Cheap Field Strength Meter
Below are photos of my build of the Field Strength Meter described in the YouTube video by K7AGE. I chose the "Manhattan" style to build it, gluing little tiny pc board pieces onto a larger piece to form the junctions of the various devices. His YouTube is based on an article by KB3VZL in the February 2015 QST (page 71).
At first I didn't think I needed the switch but then realized that to use the meter as a voltmeter I'd need to protect the diodes so added the switch.
I mounted the small pc board with a tiny piece of 3M double sided foam tape. The banana jack is cemented into the hole i drilled with super glue as is the switch (since I couldn't find a matching nut!).
My antenna is simply a 24 inch piece of #14 electrical wire.
Does it work? Well, it does register voltage on the meter when I key my transmitter and the closer it is to the antenna the larger the reading. So, yes. Will it be useful? Time will tell. A practical matter is that I need a way to key my transmitter located inside while I wonder around the yard or neighborhood to seek what it reads key-down! I'll check back when I solve this "ground level" testing problem and actually try to use it!
Assuming it works, what will useful information will I actually know as a result? Perhaps just that I was able to make it in a half hour or so! That in itself is an accomplishment and reduced my junk box contents just a tiny bit! :-)