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AMS Forums set to ARCHIVE MODE (POSTING DISABLED). These forums will be used for historical reference, otherwise you can find the AMS event pages located on Facebook.
Guest Specs

Baofeng antenna cables or TCI mast alternatives

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Guest Specs

Hello comms folk. I'm wanting to get your opinions on the matter of radio+antenna mounting.

 

I had the misfortune of somehow cracking the connection point between my UV-5R and it's whip antenna at BH3 last year. (Likely pressed my back panel a tad too hard against some cover. Who knows.) So I've been looking at pigtail connectors and systems like the TCI mast so that I have more flexibility, literally and figuratively, in where my radio can be stowed on my person, and still allowing me to get my antenna in an open and stable place on my kit.

 

The focus here of course being to remove the probability of stress on the antenna connection point of the radio.

 

Has anyone used any options similar to, but more budget friendly than the TCI mast on your radio setup? Curious as well if pigtail connectors would require a different antenna than most baofeng compatible nagoya whips.

 

Thanks for the time and consideration as always. 

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Hack built a few of these with 1 yard cables to rig to the back of PCs.  The most expensive item was the antenna holder (10 bux or so). I think total price was <20 dollars.  Shoot him a PM.

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You can get a remote antenna location cable off Amazon.

 

3ft cable

New whip antenna (if needed)

L connectors

 

 

All on Amazon.

 

 

I use that setup for both my radios.

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Remember your ground plane.  

 

Without a ground plane at your antenna you're not really doing yourself any good.  At the radio itself, the radio chassis usually functions as the ground plane (poorly at that) once you remote away, you lose that so just make sure that whatever antenna design you use has a ground plane component to get the best results.  

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Guest Specs

Thanks BC!

 

What radio do you use and do you have any brand names or links to those parts? 

Been searching amazon all day myself, but can't seem to figure out the terms needed to bring up what I need. (Other than pigtail connectors, and pretty sure those are for truck antenna setups.)

 

This particular connector has caught my attention thus far, but I haven't seen anything as far as elbow connectors and an in-between cable. Wouldn't know what connectors are needed for the setup either. 

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Guest Specs

Thank ya sir. Much appreciated.

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http://www.ebay.com/itm/3feet-SMA-male-plug-to-female-Jack-Extender-Jumper-Cable-RG316-1m-/161046391703?hash=item257f1ceb97

http://m.aliexpress.com/item/1800244796.html

A ground plane is important. I don't know how they do it with the real tci mast setups. A simple wire wrapped around the threads of the antenna end of the cable is all you need. Strip the part that is wrapped around the threads. Let it hang down (stuff it into molle) below the antenna. 5 or 6 inches are about all you need.

 

*EDIT* Changed the link for the cables - first link was for 5" versions. Wow, I paid three times that for the cables. They've come way down in price...

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I used a SMA to BNC adapter and ran the cable to a small BNC woven through the MOLLE on my hydro pack. I went with BNC because there's more antenna options. You only need a 4" to 7" whip to fall in the 1/4 wavelength range for these radios. I recently switched to a BNC stubby "race radio" antenna. Range is reduced but it works at even the biggest AO's and is about 2" long reducing bleedover from all the radios out on the field.

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Toast,

  This is something I talked about for OBH3 - build your radio setup for what it needs to do most often, which is talk to your squad. It doesn't need to be a 'talk to the entire world' type of radio. It is the attitude that 'MY comms are more important, give me the biggest, baddest radio I can find' that causes the comms issues we see at games like OBH (bleed over, etc). I hope this attitude takes hold..but I'm not going to hold my breath...

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Guest Specs

I find that the range requirements for squad comms aren't so much to reach command or other squads from my perspective. It's more of a half my squad is out at the airfield and me and the other half is respawning all the way back at the FOB. 

 

For me, the biggest reason for comms at many of these AO's is to facilitate a quick reunion after respawn. Once together, I honsetly tell my guys to prioritize word of mouth communication over comms unless we are separated. So while I may opt for a decently powered whip, it's not under constant use. Simply when I need it.

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