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Military Fold-up VHF Low Band Discone

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902

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Maybe 25 years ago I went to a hamfest and bought a big, green antenna in an olive drab pouch. Sadly, it was one of the things that my wife judged would not be worthy of making the trip from NJ to our new misadventures in the Midwest (along with a Collins S-Line power supply and other things...). I've been going nuts trying to find an AN designation for such a beast, but it's been no joy through the search engines.

So, have any of you guys ever seen (and better yet, can tell me the designation for) one?

This thing:
  • Was in a green canvas pouch that was about 4 ft. long with a shoulder strap
  • Had flat (painted, not flat-shaped, they were round) green elements with like a bungee cord running through them so they could be pulled loose and unfolded, but quickly put together
  • Had plastic bumpers on the ends of the elements that looked like small black bulbs
  • Had a hat section with bungee corded elements that could be pulled out and folded down to fit in the bag - when it was set up, the elements angled up a little.
  • Had a thumb-screw captive coupling to a mast.
  • Pretty big when assembled, but light weight.
  • Didn't seem to be a permanent type antenna.
  • Loaded up great from 33-54 MHz and everywhere in between.
  • Was beefy, not dinky like you'd find hanging on the rack in Radio Shack or one of the ham stores.

It was made way before any of the interoperability bandits were making things and I didn't spend too much for it at the hamfest. Please tell me I wasn't dreaming or making this up! I've seen the smaller discone with the detachable hat section and this isn't it, but it could be a big brother to it. I just can't seem to come across one, although the Harris RF-9072 looks close, except mine had no vertical radiator sticking up from the top.
 

prcguy

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Yes, this is another topic for prcguy. I pulled out an AS-3886 Discone that was hiding in my garage rafters and it sounds like what the OP was asking about. Its a 30 to at least 88MHz Discone that probably goes past 200MHz on the top end.

Its got segmented elements held together with SS cable under spring tension and has plastic tear drop eye protectors on the end of each element. When assembled the top disc elements tilt slightly upward a few degrees from horizontal.

This antenna works great on 6m and throughout the VHF low band but will not make it down to 10m, not even the upper FM portion due to a rapid cutoff at 30MHz. This antenna is also a PIA to deal with, especially trying to stuff it back into the bag with all the elements flopping around and not cooperating. No wonder I only tested it once and stashed it away in the rafters.
prcguy

This is a Topic for PRCGuy for sure, I am sure he will chime in.
 

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902

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WOW! You pegged it!!!

Yes, this is another topic for prcguy. I pulled out an AS-3886 Discone that was hiding in my garage rafters and it sounds like what the OP was asking about. Its a 30 to at least 88MHz Discone that probably goes past 200MHz on the top end.

Its got segmented elements held together with SS cable under spring tension and has plastic tear drop eye protectors on the end of each element. When assembled the top disc elements tilt slightly upward a few degrees from horizontal.

This antenna works great on 6m and throughout the VHF low band but will not make it down to 10m, not even the upper FM portion due to a rapid cutoff at 30MHz. This antenna is also a PIA to deal with, especially trying to stuff it back into the bag with all the elements flopping around and not cooperating. No wonder I only tested it once and stashed it away in the rafters.
prcguy
THAT'S IT!!!!!! YOU DA MAN!!!!! Thank you!!!!!

PM me if you want to make some space in your garage :cool:
 

902

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I used to have that thing up on my roof when I lived in NJ (I was a popular guy in the neighborhood) and had it hooked up to an Icom R-7000 with an Ameco tunable preamp that did 1.8 - 54 MHz. I would be able to pick up the little towns in Northwestern NJ that were still on 39 and 45 MHz. I never did try it down to 10 meters, or even on the 33 MHz fire sub-band, and wasn't into 6 meters that deeply at the time. Funny because I picked a Comet 6 meter antenna for the 52.525 RCA box I built. I think the neighbors got to me, or I might have wanted some imaginary gain (it looked like a really skinny 5/8 over a 5/8). Thank you, PRCGUY!
 

radioman2001

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I picked up a complete kit brand new unopened 20 years ago for about $100.00 at a Army Surplus store where my son was getting his CAP uniforms. I use the masts for Dayton each year to hold my UHF Yagi, and I never assembled the Discone. I'll save that for when I move South, and I would love to find a SINGARS radio like the ones I used to use years ago to go with it.
 

902

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Thank you, prcguy.

I still want one of those things. It always seems I go into my garage and find all the junk I don't need and between moving a few times, it all follows along with me, and each time I end up losing something I really played with.

I haven't done much low band listening from down south. I used to do it heavily in the Midwest. Heard a lot of National Guard training on those frequencies out there, but just haven't tried here.

Let me see what they want for it...

Never mind.

OUCH!!! Where's my wife?!
 
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