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Categories | Antennas: HF Portable (not mobile) | MFJ 2289 Big Ears Portable Dipole Help

Show all reviews of the MFJ 2289 Big Ears Portable Dipole

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N6JPG  Rating: 5/5 Sep 16, 2013 21:51  Send this review to a friend!
Great Travel Antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I enjoy being able to work HF while traveling. Having a good portable antenna that was not only easy to set up and use but one that works as well as a more conventional, permanent type was paramount to me. After trying a couple of other travel type antennas with marginal results, I came across the MFJ-2289 in their catalog and was intrigued by the design.
The antenna consists of a center mounting block containing the 3/8-24 mounting studs each positioned to hold the whips at an approximate 45 degree angle from the vertical, an SO-239 coax connector, a mast quick connector, and a matching balun. Two collapsible whips that extend from 28” to 17’ each and an adjustable coil complete the setup. The coil is screwed into the mounting block and one of the whips into the coil. The other whip is screwed into the other side of the block. The jumper on the coil is then set as recommended for the band. No tools are required for setup. Use of an antenna tuner while not required speeds the SWR setup process. MFJ recommends using a fiberglas or other non-metallic mast to mount the antenna. Once set up, the antenna resembles a large set of the old “rabbit ears” TV antennas from the past.
After receiving the antenna and the MFJ-1919EX fiberglas tripod/mast combo, I gave it a quick trial run setting up in the back yard with my Yaesu FT-897. Setup was fast and easy taking all of about 10 minutes. I adjusted the antenna for 40 meters as per the included guide with SWR setting very smooth with one minor adjustment. I immediately made 3 contacts on 40 meters. I then re-configured the antenna for 20 meters again with a quick SWR adjustment and made 3 more contacts.
About 3 weeks later, I was finally able to give the antenna a good wringing out from the north coast of California. Setting up in the back yard of my in-laws house, I quickly had the antenna up on the mast and worked several stations on 20 meters with only 15 watts of power from the FT-897. Quickly reconfiguring to 40 meters, I checked in with one of my regular nets. I then reset the antenna for 17 meters, bumped the power up to 90 watts and worked numerous US stations, one in Mexico, and one in Russia. Had several great signal reports from around the country; many believing I was running a kilowatt or more.
All in all, this is a great travel antenna. Easy to set up and take down, easy to tune, and excellent transmit and receive capabilities.
Product is in production.
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