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Author Topic: Pro Rack mount  (Read 4671 times)
W2RSA
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Posts: 17




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« on: February 04, 2013, 08:13:36 AM »

I need advice from someone more mechanical than myself, before I ask away no negative comments on the antenna it was bought for me as a Christmas gift and I'm currently having no trouble with it HI HI !!
My vechicle is a 2004 GMC Sierra, I have a Pro Rack mounted to it (specificlly for antenna mounting), the problem I'm having is rust. I went with a direct mount to the rack via a barrel connector, and I need (or would like to leave it this way due to no operatioal problems) due to clearence and most importantly (to me) I can easilly remove it when needed (car wash ect).
The bare area on the rack is constantly rusting and its becoming a chore to keep breaking out the drill and wire brush to keep it clean (cant seal it with spray or caulk, obviouslly when removed that seal will be broke). My thought is a trip to home depot to purchase an aluminum bar or stainless if I can find it. Just wondering if taking this bar and bolting to the rack and reconnecting my ground wires to the bar and sealing the outside (exposed) edges with paint and silicone is doable or maybe someone has used this same mounting method and has come up with a better idea ? OK remember it was a gift, the antenna I'm using is the ATAS-120A (used for 40-6) I have v/uhf antennas mounted sepratley on the side bars using half mirror mounts and no trouble and like I said I would prefer to use the center flat bar for the ATAS. Thanks for any help here.
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KW6LA
Member

Posts: 92




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« Reply #1 on: February 05, 2013, 10:32:11 PM »

Where do you start on this one ? ?

Well there are 2 parts to the antenna so you have the antenna its self. Now you need the second part called the counterpoise or return path. Mirrors , tire racks, and bars don’t work very well for low band HF / mobile.
Guys will bond ( wire together ) the whole car / SUV/ truck, for low frequency resonation. It help with your SWR also. That said the ATAS antenna is like a Hamstick that forgot to take its vitamins. Not to be mean, but
not worth my time to mount on a vehicle. Yes I have had QSO with people running them, but also a dipole @ 100 milliwatts. Putting antennas near each other also is asking for trouble with SWR and very distorted patterns.
Please see Alan’s site on mobile-setups on how to do it right ! ! ( ( K0BG.com ) )  and good luck.   
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W2RSA
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Posts: 17




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« Reply #2 on: February 06, 2013, 03:54:19 AM »

Thanks Anthony, Ive been to K0BG's site several times (this aint my first rodeo hi,hi) I've been licenced since '02.
I understand how antennas work (and have been running mobile in tractor trailers since I recieved my general ticket in '92)
As I stated I'm not looking to get bashed for installing the ATAS 120 I know its a not the perfect mobile antenna (but it was a gift or FREE) I already have it installed on the Pro Rack with ground(s) or counterpoise if you prefer running to the frame (both sides of the rack as well) terminating within six inches on both sides of the antenna, the bed is bonded as well as the doors,hood, and cab. The radio is strapped to a seatbelt bolt and due to weather I still need to bond the exaust system, all that aside I must admit the antenna works pretty good for what it is,and what I use it for, considering most of my time mobile is in a completlly different truck. As I appreciate your guidence I was simply looking for a way to secure the antenna to the Pro Rack that will not allow the steel to rust around the area(s) where I have wire wheeled the paint off and still be able to remove it to go through the car wash. Think ill just lay an aluminum flat bar over the top off the steel, bolt it and silicone the edges. BTW the little tar heel I have on my Peterbilt is a far better antenna than the ATAS but with two kids in college and diesel fuel over 4 dollars a gallon the wife said no tar heels ! My next question would be signal distortion, from my knowledge and what I've been told over the years the frequency seperation is so great between the ATAS (used only for HF and 6) and the comet 2/440 that it shouldnt be a concern (theres a little better than 3' 8" between the two) is my thinking here wrong ?? I have my Peterbilt set up the same way minus the Pro Rack hi, hi and have never had any trouble.
Pics of the Peterbilt are on my QRZ profile but its a little dark not sure if you can actually see the antenna set up.
Thanks again and 73
 
73
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KW6LA
Member

Posts: 92




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« Reply #3 on: February 06, 2013, 05:04:35 PM »

Yes I see by your other posts you didn’t just fall off the banana mobile truck Hi Hi.  The mobile experimenter have found out it doesn’t take much to work 20 meters and up, but 40m and down will let you know.
Well if you have been to K0BG’s site not much else to say. I do have a Bugcatcher on my Tahoe ( left rear ) and a Larsen 5/8 wave 2 meter antenna in the opposite corner of the roof. It’s  6ft. between them
and when on 2 meters simplex I can notice a big difference. Signal quality on 2m goes down when the BC installed on the back. When I remove it 2m gets much better and I don’t have to find a hot spot. Now
being the ugly Ham I am, I installed a 100w amp so I can run both antennas. HF bands don’t seem to be a problem, but who would know its sky wave ! Nutty.. but I have been using silver loaded epoxy to tag
vehicle grounds so no holes are soldering. Allan said it is nutty why would you do that ? ?...........I said we do it all the time on Space Craft and they didn’t fall off the banana rocket ship hey. This might work for you.
Copper and Aluminum oxides don’t conduct very well, but silver is excellent and is why I use it.  Good luck and 73,s
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KCJ9091
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Posts: 0




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« Reply #4 on: February 06, 2013, 06:44:25 PM »

How did a question abut stopping rust turn into a dissertation about two parts of an antenna?  I guess I missed something.

Why can you not paint or coat the bare metal to protect it from the elements?
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KW6LA
Member

Posts: 92




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« Reply #5 on: February 06, 2013, 09:22:43 PM »

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
How did a question abut stopping rust turn into a dissertation about two parts of an antenna?  I guess I missed something.

Yes you did miss it.................... its called a Pro Rack

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NZ5E
Member

Posts: 75




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« Reply #6 on: February 07, 2013, 06:10:31 AM »

Take a look at Safeguard 13062 by Sanchem, Inc.  It is a rust inhibitor for steel, iron, and zinc that turns blue-black in color when it reacts with steel.  The metal can also be painted, after applying Safeguard 13062.

I purchased a gallon of Safeguard 13062 to prevent rust between the sheet metal and frame of my counterpoise, http://i1297.photobucket.com/albums/ag21/toposolutions/Amateur%20Radio/ZoomedInCollage_zps3d884d35.jpg.  I first had the entire assembled structure powder coated.  I then removed the sheet metal from the frame to expose the bare metal areas where the sheet metal mounts to the frame.  I wire brushed the bare metal areas and used a paint brush to apply Safeguard 13062 to both the bare metal areas of the frame and the sheet metal.  I used all stainless steel bolts, lock nuts, and star washers to bolt the completed structure back together.  The stainless steel star washers at the top of the bolts and behind the lock nuts bite through the thin protective coating of Safeguard 13062 to ensure good electrical contact between the surfaces.  It only took about a pint of Safeguard 13062 to complete my project.

Terry, NZ5E
« Last Edit: February 07, 2013, 06:20:05 AM by NZ5E » Logged
KCJ9091
Member

Posts: 0




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« Reply #7 on: February 07, 2013, 06:10:17 PM »

--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
How did a question abut stopping rust turn into a dissertation about two parts of an antenna?  I guess I missed something.

Yes you did miss it.................... its called a Pro Rack



Were you born an ass or did you have to work long and hard to get that way?

He asked about a way to stop the rust on his pro rack.  And the best you can come up with is "Not to be mean, but not worth my time to mount on a vehicle. " Or your opener,  "Where do you start on this one ? ?"  And then "Well there are 2 parts to the antenna so you have the antenna its self".

WTF does any of that have to do with rust?  How is bonding body panels going to prevent his pro rack from rusting?

Condescending, pompous and totally non-responsive.
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W2RSA
Member

Posts: 17




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« Reply #8 on: February 08, 2013, 06:56:34 AM »

Thanks for the help Terry, appears to be exactly what Im looking for and I can coat the frame too !!
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K2FOX
Member

Posts: 110




Ignore
« Reply #9 on: February 08, 2013, 07:55:53 AM »

I need advice from someone more mechanical than myself, before I ask away no negative comments on the antenna it was bought for me as a Christmas gift and I'm currently having no trouble with it HI HI !!
My vechicle is a 2004 GMC Sierra, I have a Pro Rack mounted to it (specificlly for antenna mounting), the problem I'm having is rust. I went with a direct mount to the rack via a barrel connector, and I need (or would like to leave it this way due to no operatioal problems) due to clearence and most importantly (to me) I can easilly remove it when needed (car wash ect).
The bare area on the rack is constantly rusting and its becoming a chore to keep breaking out the drill and wire brush to keep it clean (cant seal it with spray or caulk, obviouslly when removed that seal will be broke). My thought is a trip to home depot to purchase an aluminum bar or stainless if I can find it. Just wondering if taking this bar and bolting to the rack and reconnecting my ground wires to the bar and sealing the outside (exposed) edges with paint and silicone is doable or maybe someone has used this same mounting method and has come up with a better idea ? OK remember it was a gift, the antenna I'm using is the ATAS-120A (used for 40-6) I have v/uhf antennas mounted sepratley on the side bars using half mirror mounts and no trouble and like I said I would prefer to use the center flat bar for the ATAS. Thanks for any help here.

Hi, I use what is called a Headache Rack on my Ford Ranger, it is similar to the Pro Rack except it looks like venetian blinds. I have antennas mounted on mine and it is painted, no ground issues at all, good swr and performance. If you would like to trade notes, you can email me at k2fox@comcast.net.

-Jay
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