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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Yagi, Quad, Rotary dipole, LPDA | Cushcraft MA5B Mini Beam Help


Reviews Summary for Cushcraft MA5B Mini Beam
Cushcraft MA5B Mini Beam Reviews: 160 Average rating: 4.6/5 MSRP: $365.00
Description: Cushcraft's newest multiband HF antenna provides 5 bands
Product is in production.
More info: http://www.cushcraftamateur.com
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KD7VEA Rating: 4/5 Apr 14, 2015 11:04 Send this review to a friend
decent performance but traps need some help  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had my MA5B for over a year now, and I am starting to see some issues with it. Don't get me wrong, its better than the G5RV I was running, but The antenna is coming down for the second time in 1 year. The first time, there were burn spots on the coils in the 10/15/20 driven element. I do run an AL-80A that on a good day runs about 850 watts SSB on 20 meters, still a bit under the 1.2KW rating of the antenna. I have not pulled the antenna down yet, but I am wondering if I will see the same burn marks inside the antenna this time. with an SWR of 10:1, it is pretty much not usable at the moment. other than that issue, I have been pleased with the antenna I have it on a rotator with beams for 1296, 440, 220, 144, and 50 with about 30 feet of a tubular tower and nothing has broke yet, and we see some pretty strong winds here everyday.
 
JI1ANI Rating: 5/5 Mar 21, 2015 22:02 Send this review to a friend
6m mods  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I added 6m to my MA-5B.
The element of 6m was made Pallastic element which makes a radiator of a classic band meet.
An interval of a radiator and 6m element is 13cm.
6m element is 274cm long.

MA-5B+6m has gain like a 3ele yagi, vk and qso, possible.
 
K8IDW Rating: 5/5 Jan 9, 2015 11:46 Send this review to a friend
GREAT for 9 years!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Bought mine new 9 yrs ago and put up on 40ft tower. FANTASTIC results. I love the WARC bands, and mine is FLAT across both the 12 and 17 meter bands. 10M I have mine set for the CW Portion, so just use a tuner when on SSB, same with 15, and 20. Been through a bunch of really nasty storms in summer and winter. We have brutal winters hr in N. Ohio. Remember it's only a rotatable dipole on 12/17, and 2 3ele on 10/15/20, but it's one of the best antennas I've used since becoming a Novice in 1979.
 
ON3IM Rating: 5/5 Jan 9, 2015 07:37 Send this review to a friend
very nice  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I love this antenna. A bit of work to put it toghether but never made better contacts. Even when I have to put the antenna down to 5 meters beceaurse of the wind it is still do´ng the job.
Recommend it.
 
VE3PTC Rating: 5/5 Nov 4, 2014 16:12 Send this review to a friend
5 years on  Time owned: more than 12 months
decided to write a follow up review of this interesting antenna. i have had mine for 5 years, with absolutely no problems at all. no wind-milling, no traps gone south etc. the swr plots are the same as when i installed it.
i have no room for a full size tri-bander, so the ma5b fits the bill. of course it is down on a full size antenna, but not by much. even the mighty hexbeam has its issues, like interaction between the 10 and 12m elements, which has still not been addressed as such.
in the 5 years i have had this antenna i have wkd a lot of dx,with 100w. i did briefly run an old sb 200 amp, and with the ma5b it was really good. no issues with traps at that level of output.
so, i recently decided to "improve" the ma5b on 12 and 17m where it is a dipole.
i have fitted a boom extension, and added an extra element behind the 10 15 and 20m element.
because of the spacing involved, i opted for a reflector on 12m, and as a director on 17m.
basically two 7 foot lenghs of 1 inch dia alu pipe, into which i fitted 14 inches of plastic pipe. i wound two coils for each end, in series and terminating with small capacity hats like the tgm antenna.
i resonated the reflector at +8%, and the director at -5%.
and yes, it does work. the normal operation on 10 15 and 20 is unaffected, as regards f/b and gain.
on 12m it performs as well as 10 does with the same f/b and gain.
on 17m, because its a driven element/ director, the f/b ratio is poor at about 1 s unit,but it still works well in the direction its pointed at.
next year, i plan to take the extra element off, and change the coils to make 17m element a reflector too. i think the performance will be similiar to the 20m part, but with better f/b ratio than with the director.
all in all, for a limited space antenna, it really works well!
vy 73 de bob
 
KK4QBU Rating: 1/5 Jul 10, 2014 06:28 Send this review to a friend
WHERE ARE ALL THE PARTS???  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought this antenna with the intentions of installing it over the fourth of July weekend, I took it out of the Box on Thursday the 3rd to put it together and realized it was missing several parts not just screws and bolts but large pieces like poles (WHO PACKS THIS STUFF?)I called Cushcraft immediately to get these parts and the person there was very laxadaisy about the whole thing and didn't even apologize for the inconvenience. I didn't receive the parts like promised the first of the following week so I called back to check on the status and was told they were just shipped. The service of this Company is terrible !! I AM NOT IMPRESSED. Cushcraft will not be getting anymore of my money.
 
M0TFO Rating: 5/5 Nov 15, 2013 07:01 Send this review to a friend
MA5B alomst 5 years of service.  Time owned: more than 12 months
Just a Quick update from my past reviews of the MA5B, coming up to 5 years of service as still as good as the day I installed it.I service it every 18 mouths or so,apart from that it stays up and works well for a mini beam.
 
KA3PCX Rating: 5/5 Sep 3, 2013 17:18 Send this review to a friend
Great Antenna!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
It is easy to put together compared to quad antennas!

I can only compare this antenna at a low height compared to my vertical Cushcraft R-5.

I work alot of qrp if you use the beam they can hear me in ssb but not always on the vertical.

The 20 meter band part works almost the whole band but tune what you use most! 17 meters is great!

This one came from MFJ & did have all the parts & more & correct instructions that more than I can say for Cushcraft when I bought my AS3S they sent me a 6 meter beam instruction manual!

It is a keeper for me! Ray KA3PCX!
Also built very well!
 
OH1LA Rating: 5/5 Aug 31, 2013 03:20 Send this review to a friend
The results of one day  Time owned: more than 12 months
Yesterday I worked 57 DX connection outside Europe. More than that would have been possible. I had Yesu FT-2000 + Heathkit SB-220 (2x 3-500Z) and MA5B.
15m: JA's (22), K/W's (4), H44, HL, UA0, CM2, P29, DU, HS, VK, Z21, 3B9, 5R8, TU, 7T, YB (4), 9M2(2), V85 (2) and VU, HZ,17m: 6O0, HZ, AH0, P29, 20m: E29, S2, and YB.
Since 2009 has been MA5B and thousands of dx is the log. Overall, 90% of the work outside of Europe. Its size MA5B is a good antenna, and I can recommend. Now, however, I have ordered a new antenna to replace the MA5B. The antenna is G3TXQ broadband hexbeam by SP7IDX. I've read so many good reviews. I have a different view M0TMC, who gave here only two (2) MA5B antenna and said that if the like night and day when you compare hexbeam and MA5B antenna. I look forward to well that the improvement in the antenna after all, it will be bigger, but lighter.
 
KA3PCX Rating: 5/5 Jun 23, 2013 06:35 Send this review to a friend
Great Antenna for limited Spaces  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I bought mine from Universal Radio, opened package & all the screws & bolts with extra screws & bolts in this package!

Assembly was straight forward, all bands including 20 mters very low to flat swr onlower end of 20 mters, the rest all fine!

Make sure those spokes are at a 45 degree angle & also check to make sure those traps are facing down!
One word on tuning ,The higher the antenna will give you a more accurate tune. don,t tune it close the ground as I did it will change prpbably higher in frequency on 20 meters, I had mine set for 14.0700 but after puuting it on my roof the swr was lower on the upper portion of the band will have to retune a litlle later.!

Does it work? Yes, I made sveral ssb contacts this field day with only 10 watts into Virgin Islands & puerto Rica, but the higher the better!

Comparing it to the A3S it is not quite as good but much better & quieter than most verticals or windoms, so it short, it does what it is supposed to do!
Sure, it is not a hex beam but is simplier & easy to put up. So the choice is yours!
 
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