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Reviews Categories | Antennas: VHF/UHF+ Directional (Yagi, quad, etc.) | Cushcraft 13B2 Help

Reviews Summary for Cushcraft 13B2
Cushcraft 13B2 Reviews: 40 Average rating: 4.0/5 MSRP: $159.95
Description: 2m 13 element boomer antenna (vert./horiz.)
Product is in production.
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ZS5J Rating: 4/5 Feb 25, 2005 10:45 Send this review to a friend
not too bad  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought a new 13B2 from AES in Las Vegas while on vacation a month ago. To make the package smaller to take on the plane back home, I took it out the box, stuffed all the elements into the boom, and put the driven element and other hardware in my baggage. I installed it here 3 weeks ago. It goes together very easily, swr was great at 147.000 mhz - but.....our 2 meter band here is from 144 - 146 mhz, so the swr was 2:1 in the middle of our band. No problem, I threw out the driven element, and replaced it with the same tubing but 3/4 of an inch longer on each side. The swr is now perfect on 145 mhz (I hope it hasn't screwed up the pattern or gain - it doesn't appear to have).
Performance is good, not excellent, but good for the price. There are repeaters 150 miles away that I can access any time, regardless of band conditions. And, 2 weeks ago we had excellent ducting down the coast, and was able to work several repeaters more than 400 miles away.
Negatives - it's a bit flimsy, and performance is good, but not quite as good as my M2.
73, John ZS5J
Richards Bay, South Africa
KK6SM Rating: 1/5 Feb 24, 2005 20:01 Send this review to a friend
Poor Performance  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I had mine up for a week and found it didn't work any better than my Diamond X-510MA. It also seemed to be flimsy in construction. So I took it down, disassembled it, put it back in its box and put the Diamond back up. I also have a Cushcraft HF beam that works well. I'm disappointed that Cushcraft would make a 2 meter antenna with such poor performance!
AF4O Rating: 4/5 Dec 25, 2004 10:39 Send this review to a friend
Good Antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this antenna for about 10 years. I agree with the previous post about the metal mast. On vertical with a metal mast I was not pleased with the performance but on horizontal its fine. I use the antenna on WSJT meteor scatter, etc and on ssb. If the conditons are there then i can usually work them. Im sure there are better performance antennas in long boom varieties but for close spacing the 13b2 does just fine. Since I am a fanatic about weatherproofing (tape, coax seal, and clear acrylic on the connections and clear acrylic on the joints) I have had no long term problems with the antenna.
K9WIT Rating: 5/5 Oct 14, 2004 19:49 Send this review to a friend
Great preformer on SSB !  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had this antenna for 10 years. I have it mounted horizontal for ssb and after 10 years the swr is still 1:1 to 1 across the entire 2 meter band. Can M2 say the same ? Do your self a favor try this antenna out if your into ssb on the 2 meter band.
KC2GOW Rating: 5/5 Sep 2, 2003 11:47 Send this review to a friend
A DREAM COME TRUE  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have to admit I am not the biggest cushcraft fan in the world. This is an exception. Currently it is mounted horizontal in my attic w/ 120w pep. It works great, I'm working stations in w. virginia and maine without trying. Soon I will get the antenna mounted outdoors on a rotator and I'll update my review. It is a well built antenna with a lot of gain. Perfect for someone that cannot fit big arrays.

K9KJM Rating: 3/5 Aug 1, 2003 01:33 Send this review to a friend
Flimsy compared to M2  Time owned: more than 12 months
"As good as an M2?" Get a grip! Compare the
M2 2M12 to the 13B2 for a direct comparison, Not
the little 9 element!
The Cushcraft 13B2 is what you call "flimsy"
MUCH lighter duty than any M2 antenna.
I have used both here. Note that I rate the Cushcraft 13B2 as an OK antenna......... Because it is. For it's price, it does a decent job.
I would rate it's gain not that far behind the
M2, BUT there is no comparison in quality.
The M2 antennas are MUCH better built. (And will
last much longer)
As they say, "You gets what you pays for"
If you want a second rate antenna, Get the Cushcraft.
VA3HST Rating: 5/5 Jul 31, 2003 22:08 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've owned the Cushcraft 13B2 for 10 years now, and it's an EXCELLENT Antenna. Its still functioning flawlessly, 0 problems with it at all. Would buy another one in a second.
K3XT Rating: 5/5 Jul 8, 2003 16:00 Send this review to a friend
As good or better than M2  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had the 13B2 up now for ten years. Had good performance until recently when SWR started to increase. Thought matchbox on 13B2 had gone bad and was wondering how a quad or the much raved about M2 might do. So I purchased a 9 element M2 2m antenna (boom length for both antennas about 15 feet long) and installed it on the same mount as the 13B2 (horizontal). Using a 2m beacon that is 4 miles away I took S meter references before and after the antenna switch. There was not a bit of difference in Forward gain. Side lobes on M2 were less noticeable (cleaner pattern). But the 13B2 had a noticeably better Front to Back ratio on an uncalibrated S meter. It turned out the high SWR was due to an aging piece of coax that went around the rotor. When I reconnected the 13B2 with some new coax the SWR was 1:1 and almost that from 144 to 148 Mhz. The SWR curve on the M2 is only good for a 2 Mhz bandwidth. So I had a good 2m antenna all along. The only fault might be that Cushcraft rates their antennas in dBi and M2 rates their antennas as dBd. Both antennas appear to be true 12 dBd forward gain antennas. If the M2 9 element antenna does have more forward gain than the 13B2 it is so small that I cannot tell any difference.
KC2KNF Rating: 5/5 Apr 4, 2003 18:54 Send this review to a friend
OK IM MY BOOK  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
the 13b2 has worked just fine for me
the only problem i noticed is that the rejection was pretty bad,but after a few convesations with hams who are much more fimilar with vhf,like sherman "w2fla" and dave "n3jfm"
i replaced the steel mast with a heavy gauge piece of p.v.c with a wooden dowel inside for extra strengh
no more problems and the antenna works great for
long distance simplex
im going to buy another and mount it horizontal
for 2 meter ssb
NE0P Rating: 5/5 Nov 20, 2002 11:37 Send this review to a friend
Works great  Time owned: more than 12 months
I purchased this antenna to replace a Cushcraft A14810S. Figured the longer boom and greater number of elements would work better, and that does seem to be the case. ALso, Cushcraft antennas are much easier to build than Msquared. ANyone who has assembled an M squared antenna will understand. I bought my 13B2 used, assembled it according to the directions, and it has worked perfectly since. No tuning needed to lower SWR, etc. It just plays and plays.

Mine is only up about 25 feet, which I know hurts performance, but I have had a couple of 1000 mile plus QSOs on Meteor Scatter in the past week. Also works good for the close in ground wave stuff, but doesn't hear as well as a longer yagi that is twice as high at a friends house across town. Of course he is also using hardline, and a preamp, and spent around $1000 for his setup, and I spent around $100 for mine. Still I have 39 states worked on 2 meters with this antenna, and over 100 grids works, and that is in 13 months.

This antenna is a nice compromise of size and performance. The 15 foot boom fits almost anywhere, and doesn't need support brackets. You can turn it easy with a TV rotor, and it is still lightweight enough to mount yourself. If you want a high performing compact 2 meter, get this one.
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