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My first pass with a homemade, 'tape measure' Yagi antenna! I followed a design described in a YouTube video by India Rocket Girl, though I cross referenced India Rocket Girl's design with other sources for tape measure antennas and DIY dipoles. I also watched around seven YouTube video tutorials on how to solder wires to each other and to metal surfaces as my soldering skills are incredibly rusty. I lacked many of the components that India Rocket Girl uses, but made do with zip ties and metal brackets that I found at the local hardware store. Instead of PVC pipe, I used a long piece of wood that was intended for house moulding. The tape measure was an old heavy duty one that I had in my electronics box. Last night after dinner I started testing a few things, and before I knew it I was knew deep, spread all over the flat (T was away in Italy). I didn't think I had gotten it right, and I was convinced I would need to re-solder, but when I set up this morning, connected the antenna to my dongle and lifted the giant Yagi off the ground, pointing north, the signal was immediately strong! I tracked the satellite to a maximum elevation of 45 degrees to the East and then down to the Southern horizon. Toward the end of the pass a couple approached me from behind and were almost as excited as I was about the tape measure design and the image of the Mediterranean forming on my screen. Shortly after they left, Martin rode over on his bike and kindly took the photos of me shared here, very grateful for documentation of this DIY moment! More testing to follow soon...


18 June 2024 10:14:12


Hackney Downs, London

Country or Territory

United Kingdom


Sasha Engelmann



Radio Callsign


Latitute / Longitude

51.554514, -0.059553