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Old 06-16-2008, 11:20 AM   #43
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As a radio tech, I must put in my couple o' pennies.....

A radio wave is an electro-magnetic pulse radiating from an antenna and a ground plane. The antenna, as you all know, is the wire you see, the ground plane is the vehicle on which it is mounted. Half of the wave comes from each side. These "sides" in a perfect world are equal, however they are not. The difference between them is what is called, "Standing Wave Ratio", or SWR.

If the antenna is "matched to the vehicle" perfectly, your SWR will be 1 (one).
If not, it will be higher than 1. To match your antenna, a tech must use a Field Strength Meter in line with the antenna lead to your radio. Matching is done by either shortening or lengthing your antenna based on what the meter says. If the SWR is higher on channel 40 than channel one, then the antenna must be shortened, if higher on then lengthing is in order. Opitimumly when you key-up the meter should not move or stay at 1, but that will never happen. However, you can get really close!!

The ground plane is the place where the antenna is put on the vehicle...in that you want as much metal under it as possible as well as much height as you can. So the center of the roof is the best place to go, either mag or permanent mount. Another great place it on the hood where it closes next to the driver side split. (If you chose this mount use a bracket for the antenna and be real careful with the coax!!) Because the radio is grounded to the vehicle, your antenna will be grounded as well through your coax making where ever you mount a good plane, but be sure to get your height also. The worst place to put your mount is on the rear bumper...because now your vehicle blocks the wave from going forward. Mirror mounts work because of the heighths involved.

Which ever way you want to go, get your matched by a qualified tech...many truck stops have someone that can for a small fee get set-up in good time.

Hope this helps....

Dan W.
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Old 06-16-2008, 01:46 PM   #44
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Talking

Can't stop smiling to myself, thinking about the CB days. it swept the nation faster than Hoola-hoops, and introduced a whole new jargon.

Ever see Smokey & The Bandit? "Come-on back at me, Bandit" "That's a big ten-four, good buddy!"



It was Big Fun!
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:06 PM   #45
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Yeah...I sold one to every wannabe "bucket-mouth" this side of the Pacos.....

That's a big ten Roger
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Old 06-16-2008, 11:30 PM   #46
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Oh! Oh! I remember a song, a really sad song, about a little boy talking to some big ole truckers about his life on a CB radio, and them getting together and doing something for him.

Was it called "Teddy Bear" or something like that? I found it: Red Sovine's "Teddy Bear" it is!

When a hobby invades the major media, like having a popular song written about it, it has really hit The Big Time.

We got us a Convoy, unh-huh!
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Old 06-17-2008, 06:05 AM   #47
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Since we are taking a stroll back in time, lets see if anybody remembers this;
When I started in radios at age 6 you had to register with the goverment have a call sign, ours was KG 6996
The first radio I used was called Sonar, Base radio, had 6 channels and used letters instead of numbers
The next was a Golden Eagle, 23 channels, this set had one recieve unit and one transmit unit and you had to use a built in tune button to match the 2 so you could talk, if you did not you would be listening on one channel and talking on another.
Antenna used was called a beam antenna and had to be on a rotor and you had to turn it to the direction you wanted to talk and listen. This type antenna is still in use today by many and is next to or one of the oldest antenna designs that I know of,the other antenna most commonly used for moble was the steal wip.
I am sure there may be other things that I just dont remember at this time, thanks to old age "UG"

Sarge
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Old 06-18-2008, 10:39 AM   #48
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I think that it would be great if we could all agree on channel 14 as our "Airstream" channel. I just returned from a 1500 mile trip and I never heard - or could I raise - any Airstreams on 14. For the record, 14 is also a very quiet channel with respect to other traffic.
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Old 10-01-2008, 08:57 PM   #49
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About "Ground Planes"

The reason a mobile antenna needs a ground plane is because mobile antennas are 1/4 wave whip antennas, although most are loaded to make them shorter because a true 1/4 wave antenna at 72 MHZ is 9 Ft long..... remember the big whips? Anyway, to be a good load to the transmitter, it needs to be a half wave length antenna, and the ground plane formed by the vehicle is the other 1/4 wave length, which when together, form a 1/2 wavelength, or diapole antenna. THAT is why the antenna needs to be adjusted for minimum SWR....not all vehicles/ground planes are the same.

Antennas can be electrically shortened (loaded) to make them smaller by installing inductance (a coil) in series in the antenna, or capacitance in parrallel with the antenna. Capacitance is normally used with the very short CB antennas, or both Capacitance and inductance.

Base station antennas, on the other hand, are diapole antennas out of the box. If you look at them, they will always have a top section, and a bottom section. Even the "beam" antennas are diapoles at the driven element, with longer reflector elements at the rear, and sorter director elements at the front.

Basically speaking, the shorter the physical length of the antenna from 1/4 wavelength, the worse the performance.

Sorry for the long post, I tend to ramble on sometimes.
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Old 10-01-2008, 11:39 PM   #50
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Send a message via AIM to hamradio
12. AMATEUR RADIO


This is another valuable group who assists in numerous ways


at the rally. If you are a “Ham Operator”, let this group know of your


interest.
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Hi all!

The Ham radio national simplex frequency is 146.520! I suggest that frequency for any Airstream traffic.

73 Peter VE7REZ
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Old 10-08-2008, 12:21 AM   #51
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Cracker View Post
I think that it would be great if we could all agree on channel 14 as our "Airstream" channel. I just returned from a 1500 mile trip and I never heard - or could I raise - any Airstreams on 14. For the record, 14 is also a very quiet channel with respect to other traffic.
Channel 14 is the Wally Club channel, and channel 24 is it's backup if channel 14 gets busy. Since many (if not most) Airstream owners are not in the Wally Club they may not know we hang out on 14 / 24.
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Old 10-08-2008, 07:31 AM   #52
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While it is all well and good for Airstreamers to have a special channel while traveling together, and while at large ralleys, the fact remains that individual travelers will be on channel 19 to monitor road/traffic conditions.

I know that's what I do.
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Old 09-28-2011, 07:58 PM   #53
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My radio came with a telescoping antenna that is probably not very efficient. I am thinking about upgrading to a Wilson 500 mag. mount.

Wilson is a great antenna. I have the wilson 5000 magnetic base antenna. Wilson also also makes a Mini Wilson magnetic, the whip is only about 1/3 the length of the regular antenna.
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