Author Topic: Make a TV Antenna for HDTV  (Read 9128 times)

K

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Make a TV Antenna for HDTV
« on: March 21, 2012, 01:44:44 PM »
I ditched my cable completely after trying this antenna. All the local over the air (OTA) digital broadcasts show up crystal clear on my HDTV for free.

I know I shouldn't be promoting mind-numbing local TV.. but I'm hoping most people here have good TV watching habits. (I mostly watch the news while I'm waking up in the morning)

It might just take a $10* stop at a hardware store, and some basic soldering skills. Plans are available here: http://www.tvantennaplans.com/

I have build many of these and they all work great! I haven't found it necessary to build the reflectors for the back -- the "V"s themselves are sufficient in my experience.

* I already had a soldering iron, solder, wire, and other necessary tools and materials.
-K

K

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Re: Make a TV Antenna for HDTV
« Reply #1 on: March 22, 2012, 01:13:51 PM »
There are more plans out there, here's something from another thread:

Even cheaper, I made this one for the cost of the adapter piece (which was about $3 at our local hardware store) and some things laying around the house. It works great! (Too bad I'll never be able to avoid cable altogether since boyfriend is a huge hockey fan and there are no good alternatives there, we still kill the cable for the summer) http://www.squidoo.com/a-free-antenna-to-watch-free-hdtv
It's in our attic and I ran a cable down to the living room for it, no one has to see it and it gets pretty good reception up there.

Thanks, jwystup!

Also on squidoo: http://www.squidoo.com/make-this-powerful-hdtv-antenna-out-of-cardboard
-K

strider3700

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Re: Make a TV Antenna for HDTV
« Reply #2 on: May 08, 2012, 11:25:48 AM »
I originally built a bowtie antenna like above.  It got a few channels but not many.

I built a single bay gray hoverman antenna like this.
http://www.digitalhome.ca/ota/superantenna/design.htm
it worked well and got every possible channel here but 2. The issue was my channels come from the east and the south and It forced me to aim in one direction and not get the others.   Aiming in the middle got nothing.
I then built the "stealth hawk"
http://www.digitalhome.ca/forum/showthread.php?t=123803
it gets all of the channels available here, all at the same time aimed slightly south east.   It's also smaller then the gray hoverman which makes mounting it easier.  Right now It's just on a 10' piece of 1/2" PVC pipe mounted to the top of my fence. 
Since building it my cable TV savings works out to $1380 assuming they haven't increased the price of their cable package.  I think it would cost $10 if I bought everything new but I had the pipe and some old electrical wire that I stripped to make the antenna.   $2 at walmart for the adapter to the coax which I also had.


XcaliburGirl

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Re: Make a TV Antenna for HDTV
« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2012, 08:12:02 AM »
I did the same thing. It was that clothes-hanger bow-ties on a 2x4 version. It worked OK, but living in an apartment building in NJ (all our stations were from NYC), it didn't get reliable reception.

My husband told me it was an eyesore though, and we bought an antenna at Radio Shack for probably less than $15 (I don't remember), and it pretty much worked as well (or as badly) as my DIY version. A tip for anyone who wants to watch local over-the-air HDTV, but doesn't want to build the antenna: you don't need an "HD" antenna. That's just a marketing scheme. As long as your TV is HD, you can use any antenna that gets VHF and UHF.

Now we don't really bother watching broadcast TV, unless we want to watch local weather when there's a hurricane or blizzard coming. There's so much more on Netflix and Hulu.

Nancy

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Re: Make a TV Antenna for HDTV
« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2012, 03:24:06 PM »
We made an antenna that looks like that one. I didn't read through your directions, but ours didn't require any soldering or reflectors. It works perfectly and cost us $8. It is so badass!