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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF: Verticals; Wire; Loop | Cushcraft MA6VA Help

Reviews Summary for Cushcraft MA6VA
Cushcraft MA6VA Reviews: 3 Average rating: 3.0/5 MSRP: $339.95
Description: MA6VA Six-Band Restricted-Space

Vertical Antenna

Made for today’s expanded-coverage radios, Cushcraft’s MA6V provides the
same great versatility and performance of the MA5V- with the addition of 6
Meters. Enjoy congestion-free FM-repeater operation and explore the world
of exotic seasonal band openings on 50 MHz CW and SSB. It’s a great way to
add amateur radio’s “magic band” to your operating repertoire!
Product is in production.
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WB3BD Rating: 2/5 May 10, 2018 00:52 Send this review to a friend
bad craftsmanship  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
Like a few others who've written reviews on the 5-band version of this antenna, both ends of four of the five loading coils on the pre-assembled elements were not soldered to their respective contact points, nor were the wire ends removed of varnish, resulting in no electrical contact whatsoever. The wire ends were simply pushed through the lug holes and covered with waterproofing compound. Consequently, the only two resonant bands on the antenna upon initial assembly were 20 and 6 M. Only after disassembly, 2 hours of scraping, and subsequent soldering , was the antenna actually usable. This issue goes beyond poor quality control - it approaches laziness.
AG6EM Rating: 3/5 Jun 30, 2012 14:35 Send this review to a friend
Good on all but 20M  Time owned: 3 to 6 months
I purchased the MA6VA because I have no room for radials, no trees, and CC&R restrictions which prohibit all antennas. Since the HOA has been inactive for a number of years and some of my neighbors have antennas for TV and satellite I figured I’d give it a try with something modest and so far nobody has complained.

The kit arrived with all parts present and accounted for but there were two issues with quality. First, as some have mentioned, the hole in the insulator for one of the tuning stubs was too small and had to be reamed out; not a big deal. What was more frustrating was the resonator assemblies. These come pre-assembled with the coils covered in black epoxy and the threaded mounting stud and saddle also epoxied to the tube. Unfortunately whoever assembled them let the epoxy drip on to the threaded studs making it impossible to screw on the attaching nuts. I had to go buy a die to clean the epoxy out of the threads in order to assemble the antenna. Also, one of the saddles was glued on crooked by about 3 degrees giving the resonator a small but noticeable slant. There is apparently little attention given to quality control.

After assembly I found the resonant points for all bands to be above the high end of the band at the recommended assembly settings. I was able to tune all of the bands except one which needed a tube longer than the one supplied. An email to tech support yielded a longer tube which was provided quickly and at no cost. If you buy this antenna plan on using an antenna analyzer to get it working properly. Most of the bands are very sensitive to small changes in the tube positions so tuning using the SWR meter on your rig will likely prove frustrating.

I found the performance of the antenna to be good on all bands except 20M where the minimum SWR is high and therefore results in a very narrow 2:1 bandwidth. For this reason I lowered my score to 3. After tuning the results I achieved are listed below:
Band_______Z@RES_______SWR@RES___2:1 BW_________3:1 BW
6M_________64___________1.2:1_________2320 KHz________5770 KHz
10M________48___________1.0:1_________530 KHz_________1075 KHz
12M________50___________1.1:1_________700 KHz_________1370 KHz
15M________50___________1.1:1_________520 KHz_________930 KHz
17M________60___________1.2:1_________180 KHz_________330 KHz
20M________80___________1.7:1_________81 KHz__________180 KHz

As you can see, 20M performance is poor. Of course, your results may vary. I will soon be replacing this antenna with something more useable on 20M but, if you don’t need 20M or only a narrow portion of it and are space restricted, this may be a good choice for you.
KD0OPN Rating: 4/5 May 15, 2011 21:10 Send this review to a friend
Great vertical antenna  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
A great performing multiband antenna. Low profile makes it less annoying to neighbors who don't appreciate the beauty of antennas. Easy to assemble, with the exceptions noted below.

I would have given the antenna a 5 were it not for the fact that the hardware bag was ripped open. Fortunately only one #8 lock washer was missing. The kit also included an extra lag bolt which I have no idea where it came from. The instructions mentioned some extra plastic end caps for the X-hat rods, but they weren't mentioned on the inventory list nor were they included in the kit. The large 6M mounting bracket required drilling to enlarge the existing hole so the threaded rod would fit. Finally, I had to grind some flashing from the radial ring so the radials could be inserted.

A bunch of small things during assembly to be sure, but the performance and size of this antenna make up for the slight frustrations during assembly.


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