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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Vertical, Wire, Loop | HUSTLER 4BTV Help


Reviews Summary for HUSTLER 4BTV
HUSTLER 4BTV Reviews: 104 Average rating: 4.8/5 MSRP: $119.99
Description: 4 BAND TRAP VERTICAL ANTENNA
Product is in production.
More info: http://WWW.NEW-TRONICS.COM
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Page 1 of 11 —>

K9RE Rating: 5/5 Nov 21, 2014 16:39 Send this review to a friend
A Best Buy!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I just installed a new 4BTV and couldn't be happier with the performance! This is my second one. I finished the installation in the middle of the November phone SS and had a blast working stations from coast to coast; FL to BC, Maritimes to SD and everywhere in between on 40-10m. Most stations came back to me on the first try. I could hardly believe how well it worked!

My new 4BTV is ground mounted and I decided to get serious about radials this time after reading articles by Rudy Severns and Jerry Sevick. I got the DX Engineering radial plate and some of their accessories to make the job easier. You can install the antenna without one, but the plate makes for a neat and efficient installation that's easy to work on. I also got the S/S hardware package, U-bolt, Never-Seez, and Penetrox to protect everything. Mounting the plate about an inch above ground keeps it out of the dirt and makes attaching wires a breeze.

Currently I am using 24 radials of various lengths. I have eight 10 footers and sixteen 20 footers. I will be adding another eight 15 footers. Why the odd lengths? Partly to accommodate the limitations of my QTH and partly to help ensure the system works efficiently on all bands.

I used the manufacturer's instructions for the dimensions, but I followed the recommendations in the DX Engineering manual in other respects. The manual is really well written and I highly recommend getting a copy. My installation has a low VSWR at resonance on all bands but it approaches 2.5:1 at the upper band edge on 40. The other bands are pretty flat right across. So far I have not changed any of the settings as the antenna works well enough as is. When warmer weather comes I may do some tweaking.

My first 4BTV lasted for many years, but I never got good performance out of it because I wasn't aware of how important it is to install a radial system. Stations came in strong and I would call them back, but they never heard me. Putting in a good radial system makes all the difference!

I like the construction of the Hustler 4BTV. It's rugged and comes with S/S hardware. I prefer it to the Hy-Gain 14AVQ, which I have also owned, for two reasons. It's a little taller, which to me indicates it will be slightly more efficient, and the trap covers are made of better material. I had a problem with the Hy-Gain trap covers splitting. The Hustler traps are much better in this regard.

This antenna is an "oldie but goodie"-- it's a good value and a great performer if you install it with an effective ground system.
 
N4SJW Rating: 4/5 Oct 31, 2014 06:32 Send this review to a friend
Good antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I had our club's 4BTV up in my back yard for several weeks and compared to my 170 ft horizontal loop, it did quite well and at times did better. I had it tied to a fence post and my radials were abt 100 ft of chicken wire attached to the split rail fence. Worked abt 20 countries and noise level was interestingly lower than the horiz loop.

My only concern is the spider assembly and "tubes". They are quite flimsy and I knocked off 2 of them in normal setting up and lifting the antenna. They are held by a 6-32 screw with very little surface area. When I took the antenna down after about 6 weeks in dry climate (Denver metro area), one of the screws was already starting to show some corrosion. I will likely buy a 6BTV in the near future to avoid the spider assembly issues. The 4BTV is good antenna and value. I have no hesitancy in recommending it.
 
KD2FJM Rating: 5/5 Oct 3, 2014 11:49 Send this review to a friend
Great value  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have this antenna ground mounted near the house(there was an existing pipe which once held a dish...saved me some effort) With about 20 ground radials. I've hit Belize, Canary Islands, Brazil, Cuba, Spain, and several western states on 10 meter SSB with no problems. Fairly easy install IF YOU FOLLOW DX ENGINEERING INSTRUCTIONS. This antenna was recommended by a friend and it sure was a good choice.
 
W2UIS Rating: 5/5 Jul 28, 2014 23:15 Send this review to a friend
Update  Time owned: more than 12 months
The replacement 4BTV has been installed ground mounted without radials. Using the recommended dimensions SWR is 1.5 or less on all four bands. First contact at 10 watts was with a station in Germany. Very pleased with the results.
 
HA7WX Rating: 5/5 Jul 27, 2014 00:59 Send this review to a friend
Good and quality product  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Hi Everyone! Not to mention the price, which is -even with european taxes and customs duties- spot on .
To make it short: difficult to find that level of quality for the money spent.
As a previous reviewer told: take your time. And read the manual and use your (or borrow one) antenna analyser. I have the chance to have a tape not only in cm but in inches too. I followed the intructions and corrected a little bit using my MFJ-259 analyser. SWR is 1.0 to 1.2 on those band areas of interest. Only 40m band is where i could not get the best out of the antenna but if you have a look at my qrz page, you'll find out why: i have no room to put as much 1/4 wave radials as i want and as a matter of fact i could not lower the resonance enough, and the antenna is at resonance on 7250 and should be 100 khz downer at least. No matter i am using the radio's built-in tuner to correct the SWR.
So is it performing? Yes, maybe not a yagi. But i have 5 bands (i added 1 radiator next to the antenna for 17m and it works).
Would i recommend it? Sure!
73s de ha7wx chris, catch ya on the bands! hi hi.
 
AA4BQ Rating: 5/5 Jun 15, 2014 08:45 Send this review to a friend
Bird house stealth  Time owned: more than 12 months


This also appeared years ago in QST when I first built it.
The bird house is made of light weight corrogated plastic and then painted. It's quite attractive and as a plus, it rests flatly on top of the capacitance hat to hide that. To complete the disguise, a non-functional pulley is visible at the top of the vertical and imitates the ones commonly seen on Martin poles to raise and lower the house for seasonal cleaning. This justifies the "half-mast" appearance as well. It has been up 12 years and works great down by the water and over a buried system of radials. It's a very good antenna for DX in my opinion.

73
AA4BQ.

(Sorry guys, I have no design plans available. I just drew it out and hot-glued it as I went. It weighs about a pound or less.

http://www.astrosurf.com/luxorion/qsl-tower-assembly2.htm

 
W7MGB Rating: 5/5 May 30, 2014 10:37 Send this review to a friend
Very Pleased - money well spent!!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This is a very well made antenna using what appears to be good quality components. Everything fits together like it should, all the parts are there, no real tricks or assumptions need to be made to construct anything. One thing that I do find a little interesting, DX Engineering (a fairly well respected company, it seems), sells this same antenna, along with an entire host of "accessories" that will supposedly make the antenna better. I really doubt if anything they sell will make it better - if you buy from DXE, you'll get a very repetitive 60 page "manual" on how to put the antenna together and what "accessories" you need to do it right. That manual, in my opinion is nothing but a sales gimmick to get you to buy all the supposedly required accessories. Most notably, DXE will tell you that roof mounting this antenna with resonant radials is the least optimal method. The manufacturer of the antenna, states that roof mounting with proper radials is the BEST method to install - a bit of a contradiction there. I think DXE says the roof mounted option is least desirable because then they cannot sell you the radial plate for $60. The radial plate really is not needed, not at all. The tilt mount is another option that I feel is not needed. The antenna is only 15 lbs or so, quite manageable for even one person.

I followed the directions exactly as written and included in the box (from the manufacturer - New-Tronics). Everything went well. All of the measurements were exactly as stated. Up on the roof, connected up to the rig - the worst SWR I get is about 1.3 or 1.4 to 1 (1.3:1, 1.4:1) on all stated bands except 10 meters. 10 meters is a little worse, but that band is much wider. 10 meters gives me an SWR of better than 1.8:1 at the extreme edge. I did make an air-wound common mode choke at the antenna end (I used a mason jar, wrapped 10 loops of coax as close to the antenna connection as possible, and wrapped it all with wide black electrical tape).

The only thing you will need to construct the antenna is a flat blade screwdriver, a couple of wrenches (7/16 and 3/8), wire crimpers (to make and attach the radials), and a ruler/tape measure. The only that is not in the box that should be - some penatrox or similar anti-seize type product - get some and use it to make a good contact amongst the parts - put it on every piece that connects to another piece.

Does the antenna work? It does for me - it works very, VERY, well. Verticals are supposed to be noisy? This one is no more noisy than any of the horizontals that I have. Does it receive any better? This is about the only thing I cannot fully answer - it is definitely no worse than any of the horizontals that I have - they all regularly hear Australia, Europe, Asia, etc. The 4-BTV hears all that as well. Does it transmit better? Yes - it does. Since I've had the 4-BTV on the roof, I get right in on all the DX calls. I get very good reports too. This antenna is on the roof of a split-level, so I guess the tip of the antenna is probably 55 feet high - maybe just a little more.

Would I buy it again - Why? This one is well amde and will last a long time I am sure. I won't need to buy one again. I also will not have to buy anything else, either.

In my opinion, buy one. You will be pleased.
 
W0JP Rating: 5/5 Oct 25, 2013 09:40 Send this review to a friend
Worth the money  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is a nice looking antenna with minimal profile so somewhat stealthy. My neighbor hadn't even noticed I installed it one evening!
I had this at my previous HOA restricted location and used 40 12ft(space limitation)radials with lawn staples from Home Depot in the fall and by spring I could mow no problem. I had to retune the traps because of the radials but no big deal. I added the dx engineering 17m kit and it worked like a charm as well.
When I moved I put up a Yagi but I missed the Omni directional traits of the vertical for listening for signals that you can miss on the backside of a Yagi. I decided just to mount it near my chainlink fence and use it as a counterpoise/ground for a test. It works great!! My tuning for the radials was perfect with the fence and I get 40 over 9 signals on 40m all the time vs. s7-s8 from my random wire with more noise. There are so many negative reviews about verticals but I am constantly impressed with the performance of this antenna! Radials or Chain link fence I can verify either works well. Nope its not a yagi but I made many dx contacts on 100w no problem due to the low takeoff angle. Less noise than my 20m attic dipole at my old qth as well.
 
KT4EP Rating: 5/5 Jul 11, 2013 15:09 Send this review to a friend
Just installed, more to come later, impressed with the quality  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Ordered July 3rd from DX Engineering, received July 7th and fully installed July 11th. I bought the 30 meter trap for this antenna, so now it's a 5 band model.

I already had the DX E radial plate and 72 radials of varying length from 7 to 16 feet, but am going to install 34 more radials from 6 to 16 feet. I don't have room for longer radials. I am impressed with the antenna and accessories quality. I also installed the tilt plate for the antenna, so the coax runs to the base plate, then the bulk head pass through, then a 2 foot coax to the antenna. I also bought the so239 adapter to put on the base of the antenna. I eyeballed the initial trap settings and SWR plus resistance readings are near perfect on 15, 20, and 30 meters but around 2.2 to 1 on 10 and 40 meters.

My target tuning frequencies are the common psk31 frequencies so I am at the bottom of the bands for my tuning purposes. As I check higher on the bands, the SWR and resistance rise. I plan to keep the antenna tuned for the frequenices I've indicated. I expect differences once I get the other radials on the ground. I also expect better operating with this antenna over my homebrew which I'd used mostly for 10 and 15 meters.

Definitely need guy lines in my situation, so I bought 100 feet of Dacron line from DX Engineering along with 4 hefty anchors which I ended up digging holes for them and pouring concrete around the anchors. The earth at my antenna location has not been disturbed in over 40 years but as I dig down I find a nice mix of sandy loam with very little clay.

You need radials to make a ground mounted vertical work properly. I read many reviews here and other places and its amazing that many hams don't understand that principle. I would also like to try this antenna elevated with 4 radials but don't have the structure and room for it.

I had already mounted my radial plate to a 4x4 post set in concrete and run the radials so I reconfigured the mounting by using a 2 inch OD pipe and fastening it to the post. You don't have to mount this antenna to a pipe set into the ground but I can see how it would make a nice set-up compared to what I had to go back and reconfigure.

I don't know if I will make the suggested coil out of coax to stop RF from traveling back to the shack. It isn't a problem at this time. Also, my coax is lying on the ground, not buried and does not seem to be a problem, yet, but then again, I use low power most of the time. If that matters? My RG8 coax run is about 50 feet from radio to antenna.

I'll make another review after I have used the antenna for several months or maybe less.
You can find more about my installation, eventually :), by finding me on QRZ dot com and will find a link to a personal web page.

No, this isn't a beam. But I was impressed with my homebrew vertical, having gotten New Zealand twice on 10 meters psk31 while I couldn't even hear those stations on my 100 foot inverted vee up at 52 feet fed with 450 ohm line. I expect good results with this Hustler.

I can't say enough good things about DX Engineering and the quality of the products I receive from them.
73
 
KK4KYJ Rating: 5/5 Jun 8, 2013 19:25 Send this review to a friend
Rugged, Superior Performing Antenna  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I purchased 2 of these antennas from Dx Engineering with tilt plate and radial mounting plate. They are set up about 50 air miles apart. One installation is on a 5 acre field and has 40, 32 foot radials installed under sod, per Dx Engineering instructions. This antenna was retrofitted for 80M. The other is installed on a 1/16 acre plot with 8, 16' radials under sod. This was retrofitted for 17M and 12M. Both antennas are outstanding performers. The performance on 17 M is stunning. SWR is less than 2.0 on 10,12, 15, 17, 20, 40 meters. The BTV4 is constructed from heavy aluminum and holds adjustment. DX Engineering supplied construction and tuning instructions and hardware are marvelous. Both installations have experienced winds in excess of 60 mph without damage. My rig is an Elecraft KX3 with maximum output of 12.5 W. Over the last 6 months, I have "worked the world." Contacts often can't believe they are working a QRP station. I recommend these antennas- especially with the Dx Engineering instructions and hardware items to anyone who wants a rugged, excellent performing vertical antenna. If I failed to make myself clear, I love this antenna.
 
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