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What base antenna is the best bang for the Money?

Antenna

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#1 rodro123

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Posted 21 December 2019 - 11:23 PM

I’m thinking of a new base antenna. The ones that I have in mind are as follow. If you know anything of them let me know I will mount on a 40 foot pole. I’m only doing GMRS. They range from $190 to $900. Do you own any? I live in Wisconsin so I can pick up the first two but the third I would have to pay shipping.

 

https://www.shopwisc...b-P5783211.aspx

 

https://www.shopwisc...b-P2179087.aspx

 

https://www.solidsig...w.asp?p=1151-4n



#2 kb2ztx

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Posted 22 December 2019 - 08:34 AM

The DB404 has always been my go to antenna. I run the DB408 on all my repeaters. I actually have 2 DB404 in my garage i use for portable repeaters when needed. They hold up well. YMMV



#3 Jones

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Posted 22 December 2019 - 10:42 AM

DB404 for the win.



#4 berkinet

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Posted 22 December 2019 - 12:26 PM

Only 1 question... rodro123 lives in Wisconsin, where there is actually winter. Being metal and a lot of nooks and crannies I'm wondering how the DB404 will perform with snow/ice/wind loading?


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#5 SteveC7010

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Posted 22 December 2019 - 12:52 PM

Only 1 question... rodro123 lives in Wisconsin, where there is actually winter. Being metal and a lot of nooks and crannies I'm wondering how the DB404 will perform with snow/ice/wind loading?


We have a similar dipole antenna on our ambulance station. It's been there for at least 15 years. It works fine in the wind and snow and ice of the Adirondack mountains.

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#6 Jones

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Posted 23 December 2019 - 10:08 AM

We have snow, ice, and 90MPH wind in Nebraska as well, and the DB antennas all work just fine. ...some for over 30 years.

 

Side mounted DBs with top and bottom mounts never go anywhere, but the ones that are mounted by just the bottom mount only will tend to bend over in those 90-100MPH January winds if they are ice loaded.

 

Interestingly enough, the ice doesn't de-tune them too much. it tends to make them resonate at a slightly lower frequency, but not totally out of band.



#7 rodro123

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Posted 23 December 2019 - 07:14 PM

I assume you are all on board to get the DB404. I’m going to place my order after the holidays. I would like to thank everyone that responded what a great community we have here. But please keep responding will not order until 1/6/2020.



#8 kipandlee

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Posted 24 December 2019 - 07:32 AM

agree the DB404



#9 Radioguy7268

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Posted 24 December 2019 - 07:36 AM

I'll toss in the dissenting opinion. There's absolutely nothing wrong with a DB404 dipole. Proven design with good spec's.

 

It's probably overkill for a home "base antenna". Especially if it's being mounted at the top of a 40 foot unsupported and un-specified "pole".  I'd be concerned about ANY 40 ft. pole for a home antenna. I'm also thinking that a base antenna in GMRS is mostly going to be used to control a distant repeater. If so, the repeater's location and antenna situation is more important than the base radio's antenna.

 

Use any decent 5 or 6 dB gain omni fiberglass antenna, and quality coax, and you'll hit 90% of the repeaters that you'd ever get with a DB404. You'll also save yourself a few trips outside during the ice and snow to see if your 40 foot pole is still standing vertical. You will probably save a few hundred dollars also.


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#10 rodro123

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Posted 24 December 2019 - 09:14 AM

I'll toss in the dissenting opinion. There's absolutely nothing wrong with a DB404 dipole. Proven design with good spec's.

 

It's probably overkill for a home "base antenna". Especially if it's being mounted at the top of a 40 foot unsupported and un-specified "pole".  I'd be concerned about ANY 40 ft. pole for a home antenna. I'm also thinking that a base antenna in GMRS is mostly going to be used to control a distant repeater. If so, the repeater's location and antenna situation is more important than the base radio's antenna.

 

Use any decent 5 or 6 dB gain omni fiberglass antenna, and quality coax, and you'll hit 90% of the repeaters that you'd ever get with a DB404. You'll also save yourself a few trips outside during the ice and snow to see if your 40 foot pole is still standing vertical. You will probably save a few hundred dollars also.

Thank you Radioguy7268 I do like the response.

 

 

This is the 40 foot pole I have bought it a few years ago for my second place in upper Wisconsin I bought it for a TV antenna but still no reception so it’s just laying there. I have all the Guy wires and all. I will be mounting it 50 feet from my house in SE Wisconsin and 60 feet from the electrical overhead wires. This is a spring project.  I like it because one man can lift it up no equipment needed to lift it. It is very well made.

 

https://www.solidsig...AyABEgJRbvD_BwE



#11 Jones

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Posted 24 December 2019 - 10:24 AM

I was assuming you had a tower, and wanted the best of the best.  Since you are talking about a simple push-up pole, I will have to agree with Radioguy7268 that the DB404 would be overkill, and might tend to overload the support pole when iced.  The DB404 would survive the ice, but might not survive the fall to the ground when the pole snapped.

 

My next best recommendation for you would be to look into a Comet CA-712EFC for about $150. Much lighter weight. With the money you save on the antenna, and since you are going about 120-150 feet for the coax run, I would take that saved money, and put it into an extremely low-loss coaxial cable such as LDF4-50A Heliax or similar.  If you can save 3dB of loss in your coax cable, you will literally be doubling your power to the antenna.

 

If you do decide to go with the Comet for GMRS, be sure to order the model with the "C" on the end.  The popular CA-712EF is a Ham antenna tuned for 430-450 MHz. The one ending in "EFC" is the commercial version, tuned for 460-470 MHz.


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#12 kb2ztx

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Posted 28 December 2019 - 07:15 AM

Only 1 question... rodro123 lives in Wisconsin, where there is actually winter. Being metal and a lot of nooks and crannies I'm wondering how the DB404 will perform with snow/ice/wind loading?

 

I lived in upstate NY (Tug Hill area) for most of my life. All my NY GMRS repeaters run this antenna and all my SAR repeaters run the DB224 (same design) and never had an issue. I have one antenna that is about 20 years old and yearly PM checks are always fine.



#13 SoCal355

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Posted 29 December 2019 - 11:43 AM

 

 

My next best recommendation for you would be to look into a Comet CA-712EFC for about $150. Much lighter weight. With the money you save on the antenna, and since you are going about 120-150 feet for the coax run, I would take that saved money, and put it into an extremely low-loss coaxial cable such as LDF4-50A Heliax or similar.  If you can save 3dB of loss in your coax cable, you will literally be doubling your power to the antenna.

 

 

 

That is the route I took on a 40 ft mast by the ocean. Works extremely well with 100ft cable run


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