austin spectra repair

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rvawatch

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so I have a used austin spectra antenna. i was taking a look at it today and realized that the fragile metal tab connector had hairline cracks running through it. It was just a matter of time before it broke off. I went ahead and took apart most of the antenna that I could.. took the spring coil off, the rubber washers, the metal screw ring.

4 questions:

1. what are your opinions on soldering on some sort of new connector? Perhaps I could do something instead of the little tab that breaks off for people. I'm thinking copper, although the original piece was silver colored.

2. does anyone know what is underneath/ how to remove the section of the antenna that is inside of the spring coil? It seems pretty flimsy and since I have it all apart I figured I might as well make sure everythings good in there.

3. Anyone know if the little white piece that holds the metal tab can be easily removed?

4. is there somewhere to buy parts for this antenna?

I attached a generic pic to jog some peoples memory.. but if I solder on a new piece, etc, I will take pics and maybe write up a how to.

Thanks all
 

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jon_k

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I'd love to see pics of this disassembled as far as you have it.

I always thought soldering a new tab wouldn't be hard at all. With no disassembly required. Unsure why you took spring and everything off of it.

The question is sourcing the metal piece, would it be the same impedance?
 

mrsvensven

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After being on my roof for a while, My spectra came apart and the base needed to be reconstructed. I remember having the little white plastic piece out, but the wire to the little spring runs through the middle and will break if removed. I replaced the spring with a bit of solder. I'm sure it does not have an ideal impedance, but my scanner does not mind.
 

rvawatch

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i took the spring off just for the heck of it since i was already taking it apart. i was curious how it went together.

as far as the metal tab... i ended up going to my friends house to seek his idea. his goes by "simplier is better" so i figd he might have a good idea before i go crazy. we used a wire brush to smooth out the solder surface, made it all shiny, then put a drop of solder and he told me to put it back together. it works fine. all the metal tab did was complete the connection, which is the exact same thing the solder does.
 

af5rn

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For the price they charge for that piece of junk, I know they could afford to come up with a better, less complicated, more sturdy, less fragile base system for it. A spring loaded pin like in the Maxrad's would be nice.

I'm betting that at least three out of every four people who buy that antenna screw it up the first time they screw it down to their mount. The majority of them have no idea that they screwed it up, and just tell everyone they know that the Austin Spectra sucks. Consequently, the Antenna gets a really bad reputation and few people buy it. If they just improved that base, people wouldn't break it, people would be relatively happy with it, and sales would significantly improve. I guess that makes too much sense though.
 

KC0QNB

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Gothenburg, NE
For the price they charge for that piece of junk, I know they could afford to come up with a better, less complicated, more sturdy, less fragile base system for it. A spring loaded pin like in the Maxrad's would be nice.

I'm betting that at least three out of every four people who buy that antenna screw it up the first time they screw it down to their mount. The majority of them have no idea that they screwed it up, and just tell everyone they know that the Austin Spectra sucks. Consequently, the Antenna gets a really bad reputation and few people buy it. If they just improved that base, people wouldn't break it, people would be relatively happy with it, and sales would significantly improve. I guess that makes too much sense though.
What he said, just get a better antenna problem solved, I still don't understand. af5rn knows what I mean.
 

jon_k

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Fort Worth, Republic of Texas
For the price they charge for that piece of junk, I know they could afford to come up with a better, less complicated, more sturdy, less fragile base system for it. A spring loaded pin like in the Maxrad's would be nice.

I'm betting that at least three out of every four people who buy that antenna screw it up the first time they screw it down to their mount. The majority of them have no idea that they screwed it up, and just tell everyone they know that the Austin Spectra sucks. Consequently, the Antenna gets a really bad reputation and few people buy it. If they just improved that base, people wouldn't break it, people would be relatively happy with it, and sales would significantly improve. I guess that makes too much sense though.
If mine ever breaks I plan to try to fabricate some sort of metal tab in the shape of

|_| so it's got more support on the other side, verses the _| shaped tab that's stock. I agree though, many mounts have a push-down connection in the center there. I'm not sure why the Spectra has such a cheaply made tab.

The antenna performs fairly well other then that.

I'm curious of the SWR for transmit on 2m/70cm though. Anyone test this? I haven't had a chance to yet. It's probably horrible but I'd like to test it anyway.
 
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