Modifying a TV “bunny ears” antenna for 2m and 70 cm use

Hey there! I haven’t been posting for a really, really, long time now. Been so busyyy~ T^T

On one of the amateur radio chat groups I am in, someone asked if they could make use of a TV “bunny ears” antenna for 2m and 70 use.

I was initially skeptical of the idea, and was wondering if the idea would actually work. Of course, what better way to find out than to actually modify one? So I went out and bought myself one, and got to work.

After calculating what the lengths of each “ear” should be, trimming them and taking more measurements, I wound up with this VSWR graph:

I obtained a VSWR of 1.3 on VHF and 1.5 on UHF! That ain’t bad at all, for such a quick modification! =D
So I decided to test it out by making some contacts. I was able to reach the repeater from my place, which is about 11.47 km away.

I was also able to make a contact with another ham on UHF, simplex.

So the antenna seems to be working fine so far! But in this state…

the antenna probably won’t last that long in the elements. =P
Let us make this into a more proper build! With a little help from my dad <3, here’s what I came up with:

I then mounted the antenna out of the window.

This is the final measured VSWR plot:

VSWR 1.2 on both frequencies! ^^

As you can see, modifying/making an antenna suitable for use on the ham bands is not a difficult task. This antenna “build” cost me about $10 SGD. Maybe one should try building and experimenting with antennas, and see what results they get, and make a few contacts with people on the air! There are many resources like the “Practical Antenna Handbook” by Joseph Carr and the “ARRL Antenna Book” which are comprehensive and handy guides, even for beginners.

Until next time! =)