Setting up a mast end fed antenna

Hello everyone,

I am almost finished with my mini end fed antenna,just need yo cut it yo the right lenght.
My question is,how do i set up the mast so it does not fall over,obviously i need a 3 point anchorage for the mast(telescopic fishing rod) to keep it in place?
Then i suppose i need a counter rope for the other end from the end feed antenna assemly to keep the mast straight?
Any photos of your setups are welcome so I can see how it works.

Cheers and 73 de 9A3BKF Karlo


If you have a look at Sotabeams on YouTube I seem to remember that he does a good video on erecting a pole and guying it. Hope this helps.


I bring some paracord so that when I eventually end up on a totally bald mountain and need that much guying, I’ll be able to do it. But in the activations I’ve done so far, I’ve never needed more than a few bungee cords. I can always give the mast some support by either wedging it between rocks or binding it to a tree/post/large rock using the bungee cords. The wire antenna itself acts as two points of anchorage: one where the end of the wire is tied off (or rather, the few meters of paracord that I’ve attached to the end of the antenna are tied off) and another from the coax side.

With an EFHW antenna made with appropriate wire, the mast does not have to hold up much weight, so it is not difficult to stabilize it with the two directions of guying provided by the antenna itself + some basic method of securing the base of the mast.


That depends on the mast.

I use a 10m DX Wire Mini mast and a 6m Decathlon mast. The Decathlon mast stands securely in the holder.

The 10m mast is either leaned against it somewhere, fixed with elastic Velcro or, if necessary, braced with a ring disk with holes.

My endfed has a few meters of rope at the end. I tie it to something (branch, tuft of grass,…) and if necessary I also have a tent nail with me to tighten the antenna wire.

The space always determines the structure (Inv. L, Inv. V,…) I usually sit next to the mast and the coax feed is at the foot of the mast. From there the coax goes to the place where I can sit comfortably.

If you run the cable loosely on the mast, you can vary everything easily…

73 Armin


You should have a look at this thread:

There are several suggestions on how to guy your mast.

You can see how I mount my mast when there are no trees, … in this video:

73 Martin


When ever possible, I jam my poly pipe sleeve into some rocks, soft ground or in this case some tree remains. It is generally plenty of support for my Carbon 6 mast and an end fed half wave for 40m, strung as inverted V.

Where there is nothing suitable, I use a Sotabeams guy ring and three guys, about 1 metre up the mast. I always carry these, but hardly ever need to use them. I’ve even used my bike to hold up the mast on occasion.


Cheers for the answers,I failed to mention that I’ve got this kit at FH: 10/(15)/20/40/80 Mini End fed antenna kit, including 100 Watt 1:49 Impedance transformer - HF kits

My concern is with the transformer weight,obv i need to remove the top section of the pole,but will it bend it too much?
I have yet to test it out,probably tommorow when we cut the wire to length.


I would replace the wire with some much thinner stuff. I really like Poly-Stealth wire. It will take 100 watts no problem.

Take the very thin top section of the mast and glue it into the next section to strengthen it. Also, put heatshrink tubing on the base tube to protect it (it gets jammed into rocks, etc). Tape up the bottom to protect the cap and keep it from coming off. Tether the top cap to the pole.


It is a brick! However, it won’t add any load to your mast, as it will either be on the ground at the feed point, or preferably 1 metre off the ground, hanging from a branch or tied to walking poles.


I thought the transformator would go on the top and the wire down from it?

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+1 for this. Don’t lay it on the ground unless absolutely necessary. You should elevate it (and the counterpoise, if you use one). Use a short length of coax between the transformer and rig.

If you are running QRP, consider making yourself a much lighter version of this antenna. This is overkill for SOTA.


Thats what I’ve got atm that is near completed,I still have a sotabeam picobalun to make into a antenna for adipole,that would make amuch better solution for the harder/longer hikes.


When I deploy my EF (either EFRW or EFHW) I either do inverted V or inverted L. That is what most people do. Otherwise you need too much feedline, and that stuff is heavy and/or lossy if you use the thin stuff. I use an 8" coax between the transformer and the rig.


I’ll be using RG-174,thereabouts 10 meters or so i think,the rig is the trusdx.


I have my transformer mounted on the same board as the radio. RG174 feedline is only 3".
I use 28 guage wire as an inverted v so there’s practically no weight or stress to the pole. K6ARK has a good youtube vid on guying poles.


You didn’t say what configuration you intend to use for your EF (halfwave?) antenna: horizontal, inverted V, sloper, etc.

I rule out horizontal and inverted L for quick and practical portable use. I activate solo and carry one 6m-long telescoping fibreglass pole, not two poles. I very rarely find anything on SOTA summits (like a tree at the right distance and with suitable branches) to attach the other end of the wire to the same height.

I find it takes longer to put up an inverted V (than a sloper) especially in strong wind where the two wire halves want to get entangled. I use inverted V config only for my linked dipoles.

So, that leaves the sloper configuration. I always first choose where I want to sit (in a sheltered spot out of the wind if possible – which maximizes my activation time).

If I’m lucky there’s a stonewall, fence, bush etc at my chosen operating spot to which I can attach the Z-match transformer end 1 or 2m off the ground. If not, I have a 2m cord to extend the wire to a ground peg so the Z-box is off the ground 50cm or so. I use a 2m RG58 coax to run from the Z-box to my rig (KX2 with internal ATU).

Bungee cord (green) to bush, EFHW wire (red), 2m coax to rig (blue), Z-match box (yellow)

I pay out the antenna wire on the ground from the winder and assemble the 6m pole with O-ring and guy cords (I use 4 not 3), then attach the end of the EFHW to the top end of the 6m pole with a few cm’s of bungee cord.

If it’s not windy (like on yesterday’s activation) I raise the pole and move it until the EFHW is taut and attach the guy cord on the opposite side of the antenna wire to a ground peg. At this point, the pole can only fall over at 90 degrees to the line of the antenna, so I put in a guy & peg on one ‘side’. With two guys attached I can usually let go of the pole and then do the other two guys/pegs. The guying usually needs some readjustment especially on rocky summits where the soil is thin.

The thin sections at the top of the mast should be bending over due to the tension in the wire, otherwise you will have a big sag in the wire which will detune the antenna (as its effective length is too short).

If it’s very windy I determine where the pole needs to be (as above) but lay the pole down and attach the (four) guy cords to the pegs and then raise the pole. You need to know how far away from the base of the pole the pegs need to be. Practice this somewhere benign like your garden lawn or local park to get the distance right.

Other activators will tell you to do the pole bit first and pay out the antenna wire to wherever the wire ends (and activate at that spot). But they are young (and impervious to the cold and rain) or activate in warm weather or on wooded hilltops.


With QRP you can get away with anything. Here is my 49:1 off a boulder. I don’t use a counterpoise.

I usually use 5 metres of RG-174, with a common mode choke in-line next to the radio. Occasionally I’ll connect the 49:1 straight to the radio, skipping the coax.

You have a radio, some coax, a transformer, a mast and some wire. Hook it up and give it a go!


Yes, but like most YouTube demo videos he erects the pole in a town park with peg-friendly, level grassy soil on a dry windless day. One can more or less get away with anything with those conditions. Some of us have had to develop our methods the hard way to cope with strong winds on hostile uneven rocky summits in GM/SS, G/LD etc.

Some of these solutions involve effectively using the antenna wire as one of the guy ropes. I never do that as the antenna suffers unnecessary stress in high and gusty winds. Most of my EFHWs are lightweight with inline traps, stubs and Z-boxes intended for QRP use. They are have been trouble free for many years despite regular use. Careful unpacking/unwinding and rewinding/packing also helps.

Preventing fibreglass pole sections collapsing (mid QSO) in the rain when the joints are wet is a problem. As is making the sections collapse (when they don’t want to) at the end of of the activation.


The weight of the antenna is not the issue. Getting a guyed mast to remain upright in strong winds (which we get frequently in NW Britain especially on hilltops) and where the summit terrain is mainly rock or 1-2 inches of soil is a challenge. That’s why I use 4 not 3 guys/pegs in case one pulls out.

Mind you trying to get the long ground spike for my Chameleon MPAS Lite vertical into the ground can be hard work. I must have tried 15 times on a G/NP summit a few weeks ago before it went in enough.


Or use a sloper configuration fed at the low end.