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coax connector conundrum


Guest mike
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Im planning on putting up a base antenna (Ed Fong DBJ for GMRS with "N" connector).   I haven't picked the precise spot yet , but guessing it will be around 50 feet of LMR 400.  Im gonna order it with a "N" connector on the antenna side. My trouble is what to order for the radio side.  I currently have only HTs, several , all require SMA or SMA F.  I want to eventually get a mobile to use as a base radio.  From what I can tell, I think most mobiles have UHF connectors (so-239).  It seems logical to have the coax made with the connector that the mobile I eventually want to use has (most likely UHF conn.).  But the more I read about the UHF connectors, Im less excited about  using the UHF connectors on the GMRS frequencies. Have read several different sources stating losses in UHF connectors above 300 mHz.  So, I thought mabe I should have the coax made with a BNC conn.  & use BNC to SMA & SMA F to connect to my HTs.   I think I'm OK with that for HTs.  This brings me to another thought.  Is it technical or difficult to change the so-239 mounted on a mobile to an "N" conn. Do you just bolt in & solider connections.  Or, is there anything to be done with the electronics in the radio ? 

I know most of GMRS users for mobiles / bases are probably using UHF connectors.  And some will say it works fine, but I'm not in a great spot (in a hollow) & want to do the best I can with minimizing signal loss in my system. From what I understand Crimping tools for LMR are expensive & It sounds best to have the coax made with connectors when I order it & just do the coax thing once.

thanks, mike

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Im planning on putting up a base antenna (Ed Fong DBJ for GMRS with "N" connector). I haven't picked the precise spot yet , but guessing it will be around 50 feet of LMR 400. Im gonna order it with a "N" connector on the antenna side. My trouble is what to order for the radio side. I currently have only HTs, several , all require SMA or SMA F. I want to eventually get a mobile to use as a base radio. From what I can tell, I think most mobiles have UHF connectors (so-239). It seems logical to have the coax made with the connector that the mobile I eventually want to use has (most likely UHF conn.). But the more I read about the UHF connectors, Im less excited about using the UHF connectors on the GMRS frequencies. Have read several different sources stating losses in UHF connectors above 300 mHz. So, I thought mabe I should have the coax made with a BNC conn. & use BNC to SMA & SMA F to connect to my HTs. I think I'm OK with that for HTs. This brings me to another thought. Is it technical or difficult to change the so-239 mounted on a mobile to an "N" conn. Do you just bolt in & solider connections. Or, is there anything to be done with the electronics in the radio ?

I know most of GMRS users for mobiles / bases are probably using UHF connectors. And some will say it works fine, but I'm not in a great spot (in a hollow) & want to do the best I can with minimizing signal loss in my system. From what I understand Crimping tools for LMR are expensive & It sounds best to have the coax made with connectors when I order it & just do the coax thing once.

thanks, mike

I personally use only N-connectors on my antennas (where available) and on my primary runs of coax between radio and antenna. I do and will use adapters or adapter cables at the radio end as necessary. I have no compelling reason to undergo the hassle of changing a connector out on a radio before or until the connector fails. There simply is no meaningful benefit to me to justify the effort. Would I consider switching to N on the radio if it needed to be replaced? Maybe.

 

 

Michael

WRHS965

KE8PLM

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Pasternack (and Ham Radio Outlet to a much lesser extent) sell short, thin, flexible cables to adapt an HT (BNC or SMA) to a heavy cable (N or whatever).

Pasternack does customs for whatever you want but they are sort of expensive.  Maybe try Digikey as well because they have some.

RG141 is very flexible and fine for  a couple feet. 

 

I always like to use a right angle connector on the HT to allow more movement.

Also, consider getting a speaker mic on the HT so you don't have to move the radio around so much.

If your HT is a Wouxun that Powerwerx speaker mic is really nice for $15 on sale.

 

Vince

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  • 1 month later...

Thanks, guys after you input & some more research (including talking to some local HAM old timers), Im going with "N" connectors.  Since I'm just starting out , I think it will be best to stay uniform with all my equipment.  and as I add in the future, I wont have to rework or use adapters.  Im even going to swap out the UHF connectors on my mobiles to "N" connectors.

thanks again !

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