If you live in the countryside or a rural area, you’ll need to strengthen your signal to watch all your favorite TV channels as much as you wish.
The best way to improve the signal of your antenna is undoubtedly by placing it on a mast, which not only improves Wi-Fi connections and radio signals but also helps you broadcast emergency communications.
Antenna masts are usually placed in a high position to enhance the signal.
Plus, you can easily lower it whenever you want, unlike standard towers.
To know how to build a 40′ antenna mast, continue reading for a step-by-step guide.
6 Steps to Build a 40′ Antenna Mast
Without further ado, let’s get into the easy-to-follow steps of building your own mast.
1. Prepare the Tools You Need
You’ll need to use specific tools to build the mast, and we recommend preparing them before you start to save time. Such tools include:
- A shovel that you’ll use to dig up the soil to make a place for the structure.
- A 15 feet long aluminum tube with a 3-inch diameter to serve as the construction’s base.
- Two fiberglass tubes, where one is 17 feet long with a 10 mm diameter and the other is 12 feet long with a 5mm diameter.
- A winch and pulley to help elevate your mast.
- Four metal rebars to put in the hole after removing the dirt to work as the mast’s base’s anchor.
- Two steel posts with 2-inches diameters and 10 feet long to help you create a sturdy receiver’s base.
2. Decide on the Location
Once you install the mast, you won’t be able to change its place later. For this reason, make sure you choose a good location for the signal.
Then, with the help of the shovel, dig a 3×3 feet hole in the ground if you want a square-shaped one.
In case you need to make a round hole, dig one that’s around 3 feet in diameter.
3. Build the Base
After digging the hole, now’s the time for the metal rebars. Push them into the soil, so they work as anchors for the base.
After that, place the steel posts very carefully, so they rest in the center of the hole. You should lower them until they’re one or two feet in the dirt to make sure they’re stable.
Next to the steel posts, place a metal bar to serve as the grounding point.
Yet, make sure that it’s a bit larger than the hole, so it leaves a small part on the surface. Following that, prepare the cement and fill the hole with it.
While doing so, don’t forget to place the U-bolt with washers because that’s where you’ll attach the pulley.
Now, you can rest for some time while the cement dries up.
4. Set up the Middle Section
When the cement dries up, hold the 15-feet aluminum tube and measure to see the right point where you should drill to place the right pivoting point.
Note that the hole should be one inch only, and it shouldn’t be located at less than 5 feet.
Next, drill a hole in the 6-feet steel posts from the ground and insert a bolt and the aluminum tube into it.
Then, ensure that the bolt isn’t loose and is well adjusted using a wing nut on the opposite side.
This bolt is the pivoting point on your mast. To check that you succeeded, try moving the aluminum tube upwards and downwards.
5. Raise the Mast
To be able to raise the mast, you’ll need to use the winch and the pulley. Let’s see how you can attach the winch, pulley, and cable to the aluminum tube.
Set the pulley so it’s in the exact direction where the aluminum tube will fall and adjust it in a way that it faces the winch’s location using a U-bolt.
Then, install the winch in the middle of the steel post and follow its manual for instructions on how to install it.
When you’re done, tie the winch and the steel cable together and make the spare part go through the pulley.
Lastly, tie the cable to the aluminum tube’s lower part and secure it using a spacer or a washer.
6. Finish Up
Now’s the time to finally use the fiberglass tubes. While the aluminum tube is still lying down, assemble the rest of the pieces.
Start by drilling a one-inch hole on the aluminum tube. Make sure to drill the hole at least two feet from the tube’s end.
Hold the 10-inch fiberglass tube and drill a hole that’s only 1 inch at two feet from its bottom on both ends.
Then, redo the same process with the 5-inch fiberglass tube—however, this time, you have to drill a hole into one end only. Connect them using nuts and bolts.
Make sure you arrange this set up so that the 5-inch fiberglass tube rests on the 10-inch one, and the 10-inch fiberglass tube rests on the aluminum tube.
Then, make sure that they aren’t loose.
Advantages of an Antenna Mast
- Durable and lasts for years
- Can be taken down whenever you want
- Doesn’t only enhance connectivity but also improves communication in rural areas
Disadvantages of an Antenna Mast
- It’s not space-saving as it takes up much space
- It costs a lot of money, especially if you’re building one for the first time
- Requires a lot of tools
- It might take weeks to build
Important Considerations to Make the Process Easier
Some specific tips can help you build a 40’ antenna mast without facing much trouble.
Carry on to find a list of the dos and don’ts you need to know.
- Wear gloves while working to keep your hands safe because you’ll use a lot of bolts and other sharp equipment like wires and tubes.
- When you lower or raise the mast, make sure you do so slowly and with grace because you don’t want to break the fiberglass section and lose all the progress you’ve made.
- Make sure you tie the wire that you’ll tie to the bottom of the aluminum tube very tightly. However, don’t tighten it so much to the extent that you put a lot of unneeded stress on the wire.
- Place the mast on a slope. It won’t be stable when you raise it.
- Keep the mast close to the floor – it’ll get damaged.
- Keep the base close to buildings (less than a 10 feet distance).
How to Maintain the Antenna Mast
Like everything in the world, if you keep a device without maintenance, it won’t last. For this reason, you must learn the methods by which you can maintain your antenna mast. Let’s check them below.
- Cover the winch and cable because they might rust if they’re exposed to all weather conditions.
- Don’t keep any part of the antenna mast on the floor. Make sure you lift everything. It would be best if you also hung the fiberglass using build supports in a way that it hangs on the same level as the pivoting point. If you don’t do that, the fiberglass might get bent or corroded.
- To ensure a smooth upwards and downwards movement, lubricate the pivoting point regularly.
- If you notice any corrosion, remove it with a brush or steel.
Frequently Asked Questions
Can I Install an Antenna Mast on My Car?
Yes, you can. Having an antenna mast on your car helps you listen to broadcasting stations with excellent and clear quality.
It does so by picking the magnetic energy from the radio waves and then sending it to the vehicle’s receiver.
Can I Use PVC Pipe?
You can use a PVC pipe instead of an aluminum one.
However, it’s not advisable because PVC pipes aren’t as durable as aluminum ones. In fact, they might last for a maximum of five years because they don’t withstand cold weather.
What’s the Best Height for Installing an Antenna?
The best height at which you should install your antenna is not less than 30 or 40 feet above ground level.
This helps the antenna improve your signal. And if you want to raise the antenna, you can use a mast.
Hopefully, you now know how to build a 40′ antenna mast by following easy and straightforward steps.
Don’t forget to wear gloves and gather all the tools you’ll need around you not to waste time.
Also, remember to check the do’s and don’t s list before starting your project!