difficulty pulling in one High VHF KFLA station Los Angeles - AVS Forum
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post #1 of 76 Old 03-08-2010, 10:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I got north view window on top floor that is facing the Mt Wilson (35 miles) north direction where towers are (no obstructions to line of sight). *I made my own 8 wisker type HDTV antenna via instructions on internet made with 12 gauge copper wire instead of hanger (diagram picture attached). *Results are good for UHF channels which average strength is 50-60%. I even get a station 63 miles away in San Bernadino KVCR ch24 (17% strength bar) slightly north eastern direction. Strength bar for high vhf channels of 7 9 11 13 are 40-60% . But, there is a station called KFLA ch 8.1, 8.2, 8.3, 8.4 that eludes me with 0-10% which gives some intermittent of video and audio. KFLA is located at Mt Wilson. So distance is same as other UHF and VHF stations but signal is weaker - ? I am currently considering the winegard YA 6713 with an A/B switcher ($70) . I have my current home-brew antenna right up against the window. *I am not allowed to put antennas on the roof or outside wall (apartment building). * What is your opinion? Is there a specially tuned high vhf antenna I can build to solve this? The YA6713 is to huge to hang in my bedroom.
thank you*
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post #2 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 11:06 AM
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You can try this good cheap pair of VHF rabbit ears (leave off the UHF loop), or build a large 24" circular copper tubing antenna for VHF. Combine it to the UHF antenna you built, with a UVSJ


The problem with VHF is that indoor reception is often difficult, due to poor wall penetration and lots of interference sources in the VHF band from other electrical and wireless crap in your home.
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post #3 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 11:44 AM
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KFLA-LD is a 300 watt station. Are you sure you really are interested enough in its content to do what it will take to receive it?

Website: http://www.kfla.tv/
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post #4 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 11:57 AM
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Do you know if KFLA is a low or high powered digital broadcaster?
What data do you get about it using Antennaweb.org or TVfool.com for you addresse?
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post #5 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 01:20 PM - Thread Starter
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ARXAW thank you, I will give the circle loop and rabbit ears a try.
For the circle - do both ends go to balun? I always wondered if connecting like that causes short?

ProjectSHO89 thank you - the programing on this station is unusual - 8.1 Australian TV, 8.3 Old movies, women mud wrestling - very odd mix. I will give up if the antenna is too huge or expensive.

Walford thank you - TVfool reports: Max ERP: 0.300 kw Eff. Pwr: 0.190 kw
When I go to website of the station it says: KFLA-LD is a digital low-power television station licensed to Los Angeles, California. The station broadcasts digitally on VHF channel 8, and is the first station located at Mount Wilson to broadcast solely with a digital signal. KFLA went on the air on October 17, 2007. http://www.kfla.tv/index.html

Does that mean they are putting out a lower signal the any other station?

Attached pics: my window, Antennaweb and TV fool.
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post #6 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 02:21 PM
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If arxaw's suggestions don't work, since you are interested in building one, I would suggest looking at these:
http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showthread.php?t=1024739. Post #11 has pictures showing the dimensions of the antenna (roughly, with a ruler placed alongside the elements); http://www.ham-radio.com/k6sti/vhftv.htm, plans for a simple high vhf yagi. I haven't tried either of them, but they're pretty simple and short. I have had problems with vhf 11 and 13, both low-powered, and I made a short 4 or 5 element antenna that seems to pull in 11 (I haven't yet tried it on a regular basis for consistency) built on measurements that I got from k7mem's yagi calculator: http://www.k7mem.*********/Electroni.../yagi_vhf.html. You could try making one tuned just for channel 8; his designs call for long booms, but you could just try the length of boom that you want and see what you get. Finally, the RCA Ant751 has received good reviews from a number of people, and I believe that the boom is about 15 inches shorter than the 6713. It may be available locally, and if it is returnable it would be risk-free. Good luck!
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post #7 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 02:41 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pvotlucka View Post

Walford thank you - TVfool reports: Max ERP: 0.300 kw Eff. Pwr: 0.190 kw
When I go to website of the station it says: KFLA-LD is a digital low-power television station licensed to Los Angeles, California. The station broadcasts digitally on VHF channel 8, and is the first station located at Mount Wilson to broadcast solely with a digital signal. KFLA went on the air on October 17, 2007. http://www.kfla.tv/index.html

Does that mean they are putting out a lower signal the any other station?

Attached pics: my window, Antennaweb and TV fool.

Yes, they put out a lower powered signal as shown by much the power level in your TV fool listing and as indicated by their status as a low powered station.
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post #8 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 03:40 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

Do you know if KFLA is a low or high powered digital broadcaster?
What data do you get about it using Antennaweb.org or TVfool.com for you addresse?

I looked it up at the FCC's website (which serves as the database that TVfool and antennaweb.org accesses).

Here is the license data: http://www.fcc.gov/fcc-bin/tvq?list=0&facid=28566
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post #9 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 04:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pvotlucka View Post

ARXAW thank you, I will give the circle loop and rabbit ears a try.
For the circle - do both ends go to balun? I always wondered if connecting like that causes short?

Leave about 3/4" gap in the loop. Connect a balun wire to each end of the tubing. 3/8" tubing works well. It would look similar to this. The balun would connect at the gap, which could be at the top or bottom of the loop.

Quote:


TVfool reports: Max ERP: 0.300 kw
Does that mean they are putting out a lower signal the any other station?

That is a very low power transmitter.

Additionally, your picture indicates that the "Vs" of your antenna whiskers are bent too close together. They need to be spread wider.
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post #10 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 04:58 PM
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That looks like a UHF antenna.
You can get antennas that are combo upper VHF(channels 7-13) plus UHF that are not as wide as models that also receive the lower VHF channels (2-6)
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post #11 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 06:09 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

That looks like a UHF antenna.

The antenna image I linked to in my post above is a UHF antenna. It was only for comparison, to show him that the whiskers on his homemade UHF antenna (below) were too close together.

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post #12 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 06:21 PM
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If he is trying to receive channel 8 then the length of the dipoles on a UHF antenna are not long enough for VHF signals.
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post #13 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 06:28 PM
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A VHF bow-tie can be tried:

http://www.avsforum.com/avs-vb/showt...1#post15526421

Just be sure to use a UVSJ diplexer to combine the 2 antennas.

However, it may be a fruitless exercise, trying to get a low power digital VHF station on an indoor antenna. Co-channel interference from KFMB/8 from San Diego may be causing problems for you as well.


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post #14 of 76 Old 03-09-2010, 07:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by walford View Post

If he is trying to receive channel 8 then the length of the dipoles on a UHF antenna are not long enough for VHF signals.

That's why I suggested he try a VHF antenna and combine it with his homemade UHF bowtie.
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post #15 of 76 Old 03-10-2010, 07:01 AM
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Even if there's enough signal level to get a signal from VHF via a UHF antenna, the main lobe will not be straight ahead at those frequencies.

A UHF antenna will likely pull in any high-band VHF signals via two split lobes, about 60 degrees off axis. The null would be straight ahead, so no signal will be picked up from the direction the antenna seems "aimed".

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post #16 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 01:19 PM - Thread Starter
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Thank you all for the good ideas to catching ch8. I tried the following today:
1) RCA rabbit ears - 0% on signal bar
2) 24 inch circle of 3/8 copper tubing with 3/4 inch gap - 12% on signal bar
3) VHF bow tie -12 guage copper wire 31 inch length - 12% signal bar
4) Channel master 4221 copy -The eight wiskers antenna was widened to five inches and then antenna spun around slowly to see if it would aligned split vhf lobes. I added some four 31 inch wires behind the wiskers to see if that wire would tap into the split vhf lobes. The 1x1 screen is only sold in bulk at $35 or more - so I rejected that option. -10% signal bar. I will keep eye out for small piece of screen to complete the vhf section.

The antennas (except rabbit ears) all had a similar response was very similar across:
Ch 8.1 - business channel - clear picture and audio is very low and choppy
Ch 8.2 - infomercial channel - clear picture and audio
Ch 8.3 - entertainment channel - picture will come in clear but little choppy with red and green squares popping on and off. No audio.
Ch 8.4 - spanish -clear picture and audio

I believe 8.2 and 8.4 look and sound better because it is being transmitted with more power just by picture/sound quality and ignoring the TV signal strength meter.

I think the only option now is to give the yagi a try. Maybe it can be mounted along the wall or hanging from ceiling aimed out window at transmitter.

Thank you for your help, knowledge and inspiration Arxaw, ProjectSHO89, Walford, Lemmalone and Kenglish. I learned a lot for all your comments about antenna design.
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post #17 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 05:15 PM
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All of your ch 8-n sub channels are broadcast on the same frequency and at the same power.

The circle antenna in the picture looks awfully small. It should be 24" across, or 75.4" of tubing.
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post #18 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 06:47 PM
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You could try building a blind for the channel 8 antenna. I saw a picture of one someone built a couple of weeks back. He was using it to avoid nearby multipath reflections, but I suppose a blind might also knock down co-channel interference.
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post #19 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 09:52 PM - Thread Starter
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I got a 24" across 3/8 thick copper ring up against the glass window with duct tape. Channel 8.(1-4) came in at 20-21%. All the channels behaved same as in the last post.

The other VHF channels 7-13 are pulling in at 72% - which is good.

Question: Is this circular shape mean I am using a UHF to catch a VHF?
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post #20 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 10:02 PM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by deltaguy View Post

You could try building a blind for the channel 8 antenna. I saw a picture of one someone built a couple of weeks back. He was using it to avoid nearby multipath reflections, but I suppose a blind might also knock down co-channel interference.

One of the posts mentioned that there may be a competing signal from San Diego on ch 8. I have a TV on the south side which does not pick up any signal from the south using Channel Master copy 4221 facing that direction. I believe that is what your saying. The poor signal on the south side forced me to run a 50ft cable to the north side. Deltaguy can you tell me what blind is or looks like? I did search but could not find. Thank you.
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post #21 of 76 Old 03-15-2010, 10:26 PM
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I saw competing signals from KFMB and KILA when I looked at a SoCal TVFool chart. Co-channel interference is a reception death sentence for a gentleman up north here. I know he has a tower, several antennas, and can analyze signals.

However, if the co-channel signals could be blocked somehow, reception might be possible. A blind would be a structure made mostly of a wire mesh that would enclose your channel 8 antenna, but would be open only in the direction of KFLA. This is only theory. Someone posted a picture of two high rise buildings side by side just outside of his line of sight to a desired antenna farm. He built a wire mesh enclosure for the antenna to eliminate reflected signals. It did work for him. I don't know what kind of wire would be best to use or how large the dimensions of such a structure would need to be.
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post #22 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 12:11 AM
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Quote:
women mud wrestling

Thats sounds like some fun TV watching.

I don't know if this will help but I use a Terk TV5 amplified indoor antenna and it picks up my PBS station that is 30 miles way. It is a UHF and VHF antenna. My mom and sister use this antenna too.

http://www.amazon.com/Terk-Low-Profi...8723405&sr=8-1

Broadcast TV - a vital national public resource
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post #23 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 12:18 AM - Thread Starter
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I see what you mean - that two signals at the same channel and cancel each other out. Creating some signal divider to focus in the direction of desired station. TV fool and Antenna web - is partially accurate for 90277. AntennaWeb under estimates and TVfool overestimates. The list of what I get now is below. Red is weakest signals. Bold is what I watch regularly.

2.1 - KCBS (CBS)
4.1 - KNBC (NBC)
4.2 - WX+ Weather, sometimes news
4.4 - Universal Sports (nothing but skiing)
5.1 - KTLA (CW)
5.2 - ThisTV (classic TV and movies)
7.1 - KABC HD (ABC)
7.2 - KABC SD alternative programming

7.3 - KABC Accuweather
8.1 KFLA BIZ Television -has 24/7 music station on sub audio - SAP
8.2 CornerStore TV
8.3 America One TV
8.4 TV Centro Commercial

9.1 - KCAL
11.1 - Fox11

11.2 Fox
11.3 Fox
13.1 - KCOP
18.1 - KSCI
18.2 - UTB (Japanese) NHK Japan World in English
18.3 - MGC-D (Korean)
18.5 - USArmenia
18.6 - (says Testing)
18.7 - VZA (Vietnamese)
18.8 - Taiwan (Chinese)
20.1 KNLA
20.2 KNET
20.3 KHTV
20.4 Corners
22.1 - KWHY HD (Spanish)
23.4 AVX Vietnamese
24.1 KVCR San Bernardino/Riverside
24.2 KVCR San Bernardino/Riverside
24.3 KVCR San Bernardino/Riverside

28.1 - KCET HD (PBS)
28.2 - KCET OC
28.3 - KCET V-Me (Spanish)
28.4 - PBS World

30.1 - KPXN (ION)
30.2 - qubo (kids)
30.3 - ION Life
30.4 - Worship
31.1 KVMD
31.2 IMPACTO
31.3 Italian Broadcasting Network RAI
31.4 KJLA
31.5 Skylink
31.6 VYV TV
31.7 TBW TV
31.8 WCE TV
34.1 - KMEX (Spanish)
40.1 - TBN
40.2 - The Church Channel
40.3 - JCTV
40.4 - Enlace (Spanish)
40.5 - Smile of a Child (Children)
44.1 - KXLA some Japanese
44.2 - V TV
44.3 - Sk DTV (Korean)
44.4 - LSTV (Vietnamese)
44.5 - Arirang (Korean stuff mostly in English)
44.6 - IAVC (Chinese)
44.7 - NTD TV
44.8 - ICN
44.9 IMPACTO
46.1 - KFTR (Spanish)
46.2 - KFTR
50.1 - KOCE HD (PBS)
50.2 - KOCE OC

50.3 - KOCE Create
50.4 - KOCE SD alt programming[/b]
52.1 - KVEA HD (Spanish)
52.2 - KVEA SD (same programming)
54.1 - KAZA (Spanish)
54.2 - KAZA
56.1 - KDOC HD
56.2 - ESNE
57.1 - KJLA
57.2 - LATV
57.3 - KBC TV Chinese programming
57.4 - SET Saigon Entertainment TV
57.5 - SGTV Saigon TV (Vietnamese)
57.6 - VBS TV
57.7 - VYV DT
57.8 - KVMD
57.9 ZWTV
58.1 - KLCS HD (PBS)
58.2 - KLCS kids programming
58.3 - KLCS PBS Create
58.4 - KLCS SD alt programming

62.1 - KRCA (Spanish)
62.2 - HTTV US
63.1 KBEH
63.2 KBEH
63.3 KBEH
63.4 KBEH
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post #24 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 12:37 AM
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There is no KILA. I believe that. Try zip codes around Orange from TVFool. I checked at least 3. I didn't check Orange.

Co-channel can also be a non-factor. Signals listed by TVFool as tropo, for example, can be received. I'm not sure what negative noise margin for a channel pretty much eliminates its ability to interfere. Tropo might cause interference when it occurs however.
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post #25 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 12:42 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kenglish View Post

Even if there's enough signal level to get a signal from VHF via a UHF antenna, the main lobe will not be straight ahead at those frequencies.

A UHF antenna will likely pull in any high-band VHF signals via two split lobes, about 60 degrees off axis. The null would be straight ahead, so no signal will be picked up from the direction the antenna seems "aimed".

This is great, just like with indoor antennas, the VHF nightmare. It could easily be a case of plenty of antenna to bring in VHF signal but... aim, aim, aim, and, of course, location, location, location.
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post #26 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 05:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pvotlucka View Post

I got a 24" across 3/8 thick copper ring up against the glass window with duct tape. Channel 8.(1-4) came in at 20-21%. All the channels behaved same as in the last post.

The other VHF channels 7-13 are pulling in at 72% - which is good.

Question: Is this circular shape mean I am using a UHF to catch a VHF?

No, the size of the loop determines whether it will work best for UHF or VHF. In this case, you built a loop antenna optimized for VHF frequencies.
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post #27 of 76 Old 03-16-2010, 09:25 AM - Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by arxaw View Post

No, the size of the loop determines whether it will work best for UHF or VHF. In this case, you built a loop antenna optimized for VHF frequencies.

That design is very solid and straight forward. My wife has a friend that has trouble with her VHF signal only. She had her husband hold the antenna during the academy awards. She is between buildings, a few apartments in. She gets UHF maybe by reflection at 60-70%. Next time I visit - we will try this VHF tuned circle.
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post #28 of 76 Old 03-21-2010, 04:33 PM - Thread Starter
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I decided to make a larger version of the Channel master 4221 copy with 8 gauge copper versus old 12. 9.5"spacing and 10 inch bow/wisker. I was hoping for a overall increase across the channels - especially 8 and 24 KVCR.

In general it did increase the strength little bit overall. ch 8 - .1 to .5 came in like usually did except 8.5 played oldies music. I dont know if that is because of this antenna or they just started to broadcast it today.
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post #29 of 76 Old 03-22-2010, 04:51 PM - Thread Starter
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6 foot boom and 1/4" copper tubing tuned for ch 8.3 on yagi software www.k7mem.*********. Results rapid oscillation between 60-80% !!! for 8.1 to 8.5 After the joy of hearing and seeing it work for the first time, the show that was on was Deutsche Welle news (Europe news) - very cool stuff. For now, I had to hide it behind some furniture and hook up older antenna. It is way to big to mount anywhere. Hanging it on the wall with aim at window gave 0% signal. Mounting from ceiling and having it hang would might be ok (the higher the better. I believe the popcorn stucco ceiling might have abestos sealed in by years of paint - too afraid to mess with that.

The suggestion to make it smaller in this post might be the next logical step. My question is how short of boom can I go? Currently the 6 foot boom = 9.58 gain .

Would this be too small? : A 24.0 Inch Boom should have an Estimated Gain of 5.853 dBd which I could easily mount from the top of the window.

I attached some pic of yagi but camera is getting old and adding some lines.


Thank you all for helping understand this problem - supplying good plans and hardware recomendations!
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post #30 of 76 Old 04-18-2010, 03:19 PM - Thread Starter
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The ch8 station must have increased the signal output. Therefore the original suggestion at the beginning of the thread - rabbit ears pressing against window in the center - is doing the trick. The length is about 20 inch 1/4 copper tubing each side connected to block of wood, which finally goes to balun. It is positioned in the sweet spot of window for the signal. An A/B switch connects to homemade CM4221 which is aimed north east to get San Bernadino - which gets ch 24 and 26KVCR - (PBS and great old movies). The rabbit ears do a great job with all the Mount Wilson Signals. I just got another station with this attenna after a rescan ch41 - PBS. It keeps getting better with time. Attached is all the info for anyone to replicate. I trying to work out a way to eliminate A/B switch for convenience on another thread.

Thank you to Arxaw, ProjectSHO89, lemmalone, walford, Falcon_77, kenglish, deltaguy and Jedi Master for the ideas and insight. I much smarter about the antennas after reading your replies.
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