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I need antenna suggestions

Help with installing an Antenna, or just choosing the right antenna to go with your radio, or your mobile.

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SeekerK1
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I need antenna suggestions

Post by SeekerK1 » Monday, 02 January 2017, 13:03 PM

I recently got my first CB radio and would like to get it set up in my car. I don't have an antenna yet though and need suggestions so that I can find the most best one. I did receive one recommendation this past week from the owner of a local CB store but I'm hoping to find an antenna that meets my full satisfaction. What I'd like is a portable antenna with powerful magnetism which can be mounted on and off during each car trip. What I was shown at the store was this antenna that (after being hooked up to the radio) would be magnetically mounted onto the car roof with the wire going through a window back to the radio. The antenna was extremely long however and I'd like an antenna that is no more than a foot long. Such a thing might not have been seen as too realistic back when two way radios were first invented but with the upgrades in technology that have come through over the years I have a sure feeling that there must be some available antenna out there fitting this description. Any ideas or links from anyone?




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MunShine3X07
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Re: I need antenna suggestions

Post by MunShine3X07 » Monday, 02 January 2017, 14:06 PM

A mag mount antenna only a foot long? For the trouble of running a wire through a window each car trip maybe a portable "walkie-talkie" would be a better choice. A one foot antenna may not give you satisfactory performance. What do you expect to do with your setup?

That said, I ran a "lil-Wilson", mag mount about 3 foot length on two vehicles moving across country. Wife and I used the radios constantly over a 3000 mile journey. They performed well traveling no greater than a couple of miles apart at most. I discovered later that's about all I could do with that antenna and stock radios anyway.

You really need to go over 4' if you want your radio to be useful more than a couple of miles. In comparison to the lil-wilson, I'm using the same tired old stock radio and a new 6.5' antenna on a mag mount, I easily chat with folks 12miles away.

The antenna is the most critical part of your set up. Sure there are folks that will sell you a one foot antenna, but it will cost you in performance.



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jessejamesdallas
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Re: I need antenna suggestions

Post by jessejamesdallas » Monday, 02 January 2017, 15:01 PM

There is no such critter available to use with a CB Radio...When it comes to CB antenna's, "the longer the better"...A antenna 1' tall, you would be lucky if you could get out 25 feet from the car...(well...there "is" a CB antenna that's about a foot tall, that sticks on the back or side window, but like I said, you won't get out passed the hood of the car with one...)

I would not even consider any antenna shorter than 4' tall.

That said, Sirio makes probably the best magnetic mounted antenna's you'll find...Be prepared to spend $80 or better tho...But you get what you pay for.


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The DB
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Re: I need antenna suggestions

Post by The DB » Tuesday, 03 January 2017, 10:31 AM

SeekerK1 wrote:I recently got my first CB radio and would like to get it set up in my car.
OK
SeekerK1 wrote:I don't have an antenna yet though and need suggestions so that I can find the most best one.
Two things, you want to mount the antenna as high as you can, and you want it to be as long as possible. That will give you the best performance. The more of a compromise from those two things you go with the more of a compromise your antenna will be.
SeekerK1 wrote:I did receive one recommendation this past week from the owner of a local CB store but I'm hoping to find an antenna that meets my full satisfaction.
Which antenna?
SeekerK1 wrote:What I'd like is a portable antenna with powerful magnetism which can be mounted on and off during each car trip.
All magnet mount antennas are this way, some permanent mount antennas can be made removable as well so they aren't up there all the time, this is generally used when going into garages and such.
SeekerK1 wrote:What I was shown at the store was this antenna that (after being hooked up to the radio) would be magnetically mounted onto the car roof with the wire going through a window back to the radio.
Again, all magnet mount antennas are this way.
SeekerK1 wrote:The antenna was extremely long however
Define "extremely long". There is a limit as to how long of an antenna a magnet mount will effectively hold, and most of us wouldn't see the lengths typically used with magnet mounts as "extremely long". There are exceptions, for example, you could use a tri or quad magnet mount with a 102" whip, which is 8.5 feet long not including the mount. In most cases, the antennas designed to be (and by extension comes with a magnet mount built in) range from about four to six feed in length. If you see these lengths as "extremely long", I'm sorry, but most of us would disagree.
SeekerK1 wrote:and I'd like an antenna that is no more than a foot long. Such a thing might not have been seen as too realistic back when two way radios were first invented but with the upgrades in technology that have come through over the years I have a sure feeling that there must be some available antenna out there fitting this description. Any ideas or links from anyone?
A one foot antenna won't work well on CB frequencies. This is a simply fact of life. Can you find antennas that are perhaps a foot or two long that will function? Yes, they do exist, but none of them work well.

Also, this fact has nothing to do with the advance in technology, it is based on physics. It doesn't matter how much technology advances, it is still beholden to the laws of physics, and the physics of how antennas of the types we use work have been well understood for over 100 years now. Different frequencies require antennas of different lengths, and the frequencies used by the CB band that length is between 8.5 and 9 feet long. Going shorter than that is always a compromise, and the more you shorten it the quicker the antenna's performance gets worse. There really is no way around this, no matter how much technology advances.

If you really want smaller antennas that are more effective there are other options available. The FRS/GMRS radios for example, although those are generally used for personal use at very short range (don't believe the ranges on the packaging, they are total BS), not general chit chat. Another option would be to get a ham radio license and use the 2 meter ham band and higher frequencies. In many of these bands you also have the advantage of repeaters to help extend your range, and these can be linked together, often they can cover an entire city, and sometimes an area even larger, I know of some states that are almost completely covered by the same repeater pair of frequencies, so any use of said repeater almost anywhere in the state and others almost anywhere else in the state can respond.


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Re: I need antenna suggestions

Post by MDYoungblood » Tuesday, 03 January 2017, 11:38 AM

To add to DB's questions, what model car are you installing it in? Knowing this would help suggest an antenna. BTW, what radio did you get?

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