US 3059322 A
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Description (OCR text may contain errors)
Oct. 23, 1962 G. L. TEAGUE v 3,059,322
METHOD OF MAKING A COLLAPSIBLE ANTENNA 0F WIRE MESH Filed March 17, 1961 4 Sheets-Sheet 1 GRADY L. TEAGUE mvavrop HUEBNER a .WORREL ATTORNEYS G. L TEAGUE Oct. 23, 1962 METHOD OF MAKING A COLLAPSIBLE ANTENNA 0F WIRE MESH Filed March 17, 1961 4 Sheets-Sheet 4 /9R/89 I88 I85 /84 /63 GRAN L. TEAGUE INVENTOR HUEBNER 8 WORREL ATTORNEYS for a minimum antenna cost.
United rates atent 3,e59,322 METHOD OF MAKING A COLLAPSIBLE ANTENNA OF WIRE MESH Grady L. Teague, Fresno, Calif. (Rte. 1, Box 726, Porter-ville, Calif.) Filed Mar. 17, 1961, Ser. No. 96,528 Claims. (Cl. 29-1555) The present invention relates to a collapsible antenna and method of making the same, and, more particularly, to an economical, directional, high-gain antenna which can be rolled into a collapsed condition, which is selfsupporting when erected, and which has optimum operating characteristics.
The principles of the present invention are conveniently described in connection with a directional, television-receiving antenna of the type which employs a metallic screen reflector behind a plurality of dipoles mounted in an array. Although such antennas have been known, they have been unsatisfactory in several respects believed overcome by the present invention.
For example, such antennas have ordinarily been relatively dilhcult to assemble and to erect. They usually include a plurality of antenna elements which are mounted on a large reflecting screen by several braces or brackets. A mast is commonly utilized to support such an antenna dependably and at a proper height on a roof. The task of assembly is complicated by the necessity of correctly fastening the several parts together by bolts and nuts. Disassembly is even more onerous after the antenna has been subjected to weathering.
In addition, antennas of this type must be almost entirely disassembled for storage and/or transport. The several parts of the conventional antenna, including the bulky and cumbersome reflecting screen, are not conductive to compact packaging.
Further, many relatively simple conventional antennas, as described above, fail to yield an optimum signal, especially when operating on ultra-high frequency channels,
Public resistance to ultrahigh frequency transmission has been at least partially exerted because of the relatively poor reception and high cost of antennas available prior to the instant invention.
Accordingly, it is an object of the present invention to provide a collapsible antenna which is easy to make, assemble and disassemble. 3
Another object is to provide .a relatively large antenna including a reflecting screen all of which is capable of being rolled into a collapsed condition and unrolled into an operating condition.
Another object is to provide such an antenna which is self-supporting and requires no auxiliarymast when the antenna is mounted at heights which are normally suited for optimum reception.
Another object is to provide a collapsible antenna which can be rolled into a collapsed condition without disassembling the parts of the antenna and, conversely, which can be unrolled and erected without the necessity of fastening a multiplicity of parts together.
Another object is to provide an economical, high-gain antenna of relatively low costwhich provides optimum reception even when operating on ultra-high frequency channels.
Another object is to provide an antenna of the type described which can be'adjusted for optimum signal response in both strong and weak signal areas.
These, together with other objects, will become more fully apparent upon reference to the following descriptionand accompanying drawings. t
In the drawings: a
FIG. 1 is a perspective view of an antenna embodying the principles of the present invention and being mounted on a roof.
FIG. 2 is a somewhat enlarged, fragmentary side elevation of the antenna of FIG. 1.
FIG. 3 is a somewhat enlarged, fragmentary side elevation of the antenna of FIG. 1 but taken from a dilferout side of the antenna from that illustrated in FIG. 2. FIG. 4 is a somewhat enlarged top plan view of the antenna.
FIG. 5 is a somewhat enlarged perspective view of PEG. 8 is a perspective view of the antenna rolled into a substantially cylindrical roll following collapsing of the antenna into the conditions of FIGS. 6 and 7.
FIG. 9 is a top plan view of an antenna embodying a second form of the present invention.
FIG. 10 is a top plan view of the antenna of FIG. 9 shown in partially collapsed condition.
FIG. 11 is a fragmentary side elevation of a portion of an antenna embodying a third form of the present invention.
FIG. 12 is a fragmentary perspective view of the antenna of the third form of the present invention.
FIG. 13 is a fragmentary, side elevation of a portion of an antenna embodying a fourth form of the present invention.
. FIG. 14 is a fragmentary, perspective view of the antenna embodying the fourth form of the present invention.
Referring more particularly to the drawings, a collapsible, self-supporting, multi-directional antenna, embodying the principles of the present invention is generally indicated by the numeral 15 in FIG. 1. The antenna includes a relatively large reflector 16 of flexible, metallic, screening material. In the form of the invention illustrated in FIG. 1, it is preferred to employ one inch mesh, number fourteen screening embodying a mixture of copper and steel wire; the Wire is conventionally available under such trade designations as all-purpose or multi-purpose welded wire but is not to be confused with so-called It is understood, however, that the invention is not limited to this specific screening material.
The reflector 16, in one form thereof, is substantially triangular in transverse cross-section, .as illustrated in FIG. 4. Thus, the reflector includes a first, substantially rectangular, side portion 18 having upper and lower edges 19 and 20, and opposite side edges 21 and 22. The refiector also has a substantially rectangular, second side portion 24 providing upper and lower edges 25 and 26 and opposite side edges 28 and 29. The second side portion has an apical flange 31 extended throughout its length and wrapped around the side edge 22 of the first side portion. Also, the second side portion provides a substantially right-angularly bent, bridging flange 32 engaging the other side edge 21 of the first side portion.
- The side portions 18 and 24 of the reflector 16 include elongated, longitudinal and transverse wires 35 and 36 connected, as by soldering, at points of intersection 37. With the specific dimensions of the screening material set forth above, adjacent longitudinal wires and adjacent transverse wires "are" approximately one inch apart.
. Again, it is emphasized that the invention is not limited to this spacing nor limited to uniform spacing of all of the wires. The apical and bridging flanges 31 and 32 pro-- this manner, the side portions are interconnected in opposed relation to each other with the side edges 22 and 29 constituting an apex of the reflector. The side portions of the reflector are, of course, in acute angular relation to each other at said apex.
The reflector 16 also preferably includes a U-shaped bracing strip 45' which is also of the same screening material as the side portions 18 and 24. The bracing strip extends the full length of, and between, the side portions. The bracing strip provides a central portion 46 secured, preferably by soldering, to the first side portion intermediate its side edges 21 and 22, and a pair of bracing portions 47 extended toward the second side portion. The bracing portions have extended transverse wires 48 which are releasably wrapped around longitudinal and/ or transverse wires 35 and 36 in the second side portion between its opposite side edges 28 and 29. The bracing strip adds rigidity to the antenna and maintains the opposite side portions in predetermined spaced relation to each other.
The antenna 15 provides a plurality of spacers 55 each including a pair of elongated wires 56 having substantially the same spaced relation as the mesh of the reflector 16. The wires have inner ends 57 foldably or hingably connected to a pair of transversely adjacent intersections 37 of the side portions 18 and 24 of the reflector. The wires also have opposite outer ends 58.
Folded dipoles 65, constituting antenna elements, are individually connected to the spacers 55. It is to be noted that the subject antenna 15 is provided with a plurality of dipoles mounted in a broadside array on each side portion 18 and 24 of the reflector 16. Considering the array on the first side portion 18, as viewed in FIG. 1, there is an upper bay 66 including four dual dipoles and a lower bay 67 also including four dual dipoles. It is to be understood that the number of bays and the number of dual dipoles in each bay may be varied according to requirements and do not limit the present invention.
Considering one of the folded dipoles 65, it includes a first continuous wire 70 having opposite outer ends 71, an interrupted second wire 72 having adjacent inner ends or terminals 73 spaced apart substantially the same distance as the mesh of the screening material of the re flector 16 and opposite outer ends 74, and end wires 75 interconnecting adjacent outer ends of the first and second dipole wires in substantially the same spaced relation as said mesh. The outer ends 58 of the corresponding spacer 55 are connected to the first dipole wire substantially equidistantly from adjacent outer ends thereof. Further, the dipole is in a plane substantially perpendicular to the plane of the spacer. Stated otherwise, with the spacer extended normally outwardly from the side portion of the reflector, the dipole is substantially parallel to the plane of the side portion. The dipole is foldable or bendable relative to the spacer into substantially coplanar relation therewith. It is to be observed, however, that when the antenna 15 is upright, the uppermost dipole in each dual set thereof is extended downwardly from its respective spacer Wire and the lower dipole in such set is extended upwardly from its spacer.
Considering both dipoles 65 in any dual set of dipoles, elongated matching wires 80 have opposite ends connected to the terminals 73 of the dipoles. The matching wires are spaced substantially the same distance apart as the terminals of each dipole and are substantially coplanar with their interconnected dipoles. The dual sets of dipoles in each bay 66 or 67 are in generally rectangular relation to each other, there being an upper transversely opposed set of dipoles, a lower transversely opposed set of dipoles, and longitudinally aligned sets of dipoles. The dipoles in both bays are arranged in a pair of rows extended longitudinally of the antenna. Feed wires 82 spaced the same distance apart as the matching wires provide ends 83 individually connected to the matching wires substantially equidistantly between the terminals of their respective pairs of dipoles. The feed wires are interconnected at junctions 84. Preferably, feed wirestand-off insulators 85 are mounted on the side portions 18 and 24 of the reflector 16 and extended outwardly therefrom for supporting the junctions of the feed wires in predetermined spaced relation from the side portions of the reflector. Coupling wires 87 interconnect the junctions of the upper and lower bays on opposite sides of the antenna and are held away from their respective side portions of the reflector by auxiliary stand-off insulators 89. Main stand-otf insulators 91 are outwardly extended from the side portions of the reflector below the lower bay. Transmission lines 93 are connected to the coupling wires and held away from the opposite side portions of the reflector by the main insulators. The transmission lines are preferably flat or round two-wire conductors having approximately three hundred ohms impedance. The insulators are bendably connected to their respective side portions of the reflector and have insulated eyelets 95 at their outer ends for receiving the respective wires 80, 82, 87, and 93.
Operation The operation of the described embodiment of the subject invention is briefly summarized at this point. It is assumed that the antenna 15 is an assembled, operable condition, as illustrated in FIG. 1. In order to mount the antenna on a roof, as 100, the antenna is cut upwardly from the lower edges 20 and 26 a predetermined distance along the apex and the junctures of the side portions 18 and 24 with the bridging flange 32 and bracing strip 45. The side portions are then bent angularly outwardly from the principal planes thereof to provide lower mounting flaps 102. The antenna is erected in an upright position on the roof with the flaps against the roof and secured thereto in any convenient manner. If required, the bridging flange and the bracing portions are bent downwardly against the roof and secured thereto to provide additional support for the antenna. The subject antenna is dependably maintained in such an upright position by the described mounting when the antenna is mounted at ordinary height. For example, a commercial embodiment of the subject invention measures approximately twelve feet between the upper and lower edges 19 and 20 and is mounted in the described manner. For such heights, no auxiliary mast is required. The antenna of the subject invention is adaptable for use with a mast, not shown, if desired. When a mast is employed, it is conveniently received between the bracing portions of the bracing strip 45 and is secured to the side portion 18 of the reflector.
The antenna 15 is readily collapsed from the described assembled and erected condition. Also, it is to be understood that, subsequent to manufacture, the antenna is stored and shipped in such a collapsed condition. Thus the dipoles 65 are moved inwardly against their respective side portions 18 and 24. For this purpose, the spacers 55 fold, bend or pivot about their inner ends 57 toward their respective side portions, and the first dipole wire 70 pivot with respect to the outer ends 58 of their spacers. Considering one set of dipoles, the uppermost spacer and dipole are bent into a substantially common plane whereas the lowermost spacer and dipole are folded against each other with the connection between the outer ends 58 of the spacer and the first dipole wire serving as a hinging axis. All of the dipole pairs are similarly folded inwardly against the side portions of the reflector 16. Also, the insulators 85, 89, and 91 are bent inwardly against their respective reflector side portions. The Wires 80, 82, 87, and 93 need not be disconnected, moved inwardly against the reflector with the dipoles and insulators.
The ends 48 of the bracing strip 45 are released, and the bracing portions 47 are folded back against the first and, if not, are
side portion 18. The ends 40 on the bridging flange 32 are detached from the first side portion, and the bridging flange is bent around the first side portion so that the side portions are in overlaid relation to each other.
The side portions 18 and 24 are then rolled longitudinally of the reflector 16. Because the spacers 55; the folded dipoles 65; the wires 80, 82, 87, and 93; and the insulators 85, 89, and 91 are all flexible, the entire antenna is rollable into a relatively compact roll, as illustrated in FIG. 8. The collapsed antenna may be maintained in a roll by appropriate wire or twine, not shown. Alternatively, the longitudinal wires 35- have suificient additional lengths to provide wrap-around ends which are utilized to maintain the antenna in said rolled condition.
When it is desired to use the antenna 15, it is unrolled. Because of the resiliency ofthe screening material, it is necessary to bend the antenna in a reverse direction so that the side portions 18 and 24 are returned to a substantially planar condition. Thereupon, the antenna is assembled in the manner described above and illustrated in FIGS. 1 and 4. It is evident that the antenna is collapsed and erected without disassembling or assembling a multiplicity of parts, as with prior art antennas. When using the mesh of screen specified above, commerical embodiments of the subject antenna are sufiiciently strong in an erected condition to support approximately one hundred fifty pounds imposed downwardly on the upper end of the antenna.
Second Form The second form of the subject invention is of nearly the same construction as the first form described above. However, the secondform illustrates the fact that the subject antenna is adapted for assembly in various crosssectional shapes. Asillustrated in FIGS. 9 and 10, a reflector 116 includes first and second side portions 117 and 118. The second side portion has perpendicular flanges 119 connected to the first side portion by wires 120 wrapped around the first side portion adjacent to its opposite side edges. Thus, the side portions are interconnected in opposed, substantially parallel relation to each other. The second form is in contrast to the triangular relationship of the side portions 18 and 24 of the first form of the present invention. An elongated bracing strip 125 includes a central portion 126 secured to the first side portion, and bracing portions 127 extended between the side portions and releasably connected to the second side portion, in substantially the same manner as that previously described. 7
Antenna elements 130 are connected to the first and second side portions 117 and 118 by spacers 131 for foldable movement between collapsed positions against their respective side portions of the reflector, as illustrated in FIG. 10, and operating positions in outwardly spaced relation to the side portions, as illustrated inFIG. 9.
It is evident from the second form of the present invention that the side portions 18 and 24 or 117 and 118 may be interconnected in various triangular and rectangular relationships depending on which relationship produces the best signal reception, the most dependable mounting and the like.
Third Farm The third form of the subject invention is illustrated in FIGS. 11 and 12 and relates primarily to the construc- 6 Each spacer includes a pair of spacer wires which are portions, of predetermined length, of a pair of adjacent longitudinal wires 154. The spacer wires have inner ends 161 integrally foldably connected to the side portion 147, and outer ends 162.
Each dipole 140 includes a first continuous wire 165 which is a portion of one of the transverse wires 155 in the side portion 147. This first dipole wire is the wire which is connected to the outer ends 162 of the corresponding spacer 145. The dipole includes end wires 166 and a second dipole Wire 167 all of which constitute por tions of the wires 154 and 155. Still further, matching wires 169 are portions of a pair of adjacent longitudinal wires 154 and provide connecting ends 170. For purposes of reference, the second wire 167 provides terminals 172. r
In FlGS. 11 and 12, a dual set of the dipoles 140 is illustrated. The upper dipole in this set has the matching wires 1'69 integral therewith. I The upper and lower dipoles and the matching wires are cut out of the side portion 147 of the reflector 146 by clipping the longitudinal and transverse wires 154 and 155 on opposite sides of the spacer wires 160, the first and second dipole wires 165 and 167, and the matching wires 169. Similarly, the longitudinal and transverse wires are clipped endwardly outwardly adjacent to the end wires 166. The inner ends 161 of the spacer wires remain connected to the reflector. Also, the first dipole wire 165 is not interrupted between the spacer wires. However, the terminals 172 are spaced from each other by removing the transverse wire therebetween. Also, the ends 170 of the matching wires are disconnected.
The upper dipole 140, the matching wires 169, and the spacers 145 are bent outwardly from the side portion 147 around the inner ends 161 of the spacer wires 160 until the spacer wires arenormal to the side portion of the reflector. The lower dipole and spacer are correspondingly outwardly bent from the reflector. It is believed understood that the spacers are both bent down- Wardly if it is assumed that the reflector 146 is in an upright position. The upper and lower dipoles in this set are then respectively bent downwardly and upwardly into right-angular relation to their respective spacers. This moves the matching wires 169 into a downwardly extended position and locates the ends 170 in juxtaposition to the terminals 172 of the lower dipole. The ends of the matching wires are then connected, as by soldering, to the terminals of the lower dipole. It is evident that bending of the spacers, the dipoles, and the matching Wires out of the reflector leaves openings 173 in the reflector. For increasing the strength of the antenna, selective patching or bridging with auxiliary wire in any desired manner, not shown, may be employed across the openings.
An antenna according to the third form of the present invention may include arrays of dipoles 140 on opposite side portions 147 of the reflector 146 and these dipoles may be connected in the same manner as that described with the first form of the subject invention.
Fourth Form The fourth form of the subject invention is similar to the third form and is illustrated in FIGS. 13 and 14. A reflector of flexible wire mesh includes a pair of opposed side portions 181, only one of which is illustrated. Single wire spacers 183 provide inner ends 184 integrally, foldably connected to junctions of wires in the reflector, and outer ends 185. Full wave dipoles 188 have opposite ends 189 and are individually connected intermediate said opposite ends to the outer ends of the spacers. Matching wires 191 provide opposite ends 192 individually connected to inwardly disposed ends of the dipoles. Feed wires 195 are individually connected to the matching wires intermediate their opposite ends 192.
The spacers 183, the dipoles 188, and the matching wires 191 are cut out of the side portion 181 of the reflector 180 in a manner similar to that described in connection with the third form of the present invention. The spacers are bent outwardly from the plane of the side portion about their inner ends 184 and into substantially normal relation to the side portion. The dipoles and the matching wires are, therefore, positioned in substantially parallel relation to the side portion. After the spacers, the dipoles, and the matching wires are cut out of the screen, openings 200 remain in the side portion. As with the other forms of this invention, the fourth form of the invention is collapsible into a roll.
From the foregoing it is evident that a collapsible antenna has been provided. The antenna is particularly significant in that it is rollable between a collapsed, compact roll and an operable generally planar condition. The parts of the antenna need not be assembled and disassembled for rolling or unrolling, that is, for collapsing or erecting, of the antenna. The antenna is readily installed with a minimum of instruction even by the unskilled and with a minimum of tools and fastening elements. When in an operating condition, the antenna is adjustable by adding or omitting receiving elements to adapt to weak or strong signal areas. For average heights, the antenna is self-supporting and requires no auxiliary mast. Use of the antenna of the subject invention is particularly suitable for ultra-high frequency television reception.
Although the invention has been herein shown and described in what is conceived to be the most practical and preferred embodiments, it is recognized that departure may be made therefrom within the scope of the in vention, which is not to be limited to the details disclosed herein but is to be accorded the full scope of the claims so as to embrace any and all equivalent devices and apparatus.
Having described my invention, what I claim as new and desire to secure by Letters Patent is:
1. A method of making an antenna out of a flexible wire mesh screen in a predetermined plane and including spaced wires intersecting in meshed relation and interconnected at the junctures of intersection comprising cutting spacer and antenna wires out of the screen with the spacer wire having inner and outer ends respectively remaining integral with the screen and the antenna wire, and bending the spacer wire outwardly from the plane of the screen about its inner end so as to position the antenna wire in outwardly spaced relation to the screen.
2. The method of claim 1 wherein a pair of antenna wires in spaced parallel relation to each other are cut out of the screen, said spacer wire remaining integral with one of said antenna wires, and including the step of bending the antenna wire about its connection to the spacer wire and into opposed relation to the screen.
3. The method of claim 2 including the step of cutting the antenna wire which is not connected to the spacer wire to provide a pair of antenna terminals spaced the same distance apart as the antenna wires, and including the step of cutting a pair of connecting wires out of the screen so that they are entirely free of the screen except for ends integrally connected to the antenna terminals.
4. A method of making an antenna out of a flexible wire mesh screen in a predetermined plane including longitudinally and transversely extended wires interconnected at junctions of intersection comprising cutting the wires of the screen on opposite sides of a spacer wire and a dipole wire in T-shaped relation to each other and so that the dipole wire is entirely free of the screen, so that the spacer wire is entirely free of the screen except for an inner end remaining integral with the screen, and so that the spacer wire remains integral with the dipole wire; and bending the spacer out of the plane of screen so that the dipole wire is spaced outwardly from the screen.
5. A method of making an antenna out of a flexible wire mesh screen in a predetermined plane and including spaced wires intersecting in meshed relation and interconnected at the junctures of intersection comprising cutting a pair of spacer and antenna elements out of the screen with each spacer element having inner and outer ends respectively remaining integral with the screen and its corresponding antenna element, cutting a connecting wire out of the screen so that it is entirely free of the screen except for an end connected to one of the antenna elements, bending the spacer elements outwardly from the plane of the screen into substantially normal relation therewith, and bending the connecting wire so that said connecting wire is substantially parallel to and outwardly spaced from the screen.
References Cited in the file of this patent UNITED STATES PATENTS 2,072,262 Herzog Mar. 2, 1937 2,163,770 Radinger June 27, 1939 2,354,254 Gerhard July 25, 1944 2,580,462 Ranger Jan. I, 1952 2,900,706 Mariner et al Aug. 25, 1959 2,977,672 Telfer Apr. 4, 1961 FOREIGN PATENTS 129,485 Australia Oct. 15, 1948