The Versa-Tenna Story
Ever notice how the more superlative the name of an antenna (Super, Miracle, Magic, Wonder, etc.), the least likely it is to be effective? The “Miracle” of one example of these is that a 50” telescopic whip antenna will radiate at HF frequencies at all...
Versa-Tenna makes no claims beyond being thoughtfully designed, carefully built, and as the name implies, versatile in operation, purpose, and configuration.
The design is based on one of the oldest wire antennas in use since the advent of radio; the end-fed wire, or Zepp as it is often called. More modern adaptations include a matching unit at the near end of the wire to transform the very high impedance present at the end of the wire to a value that nearly equals that of coaxial cable, thus allowing more practical installations that also help keep stray RF out of the shack.
Anyone can construct a simple end-fed wire antenna by attaching a piece of wire to a 9:1 balun transformer. However, the design of the Versa-Tenna was optimized by carefully evaluating six different balun designs, used with 12 plausible radiator lengths. Antenna impedance measurements and EZNEC were used to arrive at a combination that “plays well” on all bands from 3.5 MHz to 30 MHz with a tuner. The balun design, wire length, and coax cable length are all critical to ensuring that the complex impedances seen by the tuner are easily handled within its matching range. Versa-Tenna, with its specially designed balun, is easily matched by all commonly used antenna tuners, including the typical built-in tuners of most rigs.
There is a bewildering choice of antennas and antenna systems for amateur radio use in fixed station or portable use. Two of my favorites were the jumping-off point for the design of the Versa-Tenna and its system components. The Buddipole™ and the PAR EndFedz® antennas are ingenious, beautifully designed and constructed, and are a great choice for their intended uses. I own and enjoy them both. My design goal for the Versa-Tenna was to replicate their best features, and overcome some of their limitations in certain uses. Thus, Versa-Tenna can be used for a fixed-station, permanent installation, requiring only one distant end support, operating on all bands, 80-10 meters with your existing tuner; or, operate all bands portable/emergency using our optional additions such as our field deployment kit. Adventure Radio, QRP, SOTA, etc. are enhanced with the optional companion Versa-Match Z-Match QRP tuner, lightweight coax, specialty pack, and combination walking stick - telescopic mast.
"Nothing Works Like A Wire"