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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | Texas Bug Catcher Help

Reviews Summary for Texas Bug Catcher
Texas Bug Catcher Reviews: 26 Average rating: 4.9/5 MSRP: $160 - 199
Description: GLA Systems Texas Bugcatcher
Product is in production.
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W7LPN Rating: 5/5 Jun 9, 2007 17:45 Send this review to a friend
Still Great  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I decided not to use the base Loading coil. I went with a CWS UNUN 28-12.5 Ohm. I will use a remote antenna switch near the feed point to eliminate constant unscrewing the PL-259 from 28 to 12.5 ports. When I change the Tap on the main coil from 40 or 80M(12.5Ohm) to 20M or above(28Ohm), just flip the switch at the feed point. Everything will stay sealed & water tight.
W7LPN Rating: 5/5 May 24, 2007 23:07 Send this review to a friend
GREAT  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Got the coil. I bi-pass it completely to get 20 meters & above with the auto tuner. 40 & 80 meters has very good performance. The first thing I noticed was the power meter was in full swing. With a spare battery and a table near the back of my vehicle, on 5 watts with the FT-857D, while keyed up, I searched for the sweet spot up & down each band until the FT meter swr dropped. Don't put your thumb on the screw in the banana plug insulator or you'll get burned even with 5 watts. I will continue to use the autotuner for impedence matching until I decide how I want to do that. Fun antenna!
W7LPN Rating: 5/5 May 19, 2007 17:01 Send this review to a friend
Large Capacity hat  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Waiting for the 480 coil, but now operating with the 4ft mast 2 ft capacity hat a 8.5 ft stainless whip atop a heavy duty spring mounted on a removable stinger by welding a thick washer over the Ball hole(The other stinger & Ball are in the truck under the back seat). All this fed with the FT-857D and LDG Z-100 auotuner. This absolutely loves 20 meters & above @ 100 Watts, will tune 6-40m w/o a coil. Boznia sounded like local on 20 here in Boise. Coil should be here in a couple days, can't wait.
KC5HMC Rating: 5/5 Jul 30, 2006 12:05 Send this review to a friend
Great antenna  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
After upgrading to General in 04 I have tried several antennas for HF mobile. All were fine for state side use ( unless the band was wide open ). The Bugcatcher antenna that Henery sold me makes overseas communications a fairly normal ordeal. THe bananna tap system makes fine tuning and changing bands very easy. As others have mentioned, The bigger antenna makes all the difference when you break through a pile up.
KJ5PS Rating: 5/5 Jan 1, 2004 12:15 Send this review to a friend
Banana Plug Taps Rock!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Just got back on HF mobile and still enjoying excellent reports on my Bugcatcher. I noticed in the reviews there were no notes on the newer banana plug tap system Henry came out with. If there is any complaint I have it was that the changing of taps when changing bands. Well now he has a newer tap system! It is super easy to just plug and unplug the tap now. Check out his site for pictures. (ok Henry, send me a bag of taps hihi) As others have said, the coils are the difference in the reports you get. Size does matter. The proof's in the pudding when you break a pileup.
WN1F Rating: 5/5 Apr 28, 2003 13:45 Send this review to a friend
Operating mobile with GLC Texas Bug Catcher for 10 years.  Time owned: more than 12 months
I operate 10 - 160 mobile utilizing the Texas Bug Catcher. I mostly enjoy operating the W.A.S. net, however, DX is no problem. While operating 160 mobile, I overheard one fixed station state to another operator that with a signal such as mine, he was going to get a mobile antenna too. Compared with other stations mobile, I believe I have one of the better mobile stations around the country. The frequency is somewhat narrow-banded, however, with my applications of working the various W.A.S/DX nets this is of little consequence. I also use an auto-tuner, which helps when moving about. The big coil configuration might be "ugly", but beauty is in the eyes of the beholder.
KC4EOE Rating: 5/5 Sep 3, 2002 22:38 Send this review to a friend
Bigger is Better  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I use the big 680 coil and a 4 foot mast mounted onto an Outbacker coil assembly (instead of the gumdrop that was recommended) for strength. It is all supported with Henry Allen's fold-over hitch mount on the rear of my Toyoto Sienna Van. I mounted it off to the right side of the hitch so it would tilt off to the passenger side instead of to the rear. That allows the use of the ball if I decide to tow something. I also had the draw bar welded into the receiver to insure a good ground and keep the theives away. I can still remove the ball to take the whole assembly off in the future if I need to, but the ball hitch is now a permanent fixture. This antenna gets great signal reports on 40 and up but 80 meters is very narrow banded. The truckers give me plenty of room as I believe they expect a coronal arc to leap off and zap them if they get too close.
VE6XX Rating: 5/5 Aug 5, 2001 03:02 Send this review to a friend
best commercial hf mobile antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
Greetings All: Henry Allen has it figured out! I have operated hf mobile for more than 35 years, & I can state unequivocally, that the Texas Bugcatcher is the best commercial mobile antenna I have ever used. I have an HS-1500, a BB-3, & another "screwdriver" antenna, all in pieces in my shop. I always return to the Texas Bugcatcher. I run three bugcatcher style antennas on my club cab Dodge diesel 4X4. Two are Texas Bugcatchers(one on 75 & one on 40....I don't believe in using coil taps....autotransformer effect, don't you know) & a Carolina Bugcatcher for 17 metres. I have at the moment, 14 antennas on the truck....I had to laugh at the poster who said his wife wouldn't ride in the car! As another gentleman stated...RF grounding is THE single biggest thing in ensuring proper operation. Henty's coils are SOLID, & the hardware is first rate.
I make my own mounts, & use a 3/4inch pvc pipe as a stiff arm to take the lateral & fore & aft forces from the antenna. Henry's top hat is not the world's most effective(I am not slighting it..I merely point out that electrically superior hats are available) but it is eminently suitable for the
de rigeur of mobile operation. I have caught trees, solid objects(don't ask!) birds!!! etc., as well as having the antenna & hat LOADED with ice, & it soldiers on. It does, I believe, represent an intelligent trade-off between efficiency & survivability. Large hf mobile antennas are poor candidates for longevity , & they require continuous, unrelenting, & religious attention to grounding(clean the !@#%$# ground points regularly!) mechanical security, & tuning. Road grime, oxidation, salt, industrial pollution, etc. all attack the radiating portions of the antenna, &
subsequently reduce it's radiating efficiency. I immerse my coils in a hot water/commercial cleanser solution regularly, & use a soap impregnated wire pad to clean them. Henry's coils seem to work just as well today as they did when new, 10 years ago. Tune up, I find, is straight forward. I use an MFJ or an Autek analyser, & cut the unused turns of the coil open , & use a piece of foil to short the turns to the mast. (much like the "screwdriver antennas lower coil cover) I feed both 80 & 40 metre Texas Bugcatchers with an SGC 230 tuner, to allow me to qsy over 50 or so khz. I routinely receive "fixed station" reports on these bands. I am anxious to try Henry's new Bugcatcher to see how it works. Virtually ANY mobile antenna will work from 20 metres on up, but 40, 80, & 160 require a "real" antenna, & the Texas Bugcatcher is it.
KX5F Rating: 5/5 Jul 16, 2001 11:51 Send this review to a friend
Works Great  Time owned: more than 12 months
Dont waste your money on those Ham Sticks, ect, if you are going to use 40-75 meters mobile go with a Texas Bug Catcher, just give Henry a call, he will fix you up. if you have mounting problems, use his mobile mount that attaches to a trailer hitch, works good used it on a 95 Honda Accord, and a 97 Blazer with no problems.
KE9OI Rating: 5/5 Jul 16, 2001 11:35 Send this review to a friend
Great antenna  Time owned: months
I have used this antenna since 1993. I use it for 40 and 75 meters exclusivly. It is mounted on a heavy duty ball mount on the side of my dodge 4x4 club cab diesel. I have recieved many reports that were better than a friend of mine who was close to me and running an amp. Its a little difficult getting it to tune for the 1st time, but after that you don't have to worry about it. I also use the matching coil for fine tuning.
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