Connex as a shack

I’m wondering if anyone has experience using. Connex as a shack, especially as a groundplane :slight_smile:

Connex is a commercial antenna and sometimes using commercial antennas rather than amateur antennas is better. Not all the time – but sometimes. The advantage of using amateur antennas is that they typically are priced much lower than commercial antennas, but sometimes aren’t as rugged. Are you talking about a mobile antenna to ground plane conversion kit? The first thing that comes to mind is just use a regular ground plane antenna, rather than trying to convert a mobile antenna to base use. But before I digress, will wait to see if you had something/application in mind.

You misunderstand, connex, as in an iso shipping container.

I moved QTH and as part of that needed temporary storage, so purchased a container, once we were in I put my shack in it.

I’m curious what experience people have mounting vertical antennas on the top and using the connex as a ground plane.

A shipping container was my second guess. There’s a lot of metal there as long as there isn’t much rust, so it should work great for a LOT of antennas. Drilling holes through the steel is another thing though! :stuck_out_tongue:

I have a 20 foot connex container that works great as a shack. Only thing is that with the long narrow shape you end up with a somewhat directional antenna. I drilled and tapped opposite lower corners to attach to ground stakes. Right now I use a solar/battery power supply but am planning on installing a 50 amp 240 volt panel to add climate control.

No solar for me, mine is in the shadow on a line of 70ft firs (my tree guy is about to put my vhf/uhf stuff up there), so I just have a couple of long cords for now, the ripper tooth for my backhoe showed up last week so I’ll be dropping some more permanent power out there soon.

I’ve used some so-239 bulkhead connectors to get out to various antenna on the roof, mostly hamsticks at this point. They tune well on the mag mounts, but not so much on the 3/8th stud I put through the top.

I’ve got a 6x6 post I’m going to put my icom tuner on and run a long wire up into one of the trees.

I’m curious of any gotchas you can think of or learning you can share?

A connex is a good faraday cage as well as a good “shop”. We use them up here in the arctic for many uses including a good ham shack. You’ll need heat, check out water leaks and close off, a wood floor using two by fours for a floor base and 3/4" ply decking along with some good flooring like linoleum material for easy cleaning and locating parts that fall off of the bench. Also, a good external ground rod that runs inside for all grounds, don’t rely on the container as a ground as it will corrode. A good outside paint will keep it good for years. Cheaper than a built garage shop, especially if you add two or more together.

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Its not quite so cold here as the arctic :slight_smile: my container was a “one trip” so basically brand new.

So, I’ve already been working on grounding it, theres a few hamsticks on mag mounts on the roof which have given me decent results on 10-30m, i did put a stud → so239 in the roof but i cant get anything to tune up on it.

Im about to setup an external tuner(icom ah-4) and a long wire into the trees, I’m curious on your opinion about placement, should i ensure the tuner is some distance from the container? Above it? Or not worry?

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On you SO-239 on the roof, check for continuity from ground to ground, center to center lead and that there is no short from ground to center lead. If that is all good then you may need to ground the outer layer of the Conex. As for the Icom AH-4; I have one in my shack and had one mounted in the cab of my communications van when I was Commanding Officer of a comms detachment; in both locations they worked well for me and I had no issues with them; at least, not until one of my enlisted members connected the output into the input and blew the thing out. Been considering sending it back to Icom for repair … can’t blame that one on anyone except myself for not checking the set up before letting them use it.

Hope this helps, 73


I’ll double check the continuity, but it definitely wasn’t shorted to ground, the connex is grounded in plenty of places…

Alright, sounds like i’m getting the auger out tomorrow to sink a post for this tuner, thanks!

Does pretty good with those hamsticks.