How to Make a TV Antenna Mast


In the 50s and 60s it was not uncommon to see huge spider like arms atop roofs throughout countries with televisions. Antennae brought in a wide array of programming to the new form of home entertainment. As Cable and Satellite began to prevail, the TV antennae became relics of the past and yet there is still a large market for antennae for ham radios, multi-functioning telescopes and a host of other applications. While you no longer see the spiders, there are new sleek and well-designed antennae that can go just about anywhere you can place a mast.

Things You'll Need

  • 1 inch PVC pipe cap
  • 1 inch PVC nipple
  • 1 inch to 1-½ inch reducer
  • 3-sided guy brackets, 2 pieces
  • 1-½ inch female couplings, 4 pieces
  • PVC cement
  • 5-foot PVC pipes, 3 pieces
  • 1-½ inch male couplings, 4 pieces
  • 56-¼ inch long PVC pipe
  • 1 ½ inch PVC T fitting
  • Rope
  • Lay out the pipe cap, pipe nipple, reducer, one guy bracket and one of the threaded female couplings on the ground in that order to make the top of the mast. Glue all of the pieces together with PVC cement.

  • Set out one of the 5-foot pipes and one of the female couplings. Glue the pieces together. This is the second to top piece.

  • Arrange a male coupling followed by another 5-foot pipe with a female coupling. Connect these pieces with the cement to the make the third highest piece.

  • Check that the T fittings fits onto the end of the 56-¼ inch long pipe and then cement them together. Attach a male coupling to the other end of the pipe. This is the fourth and lowest piece of the antenna.

  • Tie a 30-foot length of rope through each of the three holes in the guy bracket on the top piece of the antenna.

  • Lay the pieces of the antenna out in order, with the cap on the top and the T on the bottom. The male and female couplings of the middle pieces should meet.

  • Tie 25-foot long ropes on each side of the second guy bracket. Set the bracket in between the second and third pieces of the antenna.

  • Push all of the antenna pieces together so they are firmly connected and gather the upper and lower ropes. The first upper rope should be gathered with the first lower rope and so on with the second and third.

  • Tie one set of ropes around one of the stakes. Do the same to the set of ropes to the left of the first one.

  • Mark the spot where you want to setup the mast and measure a point 16 feet away from that point. Make two more marks, also 16 feet away but each of the three marks should be separated by 120° to form a circular perimeter around the mast point.

  • Move the mast so the base is resting on top of where you want it to stand, with the base directly pointing at one of the marks on the perimeter. Spread out the ropes so the two stakes are to the right and left of the mast and the loose rope is pointing towards the point right ahead.

  • Drive the tied stakes into the points to the right and left of the mast and hold the third rope very tightly. Stand between the mast and the third perimeter point, facing the mast.

  • Have a friend lift the mast from the top two pieces and straighten it up until it is vertical. Make sure you keep the third rope held without any slack as the mast gets raised.

  • Tie the loose rope around a stake and drive it into the ground as soon as the mast is perfectly vertical.

Tips & Warnings

  • Dry-fitting pieces together before cementing them can help you determine if any of the pieces don't work together.
  • Do not try to lift the mast by yourself or it will fall apart.

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