Trying Out the Buddistick Antenna

At the Dayton Hamvention, I had picked up the Buddistick™ Deluxe Package portable HF antenna. This antenna is very popular with the Summits On The Air crowd and other QRP enthusiasts. Usually when I am doing SOTA activations, its all about VHF. But being a self-proclaimed HF Slacker, I might get on HF sometime from a summit, so having a Buddistick available seems like a good idea.

I decided I better check this thing out to see if I can make it work on our back deck.

The Buddistick Deluxe Package

The Buddistick Deluxe Package

After actually reading the instructions, I assembled the antenna and used the clamp mount to attach the antenna on our deck railing. I strung the single radial out on the deck to the recommended length and connected up the transceiver using a short length of RG-8X cable.

Buddistick clamp

Then I used the “by ear” tuning technique to set the tap on the antenna coil. You basically just run the tap down the coil to find the spot that produces the highest noise level at the transceiver.  I checked the match using the built-in SWR meter in the Yaesu FT-817 and verified that it was good.

The tapped tuning coil

The tapped tuning coil

At first, I tried 20 Meters and discovered an S6 noise level. Not good. Retuning the antenna, I moved up to 15 Meters and found the noise level to be much lower. I also heard a few strong stations working the North American QSO Party.

The mighty Yaesu FT-817 transceiver

The mighty Yaesu FT-817 transceiver

I tuned around on the SSB portion of the band and found Bob N4BP calling CQ Contest so I gave him a quick call. He came back to me right away and I gave him the contest exchange of name and state. QSL and I was in his log, no problem! I heard N8II calling and repeated the same exchange, no sweat.

Hey, this QRP stuff really works!

So that was a great first experience with the Buddistick. Now I need to try it from a summit.

73, Bob K0NR

Bob Witte, KØNR, is a regular contributor to and writes from Colorado, USA. Contact him at [email protected].

5 Responses to “Trying Out the Buddistick Antenna”

  • Chris Meisenzahl (K9ROC):

    Great and timely post for me, thanks. I’ve been using a G5RV tossed out my kitchen window 6 feet off the ground. I will likely buy one of these at some point.

  • Cliff KU4GW:

    Sounds great Bob! A few years ago you couldn’t have given me a QRP radio, but one night I decided to give it a try during a CW QRP Sprint and I only worked 1/2 the Sprint, but in that 1 hour I worked 23 stations in 17 states! I was hooked after that and now own both a Ten-Tec R4020 and a Hendricks PFR-3A and have a absolute blast on QRP CW! I use a 44 feet dipole fed with ladder line or just a 42 feet end-fed wire. Been wanting a Buddipole vertical for QRP DXing. Just haven’t been able to afford one yet, but definitely in my future QRP plans! Hope I run across a deal at the Shelby Hamfest the last day of this month! Oh yeah, a quick reminder the Flying Pigs QRP Club International’s “Run for the Bacon QRP Sprint” is tonight from 0100-0300! More info at

    Very 72/73 de Cliff KU4GW
    NAQCC#1491 FPQRP#1183 RadioClub72#46 4SQRP#536

  • Mike AD5A:


    The antenna works great, I used it this past week on a summit in New Mexico and netted 18 QSO’s in about 20 minutes, coast to coast. I would recommend elevating the counterpoise. I usually hang it over a branch when operating with trees present. I also have a trekking pole that doubles as a mount. Many trekking poles have a screw with threads compatible with the Buddi-stick mounting kit.


    Mike AD5A

  • Gurbux W6BUX:

    I have the Buddistick deluxe kit and have used it a few times and it has never let me down. Beats trying to string dipoles etc. when you are out in the local park or whatever just to make a few contacts. My FT897D and this antenna is a great combination. Set up a station at the next picnic and see what fun you can have.
    73, Gurbux. W6BUX

  • michael kf5lfq:

    I have the Buddistick deluxe kit and have used it a few times and it has never let me down

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