Austin Spectra Antenna

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tomasG

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On the Austin Spectra Antenna is the NMO mount supposed to have a spring loaded tab like every other NMO I have every seen, or does it just have a little rectangle?
 

tomasG

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246 views on this post and not a single answer. At least one of you could have helped me save my money. Yes, it is supposed to have a spring like a typical NMO antenna.

It's performance on 800 is terrible. My Radio Shack mag mount is better than the Austin Spectra. If only I could find a way to make it a NMO mount...

I also found using a service monitor with sweep and the vertical whip fromn a Hustler 6BTV 80 meter coil nthat low band can load up 1:1. I tuned it for 43MHz and CHP kicks butt now. The antenna wasn't bad before. Now it feakin' awesome.
 

KJ6HCB

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What are you talking about?

Its "supposed" to? No its not - it has a tab. Thats how its designed by Austin, and how its sold, and used.

A NMO mount is a standardized term for a thru metal hole mount antenna with a 3/4" hole used and a certain O.D. for antennas to screw on. It has nothing to do about how an antenna is made that screws onto it.

I have an Austin Spectra and it receives great 800 Mhz. Sounds like you have an issue elsewhere.
 

prcguy

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Am I reading you added another whip to the Austin Spectra to tune it to 43MHz? If so the Spectra comes tuned to about 33MHz from the factory and you cut it shorter for 43MHz.

I did a bunch of measurements on an Austin Spectra and when tuned to 33MHz its about 20dB down in reception at 43MHz. 20dB = 100X and that's a huge drop in signal.
prcguy



246 views on this post and not a single answer. At least one of you could have helped me save my money. Yes, it is supposed to have a spring like a typical NMO antenna.

It's performance on 800 is terrible. My Radio Shack mag mount is better than the Austin Spectra. If only I could find a way to make it a NMO mount...

I also found using a service monitor with sweep and the vertical whip fromn a Hustler 6BTV 80 meter coil nthat low band can load up 1:1. I tuned it for 43MHz and CHP kicks butt now. The antenna wasn't bad before. Now it feakin' awesome.
 

tomasG

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Lancaster, CA
Matt,

Lets keep this polite and focused. Of course I already know that an NMO mount is supposed to have a center spring tab. After buying it from eBay I found the spring loaded tab missing. The seller advised that it wasn't necessary and that he bever noticed it gone l got it from Austin. Full refund. I never bought his BS. damn ebay scammers.

But once again the new antenna drrived and the reception on 800 is crap. I can hear Palmdale and Santa Clarita, Castaic and others very well on the Radio Shack (unmodified). The Austin i crap! Thise aren't loading coils they are traos. By replacing the top whip on the Radio Shack my antenna analyzer reports excellent R/X values at 39.5MHz. All other bands are untouched.

Ity's a cute little antenna but more hype than leadership.

What are you talking about?

Its "supposed" to? No its not - it has a tab. Thats how its designed by Austin, and how its sold, and used.

A NMO mount is a standardized term for a thru metal hole mount antenna with a 3/4" hole used and a certain O.D. for antennas to screw on. It has nothing to do about how an antenna is made that screws onto it.

I have an Austin Spectra and it receives great 800 Mhz. Sounds like you have an issue elsewhere.
 

prcguy

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Some of the coils on the Austin Spectra are not coils but dialectric loading. Basically critical lengths of plastic placed at strageic points to perk up performance at selected frequencies.

I ran a test comparing the Austin Spectra to an Antenna Specialists MON series and a broad band military antenna. Unfortunately the testing only covered 30 to 512MHz since the A/S and mil antenna only went that high and I can post the comparison chart if anyone is interested.
prcguy




Matt,

Lets keep this polite and focused. Of course I already know that an NMO mount is supposed to have a center spring tab. After buying it from eBay I found the spring loaded tab missing. The seller advised that it wasn't necessary and that he bever noticed it gone l got it from Austin. Full refund. I never bought his BS. damn ebay scammers.

But once again the new antenna drrived and the reception on 800 is crap. I can hear Palmdale and Santa Clarita, Castaic and others very well on the Radio Shack (unmodified). The Austin i crap! Thise aren't loading coils they are traos. By replacing the top whip on the Radio Shack my antenna analyzer reports excellent R/X values at 39.5MHz. All other bands are untouched.

Ity's a cute little antenna but more hype than leadership.
 

AuntEnvy

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No answers eh...?

If this is your attitude I can see why.

You start off by complaining that nobody answered then tell someone who did to keep it poilite and focused? Your reply seemed like neither.
 

tomasG

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I certainly wouldn't call it a complaint. It was an observation that even though there has been much discussion on this antenna the question cold not be ansered. I had to answer it By calling Don. But my initial question contained no attitude.

KJ6HCB replied with a less than a tactful answer. Mark wasn't addressing the question and neither are you. This seems to be the standard of the internet and it is sad.

I then compared the antanna to the Radio,Shack and showed that by adding the long whip from the Hustler 6BTV 80 meter element one can tune the Radio Shack down to a 1:1. I closed my statement with the fact that the Radio Shack works far better.

The question was intended to spark discussion and not to solicit your 2 cents worth.


If this is your attitude I can see why.

You start off by complaining that nobody answered then tell someone who did to keep it poilite and focused? Your reply seemed like neither.
 

tomasG

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Joined
Jan 14, 2010
Messages
152
Location
Lancaster, CA
What are you talking about?

Its "supposed" to? No its not - it has a tab. Thats how its designed by Austin, and how its sold, and used.

A NMO mount is a standardized term for a thru metal hole mount antenna with a 3/4" hole used and a certain O.D. for antennas to screw on. It has nothing to do about how an antenna is made that screws onto it.
I'm sorry Matt, but you may have misunderstoof me. The NMO mount is a standard. The mount consists of the through the roof or mag-mount configuration AND the antenna that screws down on the base. A normal NMO antenna has a piece of copper coated spring steel that when screwed down on the mount makes a tension connection. Specific to the Spectra I got on eBay the center spring contact was broken off. It would still work but only if you detached the bottom ring, attach it to the NMO mount, and then screw the antenna back on.

The antenna received from Austin was complete. But its 800MHz performance sucks. I can normally hear the L.A. County 800 system in Catsaic, California Parks and Rec., San Bernardino County System 1 and 8. Thay are noisy as in parts brushing up against one another and just not happening. The Radio Shack multi-band scanner is at least consistent albeit weak.

I think the only solution for decent 800MHz performance is a diplexer that cuts off above 512MHz and a separate 5/8 over 5/8 wave 800MHz gain atenna.
 

KJ6HCB

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San Luis Obispo, CA
2 Things are wrong with your post - that is not a "standard" for NMO. Some have spring loaded (with an actual spring) pins that make contact, others use a flat piece of bent steel as you found, others make direct contact.

There is no "standard" - if there is, please, show me.

Also, no where in your first post do you mention anything about you purchasing a "used" antenna. If you would have bought it new then you would know how they come from the factory, with a bent piece of metal that makes pressure contact. When I got mine I looked at it and thought that it might not make good solid contact, so I bent it down a bit more so there will be more pressure on the NMO mount center conductor.

This is a discussion board, free for all to answer as they please. Seems like you drew a discussion, and just arent pleased with the answers. If that's the case, dont let the door hit you on the way out ;)
 
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