How to wind wire... Tutorial video

I had an old project in mind and it’s ready now. I’ve published an “educational” video about how to wind antenna wire.
The trick is a bit of silly, but just in case it provides a hint to the SOTA activators…

Sorry for some misspelling there now and then, not my mother languaje… I added subtitles in Spanish too.
I had a lot of fun preparing the video. Isn’t the RKO logo intro great?
If you consider it of interest maybe I’ll develop some more in the future. Sometimes visual tutorials are of help…

73 de Ignacio


Hi Ignacio,

thanks for the nice video. I hope you were able to completely unknot your antenna wire again :slight_smile:

I suspect that winding a 20m long wire in a figure of 8 on a single hand would become rather tedious, therefore I simply use my forearm as “winder”. I just position my forearm vertically and then wind the antenna wire in a figure of 8 fashion between my hand and the elbow. That’s quite a quick method even for longer wires.

Looking forward for your next tutorial video!

73 Stephan, DM1LE

Hi Ignacio, I always wind my dipole wires in a figure 8, however I use “kite winders” to achieve this. I don’t know the Castellano for kite wonders but I think you can see what I mean on sotabeams website.

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For very long wires you can also do the 8 form around one of your arms for one half of the 8 form and around your neck for the other half.
This is how I’ve seen rock climbers wind their ropes.
73 de Guru

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Yes I’ve seen this method, too. Hereby, even winding a length of 70m is a piece of cake :smiley:
(Tip for climbers: if your rope is very dirty it is inevitable that you need to clean your neck afterwards :wink: )

73 Stephan, DM1LE

Great soundtrack!

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Hi Stephan, well, I wind my 12m long EFHW with ease but agree longer ones could be tedious. Anyway it works fine. Thanks for the forearm tip, nice addition.
I forgot to add you can wear gloves to wind this way, then keep your hands clean :wink:

Hi Steve, right, you can make an 8 on a kite winder as well… But without it is nice as well. The simpler the better.

Hi Tom, mmmm that old guitar sound and piano solo…

I’ll start thinking new ideas for tutorials then.
What about how to do a proper chase? Seems useful nowadays, I guess :sunglasses: Just kidding, I’ll stick to activation procedures…

73 de Ignacio

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Terrific demo. I’ll put a link in our next club magazine if that’s OK.

Wooden winder user.

Effective - but I have found my method to be easier and quicker. When packing up, I simply roll up the wire around my hand and use the end to tie it off. When I want to put the antenna up again, I unroll it from the inside of the coil - the wire is permanently connected to the balun, so I untie the end of the wire from around the coil and then holding the coil allow the wire to come away from the inside of the coil as I walk away from the balun and lay the wire out along the ground.


but then it’s twisted…

Thanks Ignancio for the video, its always interesting to see others way’s of doing things.

Cheers, Nick

Good informative video. :heart_eyes:

Love the funny bits thrown into it that put a smile on your face and make it more interesting and the RKO starter bit. Man not seen that in a while and if so think about it my first time i ever heard Morse code all those years ago.

Good work.


Hi Ron, you are welcome to share a link. That is why I published it.
As Nick said it’s interesting to see what others do.
Perhaps I have to add some of your ideas to the vídeo

Karl, glad you enjoyed the funny bits…

73 de Ignacio

Great video, thanks. I use the figure 8 on a kite winder technique - I don’t mind the extra weight.

Does anyone have any tips for winding/coiling ladder line or twinlead?

73, Malcolm VE2DDZ

Twists only slightly - but not an issue. This antenna has done somewhere around 100 activations now - have had to perform multiple repairs to the wire fixing point onto the balun (wire breaks at the attachment point to the balun due to a lack of strain relief), but confident this is not due to the wire being twisted due to the way I roll it up.


Nicely done video!
And a coincidence to see this as I have just donea page and video about some wire spools I got me mate to print up for me.
Page here:

and if I can work out how to embed it, video(not as professionally done as yours!!):

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Hi Steve,
very well done on your web page. Interesting to see we were both working in the same matter, at the same time, far away… :smiley:

Congrats on you models and your full description of such interesting designs.
Thanks for the contribution; you’ve added Method D now!

Take care, 73 de Ignacio

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Hi Malcolm,

not much contribution, I carried a Delta feeded with about 2 meters of 300 ohm twin lead some times. It is quite rigid so no chance to do anything but rolling it.

  • Maybe, if it was a softer cable, like computer ribbon as used for Norcal doublets, etc, that would allow some tweaking like the 8 figure. Else I’d suggest the round winder…

  • If it was 600 ohm open line then the trouble is bigger!

I guess most operators use only coax. What is yours?
73 de Ignacio

The great thing about our radio hobby is we are many miles apart but connected in an instant.

Hi Ignacio,

I use a doublet fed with 6 to 7 meters of either 450 ohm ladder line or 300 ohm twin lead. I switched to the twin lead because I hoped it would be easier to deal with especially when cold.

I suppose the twin lead is better, but it is still a pain especially when I am cold and in a hurry to pack up. I’ll look into a round winder as you suggest.

Malcolm VE2DDZ