The Carolina Windom is very popular with modern hams, and at the same time is commonly the discussion of problems in online fora. Traditional characterisation as a single-feeder Hertz denies the existence of the vertical radiating element. It is a folly to designate the vertical wire as a non-radiating feeder, it carries an RF current that contributes to radiation just like current on the horizontal wire does.
Ninety percent is the antenna. This is especially true in QRP since with very low power, by comparison to the Power Mongers, we need to get more ERP per watt out into the ether to be heard. So when I got back into QRP a few years ago I found the fascinating world of antennas and RF radiators to be an exciting challenge and a means to find the perfect antenna which I call the
Today I reaped some unexpected benefits from one of these assignments. This was no small feat, since it was on 75 meters. I even made a CW contact with a fellow in Wisconsin, and got a decent signal report.
I have wanted to build a multi-band wire antenna for some time now and this past Field Day I had an opportunity to use a very good one. The Carolina Windom is essentially an off-center fed dipole OCFD that uses a portion of its feed line as a vertical radiator. When fed with a balun this provides a reasonable match to the standard 50 Ohm load that my coaxial cable and radio like to see.
The ARRL Meter CW contest is a great "no time limit - 42 hrs" contest to participate in near the end of the contest season and before the holidays get going in full swing. The Meter contest is held during the first weekend of December each year. Winter is the best time of year for meters due to low atmospheric noise.
Here is my home HF antenna. It is an off centre fed dipole, with 10 feet of vertical radiator. It needs no tuner on 40m, 20m and 10m.
With feet of wire, a Flat-top or Inverted-V are about the only support options available. Just keep the vertical radiator in the clear and the wire as high as possible. This antenna is optimized for the lower bands. RG-8X or Super is recommended for most installations.
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Think of the "Carolina" windom antenna the modern version of the windom as an "upside down vertical antenna", hanging down from its counterpoise strung more or less horizontally some 10 meters or more above ground. In other words, the 22 feet vertical component of the "Carolina" - between the matching voltage transformer and the current choke balun - is a vertical antenna, fed at the tip. This vertical does not require a ground or a system of radials!