Questions tagged [balun]

Devices for connecting balanced and unbalanced feed lines/antennas. Also covers questions about ununs, unbalanced-to-unbalanced connection.

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35
votes
7answers
36k views

Using a balun with a resonant dipole

I am preparing to construct a resonant, center-fed, horizontal dipole. I have seen people use baluns at the feedpoint of the antenna, and some people swear by them, but I have never gotten a ...
22
votes
3answers
32k views

Why are some 1:1 current baluns twice as complicated as others?

I would like to add a balun/choke to my dipole for the reasons outlined in Using a balun with a resonant dipole. In the spirit of continued kit and/or DIY building for my ham shack, I set out to ...
14
votes
1answer
2k views

Why do amateur radio operators call an RF choke a balun?

When using a balanced antenna such as a half wave dipole, with an unbalanced feed line such as coax, an RF choke can be used to block RF current emitted by the transmitter from splitting up at the ...
14
votes
1answer
6k views

What is the purpose of a balun and a unun in a feed line?

I have never understood how a balun or a unun works and under which situation I need to use either of them in an antenna feed line.
12
votes
3answers
9k views

Where are the baluns for VHF and higher? How can one be made?

In another question, commenters recommended that I look into adding a 1:1 balun to a dual-band dipole to eliminate the feedline as a radiator. As I understand it, a 1:1 balun also functions as a choke,...
9
votes
2answers
4k views

Does a balun need to be made with coax?

The short version My understanding is that one of the main reasons to use a balun with coax is to prevent the outside of the shield from becoming part of your antenna system. If that's the case, won'...
8
votes
2answers
4k views

When would we ever want to use a voltage balun in ham radio?

In a world where common mode current is the enemy, and we're constantly doing what we can to avoid RF in the shack, why would we ever choose a voltage type balun over a current balun? I understand ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Why isn't twisted pair used for feedlines?

My son was asking about some Ethernet cable (Cat 5 unshielded twisted pair), and since he recently passed his Technician exam and we both have "radio stuff" on our minds, I tried to make the analogy ...
7
votes
6answers
1k views

Use a TV coax and balun for a poor-man's OCFD?

Can I use TV coax and a cheap TV balun to build a poor-man's OCFD? Marginal performance is acceptable if it saves money. If I could listen to 10% of transmitters within a 100 mile radius that would be ...
7
votes
2answers
201 views

Importance of Ferrite Size in Coax Choke Balun

The question is quite simple: When making a coax choke balun, does the size of the ferrite matter, and if so, why? I have seen design notes that say to use a single FT240-43 toroid for powers up to ...
7
votes
1answer
2k views

How to determine number of turns for a 1:1 balun?

I would like to make a 1:1 balun with М1000НМ ferrite core (magnetic permeability - 1000) and 1 mm thick copper wire using triple bifilar winding. Unfortunately I didn't manage to find a clear ...
6
votes
2answers
4k views

How does a folded balun work?

A folded balun is made from two quarter-wavelength, parallel conductors. A picture is worth a thousand words: Here are some pictures of an actual construction from Gisela & Joe Noci on diydrones....
6
votes
2answers
2k views

Understanding coax radiation and “current on the shield”

I'm having trouble understanding what seems to be the fundamental principle behind baluns (and probably other related topics). Perhaps some of my confusion comes from an audio background, where one ...
6
votes
4answers
3k views

Why do we distinguish between balanced and unbalanced?

I hear all the time, "you need a balun between your balanced dipole and unbalanced coax to stop the common-mode current" when it seems the proper advice is "you need something to stop common-mode ...
6
votes
3answers
2k views

Impedance Matching Different Feedlines

(I promise there will be a question in this wall of text. I'm just giving context.) I've been wanting to try my hand at building my own antenna system for the last few weeks and in doing research, a ...
5
votes
5answers
401 views

How to match low impedance of NVIS Dipole?

I want to match a 50-ohm coax feed wire to a 40-meter NVIS half-wave dipole. NVIS antenna examples I've found are usually based on a regular dipole (72 ohms in free air). However the impedance drops ...
5
votes
3answers
935 views

Determining Impedance With An Antenna Analyzer

I need some help interpreting some information from my antenna analyzer (RigExpert AA-35). I want to use the information to impedance match my AM receiving antenna system to AM radios. No ...
5
votes
3answers
783 views

Coax or bifilar windings for a choke?

Making a common mode choke out of bifilar windings has proven rather difficult. For me the difficulty lies in getting the impedance to remain a constant 50 ohms from on the HF bands. I've tried 14 ...
5
votes
2answers
3k views

Do end-fed dipole antennas need choke baluns?

I have a couple of end-fed wire antennas I bought that came with matching baluns. One has a 9:1 unun, and I'm not sure about the other one. In addition to those, should I also put a choke balun on the ...
5
votes
2answers
514 views

Why aren't there baluns that do BOTH balanced/unbalanced transformation and common mode current attenuation?

I have read myself blue, about baluns. Especially 1:1 ones. Some claim they're only there to balance the unbalanced signal, and that's what's in the name also, but I find several that claims that the ...
5
votes
2answers
2k views

How to measure a balun for effectiveness?

It seems there are almost as many "balun" designs as there are web pages about "baluns". There's lots of accusations pointed in all directions ("design Z isn't a balun OR a choke", "design Y is ...
5
votes
1answer
1k views

Connect Printed Yagi-Uda Dipole Array with Balun to coaxial cable correctly

I am making the Printed Yagi-Uda Dipole Array with Balun (that is the full name). I used Antenna Magus to calculate dimensions. I am not sure how to properly connect it to coaxial cable. Here is what ...
5
votes
2answers
82 views

How does this quarter-wave stub balun work?

I was searching for 1:1 balun designs that would be efficient at VHF yet could easily be made from commonly available materials when I came across these two: While the design on the right seems ...
5
votes
1answer
846 views

How to build a balun transformer for 2m RX with low insertion loss

I'm looking into ways to match a 137MHz RX dipole antenna to an unbalanced coax + amplifier. I know there are several types of baluns which can be categorized under magnetic baluns (where there are ...
5
votes
0answers
81 views

What causes differences in properties of ferrite cores from same material?

Why are the shapes of the impedance curves different for cores made of the same ferrite material? The impedance (Z) of an inductor wound on a ferrimagnetic core is: $$Z=j\omega L_s + R_s = j\omega ...
4
votes
2answers
223 views

Actual Impedance of a folded dipole at resonance

I am using a Folded Dipole which I bought when I first got my General License. It was advertised as an all band antenna. My results with it were less than the claims made by the makers to say the ...
4
votes
2answers
297 views

Does a dipole require a 1.5:1 balun?

Dipoles ideally have 72 ohms impedance. I know most of the time this isn't what one gets and it can vary a lot. But let's assume we can build this perfect dipole that exhibits this impedance. Why do ...
4
votes
3answers
1k views

Do I need an 9:1 UNUN for a half-wave end fed?

I was using a 10-ish meter wire as my HF rx antenna. That's all I can install in my QTH. However I realised that my ~10 m wire can be turned into an end fed dipole for 20 meter band. But there is a ...
4
votes
2answers
142 views

Dipole increased CM current using choke balun

My 20 meter inverted vee dipole is fed with 56 feet of 50-ohm coax. The SWR measures 1.2 at the center of the band. According to http://arrl.org/grounding a balanced antenna doesn't need a ground, so ...
4
votes
2answers
11k views

How is a 1:1 current balun different from a choke?

I have a 10m dipole and am going to feed it with 50 ohm unbalanced feed line (coax). My understanding is the feed point of this style antenna is about 50-75 ohms and since it is a balanced antenna I'...
4
votes
3answers
436 views

Is RF current always confined to the inner diameter of a braided outer conductor of coaxial cable?

Prompted by a previous question found at Using a balun with a resonant dipole -- an answer there included the following text: "For transmission lines (twin-lead or coax) to not radiate, each ...
4
votes
3answers
3k views

Recommended 9:1 unun core type(s)

I would like to construct a 9:1 unun that connects my QRP transceiver to a random-wire antenna. The transceiver's antenna connection is an unbalanced BNC jack and the random-wire antenna is, well, a ...
3
votes
1answer
176 views

How does a 1:4 current balun work?

I'm having little difficulties understanding the following schematic: I understand the part regarding current distribution. I understand why this schematic suppresses common mode current. Also I ...
3
votes
2answers
88 views

4:1 Balun question

With an OCF dipole, does it matter which leg, short or long, is connected to which side of the 4:1 balun, hot(coax center) or shield? How can you tell which is which, the balun is not marked. Thank ...
3
votes
1answer
97 views

UHF cubical quad VNA analysis interpretation

I've designed a two element UHF cubical quad. It was designed to resonate at 385 Mhz. I used 0.1mm thick and 1cm wide copper tape instead of wire to lower the antenna Q. I used PVC electrical conduit ...
3
votes
2answers
542 views

Can I use a 1:1 current balun to feed a 1/4λ vertical?

I have an LDG RBA-1:1 current balun, and I was wondering if it behaves as a common-mode choke that I can use for a ground-mounted quarter wave vertical w/ 16 radials. The other choice I have is a 4:...
3
votes
1answer
242 views

Trying to understand the work of 4:1 coax balun

Let's consider the following picture (source): When current passes the half-wavelength matching section it changes the phase to the opposite, this is why we get +V and -V in the feed point, 2V ...
3
votes
2answers
102 views

Tips for HF Antenna with house near AM transmitter

My back garden is very small - about 500sqft. I also live near an AM transmitter and requires an AM filter. I would appreciate some general tips on the best approach to receiving HF signals (Ham and ...
3
votes
2answers
324 views

Why don't baluns require precise conductor spacing as in twin-lead?

This is a follow up to another recent question of mine: Does a balun need to be made with coax? In that question, we establish that a choke balun doesn't actually work by protecting the "third ...
3
votes
1answer
520 views

Balun identification from picture

I thought maybe this was a 4:1 balun, but a number of 4:1 single core balun diagrams that I found online had different connections. N1HFX's balun page and the bottom of G4WPW's page show a connection ...
3
votes
1answer
661 views

What do we mean by “RF in the shack”?

What does "RF in the shack" mean? How does it interfere with devices around coax?
3
votes
0answers
124 views

9:1 unun material and power loss

I need to build another 9:1 unun and I start searching for my toroids... (I have build 2-3 something like 4 years ago)... In parallel I checked on Google about the correct toroid etc so I found 2-3 ...
2
votes
2answers
160 views

Will using a 1:1 balun at the feedpoint of a center feed dipole result in no common mode current on the outside of the coax?

Will using a 1:1 balun at the feedpoint of a center-fed dipole when using coax result in no common mode current on the outside of the coax ?
2
votes
1answer
1k views

Do I need a Balun for a single band QRP antenna?

I have a little MFJ QRP CW 20m rig that I plan to turn into a portable kit for SOTA peaks. I have everything figured out except for the antenna. I am wanting to make a dipole. However, I was wondering,...
2
votes
3answers
1k views

Voltage vs. Current Balun for Dipole

I'm a new radio amateur setting up a half-wave 10-meter inverted vee antenna fed by 50 ohm coax. I understand that the inverted vee lowers the normal 72 ohm dipole closer to 50 ohms, so I only need to ...
2
votes
5answers
2k views

Balun and tuner configuration for multiband dipole

I'm putting up a multiband dipole in some tall trees. (Perhaps it's more correct to call it a "dipole-doublet"). The situation I'm imagining looks like this: The legs of the antenna are each 100 ...
2
votes
1answer
172 views

Power Amplifier Balun Question

Second (and last hopefully) question on the classic Solid State Design for the Radio Amateurs (SSDRA) book by Hayward et al. Again it's a power amplifier circuit (Chapter 4, pg. 66), and again it's ...
2
votes
1answer
810 views

Connecting a coaxial cable as feed to a halfwave dipole

I have as assignment to make a half wave dipole antenna, that radiates at 433 MHz. I am trying to figure out how to use a coaxial cable as transmission line. I know that the coaxial cable is ...
2
votes
2answers
81 views

Is a balun really necessary for a small loop antenna?

I am in the process of designing a small receiving loop antenna for the lower HF bands. By small I mean a circumference of less than $0.2\lambda$. Thus, a uniform current distribution can rightly be ...
2
votes
3answers
6k views

How do you construct a 1:1 balun?

I have been researching how to construct a 1:1 current balun. I have a few questions and am looking for feedback on what I plan to do. First, I want to use the balun from 10m to 160m at 100w. I plan ...