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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Mobile & Accessories | Diamond CR-8900 Help

Reviews Summary for Diamond CR-8900
Reviews: 18 Average rating: 3.5/5 MSRP: $100
Description: Quad band mobile antenna - 10m, 6m, 2m and 70cms. 1.26m long, 60 watts max for SO239 mount.
Product is in production.
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W4KVW Rating: 3/5 Apr 24, 2018 15:35 Send this review to a friend
$100 & NOT Great on any band  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Well I did some head to head testing with the Diamond CR-8900 against the Larsen 2/70 on both 2 meters & 440 mhz & hands down the Larson wins. Looking at the advertised specs on the two antennas the CR-8900 should be slightly better on 440 mhz & it is for sure NOT.It works OK but I'll keep the 2/70 under my back seat in case I'm on the fringe & need a little help.The 6 & 10 meter bands have been pretty dead on the FM portion so I have not heard any stations there so no feedback for those two bands so far.I am using the TYT TH-9800 just FYI.SWR is very good on all four bands also so just waiting on some propagation.If not for wanting both 6 & 10 meter coverage I would for sure stay with the Larsen 2/70 because it performs very very well on both bands all of the time & it has for years. {:>)
VE6ND Rating: 5/5 Apr 14, 2016 11:08 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Design  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Good antenna for the money, I gave it a 5 based on durability, flexibility and having used it for a year now based on Calgary weather and climate.
At highway speeds the base lifted up and almost over but this was due to there being a storm through the Banff area and extremely high winds. What I did was to use flooded heat shrink over the fold over base. This solved the problem and have also worked 6 meter openings last year.
With only 60 watts it does what is should.
VE7DLC Rating: 5/5 Jan 3, 2015 16:44 Send this review to a friend
Excellent on all bands  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I have been using this antenna on my balcony for several months. It is grounded (via the mount) to a long metal planter 8x1x1 feet (filled with earth) and I attached a single counterpoise wire for 10 meters. I also use an LDG Z-11 Pro tuner.

With 10 watts on one Saturday I was able to work 13 states in half an hour on 10 meters SSB. I am located in the Pacific Northwest, and got great signal reports (5-7 on average, I was hearing them 5-9)) from Missouri, Tennessee and other eastern U.S. states, as well as Ontario.

It also works just fine on 2 meters and 440 FM (haven't used it on 6 meters).

I suspect that grounding is the issue concerning most problems with this antenna. And while I certainly don't have the ideal ground, it works well for me.
KK4ITX Rating: 2/5 Aug 6, 2014 11:47 Send this review to a friend
Problems for some  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I rated this antenna (Needs Help).
I purchased a used unit at a tailgater supposedly from a SK Estate from a Ham that assured me that it worked. It didn't.

There was ZERO continuity between the feed and any part of the antenna although the analyzer would report resonance in the 2m area....... nothing I did would make the readings budge. Since the top part of the antenna (from the Base Coil up) appeared to be in working order I suspected that the Base Coil had some issues as had been reported in this Forum.

I sent a total of 3 emails to Diamond (RF Parts) for any help or replacement parts whichever they could offer..... NEVER heard from them. Even had a contact name from Dayton and no luck there either.

I separated the Base Coil from the rest of the antenna and found rusty water in the Base Coil. I suspect that there was at some time a space between the coil and the upper antenna. The end result was that the coil (where it is attached to the center pin of the coax)was separated from center pin. The hole where the wire fed into the pin was full of rusted crap.

I am trying to rebuild the coil but I need to know where the capacitors go and what value they might be, if anyone knows I would appreciate hearing from you.

I would advise anyone that owns one of these to unscrew the antenna a bit from the black portion of the Base Coil, fill with silicone and quickly tighten..... at least wrap the joint with electrical tape.

The worst part is not getting any support from Diamond/RF Parts.
K3UOD Rating: 5/5 Feb 15, 2012 09:44 Send this review to a friend
Great so far!  Time owned: months
I installed this antenna on the drivers side rear door of my Ford Ranger truck. I used a Diamond K400C mount a few inches above the top door hinge.
I used a small drill bit through the mount's set screw holes to cut away a small spot of paint to achieve a good ground to the door. Then I installed a 3/8" copper braid jumper across the hinge so the door is well grounded to the truck body.
Tune up took about 20 minutes because 2 meters needed to be adjusted by loosening the set screws on the middle coil and moving it up as far as it would go and still be grabbed by the screws. The 6 meter adjustment was about the same as for 2. For 10 meters, the stinger was a bit too long for 29.6, so I cut about 1/2" off the bottom and installed it all the way down in the top coil. The VSWR in that position is 1.7:1 on 29.6, a bit high for a perfectionist, but perfectly usable. I could have cut a bit more off and acheived a better match, but I found that if I extend the stinger as high as it will go and still be grabbed by both screws, the VSWR on 28.3 is also useable. I decided to accept a bit of VSWR on FM on the chance that I might want to work SSB with this antenna. If I find a bit of whip that will fit, I will cut two stingers, one for FM and one for SSB. It only takes a minute to change them.
So far, the only downside I can see to this antenna is that it hits the occasional tree branch. The performance on 2M and 70cm is excellent. I received a good signal report on 52.525 simplex from a station about 10 miles away. (Not much 6 FM activity around here.) Yesterday I had a good solid QSO from the Washington DC beltway to a Colorado station using 35W on my end.
W2TKW Rating: 1/5 Dec 11, 2011 07:42 Send this review to a friend
Poor quality under the covers...  Time owned: more than 12 months
I have had two of these antennas, with both failing due to the same problem.

The first antenna I purchased with my FT8900 rig. I was impressed by how it looked and felt in hand. It appeared to be fairly well built and it had some weight. It gave the impression that it could handle the abuse a mobile environment could give it.

Initially the SWR on the 2m segment was a nice 1:1. I didn't bother tuning the 6 and 10m sections at that time because the bands weren't open. I planned to used it for 2 meter and 70 cm repeater work until the other bands opened up.

I could hit repeaters from quite a distance. I regularly made contacts the local repeaters as well as on the Mt Mitchell, 2m repeater ( 6600' level located just north of Ashville, NC) while traveling back and forth from Knoxville, TN to Charlotte, NC and I had great reports on my audio.

About a year after I got this antenna a couple of ham friends mentioned my audio wasn't as crisp as it had been. A check of the SWR showed that the 2 meter section was severely out of tune with a SWR of over 5:1.

I purchased the second antenna figuring to swap parts to figure out what went bad and order a replacement part from Diamond. I suspected the base coil had been damaged. Using the base coil section from the new antenna and the remainder of the old antenna I checked the SWR on 2 m and found it returned to 1:1. Returning the parts to their original antennas I installed the NEW antenna and tuned the 6 & 10m sections at that time. The SWR's I achieved were

2 m -- 1.0
6 m -- 1.2
10m -- 1.1

Soon after, the 10 meter band opened and I attempted to make contacts. Knowing that HF contacts for a mobile setup can be difficult, I did not really know what to expect. What I found was I could hear great, picking up stations from all over the western US, Europe, and South America. However very few heard me. I ran grounding straps from my trunk lid to the car body thinking that the ground was not good enough. No difference. I checked the output of the radio thinking that the radio was not putting out the selected wattage. The radio was transmitting fine. About 4 months after getting the second antenna I checked the SWR again, and found that all section were de-tuned with the 10m section at 8:1 and the 2 m section being 2.5:1. who would have thought an antenna would fail so quickly! The failure symptoms again point to the base coil section.

At this point I have given up on this antenna. No need throwing more good money after bad. Ill let u know how my new antenna system fairs.
KV4AN Rating: 5/5 Jul 9, 2011 16:09 Send this review to a friend
Better than expected  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Based on the other reviews, I expected problems, but I had no trouble tuning the antenna. Had acceptable SWR on 440, 2, and 6 out of the bag. The SWR was above 3:1 on 29.6, I noted it was close to 1:1 around 28.0 with the tip all the way down. I trimmed a 1/4" twice off the tip and the the SWR is now close to 1:1 on 29.5. Mounted on a Diamond K400S mount on middle right edge of lift gate of Jeep Liberty. Heard station in St Louis on 10 FM this morning and lots of other activity. Worked a local station on 6 FM. Worked good on the 2 meter repeaters too. A convenient no-holes installation with better than expected and very acceptable performance. Using with a Yaesu FT-8900.
F4ILX Rating: 5/5 Apr 10, 2011 14:27 Send this review to a friend
So far So good, even very good !!!  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Bought as a new toy last month, I made a try this evening, leaving the week end family house on the hills near Toulouse in JN13FL, i've heard a QSO in Portugese on 29600 FM, I made a call and a PY2 replies ...

From Sao Paulo Brazil !!! About 5000 miles !!!

I made that QSO with only 20 watts !!!

The antenna is yet a must for a Yaesu FT 8900 !!!

73s QRO de F4ILX
MD0MAN Rating: 5/5 Jul 7, 2010 16:46 Send this review to a friend
5 years - still works great  Time owned: more than 12 months
This is the only mobile antenna I have had for 5 years and is still working well.

I have moved the Yaesu FT-8900 rig and antenna to the 4th vehicle in 5 years since owning them both from new.

Both are still working perfectly, our local 2m repeater is down, but still get plenty of UK stations.

I have worked with a colleague on setting up a couple of local 70cms repeaters using the AllStar system - this antenna still works flawlessly on all bands, fine on 70cms and I mostly work no more than 5-10 watts on this band.

5 years on and I am still making 10m contacts 3-500+ miles into Europe from the Isle of Man when the bands are open (not worked and major 6m DX yet - missed the openings on this band- but still have 1.5:1 or less SWR).

The MOST important thing with this antenna is to have a proper ground for 10 & 6m, if you are going to use a mag mount - use a good bit of braid as a ground strap and make sure this is properly connected to the body/earth of your vehicle - if you can't do this - then forget using this antenna, you will be unhappy!!!

N8UH Rating: 5/5 May 1, 2010 10:19 Send this review to a friend
Works FB for me.  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I followed the instructions. They state clearly that this antenna is not for mounting in the center of the roof. I have mine mounted on an the rack rails of my SUV, and have the mount well-grounded (also in the manual). I had to hack .5" off the top tuning stub, and now it tunes exactly like the manual says it should. No problems.

As for performance, 2m/440 work excellent. 6m and 10m are fine too. Not a 1/4 wave, but good for a compromise antenna. I use an ft-8900. Mobile, I have worked TX on 10M FM from the 'burbs of Las Vegas. Not too bad.

Construction quality seems good, but time will tell.

So, if you have an ft-8900 and need a single antenna solution, you don't have many choices. It's this one or the Comet. This one has a slightly lower profile and slightly less wind loading. I would imagine they perform similar.

If you get it, READ THE INSTRUCTIONS and make sure your mount is grounded well. It should work fine! I like it!
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