use of 160 meters for survivalists is likely never to come about for several reasons. One reason is the size of antennas needed for the 160 meter band are rather large. On HF communications radio operators generally use antennas that are one quarter wavelength for the band they wish to use. On 160 meters a quarter-wave antenna is in the neighborhood of 130 feet. Shortened verticals and dipoles are used with some success and there are some hearty souls who have develop massive beam antennas for 160 meters such as the one shown below.

160 meter beam 01 160 meter beam 02


Of course these 160 meter beam antennas would not be practical for any type of survivalist communications.

Problem number two with 160 meters is that it is primarily a nighttime, wintertime band due to its propagation characteristics.

Vertical Ham Radio Antennas

Vertical Ham Radio Antennas

Vertical Ham Radio Antennas love ’em or hate ’em they are still a viable antenna for use in either two-way communications or simple shortwave listening. Why the bad press for verticals? Well to be honest some verticals really aren’t all they are cracked up to be. Claims made by the designers and/or manufacturers simply don’t hold up when the antennas are put into action. Many amateur radio operators put up vertical antennas in a hurry and tend to skip important considerations set forth by the manufacturer. Once the antenna is up it naturally works in a substandard fashion and the operator generally blames the vertical antenna instead of the fashion in which it was installed.

Vertical Antenna Types

You can’t really have more than one way to erect a vertical antenna and that is in a vertical position. But there are quite a few different types of vertical antennas:

  • Base vertical antennas
  • Mobile vertical antennas
  • Portable vertical antennas
  • Wire vertical antennas
  • Towers and structures as vertical antennas

What’s Best For A Survivalist?

Someone on the move will grab their bug out bag and their emergency radio kit complete with radios and an antenna system of some sort. There are many ways to build a vertical antenna but a survivalist must think of weight and ease of assembly. The picture to the right is an example of a Vertical Ham Radio Antennasself-contained antenna system ready to travel. In this case you merely find a good location for your vertical antenna, assemble the pieces shown above, connect the feedline to your radio and you are in business.