Diamond X30 Antenna Field Mounting Options

cactusjk

Explorer
I am looking for a good way to mount a Diamond X30 UHF/VHF antenna for field use with my HT. I would like a portable solution such as a tripod, etc. Recommendations greatly appreciated!
 

gary in ohio

Explorer
what kind of environment? How high you need it up in the air? Will you have a vehicle with you when you use it?
There are a number of mast to get an antenna up higher. You can use a guyed mast or a drive on system. How compact does the mast system need to be?
I have a military mast set, duffle bag and will allow me to put up a guyed antenna 30ft into air but has a bit of weight for backpacking.
 

cactusjk

Explorer
I prefer no guy lines. Just want to get the X30 up in the air at least as high as a vehicle mount. I would like to fold it all up and pack in my FJ.


what kind of environment? How high you need it up in the air? Will you have a vehicle with you when you use it?
There are a number of mast to get an antenna up higher. You can use a guyed mast or a drive on system. How compact does the mast system need to be?
I have a military mast set, duffle bag and will allow me to put up a guyed antenna 30ft into air but has a bit of weight for backpacking.
 

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gary in ohio

Explorer
I would look at some of the fiberglass or aluminum mast section popular (and cheap) that many ham groups are using. Use 2 or 3 section on and secure it to the spare tire mount and you should be good. www.tmastco.com/ sells them, They can be found on ebay but sometimes shipping kills the deal. Something similar to this http://www.ebay.com/itm/12-Military-Fiberglass-Mast-Poles-Great-Antenna-WOW-/170714063424?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27bf59e240 or http://www.ebay.com/itm/12-ea-4-ft-Rib-Aluminum-Military-Antenna-Mast-Support-Poles-NEW-/380383629905?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5890a19251

You can usually find them and not have to pay shipping at local hamfest.
 

cactusjk

Explorer
Thanks for the info! I would still like some type of tripod or self standing mount to go with them assuming I keep it at a reasonable height.


I would look at some of the fiberglass or aluminum mast section popular (and cheap) that many ham groups are using. Use 2 or 3 section on and secure it to the spare tire mount and you should be good. www.tmastco.com/ sells them, They can be found on ebay but sometimes shipping kills the deal. Something similar to this http://www.ebay.com/itm/12-Military-Fiberglass-Mast-Poles-Great-Antenna-WOW-/170714063424?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item27bf59e240 or http://www.ebay.com/itm/12-ea-4-ft-Rib-Aluminum-Military-Antenna-Mast-Support-Poles-NEW-/380383629905?pt=LH_DefaultDomain_0&hash=item5890a19251

You can usually find them and not have to pay shipping at local hamfest.
 

gary in ohio

Explorer
Even with a tripod (which you can get for the military mast) Your only going to get 30ft max before your gong to need guys. Your tripod is going to need a lot of width or weight to keep your mast upright. 20ft of mast 6-8ft of antenna you have a lot of torque with the lightest wind blowing. If you can live with 10-15ft then a simple radio shack tripoid and 10ft of mast is doable. You can go with the military mast or a couple of the 5ft RS mast. Stake it to the ground and your good.
 

1911

Expedition Leader
Buddipole makes real nice 8' and 16' masts on tripods that pack down amazingly small, but they're pretty spendy. I have an 8' one and have never guyed it, though I always weight the bottom or secure the bottom with bungee cords.

Buddipole Tripod

16' mast
 

cactusjk

Explorer
That is exactly what I am looking for. Just need to figure out if I go with just the tripod how to interface the X30 onto a few mast sections.


Buddipole makes real nice 8' and 16' masts on tripods that pack down amazingly small, but they're pretty spendy. I have an 8' one and have never guyed it, though I always weight the bottom or secure the bottom with bungee cords.

Buddipole Tripod

16' mast
 

xtatik

Explorer
Putting an FM antenna up a few feet isn't going to gain you very much. Unless you are trying to get above some very near field obstructions like a bunch of 20' tall trucks or granite boulders and such, it's hardly worth the effort. The antenna's pattern characteristics will not change (beneficially) at all above full-wave height (about 6 ft. above conductive ground)
It's a line of sight affair, and unless that 20 or 30 feet gains you a better direct shot at a repeater or other receiving station, I wouldn't bother.
If you're down in a valley and you can see the repeater on a nearby mountaintop you're going to hit it whether your antenna is at 5 ft. or 50 ft. If you're on the mountaintop at 5000' you'll hit everything within sight whether the antenna is at 5005 ft. or 5050 ft. It's an FM antenna, and it doesn't need to be elevated like an HF antenna.
 

cactusjk

Explorer
Good advice. So an X30 is no better than a short rubber antenna?








Putting an FM antenna up a few feet isn't going to gain you very much. Unless you are trying to get above some very near field obstructions like a bunch of 20' tall trucks or granite boulders and such, it's hardly worth the effort. The antenna's pattern characteristics will not change (beneficially) at all above full-wave height (about 6 ft. above conductive ground)
It's a line of sight affair, and unless that 20 or 30 feet gains you a better direct shot at a repeater or other receiving station, I wouldn't bother.
If you're down in a valley and you can see the repeater on a nearby mountaintop you're going to hit it whether your antenna is at 5 ft. or 50 ft. If you're on the mountaintop at 5000' you'll hit everything within sight whether the antenna is at 5005 ft. or 5050 ft. It's an FM antenna, and it doesn't need to be elevated like an HF antenna.
 

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ocean_explorer

New member
The short rubber whip antenna that came with your HT typically has a negative gain, probably somewhere in the vicinity of -5dB when compared to a full size 1/4 wave whip. The X30 has a published gain figure of 3.0dB(144MHz) and 5.5dB(430MHz). So to answer your question, the X30 offers a considerable improvement over the rubber antenna.
As Randy W pointed out above, mounting the antenna about six feet or so above a good conductive ground is a good place to start. There are many ways to get the base of the antenna six feet up as suggested in some of the the posts above.
 

xtatik

Explorer
Good advice. So an X30 is no better than a short rubber antenna?
Um...no. As has already been pointed out, gain figures also need to be considered. The base station FM antenna being discussed here will see significant increases in gain due to its being a full-sized (non-trap, unloaded) design. My points were being made toward the performance gains in mounting it higher than one wavelength, which is approx. 6 feet in this case (2 metres). It's an FM antenna and it doesn't give a $#* if it's at 6 feet or 60 feet above ground. If it can see it's target, the signal will make the trip with ample power (given: 1w/mile).
The only benefit when raising an FM antenna would be when you are having to overcome significant near-field obstructions or when trying to broaden the antennas view of the horizon. This is rarely ever increased when moving the antenna in such small increments...such as from 6 feet to 60 feet. This is why broad service repeaters are more commonly placed on mountaintops rather than on backyard towers.
 
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