Last sunday I attended a hamfest in Bladel, The Netherlands, organised by PI4KAR.  From my qth it is a one hour drive to one of the niciest and last hamfests of the year. I had no special needs to look out for but after a while I stumbled on a Diamond W735 antenna. The W 735 is a 2-band loaded dipole for 80 and 40m. Overall length reduced from normal dipole dimensions by use of loading coils rather than traps. Overall length is 26m, fits just on the roof. My only question was : should I buy it or build myself one ? Normally I would build one described in the Rothammel book. It uses coils of 120 µH. I also found different designs on the internet. I walked further thinking of the advantages or disadvantages of building one... The cost is low, I could find time to build one, designing and making the coils is not that easy. I have to go to a friend to measure the inductance, my meter is not accurate enough. Buying one costs money, 75 euro (~ 105 USD), but it is ready and the coils are weatherproof. All material is supplied. I returned and bought one 🙂 I hope to install it next spring.

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