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Posted: 11/25/2021 5:11:18 PM EDT
I ordered one of these Collapsible J-pole and hope to mount it right beside the house anchoring to the gutter using TV antenna brackets to hold up the mast. I realize this won't be the best way to do it but that is what I have. Anything would be than an HT.

Grounding will be the area I would be really looking for help. I'm reading some of the threads on here and it's been fantastic info.

I figured I would drive a grounding rod by the mast, the bonding to the house grounding is something that I'm wondering. The wiring is across the attic so I won't have easy access. Can I just connect to the outlet ground when I come up thru the crawl space? Or is the bonding for the radio and not in addition to grounding for the antenna?

Please excuse my ignorance.


Link Posted: 11/25/2021 5:25:09 PM EDT
[#1]
Tagging for interest...



Link Posted: 11/25/2021 5:41:29 PM EDT
[#2]
Tagging for interest...



Link Posted: 11/25/2021 6:58:11 PM EDT
[#3]
Yep, two different bonding systems that only tie in outside the house.  



My shack is on one end of the house, antenna location is many feet across the lawn on the other side of the house.  I kept my coax from the antenna outside until it comes through the wall in my basement shack.  The radio ground rod is outside the shack.   That rod has a copper wire running to the ground rods for the house wiring.   That is how you tie the two together.


Alternatively you could run ground rods all the way around the house.  Likely a bit expensive.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 8:52:29 PM EDT
[#4]
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Quoted:
Yep, two different bonding systems that only tie in outside the house.  



My shack is on one end of the house, antenna location is many feet across the lawn on the other side of the house.  I kept my coax from the antenna outside until it comes through the wall in my basement shack.  The radio ground rod is outside the shack.   That rod has a copper wire running to the ground rods for the house wiring.   That is how you tie the two together.


Alternatively you could run ground rods all the way around the house.  Likely a bit expensive.
View Quote
My house ground is in the other side about 60 feet away. Can I tie into the new ground system or run a second wire to new ground rod or another rod (ground loop??), or existing house ground system?
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 9:01:40 PM EDT
[#5]
All new ground rods must be bonded to the house AC ground rod, preferably using bare buried solid copper cable. Tinned copper is the best. Cad welds are best for all connections to ground rods.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 9:05:02 PM EDT
[#6]
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Quoted:
All new ground rods must be bonded to the house AC ground rod, preferably using bare buried solid copper cable. Tinned copper is the best. Cad welds are bust for all connections to ground rods.
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The AC is on the close side of the house will check tomorrow.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 9:51:52 PM EDT
[#7]
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 9:56:51 PM EDT
[#8]
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Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...
View Quote

Check your water main coming in the house.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 10:00:23 PM EDT
[#9]
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Quoted:

Check your water main coming in the house.
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Quoted:
Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...

Check your water main coming in the house.

We're on well.

There is what I call a pump head that sticks up out of the ground about 12-16" about 5 maybe 6' behind the house, about center length wise...  I looked around it too...
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 10:00:52 PM EDT
[#10]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:

Check your water main coming in the house.
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That's interesting because I just had a gas water heater installed and that has a ground attached. I had the electrician who was wriring an outlet to the 110 leg of the 220 wire set reconnect it, and it's pretty substantial. Glad I did.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 10:10:17 PM EDT
[#11]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...
View Quote

How old is the house?  Look at your panelboard where the electric service comes in.  There should be a heavy gauge (about 1/4" to 3/8" in diameter) uninsulated aluminum or copper wire coming out.  In Tennessee it will likely go to one of two places: 1) A ground rod outside, or 2) The cold water piping if it is steel or copper.
Link Posted: 11/25/2021 10:17:06 PM EDT
[#12]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:

How old is the house?  Look at your panelboard where the electric service comes in.  There should be a heavy gauge (about 1/4" to 3/8" in diameter) uninsulated aluminum or copper wire coming out.  In Tennessee it will likely go to one of two places: 1) A ground rod outside, or 2) The cold water piping if it is steel or copper.
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Quoted:
Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...

How old is the house?  Look at your panelboard where the electric service comes in.  There should be a heavy gauge (about 1/4" to 3/8" in diameter) uninsulated aluminum or copper wire coming out.  In Tennessee it will likely go to one of two places: 1) A ground rod outside, or 2) The cold water piping if it is steel or copper.

I'll check that...

I want to say the place was built around 52-54ish....

Out in a really rural area.
House looks to be built fairly well framing and construction wise...

I'm not so big on the electrical.  
It still has a big fusebox vs a circuit breaker box.

Link Posted: 11/26/2021 12:02:27 AM EDT
[#13]
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Quoted:

I'll check that...

I want to say the place was built around 52-54ish....

Out in a really rural area.
House looks to be built fairly well framing and construction wise...

I'm not so big on the electrical.  
It still has a big fusebox vs a circuit breaker box.

View Quote

Built back in the 50's and in a rural area you are likely to run across anything at all.  The National Electrical Code has been around since 1897 but back then, especially in rural areas, adherence and compliance was sketchy.  They weren't using grounded receptacles back then, that started in about 1962, so even if you have 3-wire receptacles it's likely that the ground isn't connected to anything unless the entire electrical system has been brought up to code at some point.
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 2:27:15 AM EDT
[#14]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...
View Quote


mine is in the concrete slab in the basement below the breaker box
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 11:37:06 AM EDT
[#15]
If I'm tying into the house ground I can hook to an outlet ground.
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 1:49:14 PM EDT
[#16]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:


mine is in the concrete slab in the basement below the breaker box
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Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
Quoted:
I can not find a ground rod at my place...

I've looked all the way around the house, especially on the side my power box is on and at the pole where the power comes from and thecmeter is on...


mine is in the concrete slab in the basement below the breaker box




I was going to say this.  What do they call that a UFER?   Basically the rebar in the slab is the grounding system.

Not likely the case at all in his older home.   I seriously would consider upgrading if the house is still a fuse box.  That system has lived a full life and tech is much safer now than 70 year old wiring and devices assuming there haven’t been upgrades along the way.

Link Posted: 11/26/2021 1:57:09 PM EDT
[#17]
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Quoted:
If I'm tying into the house ground I can hook to an outlet ground.
View Quote



If I am following you, that isn’t really the way.  Antenna system grounded to outlet ground directly?  You are giving a path for lightning inside your house without hitting a ground rod first.  


That said, there is not much a little guy of modest means can do to stop lightning completely.  

Perhaps a ground rod right below the J pole then into the house.  Yea it won’t be tied into the house main ground rods as it should be,...outside!

What you will have is a potential difference between grounds as they have no direct path ie a 6 awg copper wire connection.  

Nothing is perfect when trying to jam radio into a home.   I know living in snow zone there is no way I would have a remote shack to have to plow or shovel my way to and heat while I use it in the winter.   Tennessee or NC? Sure, it makes more sense.


Temporary operation, perhaps.  Long term I wouldn’t recommend it.  My first winter I ran my antenna ungrounded, a coax flopped through the nearby cellar window and up to a tree suspended off center fed dipole.  It worked but I would disconnect the coax and toss it back out the window under the deck, mostly so I could shut the window but I also unplugged the radio from the wall outlet.  



Ideally you would put a ground rod where you need it and run6 awg copper around the outside of the house all the way to your outside house ground rods by your electrical panel.  I forget the distance between rods allowed if you did it that way.  Every 7 or 8 feet, maybe ten feet along the #6 wire comes to mind.  The ground rods are cheap enough, it’s the #6 copper wire that is god awful expensive.  The clamps aren’t cheap either,  to tie the wire to the rods.
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 2:24:28 PM EDT
[#18]
You are probably over-thinking this.

What you are trying to do is to protect your equipment against static build-up which is common when electrical storms are around, and induced EMF spikes picked up from lightning.
Both are high(ish) voltage, low current. A couple of grounding rods six feet apart and connected with reasonably thick solid copper wire will be more than sufficient.

This will not protect against a direct lightning strike. There you enter a completely different world if you want to try to protect against that.
The voltages are higher, and the current is MUCH higher. A 1" x 1/8" copper strip going to ground will typically vaporize. That is ok, because the ionized vapor and air will continue to conduct.
It will be good for one strike, then need to be replaced (if there is any left).

The grounding system to absorb a lightning strike needs to be heavy duty. Certainly more than two or three grounding rods.
Typically it would be a "Ufer" ground:

Herbert G. Ufer was a vice president and engineer at Underwriters Laboratories who assisted the U.S. military with ground-resistance problems at installations in Arizona. Ufer’s findings in the 1940s proved the effectiveness of concrete-­encased grounding electrodes. The military required low-resistance (5 ohms or less) ground connections for lightning protection systems installed at its ammunition and pyrotechnic storage sites at the Navajo Ordnance Depot in Flagstaff and Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson. Ufer developed the initial design for a concrete-encased grounding electrode that consisted of ½-inch, 20-foot-long reinforcing bars placed within and near the bottom of 2-foot-deep concrete footings for the ammunition storage buildings. Test readings over a 20-year period revealed steady resistance values of 2 to 5 ohms, which satisfied the specifications of the U.S. government at that time. This work eventually resulted in what we know today as the concrete-encased electrode in the NEC. More details about Ufer’s research are provided in his October 1964 IEEE paper CP-978, “Investigation and Testing of Footing-Type Grounding Electrodes for Electrical Installations.”
View Quote


Since you are not building a new house, with reinforced concrete footings, a minimum would be something like a 20' trench with 20' of 4awg (min) copper wire running the entire length, filled with concrete.

Forget trying to stop a lightning strike, for any cost you are probably willing to pay.
A reasonable, normal, electrical ground connected with almost any wire will be fine for 99% of the other cases.
Cover the remaining 1% by disconnecting your radio from the antenna when thunderstorms are around.
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 2:53:45 PM EDT
[#19]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:



If I am following you, that isn't really the way.  Antenna system grounded to outlet ground directly?  You are giving a path for lightning inside your house without hitting a ground rod first.  


That said, there is not much a little guy of modest means can do to stop lightning completely.  

Perhaps a ground rod right below the J pole then into the house.  Yea it won't be tied into the house main ground rods as it should be,...outside!

What you will have is a potential difference between grounds as they have no direct path ie a 6 awg copper wire connection.  

Nothing is perfect when trying to jam radio into a home.   I know living in snow zone there is no way I would have a remote shack to have to plow or shovel my way to and heat while I use it in the winter.   Tennessee or NC? Sure, it makes more sense.


Temporary operation, perhaps.  Long term I wouldn't recommend it.  My first winter I ran my antenna ungrounded, a coax flopped through the nearby cellar window and up to a tree suspended off center fed dipole.  It worked but I would disconnect the coax and toss it back out the window under the deck, mostly so I could shut the window but I also unplugged the radio from the wall outlet.  



Ideally you would put a ground rod where you need it and run6 awg copper around the outside of the house all the way to your outside house ground rods by your electrical panel.  I forget the distance between rods allowed if you did it that way.  Every 7 or 8 feet, maybe ten feet along the #6 wire comes to mind.  The ground rods are cheap enough, it's the #6 copper wire that is god awful expensive.  The clamps aren't cheap either,  to tie the wire to the rods.
View Quote
My lack of attention to detail in typing (lazy) causes confusion. I plan to ground the antenna with a grounding rod, and ground my radio on the inside via the home grounding system.

I'll certainly disconnect the radio and insulate the co-ax end when necessary. My base for the time being will be a mobile unit with a power supply.

Link Posted: 11/26/2021 2:59:41 PM EDT
[#20]
Now my next question is how do I attach the grounding wire? To the antenna, to the mast up high, to the mast and antenna? Where on the antenna (if that's the case) to not significantly impact tx/rx?

I'm a serious noob with a rudimentary understanding (enough just to be dangerous) of electricity but not in this area certainly to understand all of the terms.
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 3:18:14 PM EDT
[#21]
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
You are probably over-thinking this.

What you are trying to do is to protect your equipment against static build-up which is common when electrical storms are around, and induced EMF spikes picked up from lightning.
Both are high(ish) voltage, low current. A couple of grounding rods six feet apart and connected with reasonably thick solid copper wire will be more than sufficient.

This will not protect against a direct lightning strike. There you enter a completely different world if you want to try to protect against that.
The voltages are higher, and the current is MUCH higher. A 1" x 1/8" copper strip going to ground will typically vaporize. That is ok, because the ionized vapor and air will continue to conduct.
It will be good for one strike, then need to be replaced (if there is any left).

The grounding system to absorb a lightning strike needs to be heavy duty. Certainly more than two or three grounding rods.
Typically it would be a "Ufer" ground:



Since you are not building a new house, with reinforced concrete footings, a minimum would be something like a 20' trench with 20' of 4awg (min) copper wire running the entire length, filled with concrete.

Forget trying to stop a lightning strike, for any cost you are probably willing to pay.
A reasonable, normal, electrical ground connected with almost any wire will be fine for 99% of the other cases.
Cover the remaining 1% by disconnecting your radio from the antenna when thunderstorms are around.
View Quote View All Quotes
View All Quotes
Discussion ForumsJump to Quoted PostQuote History
Quoted:
You are probably over-thinking this.

What you are trying to do is to protect your equipment against static build-up which is common when electrical storms are around, and induced EMF spikes picked up from lightning.
Both are high(ish) voltage, low current. A couple of grounding rods six feet apart and connected with reasonably thick solid copper wire will be more than sufficient.

This will not protect against a direct lightning strike. There you enter a completely different world if you want to try to protect against that.
The voltages are higher, and the current is MUCH higher. A 1" x 1/8" copper strip going to ground will typically vaporize. That is ok, because the ionized vapor and air will continue to conduct.
It will be good for one strike, then need to be replaced (if there is any left).

The grounding system to absorb a lightning strike needs to be heavy duty. Certainly more than two or three grounding rods.
Typically it would be a "Ufer" ground:

Herbert G. Ufer was a vice president and engineer at Underwriters Laboratories who assisted the U.S. military with ground-resistance problems at installations in Arizona. Ufer’s findings in the 1940s proved the effectiveness of concrete-­encased grounding electrodes. The military required low-resistance (5 ohms or less) ground connections for lightning protection systems installed at its ammunition and pyrotechnic storage sites at the Navajo Ordnance Depot in Flagstaff and Davis-Monthan Air Force Base in Tucson. Ufer developed the initial design for a concrete-encased grounding electrode that consisted of ½-inch, 20-foot-long reinforcing bars placed within and near the bottom of 2-foot-deep concrete footings for the ammunition storage buildings. Test readings over a 20-year period revealed steady resistance values of 2 to 5 ohms, which satisfied the specifications of the U.S. government at that time. This work eventually resulted in what we know today as the concrete-encased electrode in the NEC. More details about Ufer’s research are provided in his October 1964 IEEE paper CP-978, “Investigation and Testing of Footing-Type Grounding Electrodes for Electrical Installations.”


Since you are not building a new house, with reinforced concrete footings, a minimum would be something like a 20' trench with 20' of 4awg (min) copper wire running the entire length, filled with concrete.

Forget trying to stop a lightning strike, for any cost you are probably willing to pay.
A reasonable, normal, electrical ground connected with almost any wire will be fine for 99% of the other cases.
Cover the remaining 1% by disconnecting your radio from the antenna when thunderstorms are around.



Lol, I always thought UFER was an acronym not a man’s name!  

I cannot say I always get it straight but the grounds have different purposes while essentially doing the same thing. The house ground is for current, the radio ground is for RF current mostly.  Both can pick up stray RF current.  Ideally they should be equalized being tied together at the ground rods outside.

Crossing over or not grounding right can/might lead to Odd signals getting in the radio.  You can read all sorts of stray electrical signals,....from heaters, from the water pipes, etc.  
Link Posted: 11/26/2021 4:26:22 PM EDT
[#22]
Grounding and bonding is one of the most important aspects of ham radio if you value your equipment, your house, or maybe your life.
IMHO, this book should be in every ham shack: LINK

As for the J-pole, a lot of people criticize it as being little, if any, better than a quarter wave vertical. However, it is inexpensive and very rugged mechanically, plus it will greatly improve the performance of your HT.
You shouldn't be unhappy with it and if you feel you need to, you can upgrade at a later date. It'll cost you a lot more, though.

FWIW, I made one and used it for years with my HT as a base station, even running Packet on it.
Link Posted: 1/26/2022 12:24:45 AM EDT
[#23]
For grounding information, I've learned a lot by reading the Motorola R56 Standards and Guidelines for Comm Sites.  Free pdf here:  https://documents.northgeorgiacommunications.com/Motorola-Standards-and-Guidelines-for-Communication-Sites-R56-Manual.pdf

See especially Figure 4-4 on page 4-8.  The big lesson here:  Connect all grounds together.  Do not have unbonded (unconnected) grounding elements!

Good luck.
Link Posted: 1/26/2022 7:41:17 AM EDT
[#24]
Link Posted: 1/26/2022 11:57:19 AM EDT
[#25]
Quoted:
For grounding information, I've learned a lot by reading the Motorola R56 Standards and Guidelines for Comm Sites.  Free pdf here:  https://documents.northgeorgiacommunications.com/Motorola-Standards-and-Guidelines-for-Communication-Sites-R56-Manual.pdf

See especially Figure 4-4 on page 4-8.  The big lesson here:  Connect all grounds together.  Do not have unbonded (unconnected) grounding elements!

Good luck.
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Thank you!!!!
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