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Categories | Antennas: HF: Vertical, Wire, Loop | Bilal Isotron Help

Show all reviews of the Bilal Isotron

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KC7UBS  Rating: 5/5 Mar 10, 2014 23:30  Send this review to a friend!
Isotron 160C works  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
For a 9 foot antenna on a 30 foot mast on 160m, it is great. It works as well as my ugly homebrew reduced super sloper did. On other bands I use whatever I can in the space I have, i.e. length. The laws of physics ALSO apply to the environment you have to work with including height, earth type and buildings/objects, not just the antenna physics. Read the instructions you will make mistakes if your an impatient jack of all trades like me. Read all the reviews you can. I use it on 1838kHz JT65 with 15-20w and I have worked Canada, Mexico, and about 25 states so far. So I can see the results live on psk reporter and hamspots. Software signal reports are not biased...

Mast: 3 sections of 10 foot conduit different sizes so the telescope together, slipped together and I use steel hose clamps for a stop so they slide n'fit inside each other about a foot and a half - not perfect but who cares, guyed, and muffler clamped onto a 12' 2x4, bungie corded to my deck so feedpoint is 30' up. I have used this type of mast setup for dozens of projects over years and the bungie cord flexibility survives 80 mph winds and 30 below temps here in WY. Anyway the antennas ground strap connects to mast, and on the bottom of mast I have a 14ga wire that runs just a couple feet to an 8' ground rod in hard sandstone. Incidentally, my Butternut HF2V is mounted 10' away on the other corner of the deck and it has no effect on the 160C whether it was up or down.

Feedline: I used 100' of RG58. I did install with coax choke 15 turns of coax taped up tight below feedpoint. There is more coax behind my desk coiled up on a chair, so I have doubts about all this coax is radiating stuff. Most of it drops right down into the basement. I find it incredible that the "coax is radiating" a qrp JT65 signal all the way to Maine...BS. What IS critical is metal mast, ground strap, whether or not the mast is connected to ground rod, and the tuning rod position. I finally settled on ground strap connected, mast grounded to ground rod, and tuning rod almost all the way up. SWR is 2.8:1 at 1850kHz, tiny bandwidth. My LDG YT100 and MFJ949E tunes to 1838. **When I disconnect the ground wire at bottom of mast I get 1:1 at 1910kHz with about 35kHz bandwidth, BUT the tuner won't get me to 1838.** Again, that's with the rod all the way that's currently where I'm at. I need to get it in the lower end of band, but cannot find anything on the web about adding L to coil or replacing tuning rod with a longer piece such as a steel whip. I was fascinated with this antenna. I am going to homebrew some for other bands just for kicks. Have fun its ham radio! 
Product is in production.
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