eHam

eHam Forums => Antennas and Towers and more => Topic started by: W3HKK on February 22, 2011, 07:15:59 AM



Title: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: W3HKK on February 22, 2011, 07:15:59 AM
Im retired and  in the market for  putting a 10-20m yagi on a 50-60 ft tower.  I already have a 5 el  6m yagi to go on top, but am scratching my head about which way to go for the 5 bander.  Im also thinking about the possibility of a small 40m yagi.

The Hex beam, or a 3 el  Stepp-ir, are two that most often come to mind.   

Im at the point where a huge antenna is no longer at the top of my wish list.  Something simpler, that will stay up maintenance free is appealing.

Any suggesions?



Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA5N on February 22, 2011, 08:01:27 AM
The Steppir will give the best performance.  The Hex is about 4 feet high (spreaders bend upwards) which wouldn't be a problem if it is mounted on top, but would interfere with
maintenance.  Ain't no antenna that is maintenance free!! 
Allen


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N5MOA on February 22, 2011, 09:45:15 AM

Im at the point where a huge antenna is no longer at the top of my wish list.  Something simpler, that will stay up maintenance free is appealing.

Any suggesions?



I have a Tennadyne T-8 log periodic at 46 ft.

5 bands on a 18ft boom,  about as maintenance free as you can get, and works well.

73, Tom


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: W8KQE on February 23, 2011, 06:30:39 AM
Mosley.  Very well made yagis.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: K2QB on February 23, 2011, 07:57:41 AM
If cost is not the major deciding factor than hands down Optibeam. Take a look at the OB9-5. I did all the comparisons, Moseley, Force 12, M2, etc. and for overall gain, FB, power handling and low to zero maintenance it beats them all. Add to that the personalized service and support you get from them you can't beat it. Steppir is nice (and expensive) but no way I want something with moving parts up 50 feet in the air. Two hams in my area have the Steppir and both have been down at least once over the last year for repairs and motor replacement.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: WB4M on February 23, 2011, 04:38:44 PM
I agree witih N5MOA and I plan to finally install a T-10 log from Tennadyne this spring.  No moving parts, no motors, no small wires, no having to re-tune the antenna every time you switch bands like the SteppIR.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: WB7TXG on February 23, 2011, 04:57:20 PM
I used a cushcraft for 25 years...did me very well.. reflector broke and replaced with Tennadyne T8... Third year with it... very pleased.. no moving parts to worry about failing...


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N9MXY on February 23, 2011, 05:01:09 PM
I'm in the process of choosing between a T6 and a Hexbeam now too.  You can't beat either one of them in the bang for buck department, the T6 has about twice the gain and costs almost twice as much as a hexbeam. So how much ya wanna spend? ;)

edited to add of course the T6 is a LP not a yagi so maybe it's disqualified?


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: HB9DDS on February 25, 2011, 04:33:24 AM
The Steppir will give the best performance.  The Hex is about 4 feet high (spreaders bend upwards) which wouldn't be a problem if it is mounted on top, but would interfere with
maintenance.  Ain't no antenna that is maintenance free!! 
Allen

Why should a StepIR have the "best" performance? In comparison to what?? Take in mind this antenna system has some electrical/electronically parts and it is not easy to maintain when its on a tower. In my opinion it is to heavy ans to $$$!

Why not take in mind a LogPer?

In my case a have one up 20 years. My present one is a Cushcraft ASL 2010.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: K3GM on February 25, 2011, 12:01:14 PM
So you're asking for the "Best bang for the buck Yagi"  and not "Who makes the best antenna"?  I have a 3L SteppIR up in the air (see it on the cover of Dec.QST), and while I think it's a very nice antenna and has given me troublefree operation, it surely isn't the "best bang for the buck Yagi".  My vote for that category would have to be the Cushcraft A3, or perhaps the Mosley TA-33.  At approx. $600 (US) for either, the performance and quality they offer , versus their price is hard to beat.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA5N on February 25, 2011, 01:22:37 PM

Why should a StepIR have the "best" performance? In comparison to what?? Take in mind this antenna system has some electrical/electronically parts and it is not easy to maintain when its on a tower. In my opinion it is to heavy ans to $$$!

Why not take in mind a LogPer?

In my case a have one up 20 years. My present one is a Cushcraft ASL 2010.
[/quote]
My post was in response to the two antennas mentioned in the original post, not a comparison to all possible or existing antennas.  Also the poster implied that he was going to keep his
six meter yagi and add a forty meter yagi.  Give me a break!
Allen


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: W3HKK on February 27, 2011, 10:54:33 AM
Ive seen a couple of SteppIRs up close and am troubled by the reliability.  Performance is as good as it gets but at my age Im not interested in maintaining it.

I had a KT34 years ago and  thought it was terrific.  I was hungry for DX  so got the XA kit to make it a 32 ft boom with 6 elements and loved it.   But now, the KT34 seems appealing...EXCEPT for it only covering 3 bands.   And Im not eager to  get two element performance if I can avoid it.  Which is why the Hex beam isnt at the top of my list.

Thanks to all for your suggestions.  I continue to mull.....


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N9MXY on February 27, 2011, 03:38:09 PM
Bob,

So why not a tennadyne T6?


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: W3HKK on February 27, 2011, 05:13:50 PM
Tennadyne T6 or T8 seems like a very nice choice indeed, at a good price.  My  biggest concern with LPs is the additional sqft wind loading, but those two ants arent too bad.

Thanks


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KD8MJR on February 27, 2011, 10:16:10 PM
I just got a steppir 3 element and I can tell you that this Antenna is an evolving design in progress.  The older models are very reliable and the newer ones are designed around fixing all the random problem areas that the older ones had.  At this point I feel the Antenna is very very solid indeed!   I know that 6Y1V has had two of them up on an approx 90 ft tower for about 4-5 years and they have gone through three hurricanes and are working with no problems. If you can afford it, it's worth it, just take your time and assemble it properly.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 25, 2011, 08:33:11 PM
Tennadyne T6 or T8 seems like a very nice choice indeed, at a good price.  My  biggest concern with LPs is the additional sqft wind loading, but those two ants arent too bad.

Thanks
I agree totally. I just bought a used Aluma Tower that happened to come with a Cush Craft ASL 2010 Sky Log, lucky me:)
I too wrestled with the decisions about what Yagi to buy.
I jump around from band to band a lot, and we have a lot of lightning here in Tampa. Plus, the SteppIR is pricey. But getting ANY beam up at my QTH will be a miracle, and I don't want, or need anything to go wrong. For a 5 band put it up and leave it up antenna, The Log Periodics win.
I do feel the 3 Element SteppIR will outperform it.

The Hex Beams are a great little antenna, but at only 2 elements are going to be down in gain to  an 18 ft or longer Log. Even the little Tennadyne T 6 probably has more gain then a Hex Beam. But for what it IS, a Hex Beam is a darn decent antenna.

As for the Mosley TA 33 or the Cush Craft A 3, they might outperform the 18 Foot Tennadyne and Cush Craft Logs on a certain part of a certain band.
Many mistakenly think they are "3 element antennas".
Yes, they have 3 elements, but spacing is only optimum on one band, and all else is a compromise. Then, when you factor in the traps, limited bandwidth, and no ability to work 12 and 17 meters, why bother ?

IF I had the room, no question what I would do. I would have a long boom balls to the walls Log Periodic up about 72 feet.

I suggest you read the reviews on the Log  Periodics, and see all the Hams who replaced well known Tri Banders with them ?




Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 26, 2011, 11:43:50 AM
To make a long story short as far as LPs..

A quote from another Ham elsewhere on eham:

  " The LP by it's name is a 'wide band' config and it's only claim to fame."  ;)

  Good Luck with your decision!
                73'..Tom N3ZC


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 26, 2011, 12:55:39 PM
To make a long story short as far as LPs..

A quote from another Ham elsewhere on eham:

  " The LP by it's name is a 'wide band' config and it's only claim to fame."  ;)

  Good Luck with your decision!
                73'..Tom N3ZC

Well, to quote a popular preacher "The world will end on May 21st".  I am still alive, as far as I know.
Here is a LPDA VS Yagi thread http://forums.qrz.com/showthread.php?177753-Multi-Band-Yagi-vs.-Log-Periodic-What-s-the-Difference that is interesting reading.

I agree, if you are only trying to cover 3 HF bands like 10 15 and 20, a 3 element tri band yagi is better then a Log.
But when you try to cover the 5 HF Bands from 10 through 20 meters, I think a Log Periodic is a great way to do it.
The advantages of the Yagi disappear once you start adding traps, and other elements to the boom to cover all the bands.
In fact, some multi band antennas have been shown to not work near as well as claimed. It is difficult to make a 5 band yagi antenna that will perform as good as a Log Periodic.
Many people compare Monoband Yagi's with Log Periodics, and the Yagi wins every time. But, a multiband Yagi is NOT a Monobander, far from it. A 3 band Yagi is a compromise antenna, and the compromises get even worse yet as we attempt to make that 3 band antenna cover 5 bands!

Every antenna has it's place, in the scheme of things. But for a directional antenna covering 5 HF bands with no traps, low SWR everywhere, decent gain, and nothing to go wrong, how are you going to beat a Log Periodic ?







Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N4UM on May 26, 2011, 04:36:00 PM
I had a Tennadyne T-8 for over ten years at several different QTHs.  It was completely maintenance free even though less than 100 feet from salt water and, as an added bonus, worked like a champ on 6 meters even though it was rated only for 20 thru 10 meters.  It was lightweight and stood up well in the 100+ MPH hurricane winds it experienced on several occasions.  It's not a Yagi but mine was  an extremely reliable antenna capable of operating on 6 bands with significant gain and F/B.  Wish I could put one up in the HOA Nazi run geriatric ghetto where I'm spending my "golden years!"  I'd rate the Tennadyne T-8 as the best bang per buck in a beam antenna.  BTW my choice in the same category for verticals would be the Hustler BTV series.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 26, 2011, 06:41:56 PM
I had a Tennadyne T-8 for over ten years at several different QTHs.  It was completely maintenance free even though less than 100 feet from salt water and, as an added bonus, worked like a champ on 6 meters even though it was rated only for 20 thru 10 meters.  It was lightweight and stood up well in the 100+ MPH hurricane winds it experienced on several occasions.  It's not a Yagi but mine was  an extremely reliable antenna capable of operating on 6 bands with significant gain and F/B.  Wish I could put one up in the HOA Nazi run geriatric ghetto where I'm spending my "golden years!"  I'd rate the Tennadyne T-8 as the best bang per buck in a beam antenna.  BTW my choice in the same category for verticals would be the Hustler BTV series.
LOL, You are correct about Homeowner Associations being like Nazi's. I still work, and clean roofs for a living in Tampa http://www.saferoofcleaning.com People call us all the time because they are forced to clean their roofs, or else. Often, the roofs are barely dirty, yet the HOA forces senior citizens on fixed incomes to spend money needlessly.
I like the Hustler Verticals too, as long as you get some radials under them.
Us Hams are never going to all agree about antennas, and it's all good :)
They are fun to talk about.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: WA8FOZ on May 26, 2011, 07:39:02 PM
SteppIRs are wonderful, but they will require maintenance. If I had one, I would want a tower that I could take down very easily, crank-up/tiltover or something.

My tower cranks but does not tilt over. I have a Force12 (a C3S). It has performed well and lasted through 10 years of Ohio weather, several ice storms and many 50+ and several 70+ mph storms without problems.

Hex beams are not overwhelming performers but seem to work about as well as many of the older trap tribanders, and are light and easy to handle. I'm sure I'd be very happy with one. For me, durability and low maintenance were important; hence the Force12. You have a lot of good choices. If this is your first hf beam, you will be pleased with any of them. Enjoy!

73,
Bill WA8FOZ


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 26, 2011, 07:53:34 PM
The Force 12 you have Bill is a great antenna! It also works pretty well on 12 and 17, and since there are no traps, you need not be concerned operating it off resonance!
I agree, for what they are, the little Hex Beams do a decent job. They are small and light, I have even seen them do well on push up poles. I say just get SOMETHING up in the air. This sun spot cycle is starting to come alive, and for several of us, it may very well be our last. 


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 27, 2011, 04:15:59 AM
"Every antenna has it's place, in the scheme of things. But for a directional antenna covering 5 HF bands with no traps, low SWR everywhere, decent gain, and nothing to go wrong, how are you going to beat a Log Periodic ? "

In the pile-ups with my SteppIr & Alpha as usual..but I digress... ;D

For you "Log" Fans..here's a few Log Commercials!...
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hP0kWqJJZa4&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9jnuz3ui8w&feature=related

                         73'..Tom N3ZC

                

                    





Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 27, 2011, 04:33:49 AM
"Every antenna has it's place, in the scheme of things. But for a directional antenna covering 5 HF bands with no traps, low SWR everywhere, decent gain, and nothing to go wrong, how are you going to beat a Log Periodic ? "

In the pile-ups with my SteppIR, like always..but I digress... ;D

And for you "Log" fans out there..here's a few Log Commercials!...
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hP0kWqJJZa4&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9jnuz3ui8w&feature=related


                         73'..Tom N3ZC

                

                    




[/quote]


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: AD4U on May 27, 2011, 05:40:37 AM
IMO the best bang for the buck are home brew mono-band yagis.  The longer the boom and the the more elements the better.  If you have to buy something, again (IMO) Mosley makes the best multi-band yagis, but they don't mind pricing them "up there".

Typically a short boom (14 feet or less) tri-band yagi will "work", but when compared with the better antennas, they don't work very well.

Dick  AD4U


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 27, 2011, 06:19:46 AM
FYI..

Here is a recent (today) review of a popular Log..Enjoy.. ;)
   
       http://www.eham.net/reviews/review/100817

                    73'..Tom N3ZC


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 27, 2011, 07:22:47 AM
FYI..

Here is a recent (today) review of a popular Log..Enjoy.. ;)
   
       http://www.eham.net/reviews/review/100817

                    73'..Tom N3ZC
That "review" was just written Today, I find it odd you just "found it".   And, the person who wrote that 'review' has NO CALL SIGN.

 That makes that "Review" as worthless as balls on a Spayed Cat. When people see a 'review' like that, with NO Call Sign, they recognize an obvious Hatchet Job.
It matters not anyway, even IF it was a real review.
You have nearly 48 Ham Radio Operators WITH Call Signs praising the Tennadyne Log Periodics.

BTW, I own a Cush Craft ASL 2010 Log Periodic, not a Tennadyne.

I can't prove YOU wrote that 'review', but I must be honest, I suspect you did.
I would be careful, if you did.
That 'review' might make a lot of Tennadyne Owners upset, who could easily retaliate by leaving a bad review of your SteppIR Antenna.





Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 27, 2011, 08:24:46 AM
"Every antenna has it's place, in the scheme of things. But for a directional antenna covering 5 HF bands with no traps, low SWR everywhere, decent gain, and nothing to go wrong, how are you going to beat a Log Periodic ? "

In the pile-ups with my SteppIR, like always..but I digress... ;D

And for you "Log" fans out there..here's a few Log Commercials!...
 
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hP0kWqJJZa4&feature=related

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C9jnuz3ui8w&feature=related


                         73'..Tom N3ZC

                

                    




[/quote]

The SteppIR is a good antenna, but it is not "perfect". It too is a compromise, like all Multi Band Yagi Antennas are. Here is why. Though the elements on a SteppIR are tunable, the spacing between elements is fixed. Thus, the element spacing is optimum for one band only. All else is a compromise.
It is true the tunable elements get the most out of that particular spacing, but it is what it is, on bands away from it's optimum spaced design frequency.



Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 27, 2011, 08:49:12 AM
No antenna is perfect...I've had a few. I was advised by several experienced (trust me & not giving their calls) ops to not waste my money on a log periodic if I wanted any kind of performance, as I DID look into it. They DO look great up there though.

You can argue till the cows come home as to what is best performance-wise. Proof is in the pudding. All of the "element spacing, boom length, calcs, etc, looks good on paper & the PC. I pay no attention to that crap. To every manufacturer, their's have the best design. I know what work's here for me, and it's no illusion..my log reflects it. I have an amp..75% of the time I don't use it.  If some like LPs, well, that's what work's for them..I'm just not really impressed with heavy, oversized TV antennas. But that's me. I'm just saying that for myself, I'd pay more for a proven design performance-wise, like I have. Moving parts?..Yup. But works!

Will a huge, heavy, LP at 75 feet out-perform my antenna @ only 40 ft?..Probably (I hope it does!)..but like for like..I don't think so..I don't drink the kool-aid as far as computer projections say.. ::)

LPs work..no question about that..for what they are

(and I gotta say the LPs DO look good...all of that aluminum in the Sun..)

   To Each Their Own.. :)

Found this on TowerTalk as an FYI..

"The active portion of an 8 element 13-32 MHz LP on an 18
foot boom is a small portion of the total boom length.  
Here are model data of an 8 element LP (18 foot boom),
the SteppIR 3 element yagi (16 foot boom) and Force 12
C3E (extra 10 meter director and 18 foot boom).  

The SteppIR/3 vs. 8 element LP vs. C3E (free space):
---------------------------------------------------------
                   LP            SteppIR            C3E
    Band       Gain  F/R   Gain    F/R   Gain   F/R
     20          5.0   9.2      7.4     25       6.6   10
     17          4.9  12.3      8.3     25       3.0    2
     15          4.8  13.0      8.5     20       6.2   11
     12          5.0  14.9      8.8     15       4.4    5
     10          5.1  14.5      9.0     11       7.4   23
      6             n/a        10.1     20          n/a


"On we sweep, with threshing oar, Our only goal will be the western shore"..

                     73'..Tom N3ZC

 


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 27, 2011, 09:31:31 AM
I agree, Log Periodics DO look good, almost like a big "Bird Of Prey" perched on top of a Tower.

Let me know when SteppIR comes up with a moving boom, so they can space the Yagi Elements properly on each and every band. Until then, the SteppIR remains a compromise antenna, like most others, including mine.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N5MOA on May 27, 2011, 10:06:39 AM
I agree, Log Periodics DO look good, almost like a big "Bird Of Prey" perched on top of a Tower.

Let me know when SteppIR comes up with a moving boom, so they can space the Yagi Elements properly on each and every band. Until then, the SteppIR remains a compromise antenna, like most others, including mine.


Ditto.

I don't now where "huge and heavy LP" came from, but the T8 and a 3-ele SteppIR w/30-40m add on are within a lb or two of the same weight, about the same length for the longest element, about the same wind load and turning radius, T8 has a 2 ft longer boom.

Different strokes.


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KI4Z on May 27, 2011, 04:28:25 PM
Probably the best bang for the buck yagi would be a couple of used TH3-Jr's stacked..  They're darned cheap, probably <$100 the pair, and stacking two will get the gain up to current standards.  Clean them up, dry out and reseal the traps. 

mark


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: N3ZC on May 28, 2011, 08:50:23 PM
Don't need a sliding boom..SteppIR's performance & reputation speaks for itself.

Every antenna is a compromise

Everybody thinks their's is the best. Yup..the T8 (umm?..Bird of Prey) is the same weight, etc.

Just kidding ;D..They (LPAs) are the bestest antenna ever..really! (and only 800 beans too)  ;)

My recommendation?..buy a pair of T8s & stack em'..you'll be unbeatable in the pileups!

Best bang for the buck..

           Have a Great Memorial Weekend
                    73'..Tom N3ZC


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 28, 2011, 09:10:35 PM
Don't need a sliding boom..SteppIR's performance & reputation speaks for itself.

Every antenna is a compromise

Everybody thinks their's is the best. Yup..the T8 (umm?..Bird of Prey) is the same weight, etc.

Just kidding..They are the bestest antenna ever..really! (and only 800 beans too)  ;)

           Have a Great Memorial Weekend
                    73'..Tom N3ZC
Actually, you are correct Tom about the sliding Boom. It would be better to have a sliding boom, but the ability to adjust the elements sort of makes up for it. The SteppIR is a fine antenna, I wish I had 1600 dollars I could afford to spend.
Happy Memorial Day to you too Tom!
Chris - Ka7niq


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: K3VAT on May 29, 2011, 04:40:56 PM
Best bang for the buck Yagi ... IMHO, it has to be the new Q52 10M thru 20M from N6BT.com .  True, this is a 'reduced size' antenna, but check out the specs and you'll see each the efficiency of each band vs a full sized yagi.  The elements are only 16' and boom = 9 feet.  A small rotator is fine.  N6BT is Tom Schiller founder and former owner of Force12 antennas.  Oh, the Price??? How about $550!!
GL 73, Rich, K3VAT


Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: KA7NIQ on May 29, 2011, 06:12:35 PM
Best bang for the buck Yagi ... IMHO, it has to be the new Q52 10M thru 20M from N6BT.com .  True, this is a 'reduced size' antenna, but check out the specs and you'll see each the efficiency of each band vs a full sized yagi.  The elements are only 16' and boom = 9 feet.  A small rotator is fine.  N6BT is Tom Schiller founder and former owner of Force12 antennas.  Oh, the Price??? How about $550!!
GL 73, Rich, K3VAT

I have the utmost respect for Tom Schiller N6BT, and after looking at his new Reduced Size All Band Yagi http://www.n6bt.com/n6bt-Q52-p1-1.htm that respect continues.
This is a very innovative product for space challenged Hams. IMHO, this product may give prospective Hex Beams buyers a new, cleaner looking option. Talk about Low Profile ?
This is about as low profile,, as it gets. It is actually smaller then a CB 2 element Yagi, neighbor friendly looking too!
OK, it ain't quite gonna equal a Hex Beams front to back, maybe be a little down in gain too, so what ? It don't look like an Umbrella on a bad acid trip either ;)
I hope Tom owns Europe with this design.
I think he needs a better name for it, how about the "N6BT Little Buddy" ?
Any Yagi that gives 3 plus db over a dipole, covers all bands from 20 through 10, is clean looking, and smaller then a CB Antenna is a "friend" to all space challenged Hams worldwide.
This Little Buddy is small enough to mount on a Chimney Mount, turn with a cheap TV Rotor!
What an exciting product indeed. Now, IF he can add an extra element or 2 as an option, down the road maybe ....




Title: RE: Best bang for the buck Yagi antenna is..?
Post by: ZENKI on June 03, 2011, 02:55:38 AM
Everybody  unfortunately only give logs a  bad wrap because they always compare them to the very small ones like the T6, T8 and and Cuscraft logs.

Logs unfortunately really need a   minimum boom length of at least 24 to 30 ft. Try comparing your favorite antenna brand  to a good  log periodic antenna, I bet you wont be whining about the gain.

Here is a link for  some modelling data on  the Tennadyne T10

http://www.dl9rdm.de/3.html

A nice decent  4db of gain over a dipole on most bands. Try finding any other WARC band antenna  for the same price with verifiable performance!  This owner did replace the T10 with a Optibeam with 1db more of gain! WOW some gain. The T12 even performs better. Unfortunately NEC does not model logs too well.  When you actually model a log and then actually measure the gain they always perform better than the models seem to indicate.  Driving all the elements has a huge bonus that the models dont show. I had a T12 at another location and it was sitting on  step ladder at 6 foot above the ground.  I could work DX and the antenna had a decent pattern. Logs dont get detuned like parasitic antennas.  Try and make a tribander work 6 ft over the ground, Good luck! Logs also dont get bothered by metallic  uninsulated guy wires.

Heres a picture of 4  T10's  stacked. Anyone heard Chucks signal lately on 17 meters? WOW! Logs do have their place if they are properly designed and at least have a 24 to 30 ft boom.

http://www.criticaltowers.com/General%20Web%20Pages/K1KW%20Radio%20Site.htm

Frankly hams fret way too much over  1 or 2 miserable Db. You can easily get that just by cranking your amplifier up. Nobody is going to notice where your 1 or 2 db comes from.

What is more important is the takeoff angle gain. Height upto 1.5 wavelengths  is A best buy, you cant get the extra gain from any antenna design that you are going to get from raising the height of your tower. I would be happy to take a  Hexbeam  on a Luso 40 meter electric crankup tower, I am 100% sure I will whip most peoples butt in pileup even ones with the new STEPPIR DB42 at low height.

I have a stack of 3 X 5 element monoband yagis on 20 meters, and the difference between the high one at 150 feet and the one  at 50ft is staggering. On a very well calibrated SDR receiver i can get  18 db of signal gain when i switch from the lower antenna to the upper antenna. What new antenna design can I buy that will give me this much gain ? Yup, only Eimac metal antennas with handles and hooks are capable of that sort of gain.

I also have the problem that I am getting old and I  am not so enthusiastic about contesting. I too now need a stack of antennas that covers all bands. I have been looking closely at logs, STEPPIR's and Optibeams. Even stacked multiband quads look very nice.
The 3 element ON7NQ design and the W4RNL 5 band quad designs look fantastic. The stacked logs also look very good. However I might  get custom antenna from Optibeam that would  have 20,17 and ,15 meters only on one boom.  Something with 7 elements on 15 meters, 6 elements on 17 meters and 5 on 20 meters. This would suit the stack spacing of 50 ft perfectly. I could also achieve the same performance with 3 logs on 42  foot booms! If the STEPPIR was mechanically more reliable and handled decent power without frying  that would be a good antenna. Unfortunately the price is ridiculous for such poor materials.


The N6BT design looks nice, however I am skeptical about the gain and efficiency claims. Lots of things look good in a model, in reality they  perform very differently. Ah ,,dont forget a dipole when placed at a decent height over ground has 7.5 to 8.5Dbi of gain. I dont need a beam to get 3db of gain WOW. Put this dipole up at 70 feet and all the cry baby  hams with their  10,000 dollar radios and the 10,000 dolar amp with the G5RV's stapled to the house gutter will report you for running illegal power because your signal will be so good. The humble monoband dipole at a decent height is a fantastic antenna. Even I am surprised how well it works. When you crack pileups  with 500 watts and beat stations running beams with a decent monoband dipole you soon realize all the bunkum and claims about antennas and gain  can be a lot of nonsense  a  lot of the time. 

Another thing I dont like about the N6Bt design is that it cant handle full legal limit. When you struggling for every Db in antenna gain and then to go short change yourself because you cant run your antenna at whatever  your legal limit is,  is robbing  yourself  of Db's. There are many countries where the legal limit is 2500 watts not 1500 or a kilowatt. ERP can be achieved in two ways either from antenna gain or Eimac gain, the choice is yours within legal limit!  A 1db here and a 1 db there soon adds up,  EI EI EI Oh!