Copper Pipe Drive-On Base

Back in 2014, I made a carry-frame for my FT-857, ATU and battery from 15mm copper pipe – you can read about that on this page.  Recently, I had thought about operating from the car “ninja style” where there may not be a lump of grass to push an angle-iron into or even a fence post.  A drive-on base seemed like the ideal solution as I like to use “full size” aerials when /P.

The picture below shows the dry-assembly of my prototype – I decided to add further supports at the base of the “chimney” to ensure the mast/pole didn’t slip out!

Drive-on Aerial Base made from 15mm Copper Pipe

The tall section holds my 10m fibreglass mast via a couple of bungee cords with the front wheel of my car sitting on the “8” section on the right-hand side.  The inside of the pipe at that end will be filled with potting-compound to keep the shape of the pipe when under load (from the car).  When soldered, the frame will be quite sturdy but designed for nothing more than a “fishing” pole.

Copper Drive-On Base in the M0PZT ShackI have spent around £30 on copper materials: 3.5m of 15mm pipe plus various elbow and tee sections.  I already have a blow-torch, flux and thick solder but I did need to buy a new can of black “all-purpose” spray paint.  Commerical drive-on bases seem to vary between £35-65 so there is a fair saving to be had if you wish to try this yourself – although, if starting from scratch, the cost may equal that of something you can buy “off the shelf”.

Still, it’s a hobby that encourages experimentation and I do enjoy making things – especially when there’s fire involved.

Here it is in use during its first outing on 1st September 2018:

Copper Aerial Base in use