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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Yagi, Quad, Rotary dipole, LPDA | OptiBeam OB18-6 high performance sixbander 40-20-17-15-12-10m Help

Reviews Summary for OptiBeam OB18-6 high performance sixbander 40-20-17-15-12-10m
OptiBeam OB18-6 high performance sixbander 40-20-17-15-12-10m Reviews: 8 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $4,500
Description: Extremely efficient trapless Yagi for 40-20-17-15-12-10m.
3el on 40 / 4el on 20,17,15,12 / 7el on 10m.
An absolute "dream Yagi"!
Lossfree shortened 40m elements by computer designed high Q air coils.
40m elements decoupled from other bands by the "OptiBeam decoupling stub technique".
Broadband single 50 Ohm coax cable feed system by the high efficent "OptiBeam direct coupled driver feed system" .
Decoupling of the WARC bands from the others by the unique "hidden sleeve element technique".
One beam for six bands, big gain, tremendous patterns, really six interlaced monobanders on one boom with one feed line, the Yagi for the ham with the highest demands!!!
Product is in production.
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AH6FC Rating: 5/5 Jan 18, 2016 07:48 Send this review to a friend
Update review 8 years later  Time owned: more than 12 months
About 8 years ago I wrote a review of this antenna. The first decent antenna I ever put up. Recently this monster came down since we are moving to a new QTH...and I'm happy to say it has found a new home already.

How did it play? Quite well. Structurally rock solid. * years of wind, rain, rain, rain, wind, and snow not a bolt is loose. Except for expected oxidative discoloration on elements, everything still perfect. No corrosion, nada. the plastic/fiberglas spacers a bit discolored but no crumbling, nada. Perfect.

As an antenna? Excellent. 20 meters and up, very very good antenna. on 40 meters it did very well. My guess is if I had placed it on a higher antenna, like 100 ft, it would have performed even better. Don't get me wrong, it did quite well but maybe I expected something different for 3 elements on 40 meters. Of course I could work everything I heard but not on the typical "eHam" "first call." Again, 3 elements on 40 meters needs to be way up in the air, not just at 70 feet.

This is a big antenna that requires a big tower and bigger rotator. I used an AN Wireless 70 foot Heavy Duty, that held up perfectly. My issues were with the rotator, Prosistel 61D, which is fine but this beast was just a bit too much. I should have gone to a larger rotator, even thought the Prosistel says it can handle 40 feet of antenna, having a bit more capacity would have been wise. In addition it took a couple trys to get the rotator to Mast connections right. First set of u bolts sheared off in year 4. No catastrophic failure, but could have been.

This is a big antenna. Requires big support to maintain. On a 100 foot tower, it is a fabulous antenna. It will be going to a Ham who is going to have it 100 - 120 feet with a rotated tower...that is the way to do it. It is going to be a star.

If you have the room, tower, and rotator this is the antenna for you. 73, Bill
ZL1TAP Rating: 5/5 Nov 20, 2015 15:41 Send this review to a friend
A dx dream  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
What a dx dream antenna we have had this antenna up for a little time now and finding that its working well did use it in the world wide ssb contest and it did what it was made for so i like to thank Tom from Optibeam and am giving this antenna five out of five
KA3TKZ Rating: 5/5 Oct 27, 2015 15:13 Send this review to a friend
GREAT Mult-band Antenna  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have the first Optibeam 18-6 shipped to North America. I have owned this antenna for quite some time, years. The quality is nothing less than great. This antenna still preforms within specification after all these years. The square boom keeps everything centered up reel well. The drilled element bolts holes are all centered up very well. There was no missing hardware. Shipping and packaging was done well. My cats loved the packaging material, clean up was tough, the cats had that stuff all over the place. My first tower, telescoping, came down with a broken cable with me under the tower. The antenna survived with only a couple of issues. I emailed Mr. Schmeger with a parts list and he had it shipped out the next day with an element upgrade. Customer service is very good. I also have an Optibeam 80-30 very good antenna. My set up is just like the picture on the website with the owner between 2 antennas on a tower. I think this antenna is so good that I do not use my amplifier as much as I used to. This cuts down on my electric bill. I recommend Optibeam antennas to all that will consider a beam antenna in their future!
W8BOZ Rating: 5/5 Jun 22, 2015 10:34 Send this review to a friend
Excellent  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Engineering & Construction: Superb is the only term that could be used to describe both the engineering and construction of the 18 element Optibeam, OB18-6. The material used and their quality is excellent. A tower company that has installed hundreds of beams/antennas stated it excellent in every respect and the craftsmanship was undoubtedly the very best they had ever seen. All the elements went together with very close tolerances and the hole drilling was precision at its very best.
Performance: The antenna is an absolute delight to use on all bands, 40 through 10 meters.
There have been several times on 40 meters when I was in a QSO with friends using beams and I was the only one that could hear and work a station in the far reaches of Asia or down under.

I have waited 62 years to obtain a beam with the quality and performance of my Optibeam 18-06. We have a county restriction of a maximum height of 65 feet. The quality of materials and craftsmanship is the very best. Now I can hear stations on all the bands (40 thru 10 meters) that I didnít even know were there with the antennas I used all those (62) years.

Numerous times I have been told that I was the strongest signal on the band by other operators.

Tom (DF2BO) and his wife Diana should be proud of Optibeam. They have made an old man very happy in the use of his Optibeam, 18-06 on 6 different bands with the same desired signal attained on each band combined with very low SWR.

I feel that I certainly made the right choice and am very proud of my beam and look forward to many years of operating this 5 star antenna.

My only regret is that I didnít get the Optibeam 18-06 earlier.

Since I cannot increase the Optibeam height from 65 feet because of county restrictions, I would like to encourage Tom to design a much longer boom so I could have even additional elements on the bands. He could call this Optibeam a ďLong TomĒ.

Installation: The OB18-06 is mounted atop a 65í self-supporting tower with a mast installed in the center of the tower. This mast extends to a ground installed prop-pitch motor that rotates the beam from ground level for easy maintenance. (Iím 76 years old and canít climb towers any longer).

Shipping: The Optibeam was shipped to me by the US distributor in a timely manner with no delays. The packaging was very well done and all the parts were there.

Summary: I would highly recommend the Optibeam beams to anyone seeking an outstanding antenna.
WA4KCN Rating: 5/5 May 6, 2013 20:14 Send this review to a friend
Outstanding  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Once I decided to purchase the OptiBeam OB18-6, the antenna was ordered and at my qth in 6 days from Germany. I thought fantastic speed especially from such a far away land. The antenna arrived well packed and in 3 heavy boxes. While opening the boxes it was clear the packaging was well done with the contents labeled and organized. The assembly went well with all mechanical aspects professionally designed and built. I took my time putting the antenna together in no hurry trying to get it right spending about 24 man hours in assembly. Tom the owner of OptiBeam was very helpful with the few questions I had and was easy to reach and quick to respond with answers and suggestions. Once together the antenna has a "WOW" impact on anyone looking. It looks big and well put together. The antenna was raised to 30 feet for initial testing with SWR curves exactly as expected. The beam was raised to 95 feet without problems and again SWR curves exactly as expected. SWR band widths are excellent and exactly as predicted. My on air results thus far are beyond expectations. As one might think big signals on all bands. One comparison, the OB 18-6 is greatly outperforming a 2 element linear loaded yagi at 85 feet and a 2 element quad at 90 feet on the 40 meter band. Tom made several unsolicited e-mail contacts with me after the antenna was up and on the air to question if all was well. I would encourage anyone looking for a big high performance 6 band beam to look closely at the OB 18-6. I very much recommend it.
ON4JZ Rating: 5/5 Jun 18, 2009 23:50 Send this review to a friend
Just superb  Time owned: more than 12 months
After having an OB17-4 for 3 years (2004 - 2007), I wanted to have the WARC bands as well.
Knowing the quality of Optibeam, I did not hesitate to go for the OB18-6.
It has exactly the same dimensions as the 17-4 but adds 12 + 17m on the same boom and you have 7 el instead of 6 elements on 10m. Just a few kilo's/pounds extra weight compared to the 17-4.

Some remarks: why not having a N connector instead of PL and I would go for full saddles clamps instead of the zig zag ones.
Not cheap but for quality you have to pay a certain price.

I am playing with my OB18-6 for 2 years now and it passed all test (severe wind gust of 111km/h - almost 80Mph).

Time to work some DX now hihi
73 de Joe
OE1HOW Rating: 5/5 May 8, 2007 09:11 Send this review to a friend
Best of the Best !!!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
For a long time I had planned my actual antenna installation.
I live in a 10 story building inside of Vienna, Austria.
Due to special local regulations I am lucky enough to have the permission for the installation of a 12.50 meter tall tower on top of the building and to put on top of the tower a big size antenna.
I have been looking around a lot, analysing what the market had to offer.
I finally ended up with this antenna, the OB18-6 from OptiBeam.
I wanted extreme mechanical strength, as the antenna in total is at 45 meters above the ground. I wanted absolute mechanical and electrical reliability, nothing which could fail because of moving parts, switching necessities etc.
Also I wanted electrically logical arrangements and first class engineering.
The OB18-6 for sure has all that.
The antenna is up since September last year, and the performance is just awesome. I have no amplifier, just using my Kenwood TS950S or TS2000 barefoot. If I call cq dx, I quickly have a pile up from North America, Japan or whatever.
The three elements on 40m are simply amazing, the pattern is terrific, great front to back ratio, unbelievable front to side reduction, perfect directivity.
It is a totally different world of 40m dxing with such an antenna compared to my vertical which I used before, though that one was installed under ideal conditions.
The SWR curves on all bands meet the specs or are even better.
Optically the antenna looks just majestic, a piece of art, everything is straight, all appears more than just robust.
The service by Tom, DF2BO, the owner of OptiBeam, was outstanding as well.
I teased him with an endless number of questions for months and months, and either by e mail or on the phone he always kindly and quickly answered in perfect manners.
The antenna is not cheap, how could it, with that amount of mechanical brilliancy ant that much of material included.
But if you are looking for the best of the best and if you have the tower and rotator to support such an antenna, there can only be one antenna you had to go for, and that is the big OptiBeam Sixbander OB18-6.
Regards to all de Rob, OE1HOW.
XE2WWW Rating: 5/5 Mar 18, 2007 06:36 Send this review to a friend
PROFESSIONAL DX ANTENNA  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Hi to everyone, from Mexico.Well after having the ob13-6 on my tower and playing with it for around one year, I really loved it, and Iím really pleased with the optibeam antennas. At that time I needed to do some things on my tower and I needed to put down my first antenna ob13-6, so at the same time I saw on the optibeam web page the new 6 bander model OB18-6; I checked its specifications and after some emails with Tom, we closed the deal. I waited for it for some time ,because as you know it comes from Germany, but it was worth the wait. I finally received the ob18-6 on my USA address in 4 boxes; everything was complete and with no damages, so I was happy for that. After arranging everything with the mexican customs, I crossed it to Mexico, and I will never forget when one customs officer opened one of the boxes and saw the materials and again he asked me are you sure that all these materials are for antenna use?, and I answered yes; then he only said it well, it looks fantastic!. Then I arrived home and after opening the boxes, honestly, all I can say is QUALITY . I started to assemble it; I had some experience with my first antenna and I must say that Tom always does a great job on his antennas, marking the elements and preassembling a lot of the parts on all the optibeam models, so it is very easy to assemble. So I installed it on one crank up the tower,72ft up, but I will be honest; I didnít like much how the tower looked; simply that tower is not designed for this sq/ft antenna. So I started with my plan B, ruged tower, large prop pitch rotor, and things like that. After disassembling and assembling it twice, finally I installed this antenna, around 85ft above the ground. After some tests, like my first experience, swr as advertised; regarding how the antenna looks on the 60 or 70 miles winds, I will keep you posted on that. I live very close to the coast of the Gulf of Mexico, so it is common to have that kind of winds, but on the other hand I can say that my first model ob13-6 had some 70miles winds and nothing happened. I donít have much more to say; in short, it is a professional antenna for a serius dxers,and as I mentioned, if you are planning to buy one antenna for your station and do not want to waiste time and money and of course time and work, this is your best option. I know that is not the cheapest antenna, but I am sure that you investment will pay off. If you donít have the room for this model, try any other model from optibeam; Iím sure that you will be very pleased. So at this point, if you are looking first for a great customer service, a great quality product and the most important thing that works as advertised, this is your choice.I have no more than to thank to Tom and to all the staff at Optibeam, and thanks to Jay and his staff from Array Solutions (north america optibeam dealer). Both work in great sinc and have a superb service; thanks for giving me for a second time this great experience.

Like I said on my first review,Simple. German quality developed from hams to hamsÖ..

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