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Author Topic: Yaesu ATAS-120 base station  (Read 11605 times)

Posts: 14491

« on: July 18, 2004, 07:14:37 PM »

Not only is there no gain, there is big time losses on all of the HF bands, especially the lower ones. This is typical of HF mobile antennas because they are physically short and have very little radiation resistance and lots of loss in the loading coils. The antenna has one primary benefit - it is convenient.

For *most* fixed station installations there many more efficient options available.

Bob  AA4PB
Garrisonville, VA

Posts: 23

« Reply #1 on: July 05, 2004, 01:26:20 AM »

Thanks for all the great info regarding best 2m/440 antenna. Now I'm thinking about getting a Yaesu HF/2M/440 unit and the Yaesu ATAS-120 antenna with the counterpoise kit to use as a base station antenna. I heard good stories about this antenna used for mobile applications but I haven't heard anything about using it as a base station.

Anyone have any comments? Can I assume there's no gain to be had in any of the bands? The thing I really like about this antenna is its convenience in covering the different bands without multiple antennas.



Posts: 14


« Reply #2 on: August 18, 2004, 12:13:49 PM »

I am currently putting together a base station rig similar to this and had an interesting conversation with Yaesu.  First off, the radial kit is ONLY for 2m/70cm and has no grounding effect on the HF bands (or even 6m).  Secondly, you need serious grounding in the form of metal flashing, copper plates or radials on the HF side to get it working well.  

Here is my concern though.  It has vertical polarization.  Thats great for 6m+, but what about for HF?  I was under the assumption that most HF is horizontally polarized.  Although after reading some info on broadcast stations (WWV), those are vertically polarized.

Maybe someone could give a ham some advice?  I don't mind throwing a UHF/VHF antenna on the house as well as a decent HF setup, but I sure would like to have the most versitile setup with 2 or 3 antennas.  Personally, I don't have a problem running a simple dipole down the length of my roof and getting a decent antenna tuner to tune it for the various HF bands.

My main use at the house is currently UHF/VHF packet stuff (I am very interested in bouncing communications off of the ISS/Satellites), very basic HF DX (phone mainly, but some CW), and ARES/RACES.  Thanks!

Posts: 2008

« Reply #3 on: August 18, 2004, 03:15:01 PM »

<< Here is my concern though. It has vertical polarization. Thats great for 6m+, >>

Only for 6m FM. For CW and SSB you still want horizontal.

<<but what about for HF? I was under the assumption that most HF is horizontally polarized.>>

Outside of the ground wave distance (varies with frequency), polarization is a non-issue on HF.


Posts: 307

« Reply #4 on: August 28, 2004, 07:31:14 PM »

 Having used the setup since 1999 I can tell you that the atas is a compromise on 2m/440. If you want to use it base simply follow the recommendations for all screwdriver antennas and form a set of ground radials and it will work "fine business" base from 40m to 6m.. Then simply add a 2m/440 verticle to the farm and you are good to go.

  The one thing you may want to consider if this type of antenna appeals to you is to go with a Tarheel/High sierra... or similar screwdriver as they handle more power, can be had in colors thay may blend in better with your antenna farm and cover more bands than the atas. I use the atas now as its more convenient to be able to hit the tune button and find a match than to add the other stuff to the non yaesu brands to make them act like an atas, room is at a premium in my vehicle.

Posts: 2

« Reply #5 on: February 05, 2005, 05:17:43 PM »

I am curently using the ATAS 120 as a base antenna. For me it works fine a little research on the net on conterpoise ground plain and I designed one that works fine. Have been getting fb reports as far away as the southern tip  of  Africa on the little antenna mounted 25 feet on my chimney 20 meters band .
I designed the counterpoise for 40 meters and added earth grounds 8' apart from the antenna and the mast  only problem I have run into is during real damp weather antenna SWR climbs to higher than normal 1.5.1 we live with it as for 2 - 440Meters I have a separate antenna system for them but 6-40 meters life is good.  I was impressed by my FT 847 and this antenna after being away from ham radio for 10 years and picking up wher I left off I am again hooked  antenna is worth the effort that you can design into it


Posts: 1

« Reply #6 on: June 10, 2005, 02:05:29 PM »

I just purchased a used atas-120, ft-857D and a duplexer.  I want to use this unit as a base - can you give me any guidelines as to how to set up the antenna (what the heck is a counterpoise and how do I build it?)  I am a new general - as you probably guessed!


Andy Martin

Posts: 2

« Reply #7 on: August 13, 2005, 02:31:34 PM »

The counterpoise is a ground plain the radials that you see under a vertical antenna. You must provide radials that will match the lowest band you wish to operate on in my case you are looking at 64' of radials. I used 1/2" copper water pipe for mine cut into 4' lenghths. These are mounted on a 18"  square piece of aluminum 3/8" thick  You might also want to seal the antenna in a piece of  2" pvc pipe to protect it from the weather and dirt this antenna is very sensitive to mosture and dirt lesson learned this winter . mount it in the center of the aluminum plate and set the counterpoise radials around the antenna at equal distances.  Also please note that a good  conductive silicone greese on the connectors will keep them easyly removable if you should want to do any maintanance to your antenna

Mike WD9GJK  
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