Winders for paracord, rope or wire antennas.

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Bushcrafter (boy, I've got a lot to say!)
Apr 20, 2005
Durham City, County Durham
This project was born out of necessity. There's nowt worse than opening your kit and pulling out the ridgeline for your hammock tarp to find it's all tangled up with antenna wires and tarp guy lines. Been there, done that - usually at dusk when I'm knackered already.

So, I set about seeing what was on the market for a way of keeping lines tidy, easily accessible and easily deployable. There wasn't much.

Right then, project time.

First off, I drew a winder on CorelDraw and printed it out.

Then I decided what material I'd like to make these from. It had to be lightweight, fairly rigid and able to withstand rough handling.
I chose to use a kitchen chopping board from Home bargains (£1.99). I got a few in different colours.

I printed the plan out on card, cut the bits out and drew round them

Then I went into the workshop and cut them out with a jigsaw and slim hacksaw type blade. I tidied them up on the belt sander and drilled the appropriate holes.

You can see just how thick this stuff is, yet it is quite light in weight.

So winders for my wire antennas being my priority, I loaded these up with some guying out line and the antenna elements tuned for the 20 meter band. I'll be bringing these, and quite a few others to the moot.

I also made a dipole centre and attached the coax to it with cable ties.

The elements hook onto the holes at the sides of the dipole centre with mini carabiners, and the antenna elements just push fit in with electrical connectors from Halfords. I kept the elements separate from the centre connector so I can swap out wires of different lengths for different bands.

To keep it truly domestic, here's what I use for the antenna elements - wire cored washing line. (Sainsbury's £2.99).

As I said, even if you are not into amateur radio, these winders are useful for saving a right mess when you are carrying separate lengths of paracord. You just wrap the cord in a figure eight, and to deploy, just walk away flicking your wrist (ooer missus), and it just drops off the winder as you go.

I've done the red ones much smaller as they will only be used for thin guy line to support a roach pole for my VHF/UHF antennas.

Here's the original drawing. Feel free to copy it. Just scale the image up to A4 and print it out on card.

Here's the modified one with the dipole centre, and smaller winders.

That's it. Have fun.

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