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Reviews Categories | Antennas: VHF/UHF+ Omnidirectional: verticals, mobile, etc | Tram 1191 Help

Reviews Summary for Tram 1191
Reviews: 12 Average rating: 3.6/5 MSRP: $19.99 + Shipping
Description: Through-glass dual band mobile antenna
Product is in production.
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AD5KO Rating: 4/5 Aug 31, 2016 11:44 Send this review to a friend
Good  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I purchased this antenna for use with a portable radio inside my wifes car, because no holes can be drilled in it and I did not want to use a bulky looking magmount, as she put it.
The idea here is a discrete looking antenna, not something obvious, and this antenna and mount is black and the whip is only about 24 inches long.

So for this reason I am comparing it to a rubberduck antenna. Using a rubber duck inside the car was pointless, it resulted in lots of false signals generated by the car, which meant no scanning or APRS functions.
The car is a Chevy Cruze and the glass is not passivated on that model, for those who want to know.

The SWR of this antenna is around 1.5:1 when checked with an analyzer. The antenna can be tuned by turning a small screw head inside the inner mount.
I found that SWR can also be adjusted by moving the ground plane element around, this is significant when installing and tuning. I first moved the horizontal ground plane element to obtain the lowest SWR and then used the tuning screw for fine adjustment, and did this a couple of times. I found there are certain ground plane angles which absolutley do not work, so if you have high SWR change the ground plane angle to begin with.
The adhesive tape used for mounting is made by 3M and it is strong stuff.

I cut the PL-259 off and installed a BNC connector on the radio end of the cable for use with the portable radio which is a Yaesu FT-2DR.

I have never used a glass mount antenna before and didn't know how well it would work but it works really quite well and very well when compared to a rubber duck.

This is a compromise antenna but when you are faced with a rubber duck or this it is a great option. I think it performs as well as a quarterwave magmount.

To get the antenna I called Palmetto Antennas and talked to Jerry AD5AQ, he was very helpful.
I also purchased some SMA to BNC adapters and connectors as the FT-2DR uses an SMA and I wanted a quick disconnect, so went with the BNC.
It has made the FT-2DR much more enjoyable and usable while mobile.
KJ1H Rating: 1/5 Mar 5, 2016 05:57 Send this review to a friend
MFJ magmount works better  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I didn't have high hopes for this antenna. I know that one solidly mounted to my car would work better. But it would upset the sleek lines of my Subaru BRZ, and for local repeater work I thought this would be fine, given the performance of a couple of monoband glass mount antennas I've used before.

Wrong. Installation was easy, but I couldn't hit anything but one very local repeater. I couldn't use the repeaters I generally use with no problem anywhere on my daily commute. Tuning didn't seem to help at all. When I plugged in my cheap old MFJ magmount as a test, it worked much better than the Tram antenna. I could hit all the repeaters I wanted from inside my garage, while the Tram antenna couldn't hit them from inside the same town.

It was a waste of time and money for me. I wonder if something in the Subaru's windows blocked the signal, or if it just didn't work.
K3MH Rating: 5/5 Sep 2, 2015 20:49 Send this review to a friend
How can I complain  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I am so impressed with this damn thing. I mean, how can I complain.

I completely agree, this is not a mag mount, a through metal mount, or even a trunk lip mount, agreed. But I just took home a beautiful new BMW 535i, there is no way you can convince me to go anywhere near that baby with a hand drill, sorry... Ok, so now that has been said...

I paid $30 with shipping. It arrived out of the tube, no instructions, as expected. But hey, what instructions does one need. I cleaned the glass with alcohol, I placed it squarely between the widest section of the heater wires on my rear view window, the wires were 2 3/8 wide in only one row on top, the square of the antenna is about 1 7/8, perfection.

I stuck the antenna to the outside, and since it is perfectly square, I oriented the coupling to the inside with coax facing sideways to be hidden along my moulding...

I plugged the thing into my MJ antenna analyzer, and viola, from 144-148, 1.7:1 on the band edges, and 1.1 to 1.2:1 pretty much everything in between, no tuning needed. From open box to 1.1:1 SWR in, what, 12 minutes...

I managed to hit a few local repeaters with my Boafang and will now order a new Yaesu dual banders now that I know the glass is compatible with an on-glass antenna.

Love it.

Michael K3MH
KD2CMP Rating: 5/5 Mar 16, 2014 06:51 Send this review to a friend
Better Than Expected  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Like everyone else I was skeptical. But for $30 delivered I had to give it a try on my 2014 Nissan since I did not want to drill nor mess up the paint with a mag mount. I did my research before I bought and called Carlex the maker of the rear tinted glass on the Nissan. I spoke with an individual there who assured me that the tinted glass was not Passivated and contained no metal particles. The installation was simple and straight forward. One just has to remember that the matching element (or ground plane) whatever the 6" metal whip is and coax connector has to be run horizontally. On my meter I measured SWR's of 1.3 on 70cm, 1.5 on 2 Meters and 1.8 to my own GMRS repeater, the antenna was fairly broad band. I left it right there chosing not to touch it. I tested it on several repeaters that I normally utilize as well as simplex with a friend and it was superior to the Tram 1181 on a mag mount. The same Tram 1181 was my daily use antenna on my previous truck but with a NMO mount. The new Tram 1191 was every bit as capable as the Tram 1181 which is unity gain on 2 Meters and 2.5 dbd on 60cm.

I can only guess why others have been dissappointed, improper install? Unrealistic expections? It is a compromise and I doubt the gain claims from the manufacturer but that is nothing new. I see no reason to not give this antenna a good review. Time will tell and if I experience any degradation of signal or quality issues down the line I will alter this review accordingly.
KE5TJT Rating: 5/5 Feb 11, 2014 12:18 Send this review to a friend
Great antenna for the money!  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have owned this antenna going on 5 years now. A couple of days ago I cranked up my 7800 to 50 watts and keyed a repeater 42 miles away, as the crow flies using google earth ruler. I immediately got a response, saying that while I had "eggs frying in the background, I was definitely easily readable and having no issues opening up the repeater." Now understand, this is a thru-window mount antenna only 20" tall and it's 5.5 years old. I was also parked on the side of my house, with the repeater being on the OTHER side of my brick home. I highly recommend this antenna due to ease of installation and quality of components. The people who complain about this antenna either didn't install it correctly, or installed it through too-thick of glass to work. Or.....they installed it on a window with metallic window tint. Any of these will render this antenna useless. I have a hard time believing that an antenna requiring me to drill a hole in my vehicle or to scratch the paint with a magnet mount would reach out much better than this. It would also cost more and require me to breach the weatherseal of my door or window to run the wire through. Or in the case of my car, the weatherseal around my trunk. This antenna can literally be installed in 5 minutes and you can be chatting up people over 40 miles away with an antenna that attracts no more attention than a cell antenna does. I can't recommend this antenna enough. The only issue I had with it was the locking screw at the bottom vibrates loose about once a year and requires a phillips screwdriver to snug up again. No biggie there! It also lays over flat with the turn of a screw if you need to go under something really low and don't want to risk bending the whip.
KC7JNJ Rating: 4/5 Feb 23, 2012 18:30 Send this review to a friend
Not to bad  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I normally carry an old Motorola MT1000. But there are many places no one can hear me. My new car is a lease and I can not drill holes. So I thought I would give this antenna a try. I always swore I would never use one of these. I have a friend who works at a Motorola shop do the install. (though it is not hard) it tuned flat at 146mhz. On 440 it was a bit higher. Everyone is now saying I am full and clean into the local repeaters. And I could he heard on a few not so local. The radio I am using with this is a FT-817. I keep the power low and It is doing what I need it to. I still think if there is anyway you can drill a hole and put in a nice antenna with a NMO mount I would do it. But if there is no way around it, this works better then I thought it would.
KL7BX Rating: 1/5 Jan 23, 2012 00:30 Send this review to a friend
Piece of Crap ! ! ! !  Time owned: more than 12 months
Bought one of these Tram so-called "dual-band" antennas for my full-sized truck. Learned my lesson.... you get what you pay for. A real P.O.S.!
Would only tune ONE band for decent SWR, but not BOTH bands. I suspect the TRUE gain factor is a NEGATIVE value of db, since it receives WORSE than my 1/4-wave mag-mount. By the way, I'm a radio/electronics technician by trade. I know how to tune antennas. This one WON'T tune worth a darn, for BOTH bands to work effectively. On the FLIP side, thier TRAM Model 1180 NMO Mount Dual-Band 2mtr/440 Base & Center-loaded whip kicks butt!! I bought FOUR of them and use them all over the place. THEY WORK!!! The Thru-Glass? NOT!! My best advice: stay AWAY from the Model 1191 Tram glass-mount system, unless you just have excess money to waste.
FREEMA22 Rating: 2/5 Sep 22, 2009 10:56 Send this review to a friend
Not as good as a 1/4 wave  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I purchased the 1191 as a replacement for a 1/4 wave VHF pig sticker that is on a mag mount on the roof of my truck. I am using this antenna for an APRS tracker only. I installed the antenna and tuned it using an SWR meter. To check the effectiveness of reception, I tuned to various stations that came in weak on the 1/4 wave. Immediately, I noticed that these stations were coming in weaker or not at all. I tweaked the tuning a little, but was unable to improve the performance over the 1/4 wave. The next day, I drove my normal route to work. When I logged in to, I noticed that my track had several holes in it where no packets were received. I used the antenna for a few more days, but ultimately removed it. Luckily it was only about $20 shipped, so I am not out a lot of money. Back to the drawing board.
W4MY Rating: 5/5 Dec 30, 2007 15:31 Send this review to a friend
Great value  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I got and installed this antenna in my XYL's new truck. She stipulated, no holes!

I gave it a 5 because it is a great value for what it is. For $20 + $9 S/H off of e-bay it holds its own with THE SAME type antennas costing twice as much.

If you compare this antenna to, say, a Larson 2/70 NMO mounted in the center of the car roof requiring a 3/4" hole in the sheet metal....No, its RF performance is not as good as that.

The SWR tuned right down to less than 1.5/1 across the entire 2M band, and about that at the top of the 440 band where the rig transmits.

It hits everthing I need in this middle size town where I live, and the RX is as good as any other setup I've had around here so far as I can see.

The quality of the materials are good, supplied with a good quality coax with molded connectors, and even a tuning tool. No instructions, but at this price, I didn't mind a little internet footwork. Just remember to clean the glass before installing and mount the inside unit with the coax connector oriented horizontally.

Recommended. 73 Marty / W4MY
KE5HFM Rating: 4/5 Dec 4, 2007 10:36 Send this review to a friend
Good antenna - for a glass mount  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
This antenna, when installed properly and aligned properly )eith the stub algned horizontally) is about as effective as any quarter-wave vertical. As long as you have the pickup and the antenna aligned on that glass. SWR's have been acceptable, but not great. 1.3 to 1.7 on both 2 Meters and 70cm.

Installation is simple, antenna is inconspicuous (compared to most other antennas on the market) and appears to be well made.

This would be good antenna if you're not wanting to drill holes in your vehicle, or don't want a cable exposed in a mag-mount application. in my area, this antenna lets me talk on all the local repeaters within about 20 miles abd performs well on simplex as well. I haven't tried it any farther than that. 15-20 miles can be a little spotty, and there's a significant amount of "wash" while the vehicle is moving.

Compared to a 5/8 wave mag-mount, this antenna falls short, but is smaller, and makes for a much cleaner install.

If you're not expecting to get huge distances, amazing s-meter readings - but need an smaller antenna for metro area repeater access, this would be a good choice.

No instructions were included with the antenna, so I had to get online and search for tips and tricks to installing a glass mount antenna. with a little research, you can install this antenna easily.

Here is a great resource for questions and answers to glass mount antennas (thought not completley aimed at HAM operators and not all the advice applies):
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