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Old 26-08-2011, 19:49   #76
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Geoff-
"You should see the POS I'm driving to Sydney to pick the boat up lol.
(Cost me $150 - draw your own conclusions)"

At $150, AUS or US, don't you mean "the POS I'm going to try to drive to Sydney" ?

Actually, on a ferrocement hull you probably could chisel down to the rebar in one or two locations, tie in your counterpoise to the metal, and then repair the intrusion with an epoxy or cement fill. But just running a counterpoise down each side of the hull, you might get so much coupling to the rebar that it would work as well anyhow.

Physics: A rationale that dogs gave to man, so we'd never figure out that it is dogs pulling food to the floor, not gravity.
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Old 28-08-2011, 05:11   #77
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Has anyone tried modeling the KISS using MMANA or something similar ??
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Old 28-08-2011, 06:35   #78
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

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Geoff-
"You should see the POS I'm driving to Sydney to pick the boat up lol.
(Cost me $150 - draw your own conclusions)"

At $150, AUS or US, don't you mean "the POS I'm going to try to drive to Sydney" ?
Ah, should be right. It's got either a blocked primary fuel filter or a crook fuel pump. We had it running for about twenty minutes and the injected engine is quite smooth. Gearbox is fine, just the fuel problem, nothing I can't fix, any minor issues on the way, I can fix. Cosmetically it's a bit rough, but I've driven worse long distances.

We're going to Murray Bridge first to see the wife's sister then to Mildura in Victoria, then Hay, Wagga Wagga, Bowral and into Sydney from the south. Plenty of wrecking yards around if I need a part or something, but it will probably be just fine. Mechanically it's quite good, so not anticipating any major issues, but we're prepared for them.

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Actually, on a ferrocement hull you probably could chisel down to the rebar in one or two locations, tie in your counterpoise to the metal, and then repair the intrusion with an epoxy or cement fill. But just running a counterpoise down each side of the hull, you might get so much coupling to the rebar that it would work as well anyhow.
It's possible the armature itself would make an adequate groundplane or counterpoise depending on the antenna I use. I'm favouring a 'rope' antenna, possibly configured as an inverted v, not sure yet, but I can easily make such a thing myself and it avoids the 'hot' backstay issue completely (though this issue is often greatly overstated). Experimentation would be the test. That said, I have also heard suggestions there may be unwanted electrolytic effects if this is done, though I am not certain how that could happen if the armature is completely isolated from the water. I'll look into it before committng myself.


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Old 30-08-2011, 11:46   #79
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

You could achieve the same with any piece of wire and it will achieve exactly the same result and you wont spend as much! The KISS ground is just a short radial ground. Jurgen
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with all due respect to your knowledge, it's fine for you techies out there to discuss the pros/cons, validity, etc of the KISS unit. For those of us who aren't so knowledgeable or inclined, KISS makes perfect sense. I just got mine, haven't installed it yet, but I love the fact that I just place it down and forget it. No future worries about corroded copper, no having to tear my lockers apart to install copper foil, plus figure out how to join them up, then get a good connection to a thru hull. In fact, zero issues that have plagued us non tech types.
Completely hassle free. Some of us just want to communicate, not invent the radio all over again.
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Old 30-08-2011, 12:09   #80
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Jurgen-
"The KISS ground is just a short radial ground." So you've xrayed one and found it is not what they claim? They indicate it is 8 or 9 separate wires, and a number of inductors, presumably one tuned coil to pass/block one frequency range on each wire. That tuning will make a big difference versus a "plain" radial ground.

Geoff-
The armature should(?) be within 2" of either side of the hull, and as I recall there is good capacitive coupling between any radio antenna/counterpoise and seawater for a range of a good 2". Which is why/how a foil ribbon inside a FRP hull works to connect to the salt water outside.
The cement, of course, is also wet and live in the circuit. When you remove the water from cement it goes all crumbly and can be flaked apart with a bare hand. So it isn't a great conductor, but it doesn't totally isolate that armatture either. Measuring the actual capacitance and inductance of that coupling is a simple exercise left to the reader.<G>
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Old 30-08-2011, 12:15   #81
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Any other piece of equal length wire attached to the same ground lug would work just as well! A smart ham once said, &quot;&quot;everything works to some degree or another&quot;&quot; How well it works is truly open too interpretation and circumstances. Something like KISS if subjected to a controlled investigation and measurement will be exposed for what it is. Its simply a short counterpoise that whose only relevance in radio physics is that it is acting as short counterpoise which all vertical polarized antennas require. Is it a good efficient counterpoise, in my book no. Does it work sure, is it more efficient than a bigger or more efficient system of radials or copper bonded ground system? Definitely not, thats impossible. Anyone who claims that they can stuff X amount of electrical length down a tube and that it is electrically equivalent of a larger ground system on all HF marine frequencies is having flights of fantasy. Any ground system requires capture area, and capture area is related to frequency and size. A single efficient radial wire that is capable of working as a proper counterpoise on 2mhz is 107ft in length, how can a 13ft piece of wire be seen electrically as efficient as a 107 ft of wire in terms of capturing antenna ground currents? We know its physically impossible for any short wire radial to be as efficient. Its basically flawed thinking that somehow stuffing wire down a plastic tube regardless if its length magically increases its efficiency. I am sure if you connected a bicycle wheel to your ground lug, you will report that it works. I aint going market bicycle wheel ground systems any time soon! Then again if you analyzed a bicycle wheel as counterpoise it is probably more efficient than the KISS ground at some frequency and probably is better at preventing current loss near the antenna feedpoint! 73 Jurgen
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A never ending story; oh wait the KISS works wonderfully, end of story.
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Old 30-08-2011, 12:47   #82
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

hellosailor - No need to xray the KISS. I started this thread after opening one up to see what it was made of. The accompanying pictures document it. No special inductors were found, just various lengths of wire folded up inside a plastic tube exhibiting no unique electrical properties when swept at HF frequencies.
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Old 30-08-2011, 13:04   #83
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

You dont need to model the KISS, because you cant model mumbo jumbo! What you can however model is simple short radials over seawater. What the modelling programs report is that near seawater anything will work. Take something like the KISS and install it over dessert ground and you wont be praising the KISS ground system. In real terms a good single radial wire will have something like 6db of gain over something like the KISS near seawater. Most people cant measure 6db on radio. Ham radios S-meters are useless and measure nothing really. They not calibrated and do not measure whats at the antenna socket! Your hearing is logarithmic not linear thats why most people says that it works or that they dont notice any difference simply because the difference hard to quantify, there is a difference however. Besides when HF propagation has fading of as much as 20db, who is going notice minor decibel differences? The fact is that if you soldered a quarter to a piece if wire and suspended the quarter into the surface of the water, it would work as well as the KISS ground. If you then switched in the KISS ground and re-tuned, you wont notice any difference in the real world! A quarter theoretically is large enough at HF to enable a reliable electrical connection to the seawater. Because you surrounded by a very efficient medium regardless of what you do you will have some success and it will work because you will always be &quot;connected&quot; to it despite what you think(no connection or counterpoise). If your antenna tuner allows it, and you could tune your antenna without a ground system you will find that this works too. Even though you think that you have no &quot;RF GROUND&quot; you will find that you actually do have some kind of ground because the coax between your antenna tuner and radio will is part of the circuit and will act as a counterpoise. It will work if the impedance and reactance is matched and reduced by the tuner. Your feedline is part of your antenna and if you have had experience with antenna modelling you will know that you can model any antenna with and without the feedline and obtain totally different results! Anyway i am rambling here in many different tangents. Executive summary: If you connected short wet spaghetti to your system over seawater and then compared it to short copper wire radials it would not amount to much over seawater, 6db at most. The surrounding seawater ground saves you regardless of what you do. This is the reason why everyone seems to be happy regardless of what religious grounding gods you worship. I will leave the RF ground debates to the experts who have more internet time than I have! The KISS is ingenious because it simply does not have to do anything, 99% of what is supposed to be doing is really being done by nature! If you want to spend your money on a clever marketing concept thats none of my business!
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Has anyone tried modeling the KISS using MMANA or something similar ??
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Old 30-08-2011, 15:27   #84
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

[QUOTE=hellosailor;763018]Jurgen-
"The KISS ground is just a short radial ground." So you've xrayed one and found it is not what they claim? They indicate it is 8 or 9 separate wires, and a number of inductors, presumably one tuned coil to pass/block one frequency range on each wire. That tuning will make a big difference versus a "plain" radial ground.[\QUOTE]

Would it need an inductor? I've made any number of multifrequency dipoles for hf that simply employ several different individual dipoles made of insulated wire with a common feed point. The RF energy will couple to the dipole at the resonant frequency readily and largely ignore the non resonant dipoles. I'm uncertain how this works with the end fed wire/random length backstay/random length ground plane/counterpoise situation though. I think some computer modelling may be in order.

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Geoff-
The armature should(?) be within 2" of either side of the hull, and as I recall there is good capacitive coupling between any radio antenna/counterpoise and seawater for a range of a good 2". Which is why/how a foil ribbon inside a FRP hull works to connect to the salt water outside.
There'd have to be some coupling at least. Given that steel is ferrous there is probably a tuned circuit here, a combination of capacitive and inductive coupling. Hmm, I'm not at all sure how I'd calculate that, be interesting to sweep it and see.

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The cement, of course, is also wet and live in the circuit.
Huh? I don't pretend to be a civil engineer, but I thought the curing process removed the water, or more correctly, bound some of it into the resultant insoluble compound and pushed the rest to the surface where it evaporates during the curing process.

[QUOTE=hellosailor;763018]When you remove the water from cement it goes all crumbly and can be flaked apart with a bare hand.[QUOTE]

That's contrary to my understanding, which may be faulty, but I understood that cement went through a chemical change into a largely inert solid compound and that water is bound into that compound chemically, not simply in solution. Consequently I'm not sure how you would 'remove the water'. But then I'm no expert on concrete/cement so I will defer to those with more knowledge in this area.

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So it isn't a great conductor, but it doesn't totally isolate that armatture either. Measuring the actual capacitance and inductance of that coupling is a simple exercise left to the reader.<G>
I'll look into that. The entire armature is doubtless resonant at some unguessable frequency. I've been toying with the idea of directly connecting the armature (drill or grind down to the rebar at some safe location) and attaching the ground to the armature. This should work at least as well as random radials in the bilge or copper foil spread everywhere. Is there any likelihood of this causing 'issues', electrolytic or otherwise, to the armature?

I'm going to hunt up a chemist and discuss the nature of concrete and an electronics or electrical engineer (or maybe a physicist) and discuss the effects of RF groundplane effects on the steel armature embedded in a concrete strata which is (hopefully) impervious to water, floating in a saline solution. This might well be a PhD dissertation project for some clever young graduate in one or more of those fields.

There seems to be a lot of conjecture and anecdotal evidence in this area, perhaps it's high time to nail it down with numbers.
Heinlein once wrote that if it can't be expressed mathematically, it's not fact, it's conjecture and it seems that there is considerable conjecture and inference in this area, and that's BEFORE we get into the ferrocement hull side of things, this simply adds another layer of complication.

This is interesting.


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Old 30-08-2011, 15:42   #85
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Chip, I missed your photo link. I tend to not see web links if they are not underlined the way HTML's little blue links are supposed to be.<G>

Just a batch of wires...huh. In that case, it is too damned much.

Geoff-
My understanding is that cement and concrete have a fairly high water content, however it is bound, and that's why rebar rusts and breaks them up. Supposedly you can put a piece in your oven, bake it for a couple of days, and then what comes out will be relatively easy to crumble as the water is driven out.

I'm not sure the Heinlein himself could have been expressed mathematically, ergo he didn't exist? But let me know what you find when you explore the concrete/cement issue.
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Old 30-08-2011, 16:17   #86
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

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Chip, I missed your photo link. I tend to not see web links if they are not underlined the way HTML's little blue links are supposed to be.<G>

Just a batch of wires...huh. In that case, it is too damned much.

Geoff-
My understanding is that cement and concrete have a fairly high water content, however it is bound, and that's why rebar rusts and breaks them up. Supposedly you can put a piece in your oven, bake it for a couple of days, and then what comes out will be relatively easy to crumble as the water is driven out.

I'm not sure the Heinlein himself could have been expressed mathematically, ergo he didn't exist? But let me know what you find when you explore the concrete/cement issue.
I'm no physicist, nor am I a chemist, but I do have an HF vertical here at the QTH, and have been futzing with the grounds quite a bit because we have some of the worst dirt on earth for grounding systems. That being said...

I was under the impression that "tuned" radials were only required for elevated ground planes. If you're ground mounting (and at the frequencies and heights we're talking it's ground mounted) then tuned radials are neither required nor beneficial. The FCC has a standard radial requirement (something like 150 of them of some length, and I'm too lazy to google it atm) for commercial ground mounted verticals.

I've said it before, but the performance gain using my mobile HF and screwdriver parked at work vs. parked at the beach is staggering. I can't wait to install it in the boat.

On the concrete side, I don't know all the physics, but there is definitely water in cured concrete. It will become friable when you bake it. Even more entertaining is when you subject it to fire conditions it has a tendency to fracture and pop, it's called "spalling." It can be somewhat violent in nature, and I was told in a class that it was the water in the concrete converting to steam and expanding rapidly. I don't exactly know the "why" but I do know that it's bad...

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Old 30-08-2011, 17:17   #87
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Take a look at this thread. The KISS worked good for me.....LL
The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )
That's not the thread I was looking for. There's one on this site that has pics of it actually opened up. Just the internet back after Irene, but I'll look it up soon.....LL
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Old 30-08-2011, 17:23   #88
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

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Take a look at this thread. The KISS worked good for me.....LL
The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )
That's not the thread I was looking for. There's one on this site that has pics of it actually opened up. Just the internet back after Irene, but I'll look it up soon.....LL
Now with recursion!
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Old 30-08-2011, 17:26   #89
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Well guess I was wrong. The OP has a link that shows the KISS opened up in his first post. Been putting the docks back together here in New London after Irene paid us a visit, and I'm beat. Only lost two boats that I know of, one on the beach and one on a rock pile.......LL
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Old 30-08-2011, 23:55   #90
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Re: The KISS SSB Counterpoise - Revealed ( with Pics )

Like I posted before, I have a KISS-SSB on my boat and will never go back to copper foil and a bronze plate underwater. The KISS works, and works well, and is a bargain at only $140.00. PERIOD....
I am a net controller and use my SSB a lot everyday, and many others that I stay in contact with have changed over to the KISS and their signal strength improved everytime. I have had 6,000 mile transmissions with the KISS, and my connect speed or baud rate with Sailmail is faster now than when I had a 100' of fresh copper foil. It is not a 13 foot piece of wire, it is a bunch of radials with lengths up to 65 feet long folded back and forth in a tubular housing, the many different lengths inside work together perfectly. If you read their last two testimonials at the webpage of www.kiss-ssb.com I know for a fact that they are real people, I told them to try the KISS-SSB. The KISS is simple, inexpensive and it works perfectly. Everyone is making the change but some of the old salty dogs can not handle change and probably still use tube controlled radios too. This thread has become annoying because of one or two people can not accept something so simple could work so well. No one ever says it does not work, but just complain about the cost. I rest my case, $140 is a bargin and is maintenance free and lets me enjoy cruising without worrying about the old fashioned copper foil rotting away. When I need my radio, I want peace of mind knowing it is ready to go to work for me and my safety at sea. I was referred to the KISS-SSB by an Icom America tech at the Oakland, CA boat show nearly two years ago, that was enough for me to make the change. I can remember when GPS came out for us, I couldn't buy one fast enough, but even then there were a few that said "don't trust it, always do a noon site and back it up with a sextant". Now everyone uses a GPS for prime navigation and keeps the old dusty sextant for the fun of it and to play with from time to time.
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