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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | Iron Horse (ATOC) 40 meter mobile whip IHF40 Help

Reviews Summary for Iron Horse (ATOC) 40 meter mobile whip IHF40
Iron Horse (ATOC) 40 meter mobile whip IHF40 Reviews: 6 Average rating: 4.3/5 MSRP: $22.95
Description: Seven foot single-band 40 meter HF mobile whip antenna. 250 watt PEP power rating. Removable 3 foot top section. Standard 3/8-24 thread at base. Requires mount, available separately. Photograph shows all 7 available HF whips, including European frequencies, from 80 meters to 6 meters.
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the Iron Horse (ATOC) 40 meter mobile whip IHF40.

N6ILS Rating: 5/5 Nov 17, 2003 21:37 Send this review to a friend
Great Antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I just set mine up on the roof of my 26 FT motorhome. I'm using that as my ham shack. Grounding is very important below 20 meters. The size of the vehicle makes a big difference too. I got the antenna to tune very nice. Once tuned, I worked everywhere in the U.S., from coast to coast.

I highly recommend this antenna!
KE7MU Rating: 4/5 Aug 17, 2003 09:37 Send this review to a friend
40 Meter Dipole  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Put two in a dipole configuration at 15 feet, they were comparable to my Butternut 6 vert in both receive and transmitt, narrow banded yes but with a tuner not a problem. Not bad for $44. I want to try a 2 element beam with these things. For the price you can experiment alot and have fun. Phasing two or four could be fun also. What a great low cost resource.
Anonymous Rating: 3/5 Jun 10, 2003 03:16 Send this review to a friend
OK if you don't have the space.  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I bought this antenna because I live in an apartment that doesn't take kindly to antennas. I have arranged two of the iron horse 40 meter antennas in a dipole configuration on a portable tripod setup. With the aid of quick disconnects, I can quickly interchange the 40m antennas with my 20m Iron Horse antennas. When I'm done using my radio I make the setup go away within a few moments.

When I first setup this antenna, the SWRs were off the scale. I borrowed an MFJ analyser to tune and at best found that I had a fairly narrow band width to work in. I need a tunner on the 40m antennas to transmit on the complete voice portion of the band. Without one I can only use about 1/3 of the voice portion of the band.

In short, it works ok, I can rotate it for directional advantage, it needs better set screws, and needs a tunner to widen the band width. The 20 meter antenna on the other hand works great! It has good bandwidth. I have talked all over the country it and have had some good DX contacts also. I have cheated the 20m with a tunner to work decent on 10m and 15m also.

I like the Iron Horse antennas up to 20m. The 40m is marginaly ok. But, for the trade offs of size, being mobile on 40m, stealth, etc. it works good enough to have some fun in places that larger antennas can't be used.
KD3V Rating: 5/5 Jan 20, 2003 13:28 Send this review to a friend
Los Angeles to Namibia on 40m  Time owned: more than 12 months
Any shortened antenna is a compromise but these Iron Horse 40m whips were good enough! to get me into V51E from my apartment roof (28') with 100 watts last September! Initially I was given a 3-4 report but when I signed he said I was a 5-5. Kosie does have a good 40m antenna, ... but still!

The ground plane under it is about 50 sq-ft of chicken wire and mounted with 3 other whips on a large magmount! I used 2 sheets of 3'x10' chicken-wire in the form of a cross. Works great!

They WORK!

Mobile contacts into the East coast and V2 land have also been made...

Good enough for less than $25 bucks!

Dave, KD3V
WQ5MM Rating: 5/5 Nov 13, 2002 07:41 Send this review to a friend
Great  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I have bought 3 Iron Horse ham sticks, out the
door for less than $20.00 each. I have the
10/20/40 antennas. The tech at the shop used his
MFJ 259B to set the antennas for the phone portion
of 20/40, they are mounted on the rear of the
bumper of my truck. I'm having a lot of fun with
mobil hf on these two bands. Good, inexpensive
way to try hf mobil. I recomend these hf mobil
antennas. 73's WQ5MM
N0TONE Rating: 4/5 Aug 15, 2002 09:17 Send this review to a friend
Gets you started for low cost  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
Based purely on performance, I was going to give this antenna only a "3". However, a $22.95 40 meter antenna for mobile use is pretty phenomenal.

But you cannot break the laws of physics. A seven foot long 40 meter whip, when resonated by a coil, will have a feedpoint resistance of about 2 ohms. To achieve 50 ohms, Iron Horse has selected a fairly small wire to wind the loading coil with, and this small wire adds enough loss resistance to achieve 50 ohms. The efficiency of the antenna measures about 1.6 percent, exhibiting 16dB loss compared with a full sized 1/4 wave vertical. A bit of supporting evidence: If I transmit a solid carrier into the antenna for 30 seconds, the loading coil is warm to the touch, proving that the antenna is turning RF power into heat.

It IS possible to reduce these losses in a short antenna. They could have used a much larger wire, or copper strap for the inductor. However, the costs would go up. Also, if they'd done that, the feedpoint resistance would go down a lot, and you'd be required to use a tuner. Their goal was to produce an inexpensive antenna that did not complicate things by requiring a tuner. And they have achieved that goal.

I have also borrowed a Hamstik, and the construction and loss are identical.

Compared to my shortened, loaded dipole at only 15 feet, received signals on the Iron Horse antenna are down by about 1 1/2 S-units. I have learned to not bother calling stations that are weak. I also have an Iron Horse 20 meter whip modified for 30 meters and "improved" with heavier gauge wire. I have to use a tuner with it, but the results are very good. On 10 and 15, I use a standard 11 meter whip, with a tuner, and get good results. In the end, unless you do some pretty special things to lower losses, you can expect about 6dB loss every time you reduce a vertical's size by a factor of 2. The Iron Horse 7 foot whip is about 1/5 of the full resonant length, so 16dB loss is predictable.

But I repeat - for $22.95, I'm actually on 40 meters from the mobile, and that's almost a miracle in itself.

If you really want a highly effective mobile setup, the Iron Horse or Hamstiks for 20, 15 and 10 should have much better performance. If you must have a good mobile setup on 40 or 80, you'll need to use one of the screwdriver antennas, or some other design with a larger loading coil, and you'll need to use a tuner of some sort to make sure you get 50 ohms at resonance and not something else. You will also have spent hundreds of dollars, not dozens.

I don't go HF mobiling often enough to justify hundreds of dollars. But I have had some fun with this inexpensive antenna.

Installation notes: Mounted atop a side rail of the truck bed. Coax braid is soldered to a copper plate, which is brazed to the underside of the rail. Antenna mount is isolated with turned Delrin through a hole in the copper plate. 2" copper strips are connected from bed to frame, bed to cab, cab to frame, engine to frame and engine to firewall (cab). Truck is a mini, with standard 6 1/2 foot bed.

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