Thanks to the Genius of Nicola Tesla – A Perfect Antenna for
by Dan and Sheila
if you are familiar with the name Nicola Tesla you have read enough
articles extolling the genius that he was. He was the inventor of
Alternating Current (AC), the radio (Marconi used Tesla's plans
and experiment notes), florescent lighting, radar, radio controlled
boats to name a few of the inventions of this man's genius. What
we are going to talk about today is one of the master's little noticed
inventions, The Tesla Ground Wave Antenna, the perfect
antenna for the survivalist on a tight budget (and who isn't!?!?!).
The Tesla Ground
Wave Antenna breaks nearly all the rules of antenna theory. This
antenna is very very simple using only a couple of parts, and is
extraordinary as a receiving antenna. Some have also used this as
a transmitting antenna, with an antenna tuner for HAM and freebanding.
Using a 4
ft long piece of re-bar steel or a copper and steel ground rod,
drive the ground rod into the ground so that only a couple of inches
sticks out from the ground (just enough to attach a wire and a hose
clamp). Use a solution of 1 cup of Epsom Salts and 1 gallon of water
poured on the ground where the rod is going in. Adding salts to
the ground will increase ground conductivity. With this done attach
a high gauge wire (18 to 24 gauge works best) to the rod with a
hose clamp. Use an alligator clip or male plug to attach the other
end of the wire to your radio.
My own project
to make one of these antennas went this way: Found a piece of 4
ft. re-bar steel, the type used with small cement projects. I wet
the soil around where I was going to drive the steel rod in to the
soil till it was soft and muddy with the Epsom Salt and water solution.
I then began driving the rod into the ground while still applying
the Epsom Salt solution to the area around the rod, until the rod
was only sticking out of the ground about 2 inches. Then I took
a piece of 24 gauge wire from an old parallel port printer cable
and attached the wire to the rod. On the other end I placed an alligator
clip to attach to the on-board antenna of my Grundig YB 400 receiver.
with the antenna attached to the radio I was able to hear KFI radio
from Los Angeles broadcasting Coast to Coast A.M. with John B. Wells
very clearly without the up and down signal strength that we were
experiencing before without it. In the morning I tuned into the
20 meter band (14 MHZ ) with the standard antenna of the YB400 and
was able to hear all the SSTV signals at a S3 to S4, then with the
Tesla Ground Wave antenna attached the receive went up to S9+. Definitely
worth the effort. It only took 15 minutes and most of the time was
finding the stuff I needed like wire and re-bar.
the electronics genius, Nicola Tesla, for an easy shortwave and
AM receive antenna that costs near nothing. For troubleshooting,
if the antenna does not have great receive strength, check that
the wire connected to the ground rod has a clean surface and it
is tight. Passing that test, check the ground conductivity with
an ohm meter, or simply add more Epsom Salt and water to the area
around the ground rod.
73s and 88s!
with permission from SurvivingSurvivalism.com.
and Sheila [send them mail]
are the authors of Surviving Survivalism – How to Avoid Survivalism
Culture Shock and hosts of the free podcast, “Still Surviving
with Dan and Sheila”, both available at survivingsurvivalism.com.
© 2012 SurvivingSurvivalism.com