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Lay Down Those Radials The Easy Way in Minutes!

If you have been a ham for any period of time and have experimented with verticals and other types of antennas out in the back yard that require radials or a counterpoise you know how time and labor consuming it is to bury them just under the grass.  Plus you usually have a longer run when you need a good counterpoise.

Here is a suggestion that can save you loads of time and manual labor that could be spent on the air rather than spurting gallons of sweat and aggravation!
Plus it has an added benefit which I will disclose later in this article.

So to help eliminate most if not all of that manual labor and time, and get you on the air much faster, try a simple electric powered lawn edger!

There are many inexpensive models and brands on the market that will do the "work" of getting those shallow trenches dug for your radials in no time at all. Usually less than a minute for each radial depending on the length of your longest radial.

An electric powered lawn edger will zip across the ground at a slow walking speed and cut you a fine trench into the grass and the ground below it up to about a couple of inches which is more than enough to bury the radials. The grass will grow back over the trenches in no time at all.

The only "worry" with using this method is the requirement of a long extension cord for the edger! (If it is an electric model.) Or you may be able to find a battery powered rechargeable edger so do your research.

If you don't want to bother with an extension cord, there are also edgers out there that are gas powered and regular gad powered weed eaters that you can get the add on edger attachments to do the same job.

One of the more popular electric lawn edgers is seen below:

This is the Black & Decker LE750
You can check out this lawn edger and many more
 at Amazon.com with excellent prices!

Demo Video of the Black & Decker LE750 from YouTube by N0RQ

The ground was hard clay soil.

Before you start digging!
The method for using a lawn edger would be to plan your radial field in advance starting at the base of the vertical or other counterpoise type antenna and fan out in many directions and dig (using the lawn edger) as many as you require for your installation. Mark the outer ends of each radial.
HINT, the more radials the better but would depend on the antenna type.

Then after the radial trenches are dug, simply place your radial or counterpoise wire in them, tamp the extra dirt on top about every foot or two or as you require and wait for the grass to grow over them.
Caution...the radial wires should be completely buried end to end if you plan on mowing the grass over them soon. Check them to make sure the mower won't cut them.
Over time, you won't know they are there.

So what excuse are you waiting for? The money spent on a lawn edger, in my opinion, is a lot less than the equal amount of labor and time digging your radial trenches manually!

What was the extra benefit I mentioned at the first of this article?

"Your XYL can use the lawn edger for what it was designed for while you are chasing DX!" 73  ---  N4UJW