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write your own review of the Ten-Tec Broadband Antenna.
May 23, 2005 15:42
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Time owned: 3 to 6 months
This is a terminated dipole that can be configured as a Vee if desired. It has termination devices at each end of the dipole.
My antenna is installed as an inverted Vee, with the top at 50 feet and sloping to about 8 feet on each end. There is relatively little tension on the wires and they droop a little. Each end (after the terminator) is connected to a ground rod plus 3 radials. This seems to meet or exceed the recommendations in the instructions. The feedline is about 140' of good RG-213 type coax (Buryflex), through a relay (top of tower).
I have the following observations:
1. SWR is definitely not flat. On 30 meters, for example, it is over 4:1. My intended uses were 160 - 30 meters. 160-40 SWR was acceptable (3:1 or less). Above 30 meters it grew worse. I have no problem matching it, but my expectations were different.
2. In general, received signals were worse than other wire or vertical antennas, often much worse.
3. Some of the hardware is too light. For example, number 8 eye bolts are used to attach the element wires to the center unit. One of these snapped during a moderately heavy wind. (Try finding a #8 SS eyebolt with the threaded part about 1.5 inches long!)
4. It is necessary to remove various eye bolts when replacing wires. There is no information whatsoever about this process. Will it disturb internal connections? The units (center and terminating at each end) are well sealed and I have not opened them (yet).
5. Ohmmeter measurements are sometimes a little erratic on the center insulator/balun. I wonder if there is an intermittent internal problem? Again, there is no diagnostic information with the product.
I am usually happy with Ten Tec products (Corsair, Omni 6+, and Orion) but I must exclude this one from my satisfied list.
Ten Tec kindly sent me replacement wire elements when one of the eye bolts snapped causing unusual strain on a wire joint. This "hardened" the wire and it snapped. I am still playing with the antenna (on the ground) and will try to put it up again the next time I lower my tower.
The model I use has two 100' wire elements. There is a smaller model with two 50' wires. I rather suspect these products were created with the commercial/military market in mind, to compete with a few other well-known "broadband" antenna products. Perhaps it should be left to that market.
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