I met Chris Perri , KF7P, at Hamvention, Dayton. Chris of KF7P METALWERKS has great web site offering well-made entrance panels with copper sheet ground-bus sheets and grommet-fitted entry holes for your coax, etc. The box comes in several sizes and Chris offers powder-coat finishes in many colors. The powder coat is superior to a paint finish. The material is electrostatic sprayed onto the box and then bonded in an oven by heat curing.
This is a more durable finish that should hold up well. The box is just part of a complete system comprised of entry fittings and surge protectors – all available on his web site:
A two inch opening at the rear of the panel accommodates conduit and fittings for a professional termination – the conduit extends from inside the panel through the wall into the shack for a very clean professional installation where cables can pass smoothly from the shack to the panel.
Inside the panel the coax connects to the surge protectors and from there out the grommet-fitted holes to the antennas. The Alpha Delta Transi-Trap protectors mount directly to the copper plate.
The copper plate is grounded via a 2 inch copper strap which passes out of the panel via thin slots, cut just for the strapping at the bottom of the panel…a very convenient feature. The strap exits the box and is attached to ground rod(s) which are driven 7 feet into the ground.
The station ground is also grounded through the entrance panel. In the shack, I have a large copper ground bus where everything in the shack is connected to – radios, tuners, panadapter, SignaLink – you name it!
From the interior ground bus I have a 1 inch copper braid strap that passes through the 2 inch conduit into the exterior panel. The copper braid is firmly attached to the copper plate. All connections have anti-oxidant/anti-seize compound generously applied. The compound selected depends on the material – copper-to-copper or copper-to-aluminum.
Finished Installation pictures:
Interior ground bus with 1/2″ braided/tinned copper to components in the shack:
1″ braided strap from interior to exterior panel:
Coax to Transitrap surge protectors – mounted to copper plate and Coax from Transitrap to antennas:
Plenty of room to add feed lines! Entrance panel copper ground plate with copper strap to ground rod:
Copper strap exiting the panel to ground:Ground Strp to ground rod – 7 feet in ground:
6 thoughts on “Station Ground with KF7P Entrance Panel”
Just getting back into ham radio and am looking for a clean way of bringing the antenna coax into my shack which is located in the basement. What is the smallest size box that can be used for a single coax cable with pre-assembled PL-259 connectors. I’s like the lightning arrester pre-installed in the entry panel. Not sure about surge protectors.
My ground is located in the basement below the electrical panel. There is a heavy twisted copper wire which connects up to the electrical panel and the continues up and out to a busbar on the outside of the house. Connections exist for 5 more devices so I was wondering if a single heavy twisted copper cable would be sufficient from this to the copper backpanel in the entry box? Do I really have to have a copper strap?
Just wondering if you could help me determine what the minimum design is that would be sufficient to support a simple end fed wire antenna.. I’d also like to keep it as small as possible due to the type of siding the I have on the house. Could you also give me a quote to this
I hope I’m not asking too much. But I’m unsure of what is needed. Many thanks,
One key is keeping your grounding straps or wires as short as possible. Sure, heavy gauge wire is OK. You can always expand/modify the installation as your circumstances change. Go to http://www.kf7p.com/ and look at his panel offerings. Georgia Copper is an excellent source of copper products and grounding resources. https://www.gacopper.com/index.html
Use a single ground bus for all grounded equipment in the shack and then make your run out to the panel. Do not daisy-chain equipment together. You could buy a pre-drilled copper ground bus or buy copper pipe from a home center and clamp the ground wires. Be careful of dis-similar metals which can promote galvanic corrosion. Using an appropriate anti-oxidant will minimize/prevent galvanic corrosion. From the panel, run a ground strap as short as possible to ground rods driven as far into the ground as possible – 8 feet… That’s the very basic strategy. Lightening arrestors will shunt the strike away from sensitive equipment. They are “one-use” and require slug replacement – if they survive the transient…cheap ‘insurance’ compared to equipment replacement costs. GL, Howard, WZ4K
Should that have a 90 degree bend?
Jeffrey – no. The strap is not as ‘extreme’ as it may look. I made a best attempt to round-out the curves in the strap to avoid 90 degree bends. The best option would’ve been better placement of the ground rod with respect to the strap exiting the panel.
What gauge/thickness is used for the copper plate within the entrance panel box?
Ron – The product is from Georgia Copper http://www.gacopper.com and the product # 1205-025
They also have ground bars
The nice feature of the entrance panel is the slot at the bottom for the flat strap to pass out of the panel to a ground rod(s)