Like my flagpole, HOA?

Prior to erecting my Hustler 6-BTV vertical, I knew I would get a call or letter from our, oh so supportive HOA to take it down within 30 days. Well since they don’t do a very good job at enforcing some of the other, more prominent CC&Rs in our development I decided to take things into my own hands and find a way to work through this.

Now, I know basically telling the HOA to “fuck off” is not a very professional of me as an amateur radio operator. Of course I would love to send them a letter stating that since they called my vertical antenna a “tower.” I do believe I have a leg to stand on if we went down that road, but why? I don’t have time to waste with this group so I did the next best thing.

For the past year and a half I have had a flag hanging in the front of our house. I am patriotic and love seeing the stars and stripes waving in the wind. Unfortunately, that flag got caught up in the rain gutter and tore and ended up on the ground. It needed to be replaced.

Before I even thought about putting a “tower” up in my backyard I had a contingency plan knowing full well the HOA would come after me, it was just a matter of “when.” Well after finding some great ideas on the Internet about verticals disguised as flagpoles I decided to make my own off a set of plans I found developed by Albert Parker, N4AQ.

I did run into some problems along the way. First the overall height of the antenna I bought was 24′. Making things even more challenging was the fact that the 75/80 meter resonator had a diameter larger then 2″, which means I would need to go 2.5″ in order to get this to work. I soon scraped that idea of a 24′ vertical (6-BTV) and removed the top section of the vertical (75/80m) and decreased the overall height to just under 16′.

I purchased 14′ of schedule 40 PVC pipe after making sure I could get the traps though the PVC. I replaced the element claps with stainless steel screws because there was some clearance issue while using the claps. I then painted the PVC in aluminum, used a 2″ to 1.5″ reducer and mounted 10″ of 1.5″ PVC at the top with a cap and a gold ball you see on flagpoles. I also screwed on a tie down for the rope to go around when I hoisted my flag.

The results? Quite good if I do say so myself. Not perfect and I still need to work the ground radials, but that is a story for another day. Driving down the road I see a very innocent looking flagpole now in my backward, oddly enough it is in the same location as the vertical once was.

Honestly, I don’t think the HOA is smart enough to put two and two together. If they do, I now have a flagpole, not a “tower” in my backward. Nothing they can do or say at this point.

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