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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | OPEK HVT-400 Help


Reviews Summary for OPEK HVT-400
OPEK HVT-400 Reviews: 58 Average rating: 3.7/5 MSRP: $60.00
Description: HF/VHF 8-band mobile antenna. 120 watt maxiumum power handling. Freq: 80/40/20/15/10/6/2 meter & "air band". Use jumper lead to change freq./band. PL-259 mount. Retractable telescopic whip for best TX/RX.
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.opektech.com/
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KC0UUT Rating: 4/5 Apr 3, 2013 05:59 Send this review to a friend
Good antenna value.   Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I have used the HVT-400 for 10 months. It is mounted on my Van using a MFJ triple magnet mount.

Pros:
1) It works very well. I live in Minnesota and can routinely reach the east or west coast. When band conditions are good (solar flux > 110) I have made contact with Europe and South America.
2) Little wind loading. The triple mag mount has held it in place nicely, even when driving into strong headwinds on a freeway.
3) Low price.

Cons:
Workmanship- As another reviewer mentioned, the collar with the set screw that holds the whip in place was not crimped properly. The loose collar created a lot of static. I called the factory about this. They offered to give me a new antenna but mentioned that if I want, I could first try to fix this myself by soldering the collar in place. I did solder it using a 100 watt soldering iron. This eliminated the static and the repair is still holding 9 months later.

Other:
SWR - I recommend using a tuner so you don't have to readjust the whip. My rig has a tuner that can handle up to a 3:1 SWR mismatch and can tune the antenna nicely.

I would consider purchasing this antenna again.
 
W1BVV Rating: 4/5 Sep 16, 2012 18:01 Send this review to a friend
I Love and Hate this antenna  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have a love-hate relationship with this antenna.

Love - Performance. One of my first QSO's was Australia from eastern MA. Routinely work Europe and most of US on 20M. Low windage on the car. Relatively low geek factor on the car.

Hate - Finicky tuning, maybe its my grounding. PL239 connector shorts to ground with Opek's own mount. Need to add an insulating washer. Replace the adjusting set screw with the next size longer which has a deeper hex socket that doesn't strip as easily. Do Not cable tie the jumper to the coil, it will arc through. Replace the supplied allen wrench with a good quality hardened tool or it will strip with the third tuning. The Opek lip mount has an adjustment bolt which is not stainless and rusts immediately.
 
VK2FSTU Rating: 4/5 Aug 31, 2012 00:17 Send this review to a friend
Some pointers!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought this thinking it was going to let me on any frequency I wanted but was I ever wrong to think that. Being a 4x4 driver, having it mounted on the Bull Bar was the fault. I found out that some simple steps would get me what I wanted. So, braid (copper) found in coax cable should be from Bull Bar to just under the bonnet, this has made a huge difference already. But the most important thing for those like me, no ground plane is present on the Bull Bar, so a round metal plate under the antenna is the answer, and I'm sure (what the technician told me) will work as it's the next step when made.
 
VE3EGA Rating: 3/5 May 29, 2012 18:28 Send this review to a friend
Check the whip B4 you buy!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months

I picked up my antenna from Maple Leaf Communications at a Hamfest in Canada, intending to use it this Summer as a /P Antenna with a tripod or GP.

When I got it home I noticed that where the top adjustable whip slides into a crimped-ferrule on the lower stainless section, this whole thing was not crimped properly, consequently the top section was free to rotate, making a poor electrical contact!

At the next Hamfest, I made a bee-line for Bob Morton's table (Maple Leaf Communications) I tried to get his attention more than once and he eventually said that 'HE WAS ONLY INTERESTED IN SALES DURING THIS FIRST HOUR AND TO COME BACK LATER!' - I eventually went back and told him the problem but he had no interest to replace or refund only to suggest I contact OPEK!!!!

Pity Bob doesn't like CUSTOMER SERVICE BECAUSE HE JUST LOST A CUSTOMER!

As far as the antenna is concerned OPEK need to QA their items before releasing to dealers/agents or shipping!

I have no doubt that given the corrections to the crimping of the ferrule, then it will perform as advertised!

73

Terry
 
K5TTE Rating: 4/5 May 27, 2012 01:13 Send this review to a friend
Get a tripod,use counterpoise  Time owned: more than 12 months
My initial disappointment with this compromise antenna kept
me from giving a thumbs-up on eHam reviews.

But I was persistent and didn't want to have my cash go to waste. I reapplied my efforts to make this thing work, with the goal of NOT having to use an ATU or other LC network:
I was determined to use only 50 ohm coax between my rig and the antenna. So I started then with a stable portable tripod, modified for mobile antennas. I then experimented with various lengths of counterpoises, starting with the usual quarter-wave length wire, and trying others.

What I learned:
1- My best matches were on 40 and 20. I can't explain why.
2-Whatever counterpoise length you use, you must move it
around----high or low, stretched out or not, with varying
positions in relation to the coax.
3-Keep moving the coax around as well.
4-Realize that when you get a really good match ( close to
1.2 to 1) you must leave the whole situation undisturbed.
Moving any part of this arrangement can make the SWR
take off wildly. So don't move a thing!
4- For me, I must use an antenna analyzer continuously.
You need to know immediately if your whip length or
counterpoise orientation or coax position (stretched out?
or somewhat coiled? ) alters the match.
5- Of course it may be easier to simply add a Transmatch to
this situation and get a quicker match. But for me, I was
determined to "go bare" no matter what.
6- Messing around with this tweaking may seem more
trouble than it's worth for a ham who just wants to get
" on the air" quickly. But for me it's just fun. I now know
that in a portable situation you gotta mess around with
wires a bit and allow for the extra time
7- The same method was used for my MFJ apartment
antenna, which I also like a lot. Both antennas bring
QSOs with my QRP rigs.
 
VE3VDX Rating: 5/5 May 23, 2012 12:28 Send this review to a friend
Works great!!  Time owned: more than 12 months
As I returnee to our beloved hobby after 8 years of silence I decided to try mobile. HVT400B has been purchased at local hamfest few years ago, but collected the dust in the basement. As I was set for a Dayton trip this year I thought I might just throw the radio and the antenna in the car and at least hear what was going on the bands. It took me about an hour to complete the installation, however no adjustments to antenna has been made, I just did whatever was described in the chart. My mobile radio is a tiny SGC 2020 which I set for 10W output in order not to burn the finals in case of high SWR. Well, I wish I could ground the radio properly as the alternator noise was certainly present. I used the cigarette lighter plug for power. As I hit the road I could only hear US stations but the fun began later on when I heard A71AM, JY4CI and 9K2UU just like local stations!!
Without much hope I called Barrak 9K2UU and was surprised when he returned my call with 57 report.
He could not believe I ran 10W at the time!!! I happened to work a number of stations after that including VE6,IK4,CS8 in Azores, S58 in Slovenia and CO6 in Cuba. I am very impressed with this little performer!! Will play with length adjustments and see how it works! 73!!
 
K3DOS Rating: 4/5 May 6, 2012 14:17 Send this review to a friend
A Convenient Mobile Antenna   Time owned: more than 12 months
I've had this antenna for a couple of years and wasn't impressed with its bench test results, so I didn't bother to try it on the car. Instead I went the Hamstick route and have been lugging around a gun case full of the little buggers. They work OK, but what a hassle! As a last resort I tried the Opek on the car this morning. It took almost an hour to tune, but after trimming I found that it works fine on 6/10/12/15/20 meters and most of 40 meters just by changing jumper positions. That's plenty good enough for me! Other bands require length adjustments, but I seldom work them mobile anyway. I just wish I'd tried it on the car sooner.
 
WN3R Rating: 4/5 May 6, 2012 11:02 Send this review to a friend
Brand New  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Just got it yesterday and working hard to get it tuned up. The setup is for SOTA. I have it mounted on a 4' tripod and use one counterpoise of varying lengths. So far with 1.3:1 or better SWR, I got it to tune on 40, 30, 20, 17, and 12 meters. I had to make a couple of stingers as the one supplied was too long. In the case of 30m, I had to remove the telescoping section as well as it was too long. Email me if you want the cutting chart. wn3r@arrl.net. I have not yet transmitted with it. It is still on the analyzer. I'm not interested in 80m as the counterpoise is too long.
 
W8DCB Rating: 5/5 Feb 11, 2012 07:10 Send this review to a friend
HOLY COW!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I got an FT-857D and wanted to start doing some mobile work. So I picked up the HVT-600 and installed it on my truck, tuned it to 17m and had a 58 report from SD. Later tuned it to 20m and had a QSO with a station in the Azores and recieved a 5/5 report while I was mobile.
For the price, you cant beat it.
Pros:
Price $79.95 at Universal
Easy to use and adjust
seems to be pretty sturdy.

Cons:
The little set screw for the whip has stripped out already, but ni biggie.
Have to stop the car and get out to change bands.

Not much else to say yet. Great antenna, Great price. Good DX!
 
VK2CKK Rating: 5/5 Oct 4, 2011 22:42 Send this review to a friend
Great Travel Antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
Cant understand why this antenna does not get 5/5. $ value nothing comes near. Have used in mobile operations local and abroad in VK. Gives good results. Have had "good signal for a mobile station" reports running 100W.
You do have to make sure you set up correctly, once you have mark the whip and the job is done. Have only used on 15m, 20m, & 40m. Works fine with my MFJ mag mount. Dismantle and it fits nicely into your luggage. Have had no issues. Cant go wrong for a $50 spend.
 
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