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Reviews For: TAK-tenna

Category: Antennas: HF: Yagi, Quad, Rotary dipole, LPDA

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Review Summary For : TAK-tenna
Reviews: 155MSRP: $278. USD
High-frequency antenna for 3 to 30 MHz., inclusive

TAK-tenna is Unique and has been awarded U.S. Patent.

Radiating elements use proprietary copper jacketed alloy

Rotatable - Portable - Stealth - Primary & Restricted Space

Very easy to assemble

Sturdy and well built with low wind load Weighs only 5 pounds Very small footprint >p>TAK-tenna 80 Multibander has a 48 inch boom All other models have a 30 inch boom.

Direct feed with 50 or 75 ohm coax on resonant band User chooses resonant frequency Use coax + antenna tuner...or twin lead + antenna tuner for off resonance operation

Power tested to 1000 CW watts at resonance Key down for 30 seconds and 1400 Watts PEP no heat sensed on antenna wire or coax feed point when touched by hand after power testing

High efficiency = NO lossy matching components anyplace in system Directivity = 10 to 14 dB signal increase in transmit with 90 degree rotation with horizontal orientation Vertical orientation provides omni-directional pattern

Shipping world wide

Product is in production
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# last 180 days Avg. Rating last 180 days Total reviews Avg. overall rating
KI6LXT Rating: 2010-02-25
Good Experience Time Owned: more than 12 months.
I researched this antenna extensively before investing my hard-earned-cash. After several short discussions with the developer and reading nothing but good things about the antenna I ordered one for 10-meter operation.

My antenna arrived in good shape about two weeks after I ordered it. I assembled it in about an hour. The assembly went without issue and I followed the excellent directions precisely. Some additional pictures would have been handy.

For symmetry I ensured both spirals began on the same leg of the supports although the directions did not suggest this. I would have placed the outer support facing in and the inner support facing out so the wire would have been symmetrical rather than varying up and down with the thickness of the supports. We considered the use of a Balun to keep RF off the feed line.

With two Hams assisting me tuned the Tak-Tenna. We met for coffee and I had the antenna in the back of my truck and they were very intrigued so we adjourned to a Ham Shack at the Santa Maria Airport. We hooked 12’ of 213 coax and an MFJ antenna tuner to the antenna. The antenna was very responsive to tuning but in order to get it to resonance at 29.5 MHz with 50 ohms and X-3 we had to add about 1 ½” of stubs to each segment (may have been because of the large area of tarmac we were on). The antenna then came in to perfect resonance, a condition none of us had ever seen before. Quite frankly one of the Hams was seen staring at the antenna as though observing a UFO....

We used the MFJ as a source and switched back and forth between the Tak-Tenna and a well tuned 10-meter vertical mounted on the roof of a truck. The Tak-Tenna seems to be about 12 dB down from the vertical (to be expected since Tak-Tenna was horizontally polarized and vertical was vertical). After installing the Tak-Tenna on a 15’ mast at my house and adding a 1:1 coax balun, the SWR increased to 2.2 (obviously I need to do some tuning to account for local conditions). Again we tested the antenna against a known configuration and it seemed to be down about 12 dB.

The antenna seems to be directional with the main lobe off the “hot” side of the coils. The lowest gain seems to be from the “cold” side of the coils.

We rotated the Tak-Tenna vertically and placed it atop a 10’ plastic pole. We also placed a 1:1 coax balun on the antenna and we removed the 1.5 inch stubs. We attached the MFJ with 12’ of RG213 coax. Instead of the recommended starting points of 1’ from the cold end inside spiral end point and 3’ from the hot end inside spiral end point we used 1’ from the cold end outside spiral end point and 3’ from the hot end outside spiral end point. The adjustment immediately responded and we got the antenna tuned in all but reactance. The reactance value was 33 (X=33) and the minimum SWR was 3.5.

We then removed the balun and the antenna tuned to 29.5 MHz SWR 1.2 reactance 4. Near perfect. It is interesting to note that the stubs were not required in this orientation. We suspected the balun might somehow be defective so we connected it to a dummy load and checked it with the MFJ. The balun checked out good. The Tak-Tenna definitely does not like a balun in the circuit. I do not recommend attempting to tune this antenna with only an "S" meter.

I erected the Tak-Tenna on my back patio. It is on the same plastic 10’ pole and tripod we tuned it on and it reaches just above the eves of my house. First contact was again with a radio at the airport 3-5 miles away. Changing the antenna to vertical improved received power by at least 3 “S” units and maybe more. We are very impressed with the performance. We will leave the Tak-Tenna in its current position for further testing and within a week I will raise it another 10 to 15’. I can’t wait until conditions allow me to test its performance at distance.

SWR is 1.2 on 29.5 and 2.0 on 28.3.

Overall this is a very small and stealthy antenna rated at power up to 1000 watts. It is easy to assemble but requires some skill to tune. It does tune to extremely accurate levels and is very responsive to tuning. Radiation angle is reported at 24 degrees which should make for great DX contacts.
N5IYP Rating: 2010-02-25
TAK-tenna a limited space winner Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
The TAK-tenna 80 is performing great even tho I've had to contend with power-line RFI, poor band conditions, also wiping out the wife's TV, snow and super cold in an un-heated shack in the back yard, and last but not least I managed to smoke my power supply, am waiting for MFJ to repair it and get it back to me..
When the radio Gods have smiled upon me, if I can hear the other stations I can work them. With the antenna in the horizontal position I do have coverage of all the lower 48 states and some of S America. A little tricky to tune but once you understand it, its easy.
So far so good the antenna has weathered wind, rain, hail, and snow/sleet.. And still works.
Steve, thanks for the inquiry on the TAK-tenna 80 this coming spring and with warmer wx I am thinking of purchasing another TAK-tenna cut for 40 meters.. Hmmmmmm
MW1RES Rating: 2010-02-25
TAK-tenna 80 - A WINNER BY FAR! Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Having used the TAK-tenna 40 with great results for well over 18 months as soon as I saw the TAK-tenna 80 on the site it was a definite "must have". Being restricted for space this is just inches bigger than the TAK-tenna 40 and is easily "lost" in the garden (so to speak) or behind the garage!

The last two weeks I have spent an hour here and there putting the antenna together in my garage (never really set a timescale) but possibly 8-9 hours inclusive of coffee breaks and coffee breaks and more coffee breaks. I must admit to having a friend help me with the winding of the coils, as I was slightly nervous having all that wire waving around on my own!

Last night just testing 3 feet off the ground in the garden with no real set up but my homebrew atu, FT-817, I hooked up to the TakTenna. I did not even bother trying to adjust the TakTenna on it's own first for low swr I just set the connections approximately as the instructions say. Firstly connected it to the atu and tuned up the 817.

80 mtrs 1:1 swr no problem, moved up the band about 40 khz and had to retune the atu again, no problem - it was just a little tweak, 1:1 swr again. Sounded great on receive, called a station but he sent QRZ? and then went off on first call!

So next I switched the rig to 40mtrs, TakTenna connections were not touched just left as I first set up. Tuned the atu and again 1:1 swr. Next I switched to 30mtrs, 20mtrs, 17mtrs, 15mtrs
and then 12mtrs - swr tuned to 1:1 on all those bands with the atu, 12 mtrs was a little tricky but did the business. I tried 10mtrs next but was unable to get 1:1 but did get swr less than 2:1 so it can be used.

There you have it ... the TakTenna for 80 meters covered all bands with the atu like a dream and you are not paying serious money!

Will be doing a full installation over the weekend with quality feeder, etc., on my small mast and really looking forward to getting on air. May even experiment with vertical and horizontal.

Steve has really "rung the bell" with this antenna. All parts are top quality and all you need do is what it says on the can ... you will be more than pleased with the results.

Check the TAK-tenna website for this superb antenna.

Communications are also first-class though I have had no cause to seek advice I am sure Steve would be back in a flash to answer any query if you had one!

Get on the TAK-tenna roll of honour for DX - I am going to be on there ... wait and see!

73 Frank (MW1RES)
KD7AUQ Rating: 2010-02-04
Great all around antenna for fixed, portable, emergency use Time Owned: more than 12 months.
HI Steve
The 40 meter model I have has been up close to three years now and has reached out to everywhere except to the middle east, my QTH is So. Western Wyoming using only 100 watts. Other hams constantly are in disbelief when I tell them that this antenna is only 28 inches tall 3 feet long and that the center hub is only 14 foot off the ground. Just wanted to say thanks 73s.

Robert Adams KD7AUQ
Bryce Adams KD7NWL

WA1ZNC Rating: 2010-02-02
Antenna works Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
Hi Steve:
I got my antenna up to 25 feet and I am doing really good.
40 meters is a out standing 1to1 swr.( without antenna tuner ) did this with just moving the hot wire.
I read you add again and notice that you say that the TAK-tenna is good for 40-30-20-15-10 meters with a antenna tuner I can get all these plus 17 meters this done all with My internal antenna tuner( all 1to1 )
On my ICOM IC-746PRO.
Remember most important to RESONATE RESONATE RESONATE !!!!!!!!

You have a outstanding antenna here Steve.

PS I plan to go up to 35 feet when the weather is better.
KF6WTC Rating: 2010-01-14
Great Antenna! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
It took awhile to get it tuned, but once I got a MFJ antenna analyzer I had it tuned in about 20 minutes.

Steve was great! He had no problems emailing me, or talking with me on the phone and he sent it out quickly!

Thanks again Steve!
K6PHL Rating: 2010-01-01
There is no free lunch! Time Owned: 3 to 6 months.
One of my sons who lives in a limited balcony apartment bought the portable version. After a lot of experimentation he threw up his hands and ask that I give it a try. Because I have plenty of space I tried it in both vertical and horizontal configurations at various heights up to 20 ft. As with all 'feed-line radiator antennas' it is very sensitive to feed-line orientation.
The best signal reports I could muster were fully 2 "s-units" down from my roof mounted vertical, and FREQUENTLY worse. Reception was similar.
In my many years of building and experimenting with wire antennas I have decided the three most important characteristics of antennas are aperture, aperture and aperture :-). If you are in a desperate space limited situation, this limited aperture antenna MAY work, but will be 'fiddely' and probably down in performance- often way down...
N5IR Rating: 2009-12-30
Exceeded expectations Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
I wanted to get back on HF but QTH has limited space and I need to keep a low profile. I have no room for radials so a vertical is not an option and my attic is too full of metal strapping for an indoor antenna. I decided to take a chance on using the TAK-40 as a vertical dipole.

I easily assembled the TAK-40. I decided to try it setting vertically on the work bench using the initial tap positions and a 30 year old Dentron Super Super Tuner. I worked 12 states with it there before I could get it installed outside.

A friend and I installed it and ran coax into the house on the evening of Saturday, 30 May 09, right in the middle of the WPX contest. It is vertically mounted at 11 ft above ground for the cold side hidden in vegetation. I have a choke at the bottom of the “tree mast”. That evening, using 100 watts and the Dentron Super Super Tuner, I worked 29 countries on 40 meter cw (including EZ, ZS, VK6, JA and ZL). The next morning I worked 2 SA countries on 15 meters cw.

As of 30 Dec 09, I have 91 countries on 40 meters, 23 countries on 17 meters, 19 countries on 15 meters, 1 country on 12 meters, and 3 countries on 10 meters. I have worked EZ nine times on 40 meters and I recently got through a 40 meter pile up for DP1POL, German Antarctica.

The antenna must be tuned in as close to its final mounted configuration as possible (mounted, coax run to shack, etc.). It is sensitive to mounting changes. Once tuned, I have 90 KHz at/below 1.3:1 and 195 KHz below 2:1 on 40 meters. I recommend tuning it to resonance. I used a MFJ-259 SWR analyzer.

I can not use the TAK-40 on 20 or 30 meters due to the length of coax used from the tuner to the antenna. It easily tunes on 15 meters and is some what resonant on 17 meters. I can tune it on 80 meters, but have had no luck at all there.

Like others, I usually get one to two S-units below the reports I give and I don’t always hear everything others are hearing. I don’t win pile ups, but I can eventually get through as noted above.

This is a compromise antenna design to be sure, but it has gotten me back on HF with better than expected results. I just hoped for a cw rag chew antenna. So, since it exceeded my expectations, I am giving it a 5/5 for the money invested.

I decided to get a TAK-30 and a TAK-20. They were both installed vertically 11 ft. above ground for the cold side on 23 Dec 09. The first two contacts for the TAK-20 were UA0 and KH6. The first morning gray line for 30 meters yielded PA, RA, LY, and EW. With Christmas, I have not had enough time to evaluate them, but the initial on air reports for both the TAK-30 and TAK-20 line up with the TAK-40.
SQ2FRF Rating: 2009-12-11
Very good Time Owned: 6 to 12 months.
Due the reason of very limited space I decided to by TAK-tenna in mobile and standard versions.
It was good decision, antenna working mainly in vertical position. Installed only 5-6 meters above the ground on metal mast. Due the reason of lack of free time I'm on radio only during weekends. I'am IOTA chaser and up to date with small amplifier was possible to catch: D44AC, VR2C and a lot of stations from States and over 50 islands from Europe. At first look maybe it is difficult but ass'y is possible in less then 30 minutes.
Next year I will be much more active from islands. Thanks Steve for very good for me antenna.
WB6RLC Rating: 2009-12-02
DX first contact Time Owned: 0 to 3 months.
OK, you’ve heard how easy this is to build and tune. I won’t expand on that. Here is how the antenna worked for me.

I live in a shallow canyon, more of an alluvial. There are so many rocks I have not set up a proper ground for my station. I am however about 300-400 ft above the valley floor. The transmitter is an ICOM-735 with 100 watts out.

When I tuned the antenna, I mounted it on a 6ft piece of 1 inch PVC pipe set in a concrete pool umbrella stand. This is setting on the concrete decking about 4 ft from the pool. The RG8X runs out of the garage window, across the pool deck and to the antenna. I tuned the antenna to a little better than 1.2:1 @ 7.2 MHz. So I decided to give it a try. At first 40M was pretty busy and noisy. I came back a little later. I chose to pass on the station I heard from Dubai! My first shot was to an East Coast station. I hit W4WRL, Wayne in South Carolina. That’s from Palm Springs California to South Carolina, about 2000+ miles! Not bad for my first try with the antenna setting 6 ft off of a concrete pool deck and 100 watts. I am sold. Can’t wait to get it up in the air.