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Author Topic: Large Van Begging for Killer 2 Meter Antenna  (Read 483 times)
WA0MNA
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« on: May 11, 2003, 07:03:25 AM »

Other car totaled and now I will be driving my old van prob. till next spring.  Anyway, this is a large F-150 conversion van and I feel it deserves something better than just a whip or two.  What would be something unique, and effective, for me to top it off with(*)?  Can use any part of it as far as I am concerned, for holes, etc.  Just thought I would see what I could stir up on this.  Tnx and 73's Vance
WAØMNA      *2 Meter FM only, simplex and repeater.
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KG4RUL
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« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2003, 08:17:08 AM »

Are you looking for antennas to use while Mobile or just when stopped?

Dennis - KG4RUL
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K0BG
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« Reply #2 on: May 11, 2003, 09:19:03 AM »

An "OLD" van and you don't want to drill a hole? Do you really think the value will drop by thousands just because you drilled a 3/4" hole in the roof where no one can see it?

Oh well, use a mag mount and glue it down so you won't lose it.

Alan, KØBG
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WA0MNA
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« Reply #3 on: May 11, 2003, 02:36:16 PM »

If I wasn't clear on the part about using any part  for anything...I meant that holes, brackets, etc, is no problem.  I will be driving it till prob. next April/May then I'm getting something a bit nicer.
I guess I also meant "while mobile".  It will stay around for hauling grandkids, radio stuff, etc.  Phased whips, a ringo, a discone?? I could use my homebrew yagi when parked for club events, whatever.
Just curious if anyone is doing something like this.
I also know from experience...sometimes it ain't worth it, no improvement for the effort.  Thanks
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KG4RUL
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« Reply #4 on: May 11, 2003, 04:46:14 PM »

Phased whips are a viable choice.

Any antenna, other than the traditional vertical whip design, comes with it's own unique set of problems.

The discone, if the cone is made of solid or mesh material, has a huge wind loading figure. If it is implemented with wire radials, they are easily damaged by fatigue or wind loading at high speeds.

A ringo again has a high wind loading.

Halos, especially if stacked, have many of the same problems.  Additionally, halos have the wrong radiation pattern for repeater or mobile-to-mobile use.

DDRR antennas have a low profile but, may not give much performance.

Of course, adding a 150 watt or higher power 'brick' amplifier, with a preamp, immediately improves performance all around.

Also, consider that SSB can give you more 'bang for the same wattage' compared to FM.  I know that this requires different equipment but, give it some thought.

And last, but not least: with a high profile vehicle like a van, your antenna height rapidly becomes tall enough that driving down the average street presents a real challenge. Be prepared to replace stingers or other elements on a regular basis.

P.S. I am a former F-150 van owner
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K0BG
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« Reply #5 on: May 11, 2003, 05:21:00 PM »

Vance, unless you get real crazy with a lot of esoteric circuits and field measurements, a good old 5/8 wave properly mounted someplace near the center of the roof will work well. Phased arrays, and GPS guided beams and all that jazz are great for the gungho, but... like I said...

Alan, KØBG
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KE4RWS
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« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2003, 01:49:44 AM »

I agree with the above post. A simple 2-meter 5/8 wave antenna is a good solid performing antenna without a lot of fuss. I would highly recommend a permanent mount however. Mag-mounts are okay for temporary solutions but if you plan on using it without the worry of something knocking it over from time to time then do it right and drill the hole!
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WA0MNA
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« Reply #7 on: June 03, 2003, 08:57:43 AM »

A late thanks to those who responded.  I am using a 5/8 whip now so will save dinking around and stick with it.  KISS   73 Vance
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