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Old 05-03-2015, 05:22 PM   #1
Rivet Master
2007 25' Safari FB SE
Suburbia , Sunny So Cal
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AM radio antenna advice

So as a boondocker I need really good AM radio reception.

Anyone have any suggestions for a good AM radio antenna?

I'd rather be boon docking in the desert.

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Old 05-03-2015, 05:40 PM   #2
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Biloxi , Mississippi
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Is there a difference between AM and FM antenna? Mine picks up both ok.

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Old 05-03-2015, 05:41 PM   #3
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AM? I didn't realize that still existed.
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Old 05-03-2015, 05:51 PM   #4
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Here is one but I would call these guy's as they helped me get a great tv antenna for my house.
Pixel AFHD-4 AM/FM Outdoor High Definition Radio Antenna (AFHD-4) from Solid Signal Radio Antennas&sku=5502800142
The higher your expectations the fewer your options.
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Old 05-03-2015, 05:52 PM   #5
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We find ourselves in areas that FM is a rare opportunity. AM Radio can be spotty with the FACTORY short antenna. That is one luxury off the grid is having several good AM radio stations to listen to.

I took the factory antenna off and bought a longer whip antenna. The surprise is the threading can be DIFFERENT. Take yours into the auto parts shop to compare, but the packages are usually plastic sealed. Ask them what they would recommend. Probably the most expensive one on the rack.

What was a problem for us is we park the trailer in our garage and the garage door would scrape and bend the antenna. That was the only problem encountered.

I have a 2014 today, and debating on how to get around the taller antenna. I might have to figure out a way to tie the antenna and pull it down when parked at home. Once I have that worked out, the factory antenna is coming off. It is for local city use.

I am sure someone can suggest an antenna brand that mounts on the side, or top, that can catch lots of AM signals, day or night. No matter... find a comparable taller antenna and enjoy those stations 1000 miles from your campsite.

For some years now, the most powerful AM stations are in Spanish. I am getting to like the music but do not understand a word being said. Much like the Navajo stations traveling across Arizona. I do not understand the language, and the music seems to be all the same song with commercials in between.
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Old 05-04-2015, 11:25 AM   #6
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I found if I run a ground wire from the trailer too a rod 3 foot long driven into the soil almost doubles the AM stations I can pull in.. And it makes them much clearer.

As far as buying a good antenna,, good luck.. Most are China junk and hardly work out of the package.. I tried 3 brands before I got one that worked right.. Its mount is plastic and weak but still holding on..
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Old 05-04-2015, 11:57 AM   #7
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Here is a 50" antenna which is very similar to the ones used on the Airstreams of the 60's and 70's. Side mount, split ball unit which can be adjusted to the angle of the skin where you mount it. The 50" length is what you need for good AM reception.

Metra Electronics VDP/Antenna 44-US01R at
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Old 05-04-2015, 01:43 PM   #8
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The best AM antenna IMHO is a three foot long piece of bare copper wire. Yup...old school baby. Nothing very thick, but stretch a piece out between two objects and plug that baby in. You would be amazed at the stations you can get. Amplitude modulation. Good ol' days of radio!
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Old 05-04-2015, 01:45 PM   #9
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Hot Springs , Arkansas
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Posts: 556 has a couple of options that you may like. They both work on the principle of inductive coupling and work great to pull in low power AM. AM propagation is best at night and better yet at night in the winter. It all has to do with shielding from the Sun. Anyhow, One device is a "Terk" AM Antenna. It is a coil of copper wire with a capacitor that is moved by you to closely match the frequency you are trying to tune in. It is directional, meaning that at max signal strength/ best reception the antenna will be perpendicular to the location of the station. You have to fiddle with it, but it is fun, cheap, and works extremely well. Its about 6 in in diameter and weighs little.
The other option is a ferrite bar ( same as the internal antenna ) set up that has a remote bar about the size of a snickers, coupled with a coax cable to an identical bar on the receiver end. Just place it in proximity to your radio.
If you are looking for a good AM radio the GE Supertuner 3 works well to pull in Distant Stations (DX) on its own.
But take a look at They are a small company that loves AM / talk radio. Ive made several purchases from them and all have been superb.
Some "Blowtorch" stations that are easy to dig out are WSM 650 AM, Nashville (Grand Old Opry on Friday night, and KMOX AM 1120, St Louis (CBS Affilliate, Johnny Rabbit and "Route 66" on Sat night. On a good night on the route, you can hear that station all the way to the Grand Canyon.
Good Luck!
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Old 05-13-2015, 05:14 AM   #10
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AM radio antenna advice

Originally Posted by AWCHIEF View Post
Is there a difference between AM and FM antenna? Mine picks up both ok.

FM at 31"

AM at the longest length possible.

Installed location will dictate, but extending a telescopic antenna to 31" covers the most likely possibilities.

Today's car radios have crappy AM reception. The receiver is almost as important as the antenna system. TT installations may not be any better, but they could be given space available.
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Old 05-13-2015, 07:15 AM   #11
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Ever since we got XM, I've not tuned the radio to AM or FM. It's great to choose your favorite station, and then be able to listen to it any where you go, and also be able to get news any time you want it.

I know, I'm spoiled.


"To compel a man to subsidize with his taxes the propagation of ideas which he disbelieves and abhors is sinful and tyrannical."-- Thomas Jefferson
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