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What kind of wire is best to use for connecting a FM radio to the antenna? This article doesn't say what kind of wire is used.

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  • $\begingroup$ The article is wrong when it says longer is better. You are probably best off with a 1/2 wavelength dipole made of the same 300 ohm twin lead as the connecting wire. Making it longer could add some signal strength ("gain"), but it produces weird and unpredictable nulls in the radiation pattern. The half-wave dipole has the best performance over a wide range of frequencies, with the best response at right angles to the antenna wire ("broadside"). $\endgroup$ – Martin Ewing AA6E Nov 26 '15 at 21:31
  • $\begingroup$ AA6E is spot on in his comment. I have a dipole that is made from the split conductors of 300-ohm twin-lead that runs from the roof of the house (since I have four other antennas up on the roof, that was the place to be). The antenna is mounted on a 4-foot 1/2 inch dowel (birch, available anywhere they sell lumber) and it works perfectly. The other end of the twin-lead is my Bose table -top radio. $\endgroup$ – K7PEH Dec 24 '15 at 23:17
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To construct an antenna, the focus should be on the resonant length, not on the wire used. It needs to be conductive; if it's going to be outside, protected against the elements, but if you're using free wire, then you can replace it after it rusts through.

Antennas can be either connected directly to a radio, or via some feed mechanism. Depending on which frequencies you're wanting to use (you say FM, but that's not a frequency, it's a mode), you may well find that a simple coat-hanger is more than sufficient.

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That article is terribly written, because it doesn't tell you how to construct the dipole part of the antenna and the pictures make it look like you're modifying something that already exists, but it does tell you what to use: 300 Ω twin-lead. This is a standard cable for connecting TV antennas (though less common than coaxial cable these days) and should be easy to find at stores that sell TV antenna components.


Also, this is not answering the question you asked, but if you are building an antenna design that uses a single strand of wire, not twin-lead, then the type of wire basically doesn't matter except for non-electrical properties (whether it is strong enough, whether it will corrode outdoors).

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