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Reviews Categories | Antennas: VHF/UHF+ Directional (Yagi, quad, etc.) | Ariane Arrays, Inc. C7-50 Help

Reviews Summary for Ariane Arrays, Inc. C7-50
Ariane Arrays, Inc.   C7-50 Reviews: 3 Average rating: 5.0/5 MSRP: $480
Description: K1JX Designed 7-Element 50-MHZ Yagi Antenna
Product is in production.
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K8MFO Rating: 5/5 Sep 14, 2007 14:24 Send this review to a friend
BIg Time Winner!  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
This may be considered an "academic exercise", as I understand that Ariane Arrays is no longer in business. However, I promised a "performance review" of this antenna, so here it is!

My test period for this antenna was 3 May to 26 July 2007. I was mainly interested in new countries, and only called other things if I was either bored or wanted to check the antenna with serious competition calling. During this period I worked 54 countries, which could have been increased considerably if I had wanted. For example, I never even called the several Mexican stations that were well over S9.

When I put this antenna up, I asked Scott - N1CX at Ariane whether he could guarantee that I would work some new countries. I think he said, "SURE!". Anyone that knows anything about 6 meters, including Scott, knows that 6 did not become "The Magic Band" by mistake! To make a long story short, I did indeed add to my 6 Meter DXCC total on June 25, not once but twice! Remember, I started with 152 countries confirmed, so it was not going to be easy. To put 2 new ones in the log was a big time accomplishment for me.

"So what?" you say.... So glad you asked! In my personal opinion (the only kind I have!), I would not have made the 2 new country QSOs with my old antenna, and I always considered that antenna effective. When I worked C52T and T96C I did not have a good opening into either station. They had great conditions into the W1-W4 call areas. I sit out here in Ohio, where we usually drool about the DX that is being worked east of us. Of course we think we are better looking out here!

I do not have a sophisticated antenna range, so my observations cannot be documented in a scientific manner. Here is the bottom line............ "This beam has given me that extra DB or whatever is needed to make a QSO otherwise not possible." I know that, but cannot prove it scientifically.

If I could give this antenna a rating higher than 5, I would do it. Who lost when Ariane went out of business so quickly? We all did. Hopefully there will be a worthy successor to carry on
K8MFO Rating: 5/5 Apr 27, 2007 08:12 Send this review to a friend
A winner so far  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Over the past 49 years I have used a lot of beam antennas. Specifically for 6 meters I have had personal experience with a HyGain DB-62 “Duobander”, a Cushcraft A50-5 5 element, a HyGain 66B, and for the past several years a homemade K6STI design 5 element on a 23 foot boom. I have always felt quite competitive with the latter, and in fact have constructed 3 of them, two of which have been passed on to others. My personal interest in 6 meters is working DX. I do not chase grid squares, ragchew, hang out in “chat rooms” (do you hear me now?), nor do I use any of the computer-assisted modes to make QSOs. My style is to depend on and wait for propagation to my geographical area. Ohio is not the ideal spot to chase DX on 6, but if you are patient, you have your moments. If all DX operated CW, I would not own a microphone. Occasionally it is necessary for me to operate SSB to snare a “new one”. I truly enjoy 6 meters because it is so unpredictable. Beware of anyone who tells you that they fully understand the band, for they know not of what they speak! One thing for sure – openings can be brief and signals can be weak. A good antenna definitely helps.

This is an “assembly review” of the Ariane Arrays C7-50, so lets get to it. Even though this is a relatively large antenna (7 elements on a 28 foot boom), it is shippable in one box via UPS. I was impressed with the care that was taken to “pad” the ends of the box, to prevent damage to the element ends. All hardware (stainless) and other parts are contained in special bags. The manual has a checklist for those who want to count each individual bolt, washer, and nut. I took a rough inventory and figured that was close enough. Speaking of the manual, it is similar to those of Heathkit and Elecraft, providing the space to “check off” each step of construction. Again, I looked at the manual, which does have a number of pictures, in a general fashion, and decided to start putting the boom together. Since everything was color coded, this was pretty simple. Working with the elements and the feed bracket was also pretty intuitive. Whoops, what’s left? Holy Smokes, just the boom to mast plate and boom truss assembly, and that didn’t take long either. Ariane figures the antenna can be constructed in a couple of hours. I suppose it took me 3 to 4 hours, because I did it in stages, and was interrupted by rain and hail storms. When I was all done, I even had some parts left over, and not because I forgot to use them! There were some extra nuts, bolts, washers, and even a U bolt. I have the impression this is standard with Ariane, and it is a nice touch. The company also includes a couple of tubes of NOALOX. Use it on joints that fit together. You will not regret it and save future owners of your antennas from teaching new cuss words to their families. As a previous reviewer noted, Ariane takes the time to “de-burr” their aluminum. Personally I think this is a great idea, which also saves time in construction.

Once the antenna was on my tower, it was time to apply some power. With 25 watts of forward power, I could see no reflected power on the meter of my Kenwood TS-570SG. The same held through on my WELZ SP-600 power meter. I then increased my power to 300 watts and still could not detect any reflected power on either meter. My Bird 43 wattmeter was pressed into service, and I still could not read any reflected power between 50.0 and 50.4 MHZ, the area in which I operate. Just for fun I inserted a second Bird 43 meter, and the results were the same. How much tuning did I do on the antenna? Actually, I set the T match to the “default setting” from the manual. It appears the antenna is broad banded enough to handle my operating frequencies in good fashion.

Apparently this antenna was designed by K1JX. Other Ariane antennas are of the K1FO design. This is sort of like having Henry Aaron and Babe Ruth in the middle of your batting order! These guys have accomplished a lot in the 50 MHZ and above frequencies through the years.

This review is being written less than a day after my antenna was placed on a tower. Because the boom is longer on this antenna than my old one, I need to have a couple of tree limbs removed. That will happen in a week or so. In the meantime I cannot rotate the antenna more than about 60 degrees. The sporadic E season may not start in earnest for another month or more. After I get some operational experience with this antenna I will provide another review. Once the band opens it will not take long for me to determine how I stack up against other DX guys in this area.

What I can say at this time is that the antenna appears very well constructed with quality materials. If you follow their manual to the letter, you should have no difficulty in assembling and erecting the antenna. I did have a couple of questions about the antenna, and I found Scott at the Ariane office to be most responsive, both on the phone and via email. I am not a “nit picker”, and at this point I have nothing to complain about with this antenna. I will be monitoring things during the ever-changing Ohio weather and report any problems in my “operational review”. For now I feel I have a winner, which looks very nice on my tower. If you are looking for a well-designed antenna with quality materials, you may want to consider this or another antenna in the Ariane line.
W5TF Rating: 5/5 Mar 15, 2007 08:46 Send this review to a friend
Excellent quality, very good customer support, worth the money  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
My stacked 4 element quads were destroyed by hurricane Katrina, after many hours of searching the internet and radio magazines I chose the Ariane Arrays C-7.
I kept thinking I would go with another Hy-Gain VB-66DX, 6 element yagi. I used one for over ten years and gave it up when I moved to Texas in 1997. Then I found the Ariane Arrays web site.
The C-7 is very well built with great detail to deburring parts, something that a lot of manufactures don't worry too much about.They go the extra mile and sand the insert for the boom center section, this is a 1 7/8" X 48" X .058 wall piece , you don't see this kind of quality control very much today.
I can't say enough about the overall build quality, as they say, "it aint cheap, but, you get what you pay for".
The instruction manual is very good also, like the old Heathkit assembly manuals, it has check boxes for each step. The elements are preassembled and color coded, just attach to element clamps, measure from reflector end of boom for spacing and that's it. T-Match has preassembled bracket with N type connectors and hi-quality coaxial balun, very easy adjustment for lowest SWR.
I had a question or two and Scott Bullock, the General Manager was very helpful, so you won't be left hanging if you have a problem.
I have made many contacts but no band openings yet, I am very pleaed with the antenna and would recommend it to anyone wanting an antenna that will withstand severe weather and give excellent performance.

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