Help - Small Antennas

Thurs, 28 Mar 2024

Help, I have an antenna problem

And I want to post something on my blog

OK, I’ve recently fallen down the QRP HF hole and it’s a fabulous place to be. Don’t rescue me from that.

Where I need help is the unending desire for a tiny, packable, non-wire antenna.
Something like the old Miracle Whip, the modern incarnation from Moonraker, or one of the Chinese versions from eBay.

Reading reviews on DXEngineering is a rollercoaster of emotions. Those little antennas could either be the greatest packable vertical radiators in history or scrap-bin fodder.

Further surfing makes me wonder about a small Magnetic Loop, also available from Moonraker and any number of eBay knock-offs.

I see the size of these and know they’re compromised. And I know QRP and compromised antennas aren’t a great combination.
But I have this desire for a packable POTA kit which doesn’t rely on tree branches. What is one to do?

I have a potential work trip to a state park soon where I’ll absolutely do a POTA activation. But what if that activation could be done from a picnic table instead of near a tree? What if a suspended antenna draws the ire of a park ranger? What if the laws of physics suddnly no longer apply to my 5w of output?

Has anyone actually used any of these antennas for POTA?

If you have, I’d love to hear about it. Are they a waste of money or actually useful?
Look, there’s a blog post. And about radio, no less!