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Beer Can Antenna?

Today I was at the BARA Amateur Radio Auction and a "2m Beer Can Antenna" was one of the items for sale.

What is a "Beer Can Antenna"?

They can be made from many different types of cans -beer, beans, etc. The auctioneer, Jim K2ZO, shared a story of his days in the military where they made a 20m vertical out of beer cans from a night of entertainment and the base security would not let them keep it assembled for too long.

It sold for $7 I think! The price was driven up to get us to the next item on the auction block.

What you can not see in the picture is that 4 radials attach to the PVC base and were removed for ocular safety. For the most part the "beer can" antenna is a 1/4 ground plane antenna electrically.

This is a much smaller version for 2m compared to Jim's 20m one and some of the features include:

  • Its cheap to make.
  • Has a wide bandwidth.
  • Can scale to different frequencies easily.

The theory makes sense to me and some quick research turned up a thread on Radioreference.com talking about this type of antenna.

Here is a YouTube video of the type of antenna used for 10m!

Looking for an antenna project?

This may be worth some brave soul experimenting with. Looks to be about a 6 pack for 2m (suitcase for HF) of your favorite beverage or a sale on canned green beans will get you on your way!

Antenna Project
  1. Will you try to make an antenna like this?2 votes
    1. Yes
      50.00%
    2. No
      50.00%
    3. Is this a joke?
        0.00%

Comments

  • pretty cool! I wouldn't want to spend the time... but I suppose in a pinch it would work... and it definitely would have WIDE b/w on 2 meters!

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