One of the most amazing inventions in history has to be the television antenna. It’s so simple, and yet it can bring hours’ worth of entertainment right into your living room for free! Local channels like NBC, PBS, CBS, and ABC are all available on antennas without hidden costs. Just connect one up to your TV set, and you’ll never have to worry about paying again for cable service.
Digital over-the-air (OTA) broadcasts offer a superior HD viewing experience, but if you happen to live in an area with spotty signal coverage or very low speeds, then get help from an Antenna Mast to elevate the antenna.
Do you know how to build a 40′ antenna mast? Well, we are going to talk about it here. The antenna mast is a great solution to improve signal reception. This type of tower can be raised in height, so it’s ideal for rural areas or places where buildings are blocking your line of sight. Unlike standard towers, which require more time and effort to take down when changing antennas, with an antenna mast, you have that freedom; all you need to do is unscrew one bolt!
What Is An Antenna Mast?
A mast is a tool that allows the antenna to get a clear signal without any interference by elevating the antenna at height. This can be done with different materials, but most masts are made of wood or metal and stay upright to avoid falling over during windy weather conditions.
A local telecommunication tower has one too, but you can take the antenna mast down whenever you want. Unlike other masts, which are usually large pieces of metal or wood, this lightweight version doesn’t get in anyone’s way!
Tools Required to Build an Antenna Mast
You might be excited to start building your first 40′ antenna mast, but before you dive headfirst into the process, there are a few tools you need to collect. Let’s take a look at what supplies will help make this as easy and fun as possible.
You will need a shovel to dig up dirt. You’ll want something with sharp edges and durable material so it can help get rid of all that ground!
2. Aluminum Tube
The aluminum tube will be the backbone of this antenna mast. A 3-inch diameter, 15-foot long tube will ensure that your antenna can withstand any weather.
3. Fiberglass Tube
For this project, you’ll need one tube that’s around 17-feet in height and 10 millimeters in diameter. The other should be 12 feet tall with a 5mm thickness.
4. Winch and Pulley
It’s tough to raise a heavy mast, but using the right equipment is an easy way around that. A pulley and winch system made of steel will do nicely for this purpose – just make sure it has galvanized surfaces to withstand outdoor weather conditions.
5. Metal Rebar
Metal rebars serve as the mast’s foundational anchor.
To start the project, you will need to dig a hole and remove any soil or dirt from it. Once that is completed, set up your rebars with four pieces of metal per mast base.
6. Steel Posts
To assemble the antenna mast, you will need some heavy-gauge steel posts at least 10 feet in height and 3 inches in diameter. Simply insert these into the metal bars with a firm grip on each post, so they stay put when we fasten it down later.
You will need various tools and accessories to complete your project! These include tube connectors/clamps, steel wire clip, steel U-bolt with a hook (U-hook), 1 inch stainless bolt along with wing nuts. You’ll also need cement for the antenna pole. A drilling machine is also required to make holes in concrete or wood surfaces before setting up the anchor bolts.
Estimated Cost of 40 Feet Antenna Mast Setup
You can build an antenna mast entirely from scratch for anywhere between $300 and $1300. If you want to use cheaper materials, then the cost goes down by about 30%. But in general, it will probably be around 500 bucks with better quality material and tools.
How to Build a 40′ Antenna Mast?
After taking a quick inventory of your needs and what you can afford, it is now time to start building the antenna mast.
Below is a six-step process that you can follow:
- Finding the right spot for your mast structure not only allows it to work correctly but can also be aesthetically pleasing! So, ensure that it will provide proper support wherever this is going and be sturdy enough not to collapse under its own weight.
- Collect the tools listed above in this post.
- Dig a 3×3 feet hole in the ground with a shovel.
Build the Structure’s Foundation
- I hope you have been following our instructions and readying the foundation for installation, as we discussed in prep step one. Now it’s time to prepare the hole with metal rebars that will work as an anchor!
- You already have a solid foundation for your project. Now, you just need the steel pipes in place. Push them into the center position, so they are 2-feet below ground level – then watch your structure take shape!
- A great way to make the base even stronger is to have a metal bar go through it – making sure that there’s at least 1 inch left on top so you can use nuts for additional reinforcement if needed!
- Insert the U-bolt washer and cover the remaining hole using cement.
- It will take some time for the cement to dry. Move on to the following stage after it’s completely dried.
Set up the Central Section
- For the central section, the aluminum pipe that we listed above is the way to go. Drill 5-feet into one end of the tube and make sure that hole is at least an inch in diameter, so there’s enough room inside it for a bolt.
- Drill into the steel post with the drill machine and measure the height of the hole at least 6 feet from ground level.
- Attach the post to the tube and then bolt them together. That will be your pivot point for this structure, so make sure it’s secure!
- To raise the mast, you must attach the pulley and winch to the aluminum post.
- The pulley should be installed in the direction of an aluminum tube. You can attach this with a U-hook and make sure you’re holding on tight to avoid your fingers getting pinched!
- After installing the necessary hardware to hang your winch, use its manual for guidance and install it in the middle of the steel post.
- Once the winch is fastened to your steel cable, find a spare part and attach it through the pulley. Now tie up the bottom end of your aluminum tube with the steel sable, and then use some washers/spacers for extra protection!
Finish the Process with Fiberglass Tubes
- Make sure the winch is all set and secure. If it works like a charm, tie it down with wire clips!
- Drill a hole on the side of an aluminum tube that is about 2-feet away from one end. Make sure it’s 1″ in diameter, and care to make this drill bit sharp so you don’t break through any other surface as you work your way towards perfection!
- Take a 10″ fiberglass tube and drill a 1″ hole into each ends.
- The procedure is the same with a 5″ fiberglass tube, but make sure to drill holes in only one end.
- Fasten the two tubes together with the help of nuts and bolts. Arrange them in a way so that the 5″ tube goes on top of 10″ fiberglass tube. And then these both tubes go on top of aluminum ones.
- Make sure everything is fitted correctly and secured.
Tips and Precautions for Building an Antenna Mast
- To make things easier on yourself, our team has gone ahead and put together some tips & tricks sections in each step below, so there will always be an answer at hand if something doesn’t make sense or is giving you the trouble along the way!
- Rough materials like clips, tubes, and wires await you at work. Considering the risks of injury to your body – protect yourself with goggles, gloves, or any other protective gear before starting!
- To keep your mast in the best condition, you need to inspect it once a year. During this inspection, check if all nuts and bolts are tight or whether everything is working smoothly!
- Fiberglass can be fragile, so it’s best to handle the tube carefully. You’ll need a steady hand and plenty of patience for this project!
- Lightning can have a devastating effect on your antenna mast. It’s essential to ground your mast and structure by installing an 8-inch grounding rod into the soil! When you use a bronze pipe grounding clamp for grounding, it will minimize the risk of electrical discharge.
- To avoid the signal interference of a tall structure, we recommend at least 10 feet between your antenna mast and any other buildings.
Some antennas work better than others depending on where you live in relation to broadcast towers – but not all of them do! The signal can be blocked by trees, buildings, mountains…etc.
You are in luck! With this article, you can learn how to build a 40-foot antenna mast and get ready for those digital channels without any monthly subscription.