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Scanner / Receiver Antennas For discussion of any type of receiving antenna used by a scanner or receiver base, mobile or handheld.

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Old 01-22-2010, 10:42 AM
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Default HomeBuilt Scanner Antennas

Anyone ever build one of theyre own?
How'd it work out for ya?


Pretty much I'd like to get better reception, However keep in mind that I can't attach anything onto the outside of the house. So Options may be a bit limited for me.


Thanks for your help in advance

Shawn
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:25 AM
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What you can do depends on what bands you're trying to receive.

You aren't going to manage much indoors for 30-50 MHz, for instance.

800 MHz, you can maybe get (but probably not make) a better antenna than the one that came with the scanner.

I have a nice little 800 MHz 5 element yagi (designed for cellphone use) that works nicely indoors, mounted on a suitable wood pole, for instance. Can be had online for about $40
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Old 01-22-2010, 11:30 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nysff View Post
Anyone ever build one of theyre own?
How'd it work out for ya?


Pretty much I'd like to get better reception, However keep in mind that I can't attach anything onto the outside of the house. So Options may be a bit limited for me.


Thanks for your help in advance

Shawn
I have built many scanner antennas of my own, mostly yagi beams, that work very well. You can make them out of pvc pipe and coat hanger wire. Another good beam can be made out of wood and brazing rods. Google "cheap yagi" and you will find a multitude of plans and measurements for free. Some of the best are from Kent Britain, however there are many to chose from. There are even j-pole or discone plans if you prefer. I have also found indoor antenna plans just using regular speaker wire. Good Hunting!
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Old 01-22-2010, 1:36 PM
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Mainly, the freq's around here are 420's-460's
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Old 01-22-2010, 1:42 PM
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Moved to the antenna forum. Be sure to check out the wiki, we have some homebrew antennas there.

Thanks
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Old 01-22-2010, 2:53 PM
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Quote:
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Mainly, the freq's around here are 420's-460's
Martin E. Meserve - K7MEM - VHF/UHF Yagi Antenna Quick Designer

Here is a web sight that has a program that will draw an antenna for you and give you all the measurements for the radials and spacing. Since you are looking for the 420-460 mhz range you can design a beam for the middle of the frequency and the larger the diameter of the radials the more broad band it will be. I have great success with just wire coat hangers. Just put in the freq that you want to design the yagi beam for and print out the picture and measuresments. If you are looking for a good trunking freq beam use the freq of about 860mhz. Small beam with lots of direction. Since they are cheap you could build several and point them where you want to listen or get more involved with a rotator.
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Old 01-23-2010, 12:06 PM
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What is the approximate distance you want to receive from? I have two simple antennas I made for the scanners, and have them mounted at about 10-12' on my tower. I understand you said nothing outside, so you can still use them, just inside the house/apartment. They are a vertical dipole, with the "hot" element up, and housed inside a piece of 1/2" PVC pipe. I did not do anything special for matching purposes, as it is receive, and fed with RG-59 "cable TV" coax. I am able to get stations on VHF from about 100 miles away, and UHF from about 60 miles away. My "UHF" antenna was actually cut for a combination of the UHF P.S. freqs, and MilAir freqs. Probably more resonant at about 300 Mhz. If you are just doing something inside, and don't want all the "Hoopla", just get some small speaker wire, separate it, and connect a piece of coax to it. Use a tack to put it on the wall. It will definitely do better than the telescoping antenna or rubber duck antennas that come with these scanners. I got the idea for my scanner antennas from a couple of older posts here. I have several beam antennas here, but they are for use on my Ham gear. I don't know that you would need a beam, unless you are a long way off from the transmitter, and then these antennas are directional, and you will get best results in one direction, and poor from others unless it is turned. I'll check back and see how you're doing. I can post a photo or two if needed.
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Old 01-23-2010, 2:35 PM
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I have a group of unused cable amplified splitters. Can they be used to with your antenna to boost signals or should i stay away from them.. I have a radio shack cheep antenna on the roof but i want something better. Im trying to build something with scraps around the house.
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