antenna question

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patrolman123

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Apr 14, 2004
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Baltimore, Maryland
Ok scanner people I have got a antenna question for you. I have a windshield antenna from Radio Shack installed in my truck. It is mounted to the front windshield. I have been noticing that reception is well below average. Living and driving just outside of Baltimore I monitor all surronding county fire dispatch channels. I have no trouble picking up Harford county fire dispatch but I can hardly pick up nothing on the Baltimore city fire dispatch channel. Baltimore county fire dispatch channel comes in just ok. Can anyone provide me with some suggestions.
 

ka3jjz

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Jul 22, 2002
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Bowie, Md.
You're going to have to be more specific about which on-glass antenna - but one thing that isn't well documented anywhere that I know of is that metallic tinting can seriously detune some on glass antennas. I know a couple of hams that found this out the hard way

73 Mike
 

SkyPager

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Apr 21, 2004
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182
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Arnold, MD
I would guess that if it has been there for any length of time, water (moisture) has seeped under the sticky mounting tape. Plus the torque from the wind load may have loosened something. I would remove the antenna, clean up the crud, if any, underneath and remount it.

If you are worried about holes in the vehicle, Comet makes nice window lip mounts as well as no-hole trunk lip mounts. http://www.cometantenna.com/products.php?CatID=1&famID=9&childID=14

Window mount
http://www.universal-radio.com/catalog/hamantm/3171.html

You will need to purchase a separate antenna for the mount.
 

ocguard

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Nov 9, 2002
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PA/MD
I was always unhappy with this particular antenna as well. Years ago when the BC780 first came out, I HAD to have it. I bought it, and when it came in, I went to RS and bought the same antenna. Got it all installed and when it came to monitoring, I couldn't head A THING! Not even Baltimore County's 800mhz (I lived in Perry Hall at the time). Switched to RS's mag mount. It's beastly and cumbersome, but it can hear ANYTHING.
 

troymail

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Dec 19, 2002
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Supply (Lockwood Inlet area), NC
I tried the through the glass antenna before - as soon as I installed it and tried it, I never used it again... total waste of money as far as I was concerned.

As an aside, the best thing I ever had was a little 800Mhz - short stubbie little low-profile silver thing like you'd see on the back of a police vehicle-- I purchased in at FL Anderson (fire/emergency supply store near Raven Stadium) ... the downside was I had to drill a hold in the top of my truck but the install went really well and the reception was great.
 

ResQguy

Meh
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I tried the through the glass antenna before - as soon as I installed it and tried it, I never used it again... total waste of money as far as I was concerned.

As an aside, the best thing I ever had was a little 800Mhz - short stubbie little low-profile silver thing like you'd see on the back of a police vehicle-- I purchased in at FL Anderson (fire/emergency supply store near Raven Stadium) ... the downside was I had to drill a hold in the top of my truck but the install went really well and the reception was great.
FL Anderson for an antenna?? Only a few more blocks and you would have made it to Teltronics! :)
 

Anand

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Feb 12, 2008
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Eastern Shore, MD
I run this same antenna on my car, connected to my BCT-8; and short of MSP mobile to base I haven't really run into anything I don't like about its qualities. Living 10 miles east of the Bay Bridge I can pick up AACO TRS "decently"; and from central AACO (and farther north) I can pick up Baltimore Co. TRS.

Depending on the day I've even picked up the 453.575 of the Bay Bridge MTAP as far West as Columbia.

The one thing that REALLY bothers this antenna is being within ~1,000ft of cell towers. I have heard some people that have issues with this antenna grounding it (how, I'm not exactly sure), but I'm quite pleased with it. For reference its mounted in the upper passenger side corner of my windshield.
 
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