Rolling your own Yagi

I was wondering how easy it would be to roll one’s own yagi. The design given seems to have quite a few 3D printed parts, which are not entirely easy to get in my particular case, and I can’t help thinking it could be simplified (talking about the UHF yagi in particular here).

Some ideas I had were (and the questions that need answering to find out if they are any good):

  • Do the elements have to be 8mm wide? Does this have any effect on the antenna operation? Can they be replaced by steel/copper wire?
  • Can the main stay be replaced with a PVC tube (this would allow to just drill holes through the tube to mount the elements, which would be way cheaper)?
  • Out of interest, what is the gain on the UHF V1 Yagi?

Sorry: RF noob here. I do software!