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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Vertical, Wire, Loop | Cushcraft R-8 Help

Reviews Summary for Cushcraft R-8
Cushcraft R-8 Reviews: 100 Average rating: 4.1/5 MSRP: $450 to $480
Description: 40-6m omnidirectional vertical antenna
Product is in production.
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W5RRP Rating: 5/5 Mar 19, 2013 18:38 Send this review to a friend
Wow  Time owned: more than 12 months
Have used verticals on HF since 1961. The R8 ranks at the top of the list. Yes, it does whip around in a breeze -- seems designed this way, it bends in a breeze instead breaking. With 100 watts, using ssb and cw I have worked and confirmed over 100 countries operating for 2 or 3 hours a week over less than 2 years. Like all products of this type, following the instructions exactly as written makes all the difference in the world. Though not advertised as such, the use of stub decoupling (similar to the Hy-Gain High Tower) seems to make this a superior vertical antenna. With this antenna, working DX is a joy.
K7KHZ Rating: 5/5 Dec 25, 2012 06:02 Send this review to a friend
Awesome!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Well, this is my second R8 I have purchased over the last 8 years. The first one was sold due to a move to the east coast. I am renting the house and wanted a quick, multiband vertical requiring no radials. Trying to watch the wallet, I bought a multiband, no radial vertical with a huge dissapointment (Won't mention the brand). Sold that piece of junk and went back to my proven and trusted R8. I have it 10' off the ground and performing like a champ! No DX problem here. It was well worth the additional cost. If I hear them I can work them. It is a little noisy but so is every vertical but my new Kenwood TS-590 has no problem pulling them in. If I could wish for one thing on this antenna it would be 80 meters and that would really put the icing on the cake!

I think the cost-performance ratio is a bargain and don't bother wasting your time looking at other multiband verticals if a vertical is what you want or need. You'll get all the DX you want with the R8.
PY2ONU Rating: 5/5 Dec 5, 2012 04:18 Send this review to a friend
Very good!  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is my second reviews after 1 year. The Cushcraft r8 is a fantastic antena, more there 200 entities worked in 1 year whith this product.
This is my second reviews after 1 year. The Cushcraft r8 is a fantastic antena, more there 200 entities worked in 1 year with this product. I had a little problem with water in the coils but silicone resolved this problem.
The materials are good (steel and good quality aluminium) an ROE is 1:1 in all bands (20 meters is 150 khz and 40 meters is 70 khz) but the internal antenna tunner of my transceiver resolve this question. The Cushcraft r8 have a little noise but all verticalls are noisy.
Overall I rate 5, all bands have a single antenna with great results for local and DX contacts. At the moment I have no way to spend yagis antennas and no space at home to install large antennas.
K3ROJ Rating: 5/5 Dec 2, 2012 12:45 Send this review to a friend
30,000 Worked  Time owned: more than 12 months
I bought a new R8 in 1999 when retiring with this being my second review. Am only using a chain link fence as a ground radial. Here it is January 2013 and have worked over 30,000 stations using this remarkable vertical. Hurricane Sandy just went through a month ago and the R8 is atill standing tall. Since I operate a Flex Radio 5000A, I now use the R8 in conjunction with one of the 43 foot verticals to give me full breakin capability. Dual diversity is also very useful to actually hear the other station or stations as I send CW.
N1ZLE Rating: 5/5 Sep 9, 2012 19:48 Send this review to a friend
No way this thing should work  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Ten feet off the ground. Amazingly surprising results!! This thing is a DX machine! I run full legal limit into a flat swr on 20 mtrs. Been very happy with the results. I got it used for free..... so I cant even begin to complain about it! Actually I can't find a damn thing wrong with it. After reading many articles about it I've determined mine is an actual Cushcraft version. So far the winter hasn't killed it, and I have it guyed at the feed point of the antenna and mast.
No complaints!!
KA8OCN Rating: 5/5 Aug 20, 2012 09:21 Send this review to a friend
KA8OCN  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is my second reveiew, but I own 2 of them does that count?

I have mine tuned for the low in of the bands (I like PSK31) and I can still use it without a tuner on most bands on SSB without a tuner (40 meters and 6 meters not so much) In fact on 6 meters I never had much luck with the R8 but they are only just igh enough off the ground that I do not get blinded when I mow the lawn, once or twice a year if it needs it! When the grass is as high as the R8 its time to mow the lawn.

The matching network can sometimes be a problem but there is enough information on the internet to help you rebuild it (its posted as a R6 but I used the info and was able to rebuild one I got on eBay for next to nothing because the matching network was destroyed before the guy ever had a chance to put it together.
WB6RCC Rating: 2/5 Aug 19, 2012 23:50 Send this review to a friend
Tuning  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just purchased an R8.
After reading the manual a few times, unable to find any information concerning the tuning of the 17, 20 and 30 meter bands.
Any help?
Thanks in advance.
KC5TJG Rating: 1/5 Jun 15, 2012 08:40 Send this review to a friend
Cushcraft is now Mighty Fine Junk (MFJ)  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
What a dissapointment. Here's what was wrong with my R8. (1) 17 meters is resonant too low; 20 meters is resonant way too high. Because both bands are set by traps enclosed in a single housing, there is no way to lower the resonant frequency on 20 meters without also lowering it on 17 meters. What I had to do was forget about using 17 meters in order to get 20 meters down to the low end of the band. (2) There is NO CUSTOMER SUPPORT now that Cushcraft is owned by MFJ. They're really put their "Mighty Fine Junk" imprint on what used to be a fine product from a fine company. Emails bounced back. Messages left on their "tech support" page online were never answered. Phone calls? ring, ring, ring, ring, ring, ring.... I did reach one tech support guy. He couldn't even give me the basic information, like correct radiator lengths, etc. (3) The product is advertised in QST and elsewhere as handling "full legal power." Apparently that's a reference to 1500 watts PEP, because, according to a table in the user's manual, all the antenna is rated for on cw is 750 watts. Uh, I don't think that's full legal power.

What we have here is MFJ gobbling up yet another once-fine company. It's their MO--if you can't beat the competition, buy them out, then lower the quality of the product and the service so people know they're now working with MFJ.

What a pity.
WB8ZTP Rating: 5/5 Jun 13, 2012 09:27 Send this review to a friend
Works great!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Iíve had the Cushcraft R8 Vertical Antenna up for over 2 years now. I love it! I have it mounted on a 10í stick of 1 ľĒ rigid conduit, 3í of which is in the ground so the antenna is actually 7í above ground. I added 3 parachute cord guys for support.

Iím VERY HAPPY with its performance on all bands, including 6 meters. Iím running 100 watts on SSB and if I can hear them, I can usually work them. Iíve been very surprised many times after only a few calls behind the big guns, in a small pileup, the DX picks me up!

With some careful attention on the assembly I believe youíll get great performance from this antenna!

73, Mark
N8DDW Rating: 4/5 Mar 24, 2012 07:02 Send this review to a friend
Works well for the price!  Time owned: more than 12 months
When you purchase the R-8 you get exactly what you paid for... Many bands, no radials and adequate performance to get on the air in a meaningful way when horizontal space is tight or a huge tower and antenna farm is not feasible.

I live in Los Angeles and while I'd love to slap up a 40' tower with a nice Stepper IR Beam on top and a few wires cascading down its just not in the cards like it was when I had 10 acres back in Michigan.

I chose the R8 because it gave me the most frequency coverage for the buck without any ground radials. Like many other's in this part of the country I have about 10 feet total separating my house from the one next to it and only limited space to add radials which makes radial dependent antennas not an option.

It assembles in a lazy afternoon and as others have written, just can't seem to stand up straight without leaning one way or another. I have it mounted about 15 feet off the ground and I added the guy rope kit for safety. I am near the ocean and winds in excess of 50 MPH happen more than I'd like. The R8 has survived winds gusting over 70 MPH. I have had it up now for about 4 years and amazingly, it hasn't fallen over on my neighbors roof in a pile of rubble.

It sure isn't pretty, more like a giant banana that lazily flops from side to side. With a wide range tuner it does exactly what it says it will, keep me on the air across 8 bands and with an adequate enough signal to make tons of contacts.

If a vertical is all you can do... and you have no real estate for radials... This antenna is the cadillac of compromise and worth the price of admission.
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