I spent my first couple of years in MW DX'ing acquiring an arsenal of capable MW receivers. The next couple of years were spent on experimenting with various antennas - longwires, phasers and loops. The first inductively coupled loop I tried was the well known Select-A-Tenna followed by the Radio Shack AM Loop. These "magic" devices brought many of my mediocre MW receivers onto the playing field. As I corresponded with SWL's and MW DX'ers, I was directed to a loop builder in Maryland named Ed Wawzinski (K3FDY) who operates Edek Electronics.
Ed hand assembles and sells inductively coupled loops for MW and direct-connection loops for SW. The MW line includes the 16" Torus-Tuner and the 26" "big brother" version. Ultimately, I purchased the 26" version after Ed convinced me that the performance difference vs. the Select-A-Tenna was significant. He was being modest. The 26" loop blows the doors off both the Select-A-Tenna and the RS Loop. There is significant gain over the smaller loops and I find that it's ability to null and reject noise to be much better. It's the best inductively coupled loop I've used yet for MW. Like other inductively coupled loops, it just needs to be placed close to a receiver with an internal loopstick antenna. Because the overall gain of the Edek is greater than the smaller loops, I find that the distance it is placed near the radio is not nearly as critical.
It very much resembles a black hula hoop (remember those?). The antenna comes with a nice wooden base for the loop to sit in. The MW band is covered in two segments by way of a switch built into the loop. The low position covers approximately 530-1150 khz and the high position covers 1120-1710 khz, so the overlap is about 30 khz. (Since my loop was built, Ed reports that he extended the overlap to about 60 khz). The capacitor knob is located opposite the switch and is used to precisely tune the desired frequency.
Any negatives? Well, it is big! If you're not careful, it can be tipped over. I hang mine on a peg on the shack wall for storage.
I have also had excellent success direct coupling the loop by using the RS Loop as a pick up loop or by using other pick up schemes.
To date, Ed has sold most of his loops at hamfests or by word-of-mouth. I am guessing that most NRC members are unaware of this fine MW antenna and may want to check it out further. The current cost (2002) of the 26" Loop is $69.95. If you are interested in a high performance inductively coupled MW loop, visit the Edek website at www.torustuner.com. You will find that Ed will be happy to tell you more about his loops via e-mail (P.S. - Ed's Shortwave Loops work great also).
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