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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Verticals and Wire | Alpha Delta DX-LB (shorty) dipole for 160-80-4 Help

Reviews Summary for Alpha Delta DX-LB (shorty) dipole for 160-80-4
Alpha Delta DX-LB (shorty) dipole  for 160-80-4 Reviews: 16 Average rating: 3.9/5 MSRP: $$119.95
Description: 100 ft long dipole for 160-80-40M
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Alpha Delta DX-LB (shorty) dipole for 160-80-4.

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KC9GLD Rating: 3/5 Jun 16, 2014 07:55 Send this review to a friend
Works well on 40, reasonable on 75/80 and 160 as I expected   Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Living on a small lot I had storm damage to a 450 ohm fed 80. meter inverted V. I took down and was loaned this one to get me by. WELL after about an hour with an analyzer and a Palstar AT4K, Goodby Alpha Delta and coax, hello again ladderline and cheap wire!
K0XB Rating: 5/5 Dec 7, 2008 06:48 Send this review to a friend
Performs as Expected  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Two friends and I put the antenna up last month, and I used it in the ARRL 160 meter contest this weekend. It is well-made, and it was easy to trim to resonace on 160. I have not used it on 80 or 40. On 160, it was easy to work all over the 48 states, Hawaii and the Carribean. However, I was not able to hear stations in Europe or Asia, but it's probably unreasonable to expect a shortened dipole to be an effective DX antenna.
ZS6AN Rating: 5/5 Jul 26, 2008 01:32 Send this review to a friend
I AM HAPPY  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Ordered my DX-LB from Hamcity. Arrived within 7 days - excellent service !!!

As far as the antenna goes ... well constructed - looks professional and well packed.

Erected it as an Inv Vee with the apex up at 15m (50ft) and the ends at about 7m (22ft) off the ground.

Had to do some slight trimming (actually had to make it slightly longer), but had the antenna resonant with a close to 1:1 SWR very quickly.

Performance on 160m, 80m, and 40m is impressive. As previously mentioned, it will be a fluke if the antenna resonantes on any other bands.

I only intend using the antenna for local contacts as I have other antennas up for low band DXing, so the antenna more than meets my expectations.


John ZS4S
K0KVR Rating: 4/5 Feb 28, 2008 05:53 Send this review to a friend
Performs well - replace end isnulators  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had my DX-LB for almost a year now. I use it more than any other antenna on 40, 80 and 160 meters. I have almost worked DXCC on 160. this was not easy and am definitely not competetive in a pileup. Last night, I had the same experience as the next operator in these reviews. It was snowing and all of a sudden when I turned on my amp, the SQR went thru the roof. I looked outside and half the dipole was on the ground. Upon inspection this morning, one end insulator was almost carbonized, and partially melted. It actually melted the rope attached at the other end. I then installed a cheap plastic egg inslator which lasted about 10 seconds, and now have a ceramic insulator installed. The beef I have on this is that I called the company when I put up the antenna, because I had read these reviews and asked if they were aware of the problem, and they stated they were, and that it had been fixed, and supposedly I had the new improved insulators. Not so! Anyway, the antenna works for me on 160, 80, and 40 meters since I am very limited in space and do not have high trees far apart.
WB2WIK Rating: 4/5 Feb 5, 2007 15:58 Send this review to a friend
Misunderstandings?  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had one of these for a year or so and after reading some of the reviews, it seems some users misunderstand the antenna...

First, it is not intended to work or even load up on any bands other than 1.8 - 3.5 - 7.0 MHz. Not on 20 meters, not on 30 meters, not on 15 meters, not on 6 meters. If yours loads up on some other band, that's a coincidental conjugate match you've struck with your particular length of coax, but the antenna doesn't work these other bands.

Second, the arc suppressor cartridge *must* be removed from the center insulator if you intend to ever operate off-resonance, which means basically if you ever intend to use the antenna on 160m at all; or if you intend to use it over more than about 50 kHz of 75/80 meters. If you leave the arc suppressor cartridge in place (it's factory installed), it *will* short out when you transmit...

Next, the only weak link I've found with the DX-LB is the end insulators, which are molded from some sort of thermoplastic resin that is definitely NOT up to this task. I had one fail the first time it rained and I transmitted with a kW on 160m; I replaced that one, and then later, the other one failed the same way. I replaced them both with ceramic insulators, but the original failures were a bit scary in that the insulators caught fire and melted. I found one melted, charred remains in my yard...

The ceramic replacements are fine and have been doing well, even in the rain. :-)

"Performance" on 40m is identical to a conventional 1/2-wave dipole, and on 80m is very, very similar to a full-sized 1/2-wave dipole as well, based on hundreds and hundreds of reports I get on the air ("Steve, you're very strong, and stronger than your neighbor Joe there who's in your neighborhood" is a common report received from stations 2000-3000-4000 miles away. I only make such comparisons if I can find a literal neighbor on the air at the same time -- another ham within a mile or two of me, similarly equipped. There are dozens of those to choose from, here in Los Angeles!)

Now, on 160m it's obviously a compromise and has narrow operating bandwidth. Despite that, it accounts reasonably well for itself. In the ARRL 160 contest (which is all CW, so usually doesn't cover more than about 50 kHz of the band), I have no problem making 30-40 contacts an hour, for as many hours as I stay up (zzzzzzzzzzz). I've worked a lot of the Caribbean, South America and the Pacific but have serious trouble getting into Europe on 160. However, most other guys in southern CA also don't do well into Europe unless they have very good antennas, so I don't feel so bad.

In all, I'd give the antenna a "5" except for the weak end insulators. If A-D would use ceramic or glass instead, I'd probably give it a "5" then.

KP4ZW Rating: 3/5 Feb 4, 2007 18:59 Send this review to a friend
Ok antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Bought one recently and it performs well on 40 and 20M without a tuner. It is too narrow on 80 and 160 meters therefore a tuner is needed. For a trap multiband dipole I think it performs ok but definitively it is not worth the money.
K3ICH Rating: 2/5 Dec 22, 2006 06:12 Send this review to a friend
Expensive for what you get.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I had one up for a couple years and agree that it's performance on 40 is typical of a full size dipole, but 80 and 160 were disappointing. The useable bandwidth on 160 was more like a mobile whip, about +/- 8 kHz. The antenna DID work marginally on 80/160, but you can do a lot better for $120. I replaced it with a two wire per leg dipole, one wire with 80 meter traps for 80/160 and the other leg with 40 meter traps for 60/40 coverage. I used the Unadila traps. The shape is that of a lazy "Z" extending the 160 meter wires where ever they fit. This works like a full size dipole on all four bands. It is possible to tune the DX-LB lower in frequency if you happen to trim too much off, by adding a short piece of stiff wire from the ends of the "traps". I was able to get the center frequency of the DX-LB dead on where I wanted it with that method.

A much more reasonable alternative is a Lew McCoy special....a dipole as long as you can make it, fed with open wire line and a tuner. Most local's suggest 190 feet total as a good compromise, but I wanted to try the trap approach first
K3LL Rating: 1/5 Dec 21, 2006 17:09 Send this review to a friend
Good SWL Antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I'm not impressed with the DX-LB.

I bought a DX-LB as an experiment and installed it as an inverted vee, replacing my 40m inverted vee, to see how things would go on 80 and 160.

Bottom line that I took it down and used the wire to make a trapped 80/40 inverted vee. The DX-LB coils are now in my scrap bin.

1. Performance on 40 compared to inv vee is fine as expected since it is full size on 40m.

2. 80/160 2:1 SWR Bandwidth is narrow as expected, but not easy (if at all possible) to move the reasonance point. I gave up on it thinking it would have been better to install it as a flat top than an inv vee.

3. Two emails to AlphaDelta remain unanswered, even after complying with their spam filter.

For much less money I bought two 40m unadilla traps and went for an 80/40 trapped inv vee. Plus the antenna can be easily trimmed to where you want to operate. I can use the tuner on 160 and basically get the same performance that I did from the DX-LB. I do think the DX-LB would make a great SWL antenna though or it will be fine if you are happy using a tuner to fool your transmitter all the time.
KB0LSG Rating: 3/5 Nov 21, 2006 12:30 Send this review to a friend
40 good 80 OK and 160 :-(  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I can't give this antenna a great review or a poor review. Lets face the facts here. I had a SWL friend who owned one that used it to listen on low bands. He had the antenna a couple of years before passing away and said that it always worked well for him. I got the antenna along with some other radios from his wife and decided to give the DXLB a try. Sure the antenna is not a trapped antenna but it is still very narrow band width on 80 and 160 meters because of the loading coils for those bands. The 40 meter portion performs as a full size dipole. Initially I fed the antenna with RG213 and it worked well at 600 watts on 40 and 80. If you were not within the 20KC bandwidth on 160 you can forget running the amp. My arched 2060A Heathkit Tuner would tell you the story. The voltage and feed line loss was very high on 160 with SWR in excess of 3 to 1.

My recommendations are simple. If you have a 120 bucks plus burning a hole in your pocket, and live on a small lot, and you are going to use this without an amp on 160... go for it. If you get an amp later and want to use it on 160 feed the antenna with 450ohm ladder line. You will gain much more band width with the ladder line and your tuner will thank you for it.

For the about the same amount of room and much less money I recommend you build yourself a stagger tuned dipole antenna with the top element for 160. The 160 dipole can be linier loaded or bent around to get the full 130' needed to fit your lot. Feel free to contact me for details on the ones I have built. They can be fed with good quality 50 ohm coax and will run full legal limit with good bandwidth. For much less money, and about the same amount of space, the stagger tuned antenna will outperform the DXLB any day. Put the extra cash in you pocket and take the wife and kids out for dinner. You will be much happier while at the helm and the wife and kids will thank you for the meal. Please look me up in QRZ. I will be glad to share my antenna design with you for FREE. 73 OM DE KB0LSG Trent
KN7T Rating: 4/5 Sep 26, 2006 13:28 Send this review to a friend
Good Choice For Small Properties  Time owned: more than 12 months
I've owned my DX-LB for a number of years and it has always performed fine. No issues, not even with the traps although I did notice that the clearcoat on the trap cores is starting to peel off but that's no big deal - easy enough to re-apply and I consider that part of normal antenna maintenance anyway. My biggest problem is that I just couldn't get it mounted high enough to let it really perform - with the center at 30 feet and the ends at around 12 feet. The 2:1 SWR bandwidth on 160 is very small so be aware of that. The heavy duty construction of this antenna is one of it's strongpoints and the center insulator assembly is very durable. When I first bought this antenna, the center insulator had a small crack in the plastic near the SO-239 connector and even after being exposed to the elements for a number of years, the crack hadn't grown. The outer coating on the wire insulation is starting to come off due to UV exposure but the underlying jacket is not cracked or otherwise damaged.
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