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Author Topic: Jeep Fiberglass Roof Groundplane  (Read 9609 times)
N3WAK
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Posts: 281




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« on: August 07, 2013, 05:54:34 PM »

Friends: 

I have a new Jeep JK Wrangler Unlimited Rubicon.  That's the four door, and it has a fiberglass top.  I am going to mount an HF antenna (using mono-band Hamsticks) on a Breedlove mount on either the rear passenger side just forward of the taillight or to the right of the driver's side taillight.  However, while I recognize the possibility of a cowl-mounted VHF antenna, I am thinking of installing a VHF whip in the center of the roof.  The advantage is that the antenna would then be relatively high; the downside is a hole in the roof.   I am wondering whether anyone has used foil tape on the underside of a fiberglass top to make either a largish ground plane or resonant radials?  For example, here's a place selling copper foil tape:  http://www.grainger.com/Grainger/Foil-Tape-15D562?Pid=search 

Of course, rather than self-adhesive foil tape, there's also the option of gluing (say, with Superglue) aluminum or copper strips on the underside of the fiberglass to the same effect. 

Has anybody tried this yet, or is the idea just plain crazy?  I did a search here on the forums and on the Internet, and came up with zilch. 

Thanks for your suggestions.  73, Tony  N3WAK
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K5LXP
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« Reply #1 on: August 08, 2013, 06:50:08 AM »

That's what our shop used to install mobile whips on the top of fiberglass ambulances.  You can do strips in the form of spokes or a solid disc or square if you wanted.  We'd run the tape through the 3/4" hole and wrap it around the edge so the bottom of the threaded ring would contact it from the top.


Mark K5LXP
Albuquerque, NM
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N3WAK
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Posts: 281




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« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2013, 02:25:00 PM »

Thanks, Mark, for that information.  I thought it just might work.  I'll have the HF antenna mounted by Monday, but the "groundplane roof" might be next weekend's project. 

73, Tony
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K0BG
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« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2013, 02:51:23 PM »

You really don't need the 2 inch wide stuff. If you search around, you can buy a roll of the one inch wide material (it is 3M 1181) for about $15 plus shipping.
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N3WAK
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Posts: 281




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« Reply #4 on: August 13, 2013, 02:18:51 PM »

Alan--Thanks.  I will use the thinner stuff--it is certainly much cheaper.  By the way--you have a wonderful website.  I will be bonding the hood/doors, etc. within the next week or so.  Your website has tons of great information for mobile wannabees like me.  It's "must" reading, and it reflects a wealth of knowledge and shows that you've expended an awful long time to make that information accessible to the rest of us.  Much appreciated. 

73, Tony
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N8EMR
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Posts: 235




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« Reply #5 on: August 13, 2013, 05:18:32 PM »

What you can also do is put conductive tape under the headline to create a ground plane. Something similar to this will work.
http://solutions.3m.com/wps/portal/3M/en_US/Adhesives/Tapes/Products/~/3M-Conductive-Copper-Foil-Tape-3313-Copper-3-in-x-36-yd-3-0-mil-16-rolls-per-case?N=4294584100+5000130&Nr=AND%28hrcy_id%3ARLFBB5WLNTgs_VSBW427RJN_N2RL3FHWVK_GPD0K8BC31gv%29&rt=d


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VK2ICJ
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Posts: 53




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« Reply #6 on: September 02, 2013, 09:26:48 AM »

What about using the spare tyre mount?  The bolts that go into the rear door are good and robust to handle the weight of an antenna.  I have a large screwdriver type antenna that I put on a stand that I built to a rear swing away steel bar.  That starts to get heaps of money though.

 Grin

Cheers
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W9GB
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Posts: 2659




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« Reply #7 on: September 06, 2013, 09:29:40 AM »

Antenna Specialists (Cleveland, OH) first offered fiberglass vehicle solutions in 1980s.
PCTEL (Bloomingdale, IL) purchased
Antenna Specialists (who bought Avanti earlier), Maxrad, and AntenneX about a decade ago.

PCTEL - Mobile Antenna Accessories
http://www.antenna.com/apg_products.cgi?id_num=10999

K332 - Ground plane disk provides antenna ground plane for fiberglass-bodied vehicles.
Catalog Page
http://www.antenna.com/artifacts/2013118MiscellaneousMobileAccessories.pdf

PCTEL, Inc.
471 Brighton Drive
Bloomingdale, IL 60108-3102
USA
Sales Toll Free: 1-800-323-9122
Phone: 1-630-372-6800
Fax: 1-630-372-8077
« Last Edit: September 06, 2013, 09:35:26 AM by W9GB » Logged
AC6CV
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Posts: 56




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« Reply #8 on: September 09, 2013, 04:42:06 AM »

I am using some mono band ham sticks. I'm not overly excited on how they work. I may just get a. 8' whip & large loding coil I can tap. I used them on 2 vehicles and now on my MH. I have a lot of capacitive reactance. A 1 micro henry coil across coax at the atenna helps.
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