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Old 10-29-2013, 07:41 AM   #421
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Runn0r View Post
I was wondering about the ground plane with this. The mast will extend up where the antenna base would be above the cab and the mast about 6" back from the rear window. IThe mast will be aluminum so I had planned on grounding the mast to the body really well. Would this help the ground plane?
grounding the antenna and ground plane are two different things. Ground plane is the metal around the antenna base, like if you mounted it in the middle of your roof. a 1/4 wave MUST have have an awesome ground plane, a 1/2 wave needs one, but a 5/8 or or 7/8 wave don't need one.

I was on a Net about portable antennas last night. This topic came up.
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Old 10-29-2013, 07:56 AM   #422
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCaltaco65 View Post
Could make a set of ground plane radials like previously mentioned.

http://www.csgnetwork.com/antennagpcalc.html


http://www.antenna-theory.com/tutorial/smith/chart.php
Thanks, I'll look into it. Not sure what I can fit just yet.
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:10 AM   #423
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipskip View Post
grounding the antenna and ground plane are two different things. Ground plane is the metal around the antenna base, like if you mounted it in the middle of your roof. a 1/4 wave MUST have have an awesome ground plane, a 1/2 wave needs one, but a 5/8 or or 7/8 wave don't need one.

I was on a Net about portable antennas last night. This topic came up.
Interesting stuff I was hoping this was the case and I could get away with a mast one way or another, im kind of obsessed with the project now. I was Looking at these door-jam type mounts, like on SUV's where they bolt into the trunk lip but are not flat on a metal plane, like this one:



Would these normally be used with 5/8+ wave? In this example it looks like he has the same 5/8 larsen there. Even if I have to beef up the mast system to carry a 5/8 through the bumps I will. I just want to optimize the design for the best reception without it being on the plane of the roof. I had heard tale that 1/2 wave seems to be what many ppl use for motorcycle rigs, but then others say 5/8. I guess another idea would be to make retractable/foldable radials, of course then the engineering nightmare grows
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Old 10-29-2013, 08:30 AM   #424
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Runn0r View Post
Interesting stuff I was hoping this was the case and I could get away with a mast one way or another, im kind of obsessed with the project now. I was Looking at these door-jam type mounts, like on SUV's where they bolt into the trunk lip but are not flat on a metal plane, like this one:



Would these normally be used with 5/8+ wave? In this example it looks like he has the same 5/8 larsen there. Even if I have to beef up the mast system to carry a 5/8 through the bumps I will. I just want to optimize the design for the best reception without it being on the plane of the roof. I had heard tale that 1/2 wave seems to be what many ppl use for motorcycle rigs, but then others say 5/8. I guess another idea would be to make retractable/foldable radials, of course then the engineering nightmare grows
I like you project. I think the debate over 1/2 or 5/8 wave depends on were you live/will be using it. Some people can get away with a 1/2 wave all day long and other needs the properties of 5/8 wave.

I am installing a bed bar and putting a 5/8 waves antenna on it. That will work best for me. I currently have a 1/4 wave mag mount on my roof, but I am going to use that for APRS in the future.

The radial angle changes with the different lengths. One is better for flat areas and another works better for mountain areas. With radials on a 5/8 waves antenna it will work like a rock star over any 1/4 or 1/2 wave. Maybe get an antenna with the options to put radials on it. Run without most of them time and if you find yourself unable to communicate, than you pull out a bag and put the radials on.

I am sure there is someone smarter than me that can chime in on this topic. Maybe post up on 4x4ham.com or offroadham.com

Keep us posted on this project!
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Old 10-29-2013, 10:44 AM   #425
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipskip View Post
I like you project. I think the debate over 1/2 or 5/8 wave depends on were you live/will be using it. Some people can get away with a 1/2 wave all day long and other needs the properties of 5/8 wave.

I am installing a bed bar and putting a 5/8 waves antenna on it. That will work best for me. I currently have a 1/4 wave mag mount on my roof, but I am going to use that for APRS in the future.

The radial angle changes with the different lengths. One is better for flat areas and another works better for mountain areas. With radials on a 5/8 waves antenna it will work like a rock star over any 1/4 or 1/2 wave. Maybe get an antenna with the options to put radials on it. Run without most of them time and if you find yourself unable to communicate, than you pull out a bag and put the radials on.

I am sure there is someone smarter than me that can chime in on this topic. Maybe post up on 4x4ham.com or offroadham.com

Keep us posted on this project!
Cool stuff & thanks for the info/links. I will definitely post some pics/video once I figure this thing out, hopefully it will work like a precision James Bond device. That's the vision anyway. I emailed Larsen about my 2/70B and they replied:
The NMO2/70B isnít Ground Plane independent.
Thanks!

Sooo I may need to go with something like the Comet SBB-5NMO which seems to get good reviews without a ground plane. Luckily there are a lot of repeaters around so hopefully I can make something work. The hardest part will be figuring out some way to mechanically lock/unlock the mast in place if the air pressure is not enough to hold it erect.
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Old 10-29-2013, 11:06 AM   #426
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Runn0r View Post
Cool stuff & thanks for the info/links. I will definitely post some pics/video once I figure this thing out, hopefully it will work like a precision James Bond device. That's the vision anyway. I emailed Larsen about my 2/70B and they replied:
The NMO2/70B isnít Ground Plane independent.
Thanks!

Sooo I may need to go with something like the Comet SBB-5NMO which seems to get good reviews without a ground plane. Luckily there are a lot of repeaters around so hopefully I can make something work. The hardest part will be figuring out some way to mechanically lock/unlock the mast in place if the air pressure is not enough to hold it erect.
http://metalschnitzel.com/RoboMast/Robomast.htm

Or use a couple of wheels and an RC type control to extend and retract the mast. I saw a video of a couple of kids that built a reverse thing like that. It was a HF antenna designed to climb up light poles.

So many ways you could go with this. Did I miss why you want a retractable antenna?
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Old 10-29-2013, 11:25 AM   #427
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Quote:
Originally Posted by MonkeyProof View Post
Most of the GMRS channels are cluttered with Spanish speaking people that are clearly using more then just a simple gmrs radio based on power output. Then there's a group whos high power stations are dominating the MURS channels 24/7. The LA area has gone rogue due to the lack of FCC enforcement
That's unfortunate about the MURS channels being used in that way. Did you know that Walmart uses them? Although I've only heard walmart personnel on the wideband channels (4+5). Just this last weekend, I led a caravan from San Diego to Joshua Tree and we used MURS channel 1 the whole way. Two watt HT's, DCS turned on. They worked great!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Runn0r View Post
It will be a vehicle system, but im experimenting with mounting the antenna on a 2.5' aluminum mast that will be raised via pneumatic cylinder. My worry is that with the Larsen 5/8 wave, where its longer, when I hit bumps it tends to flex much more and transfer the energy down the mast, where a short 1/4 wave wouldn't flex as much. I really just need to build the thing and see what happens, but I was just curious as to what type of difference in performance I might experience when going with a shorter 1/4 wave.
I know projects can be fun and I don't want to dampen your exuberance, but I fail to see the point of using such a short mast on a mobile install. It's one thing if the mast extends your range by say 20-30 miles, but I would wager that it will probably do almost nothing for you and maybe even make things worse. If it were me I'd just mount that Larsen on the roof and call it good! All mobile installs are a series of compromises and you just have to make the best choices you can given the circumstances.

Now, where masts make a lot of sense is in portable installs. Such as this one:



Portable 2M mast to extend range.
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Old 10-29-2013, 11:33 AM   #428
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Runn0r View Post
I am an aspiring ham tech. looking to build a custom mobile rig. I ordered a Larsen NMO 2/70B antenna after reading reviews, but I am curious about 1/4 wave antennas as well.

Does anyone have first hand experience testing and comparing a 5/8 wave and a 1/4 wave on 144/440? I know in theory I should have better range with the 5/8 wave but I am contemplating a 1/4 due to weight factors of the thing i'm building.
You can't have a duel band antenna with a 1/4 wave on either band.
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Old 10-29-2013, 11:36 AM   #429
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I know projects can be fun and I don't want to dampen your exuberance, but I fail to see the point of using such a short mast on a mobile install. It's one thing if the mast extends your range by say 20-30 miles, but I would wager that it will probably do almost nothing for you and maybe even make things worse. If it were me I'd just mount that Larsen on the roof and call it good! All mobile installs are a series of compromises and you just have to make the best choices you can given the circumstances.

Now, where masts make a lot of sense is in portable installs. Such as this one:



Portable 2M mast to extend range.[/QUOTE]

Yes. And please note the radials.
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Old 10-29-2013, 03:17 PM   #430
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maineah View Post
You can't have a duel band antenna with a 1/4 wave on either band.

Hmmm I seem to missing something here...

http://www.diamondantenna.net/nr72bnmo.html
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Old 10-29-2013, 05:17 PM   #431
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So, basically the idea of the mast I have in my mind.. would be not to raise the antenna to an advantage elevation, but just to get it above the metal shield of the cab, to that of a roof-mount antenna. The reasoning behind the retractable design... is that I work in a building where I drive under a 7ft ceiling of a parking garage daily. These limitations sparked my mind to build a (cab controllable) retraction-mast design that I have never seen ever.

It's hard to explain now without uploading drawings, but those might (who knows) be proprietary one day. I know this can work, I just need to select the right antenna that can ride..and still perform on this aluminum member I call a mast.

So other than the parking garage, I do like the look of my truck without a permanent antenna. This design will be tactically hidden 2 inches below the bed wall. And this is just another excuse to use a pneumatic system to make something I love even more awesome. Basically.
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Old 10-30-2013, 04:52 AM   #432
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Quote:
Originally Posted by SoCaltaco65 View Post
Hmmm I seem to missing something here...

http://www.diamondantenna.net/nr72bnmo.html
That is a 1/2 over 1/4 with a matching coil.
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Old 10-31-2013, 05:02 AM   #434
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Spencer View Post
i'm out in Indio on top of Chuckwalla mountain- I wanna test out my new ham radio
can someone jump on
McGilvry
157.545 and say hello? I wanna see the range of my setup
Like to listen to pagers do ya?
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:22 AM   #435
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Had the set screws back out on my NMO Larsen 150B somewhere on a trail in Montana..

Scored a Larsen 2/70C w/ NMO kit for $15 in Bozeman! She basically said, "Well, I don't know what this is, how about $15?"

Werd!

Going to be out in Yellowstone, there should be an IRLP node nearby..
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:35 AM   #436
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Finally came in the mail!!!!!



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Old 10-31-2013, 07:36 AM   #437
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oh nice, someone is going to have fun this weekend.
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Old 10-31-2013, 07:36 AM   #438
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Quote:
Originally Posted by maineah View Post
Like to listen to pagers do ya?
?? Dunno what ya mean
New to this whole thing just installed a rugged race radio on mine and two other friends trucks. So far I've gotten clear calls over 20 miles but wanted to see how it'd work while I was on top of a mountain where someone brighter than myself had installed cell towers. Can't wait to get my cert
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Old 10-31-2013, 08:01 AM   #439
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Rugged radios offers some pretty nice products, especially their 110w radios. Just to bad that the race radios are not FCC type accepted to be on amateur radio bands just to let you know. You'll no what I mean once you start studying for your exam.
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Old 10-31-2013, 10:13 AM   #440
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Chipskip View Post
Finally came in the mail!!!!!


Christmas in October! Let us know when you get it connected up. I'll look for you on aprs.fi.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spencer View Post
?? Dunno what ya mean
New to this whole thing just installed a rugged race radio on mine and two other friends trucks. So far I've gotten clear calls over 20 miles but wanted to see how it'd work while I was on top of a mountain where someone brighter than myself had installed cell towers. Can't wait to get my cert
Do yourself a favor and call Rugged 888-541-7223. Ask them a simple question. Is is legal to operate (transmit) with your VHF radio without an FCC license? I just did that and I was either lied to (most likely) or the customer service rep was grossly misinformed. He was friendly and polite though.

If you dig a little deeper and obtain Rugged Radios frequency list that they program into their radios, at the top of this list is this little warning:
Content provided is included for the sole purpose of providing educational information on a passive basis. Frequencies shown have been compiled from various sources. It is the end user’s responsibility to observe FCC regulations for proper use and programming of any radio frequency
Please note the passive basis. What does this mean? It means for listening only. They know the limits of the law and when you key up one of your race radios without operating under an itinerant FCC license, it's illegal.

Now I'm going to prove it to you. I give you two exhibits for your examination.

The first is a partial screen capture of Rugged Radios frequency list they program into their radios for sale. Notice the highlighted frequency of 151.925. Exhibit two is an FCC License frequency search by geographic location [CALIFORNIA], and I searched for active licenses. You'll note that there are 44 business that are licensed for that frequency with 1-10 shown.

Exhibit 1 a


Exhibit 2



Take a look a that list. If you used that frequency for example, you could interfere with Hospital operations, or the State of California... Both of which probably has deeper pockets than you and they could file complaints to the FCC which may come after you...The bottom line is that by transmitting with your race radio, your committing an illegal act and you subject yourself to potential financial and legal troubles. Do I write this to make you feel bad about your radio? No. It's to educate you and help protect you from the ignorance and misunderstanding of others.

If it were me, I'd return the race radio and buy a dedicated ham rig and get my amateur license. One of the biggest drawbacks of the Vertex gear is you can't program it yourself. The ham gear is all programmable by the operator.

Quote:
Originally Posted by MonkeyProof View Post
Rugged radios offers some pretty nice products, especially their 110w radios. Just to bad that the race radios are not FCC type accepted to be on amateur radio bands just to let you know. You'll no what I mean once you start studying for your exam.
Nothing wrong with using vertex gear on the amateur bands. Hell, you can use anything or build anything as long as your gear does not QRM anybody and you adhere to power restrictions, etc. As a side note, I want to hear more about Tim's old converted land mobile equipment. How heavy was that Micor?
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