Leo Shoemaker

What mast for your Hex?

Many new hex owners excitedly report working DX when they hooked up their radio to the hexbeam still on the picnic table where it was first assembled.  That’s great but still, getting it as high as possible is going to give much better results. The higher, the better for a hex as well as any horizontal antenna. When you compare …

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What makes the Hex such a hot antenna?

What is it about the hexagonal beam that has made it so wildly popular? It’s nothing more than a two element beam, isn’t it? There are lotsa beams out there with more gain. The thing looks ungainly to say the least and draws looks of vague skepticism from neighbors who already suspected something weird was going on there and now …

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Hexagonal beam vs Dipole

How does the hexagonal beam compare with a dipole? The dipole is actually a pretty good antenna. You can build one with very little expertise and only a few dollars, using trees as masts. They perform well in many cases and for the low frequency bands such as 80, 40 and 30 meters, they are usually not competing with directional …

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History of the Hexbeam

The original HEXBEAM was developed by Mike Traffic, N1HXA, in the early nineties. It is true that an “M” over “W” configured yagi antenna that resembled a butterfly was earlier tried successfully. But the advanced electrical design, the characteristic nesting concept and central terminal post that enable the multi band functionality along with the basic hardware design were all developed …

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Hexagonal beam vs Vertical

How does the hexagonal beam compare with a vertical antenna? There are a bazillion verticals sold by various major ham manufacturers. These antennas boast coverage on all bands frequently and can be quite pricey. Some have top hat arrays of spikes and mini whips. Some claim to operate without ground wires normally needed to augment the ground for a vertical. …

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Your Hex on 40?

With the waning sunspots and declining propagation on the higher HF bands (20 – 10), many guys are turning more to 40 meters. If they have a hex beam, they know how effective it is on 20 – 10 meters so the thought naturally comes to mind, “Why can’t I have a hex beam on 40 meters?” This is a …

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Front to Back Performance of a Hexagonal beam

Directional antennas perform better in one direction than others. If you can rotate the antenna, you will be able to target any area of the planet with the best performance of the hexagonal beam. This is a great advantage over fixed wire antennas that have generally good performance but usually in only a few directions of the compass. And it …

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Down sunspots

High frequency radio propagation is greatly influenced by sunspot cycles. The reason for this is that the upper ionosphere which reflects the HF radio waves and gives us the skip for DX, is especially energized by increased radiation from the sun during the sunspots. When there are a lot of sunspots, high frequency radio is hot! You can work the …

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Hexagonal Beam vs Spiderbeam

Both are Yagi directional wire beams. The Spider beam is built on a cross shaped frame. Maybe the Spider beam is sort of a cross beam? And of course, the hex is built on a, well a hexagonal frame. Both work very well. The Spider beam is a three element beam for several bands and two elements for the other …

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How does a Hex work?

A hexagonal beam is a form of the Yagi antenna which is based on parasitic principles developed early in the last century in Japan for achieving gain in one direction. Alright, so how does a Yagi work then? Well, a two element Yagi has a driver and a reflector made of aluminum tubing that is mounted on a boom and …

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