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Old 05-17-2017, 5:48 PM
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Unhappy 2017 Tahoe PPV - Lowest Profile UHF Antenna

Hello all,

Well, Chevy did me a disservice with the 2015+ Tahoe PPV. On the 2007-2014, the raised "rails" in the sheet metal on the roof were staggered so that the center line was flat. On the 2017, one of the "rails" runs right down the center line of the roof. I was planning on mounting a covert little UHF puck antenna back there, but since I can't stand things that aren't centered, and the mounting surface is elevated in the middle, that won't work.

I'm trying to find some other ideas for an antenna that is as low profile as possible, to mount 3/4 of the way back on the roof. It can't really be any wider than a Laird Phantom. In fact, I would just use a phantom, but I wanted to keep it shorter than 3" and their UHF options aren't quite as short as the 800 mhz versions.

I am investigating factory On-Star replacement antennas with UHF, but so far I can't find one that keeps the factory GPS/On-Star connection while adding UHF.

Any ideas? Thanks everyone!
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Old 05-17-2017, 8:37 PM
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Laird Phantom Elite centered on the rib. its barely 3 1/2 tall other than that .. Not much, also all 15+ tahoes have the center ribs not only the PPV. https://www.talleycom.com/images/pdf/ANXETRA4703.pdf

Last edited by FFPM571; 05-17-2017 at 9:57 PM..
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Old 05-17-2017, 8:48 PM
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The Larsen LP450NMO are 1.5 inches high, but 4.5 inches in diameter, so fitting it in between ribs would need to be checked.

These really low profile antennas come at a cost. When you try and stuff a vertical antenna that needs to be around 6 inches tall into a 1.5 inch tall patch, it doesn't work as well.

As for the concerns about looks, have you considered mounting two 1/4 wave antennas on each side, and just using one? A simple 6 inch tall 1/4 wave antenna will work better than a 1.5" tall antenna.
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Old 05-19-2017, 2:29 PM
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Originally Posted by FFPM571 View Post
Laird Phantom Elite centered on the rib. its barely 3 1/2 tall other than that .. Not much, also all 15+ tahoes have the center ribs not only the PPV. https://www.talleycom.com/images/pdf/ANXETRA4703.pdf
I like the Laird Phantom Elite - what if I was to mount it up front on a L-bracket, like this:

http://i.imgur.com/OPNqfj2.jpg

Would that give it enough of a ground plane, assuming the bracket is screwed into the quarter panel?

I know the roof is obviously the most ideal spot, but with that rail down the middle, so another thing I'm considering is a "puck" antenna, but painted silver to match the car and mounted at about the b-pillar, where the ridge in the roof stops. That might look a bit goofy though, with an antenna so far forward on an otherwise slick roof.
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Old 06-03-2017, 3:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by envoy_to_the_stars View Post
I like the Laird Phantom Elite - what if I was to mount it up front on a L-bracket, like this:

http://i.imgur.com/OPNqfj2.jpg

Would that give it enough of a ground plane, assuming the bracket is screwed into the quarter panel?

I know the roof is obviously the most ideal spot, but with that rail down the middle, so another thing I'm considering is a "puck" antenna, but painted silver to match the car and mounted at about the b-pillar, where the ridge in the roof stops. That might look a bit goofy though, with an antenna so far forward on an otherwise slick roof.
How much power are you going to be running through it/what type of radio? I've seen that done before, but the L-Brackets aren't quite as low profile as the roof would be even with it being off center. I can appreciate your feelings on that. My OCD gets me on things like that every time LOL.
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Old 06-03-2017, 4:16 PM
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Originally Posted by KM4WLV View Post
How much power are you going to be running through it/what type of radio? I've seen that done before, but the L-Brackets aren't quite as low profile as the roof would be even with it being off center. I can appreciate your feelings on that. My OCD gets me on things like that every time LOL.
It's a Motorola XTL2500, UHF. 45 watt I believe.

I suppose I could get a "hockey puck" antenna on the roof and paint it it silver like the car, farther up front where the roof is flat...but that's by the B pillar which is a pretty visible spot.
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Old 06-03-2017, 5:40 PM
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Panorama Sharkee. You loose the functionality of the Sirius but retain GPS and cellular. Also gain wifi (2.4/5 GHz). It'll fit in place of the OEM on star antenna. Looks more like the antenna that goes to the GMT900 models and not the newer KM2's but most will just see it as the OEM anyway. The one on my 2013 Sierra is mounted above the rear dome…only one person has ever called me out on it not being an OEM antenna.


Mine has the triband whip on it but there are dual band and single band whips available (including nitol options).


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Old 06-05-2017, 10:38 AM
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Originally Posted by KM4WLV View Post
How much power are you going to be running through it/what type of radio? I've seen that done before, but the L-Brackets aren't quite as low profile as the roof would be even with it being off center. I can appreciate your feelings on that. My OCD gets me on things like that every time LOL.
My thought regarding the L-Bracket is that it'd be a black antenna mounted on a black panel, and while it is 3" long, it doesn't protrude from the roof so it wouldn't be that conspicuous. I just hate random "lumps" on the roof...especially off-center lumps.



MCore25 - is the Panorama Sharkee you're referring to up on the front of your roof, or are you referring to the one on the back of your roof?
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Old 06-05-2017, 1:02 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by envoy_to_the_stars View Post
My thought regarding the L-Bracket is that it'd be a black antenna mounted on a black panel, and while it is 3" long, it doesn't protrude from the roof so it wouldn't be that conspicuous. I just hate random "lumps" on the roof...especially off-center lumps.



MCore25 - is the Panorama Sharkee you're referring to up on the front of your roof, or are you referring to the one on the back of your roof?
It is the one on the rear. The front is the OEM OnStar antenna (which I believe uses a 3/4" hole.
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Old 06-06-2017, 5:01 PM
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Originally Posted by mmckenna View Post
As for the concerns about looks, have you considered mounting two 1/4 wave antennas on each side, and just using one? A simple 6 inch tall 1/4 wave antenna will work better than a 1.5" tall antenna.
It's a great idea, but I'll be parking in a garage with very limited overhead space. a Phantom will fit, but a 6" 1/4 wave won't.

What if I hid a 1/4 wave behind the D-Pillar, above the brake lights? It has a plastic cover. Though that might not be great for 360 degree field...
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Old 06-06-2017, 5:29 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by envoy_to_the_stars View Post
It's a great idea, but I'll be parking in a garage with very limited overhead space. a Phantom will fit, but a 6" 1/4 wave won't.



What if I hid a 1/4 wave behind the D-Pillar, above the brake lights? It has a plastic cover. Though that might not be great for 360 degree field...


Nitol whip…


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Old 06-07-2017, 11:23 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by envoy_to_the_stars View Post
It's a great idea, but I'll be parking in a garage with very limited overhead space. a Phantom will fit, but a 6" 1/4 wave won't.

What if I hid a 1/4 wave behind the D-Pillar, above the brake lights? It has a plastic cover. Though that might not be great for 360 degree field...
No, because having it right up against the sheet metal like that is going to reflect most of the signal back into the radio. Not a good plan.

Are you sure your vehicle will fit in the garage, but a 6" whip is really a showstopper? That sounds a bit extreme to me.

The flexible whip might be your best choice. Anything else is going to be a compromise or a very poor performer.
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