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Old July 10th 03, 01:00 AM
H. Adam Stevens
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Default HF Mobile Antenna Comparisons

Gosh Cecil.
That's pretty much what I've seen with a little field strength meter on the
hood over the last 40 years of mobiling..
And certainly the biggest, center loaded, resonant, matched antennas are
vastly better than a non-resonant whip and a tuner.
All this second-guessing about shootouts will never cause a tuner-and-a-whip
to beat a 13 foot resonant monster.
Personally I think competition makes folks think about their radio
That's a good thing.

"W5DXP" wrote in message
G.Balinski wrote:

Has anyone put together a recent test of mobile HF antennas? I

that I remembered something in past years called a "shoot out" or

like that. As far as I remember though, it was as much of a test of the
installation of the antennas as the antennas themselves as different
vehicles and install methods were used. It would be nice to see on
objective comparison of the various units like the Hustler series, Ham
Stick, all the variants of the screw driver antennas, the Texas

etc. all mounted on the same platform with the same grounding system,


Anyone seen such a test ?

Here it is in a nutshell for 75m. Bugcatchers with large top hats and
screwdrivers with large top hats are close to equal at the top of the


Taking away the top hat costs about 2 dB. ~30-40% loss of power

Hustler and Outbacker are about 9 dB down from the top. ~85% loss

Hamstick is about 12 dB down from the top. ~95% loss

11.5' whip is about 13 dB down from the top. A 102" whip
would be even worse.
73, Cecil

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Old July 10th 03, 04:30 AM
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Yuri Blanarovich wrote:
Competition is the mother of invention and proves beyond the Cecil's Math what
energy is radiated and what is conserved in sleepy, while standing waves.

:-) Which reminds me. At the shootouts we subtracted reflected power
from forward power to yield the power to the antenna. If reflected power
doesn't exist, why did we subtract it?
73, Cecil

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Old July 10th 03, 09:31 AM
Mark Keith
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oSaddam (Yuri Blanarovich) wrote in message

Around 1970, some guys from Argonne Labs, in an effort to show us the error
of our ways, brought down equipment to a "160 Meter Reunion" and set up a
measurement program. About 75 people were there. On the "Q" question, the
comparison was between similarly laid out center/top loaded antennas. One
had a big open wound, heavy wire, spaced turn coil with a 8" diameter and a
1:1 length/diameter ratio. The other had a 1" diameter close wound coil on a
PVC form using #20 wire. The length/diameter ratio was over 20:1. It was
covered with shrink tubing.

The measured worst case scenario (of any HF band) was on 160. The difference
was .3db. That's 3 tenths. We were all shocked and immediately agreed that
the test had to be flawed...even those of us that thought the LO-Q coil was a
better deal. It just couldn't be that close.

I wonder how much ground loss they had...

That test was modified and tried over and over. I know of 5 more run between
1972 and 1992....all with the same results. Personally, the big beasty open
HI-Q coils look like "real radio" to me. There's just no real reason to use
them unless you prefer pinpoint bandwidth and terrible "proximity" problems.
We reconfirmed the numbers in the Fletcher Program.

The reason the difference is small is that the current diminishes so rapidly
in the first few turns of lumped inductance, whether Hi-Q or LO-Q, and
therefore only the loss in those turns is being compared. The same is true
for inductively top loaded base station verticals. Loss in the coil is
insignificant. Most calculations to the contrary made in texts, articles and
some modeling programs are based on the current being equal throughout the
coil. This is not true. Of course, most mentions of this loss are not
quantified at all.

Again, I also wonder about ground loss. If the amount of ground loss
is high, it's ratio against coil loss is higher. A lossy coil might
not be much of an impact. But a low loss ground system would make a
lossy coil show up more being the ground loss is a lower part of the

On the other hand, the position of the coil in the available vertical mast
means everything. Here's the bottom line: All other factors being the same,
the inductively loaded vertical with the longest mast between feed point and
lumped inductance wins the radiated field strength contest.

I agree with this part for most cases.

This means that
a standard Hustler setup is louder than any "Screwdriver" or "Bug Catcher"
unless they have more than
4½' of mast below the coil.

But, this is just pure finely ground sandwich meat. In the cases where
I tested, I never saw a hustler coil even approach my homebrew coil or
any other equal size coil for that matter, and at that time, my
homebrew coil was only 2 ft above the base. I tested the hustler on a
3 ft solid mast. It was waaaaayyy down. But they also use those stupid
short stingers, and hence use more coil windings than they really
should. Hustler is a special case... Also, note the test results
Cecil just posted...His results using the hustler seem to match mine.

We confirmed that in Fletcher, too. As an
example, for 80M, a 9ft. top loaded mast was down 20.5db from a full quarter
wave, both measured on the test stand. The base loaded 9 ft. mast was
36.5db down, a difference of 16db. BTW, the same mast loaded with a Smart
tuner or Icom AH-4 was 44.5db down. Results are worse on 160.

I assume the 9 ft top loaded ant was the hustler...??? I notice they
don't mention the center or near top loaded bugcatcher coil in
comparison...Sure, a base load is going to be down...

Seems that Hustler tried to "match" the low band resonators by introducing some
extra loses in their loading coils. I rewound the resonators with 1/4" copper
tubing (20 and up) but in view of W9UCW findings maybe there is good compromise
between ugliness and performance.

I think the 1/4 inch tubing is overkill. Really , I think anything
over about 2 mm wire size is starting to be overkill considering the
increase you get. But, I am not a fan of hustler coils. I won't use
them. All the antennas I've made using those coils were "dummy loads
on a stick". That includes the 80-10 multiband vertical I tried that
used those resonators.
I've been thinking about the disparity some seem to see in coils. I'm
starting to think it's differences in ground loss. The less the ground
loss, the more a lossy coil will show itself. Enough loss, anything
might seem ok... MK

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