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Reviews Categories | Antennas: HF Portable (not mobile) | MFJ-1979 16.5 foot stainless telescoping antenna Help

Reviews Summary for MFJ-1979 16.5 foot stainless telescoping antenna
MFJ-1979  16.5 foot stainless telescoping antenna Reviews: 18 Average rating: 4.4/5 MSRP: $59.95
Description: A telescoping antenna made of stainless steel that extends
to 16.5 feet and collapses to 2 feet. Has standard 3/8 X 24
threads on a solid brass base that is 1 inch diameter by 3
inches long.
Product is in production.
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You can write your own review of the MFJ-1979 16.5 foot stainless telescoping antenna.

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NR7Z Rating: 1/5 Oct 13, 2018 23:57 Send this review to a friend
woked fine twice  Time owned: more than 12 months
The MFJ-1979, for me, worked fine twice. On the third outing something broke, inside, on the bottom section and now that section collapses down when the antenna is extended. I have to use electrical tape to keep that section from collapsing. On the fourth outing the next two sections up broke like the first. So now I have to bring electrical tape with me to keep the bottom three sections from collapsing.
K5ACL Rating: 3/5 Aug 13, 2018 16:31 Send this review to a friend
Great, until it breaks  Time owned: more than 12 months
I put my gear through some rigorous use, and while this little whip help me put out an enormous signal (when elevated), after about 25 uses in a year, the whip broke at one of the section meeting points.

There aren't a lot of options for commercial whips like this that are adjustable in this range for this price. So for the value it's great! I just wished the whip would have lasted a bit longer than a year. Near the end of its life, I would have to tape certain sections together to keep the antenna from collapsing.

N0AN Rating: 5/5 Mar 23, 2018 14:30 Send this review to a friend
Excellent Basis for Ground Plane  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Price vs Performance is Excellent. Heavier than I thought it was going to be, which is a positive. I bought a cheap CB Mirror mount (3/8 x 24) and clamped it to the boom of a 70cm yagi (no longer in use) about 7 or 8 feet off the ground.

After I secured the mount, I attached 4 elevated radials 13 feet long at a height of about 8 feet (same as antenna), and spread them as nearly every 90 deg as possible, but they aren't perfect.

At this point I made the antenna about 13 feet long by telescoping the smallest diameter section all the way in for mechanical strength. The slid each bottom section out fully, and using only the last section diameter as little as possible for the final tuning.

After a little tuning of the radiator (I did not tune the radials, leaving them cut at 13'), the VSWR is about 1.5 : 1.

The antenna is near a lot of metal, as the cross boom is part of a satellite array, and coax parallel to it going up to a 70cm/2m J-Pole. (about 5' from it)

Performance on 17m using FT8 has been very good. It outperforms my Carolina Windom 160, except in early afternoon to Europe. Late afternoons the Ground Plane is clearly superior.

Because of the layout of the radials, it is most likely not omni-directional. The CW160 has some wicked high gain lobes that I believe explain the CW160s superiority to Europe around noon.

Results with GP @ 7': (one morning and late afternoon)

CO8, LU4, ZS2, KL7, KH6, JA5, ZL2, ZL4, 80 watts.

Fed the antenna with LMR-400, no choke, no balun. If available, I would use a choke/balun.

The entire antenna was fabricated in a couple hours (making the radials, stringing them out, mounting the CB Mirror mount) . After that it was a simple matter of stretching out the vertical and taping the joints...I taped them so they would not slip. They had very good self resistance, but since this antenna is intended to stay up a while, I secured the sections with black electrical tape.

Anyone wanting a quick 1/4 Vertical or Ground Plane for 20 meters or above would find this antenna suitable. Make sure you have a mount that accepts the "standard" 3/8 x 24 stud.

73, N0AN
KB2NAT Rating: 5/5 Jan 10, 2018 12:33 Send this review to a friend
Very Useful And Handy Tool  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I will provide another review after I've had a chance to use this antenna more often in the field, but I have had a chance to fool around with it both inside and outside to get an idea of what it can do. I will be experimenting with several types of mounts, but the first thing I did was to simply mount it on a 5" wide magnetic mobile mount and extend the antenna to do an initial eval. No problems there; the unit was solid, nothing slipped or fell off and I wondered if this really came from MFJ. Then I took it outside on the same mount on a metal table, added a couple of radials and made contact with a ham in Minnesota in the afternoon with 5 watts. I had some fun and added two 14" extensions as well to see how that worked. It did! Although it's easy to say that it's no better than a 17' wire (true), I've been in places where only levitation would have worked for a wire (no trees) and it is easier to throw wires on the ground as radials then to levitate them.
So far, so good. I was lazy; I added those two extensions and just tuned it to bands on 40 meters and up. It's a fun and workable toy.
KJ4FGI Rating: 5/5 Mar 2, 2017 16:28 Send this review to a friend
Solid not junk  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
17' telescopic antenna, well built, I was

surprised that an antenna this long is this solid.

I'm using 2 of them for a portable dipole

Eddie kj4fgi
JR0HYT Rating: 5/5 Dec 4, 2016 12:16 Send this review to a friend
Good antenna for portable  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
I use this whip for portable activity.
Usually set up this whip by 5m telescopic pole with 4 x counter poise (about 5.1m each, for 20m operation).
My component can set up with in 30 min and very suitable for the operation in camping field because of very small foot print.
Of course, performance on 20m band is very good with conventional CW/phone, and JT mode.
N4UM Rating: 5/5 Dec 20, 2015 17:30 Send this review to a friend
Great for DXpeditions  Time owned: 6 to 12 months
We took 3 of these to the Bahamas for 2 weeks of operation including the 2015 CQWWDXCW contest. They worked very well with two radials each placed about 8 feet over the edge of the salt water on a wooden deck. We ran 3 single band stations simultaneously on 10, 15 and 20M. The 10 meter station made over 900 QSOs. The 15 meter station had over 2000 QSOs and the 20 meter station almost 1500. We also used them on 30 and 40 meters with optional base-loading coils. The weather was quite windy - blowing at 20-25 MPH for days at a time. They bent quite a bit but held up well. We had to rinse the salt spray from them quite often and used a kitchen cleanser to remove the rust build-up. I cleaned them thoroughly with fresh water, dried them and sprayed them with WF-40 before collapsing them and putting them away after the trip.

They are an ideal portable antenna and can readily be packed in a conventional sized suitcase.
WB4M Rating: 4/5 Oct 12, 2015 15:18 Send this review to a friend
Low cost alternative  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
I had been looking for an easy to setup antenna for portable use at the beach when I discovered this vertical whip. I ordered it from DXEngineering with some other items. MFJ says it is a 16.7 ft. stainless steel telescoping whip, but I measured mine and it is 17'4".
The antenna can be telescoped in or out to make a 1/4 wave length antenna for 6-20 meters with low SWR. I was able to get low SWR on 6-17 meters, but no matter what I tried would get good SWR on 20 meters. I tried with/without radials, ground mounted, tripod mounted, but closest resonance to 20 was around 15.100 MHZ according to my MFJ analyzer. One thing I did notice was the thinner sections need to be fully pulled out or they will tend to slide back down into the next section. At first I thought that was my problem but it wasn't. I have the LDG817 tuner for my FT-817 so I will just use it with the antenna fully extended for all bands and not worry about adjusting it for band changes.. easier to do that anyway. I had looked at a few magnetic loops and other portable vertical systems, but you're looking a $250-350 dollars vs. $40-50 for this whip. Lot of hams are mounting it via a truck mirror mount for CB antennas, about $10.00 or less. One mount is available that uses 2 of these whips in a "V" configuration. There are a few videos on YouTube showing how some are using this antenna in the field. It is very lightweight, collapses to about 27 inches, easy to backpack, no problems with stringing up wires, etc.
NS5U Rating: 5/5 Aug 5, 2015 17:59 Send this review to a friend
Beats the others  Time owned: 0 to 3 months
Robust and stainless steel. I am selling the Buddipole and the army fishing pole verticals. When able I set up a 32ft fiberglass vertical but I can always deploy the nearly 17ft MFJ-1979.

No tuner needed from 14mhz to 54mhz. a couple of 16ft counterpoise on the ground and I am good to go. This is rugged built. Wish I had discovered it sooner.
EI2HPB Rating: 5/5 Feb 5, 2015 04:50 Send this review to a friend
Best money spent on ham radio gear!  Time owned: more than 12 months
Been meaning to review this great product for some time... Simple design, telescopic stainless steel whip less than 2ft long that telescopes out to 16.5ft so usable as a 1/4 wave vertical from 6-20m. I've used it mobile, portable and home base, on various different mounts, with and without radials and/or a loading coil to work all of the above mentioned bands plus 40m. I live on the north west coast of Ireland very near the north atlantic ocean and so far the antenna has stood up to our hard weather pretty well. As the previous reviewer mentioned the top (thinnest) section is quite fragile and prone to a bit of discolouration... that said it does not affect the performance which in my case has been excellent. I regularly go mobile or portable with this antenna in close proximity to salt water and it is the quickest easiest way I know to get a 1/4 wave vertical antenna up and on the air working exotic DX around the globe. Absolutely the best 50 bucks spent on the hobby since I got my ticket!
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