BCD436HP Car Antenna

abbysdad2006

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I'm looking for a car mount antenna for the BCD436HP that I can mount somewhere on the outside of my vehicle and run the cable inside where I can hook the scanner up to it. I'm not sure what I'm looking as far as frequency ranges. Thank you in advance!
 

Ensnared

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abbysdad2006

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I just read that the Larsen antenna is not for CB, is there such a thing of an antenna that can do it all, CB and the other bands on the BCD436HP?
 

maxxkatt

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I just read that the Larsen antenna is not for CB, is there such a thing of an antenna that can do it all, CB and the other bands on the BCD436HP?
I read on this forum somewhere, that just getting the antenna on the roof of a car or SUV will be the deciding factor. For receiving it should be not perfect but ok. For transmitting, that is just a whole different story. I bought a Wilson Little Wil CB antenna for my SUV. When my SDS100 arrives next week, I will let you know if this is indeed the case.
 

abbysdad2006

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mmckenna

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Would this work?
What is your ultimate goal?
The Larsen NMO-150/450/800 is a good option for general scanner use.
It's going to work well on VHF, UHF and 700/800MHz bands. It's not going to work well on CB as it's too short to be resonate on those frequencies. But, as comparison, so is the rubber duck antenna that came with the scanner. Very likely that the Larsen will get you some CB reception, especially compared to using the stock antenna inside the car.

If CB is the band you really want to focus on, then get a dedicated CB antenna. I've been using the Larsen NMO-27 for 30 years now, still works great. But it's not going to work well on the UHF/700-800MHz bands.

Beware of anyone selling a mobile antenna that they claim will cover "all bands" or anything like "25MHz to 1000MHz". The physics of antennas, especially in the mobile environment, make that nearly impossible to do well.
 

mmckenna

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There are many things I find highly questionable about that antenna.
An antenna that short is not going to perform at 20MHz.
Their claim of <2.0:1 SWR is completely meaningless on a receive antenna. And it's physically impossible for that antenna to give a flat SWR across the 20MHz to 1300MHz band like that unless it has a 50Ω resistor in the base (making it a useless antenna).
Claims of "compatibility" with a list of random/ancient two way radios is meaningless.

On the other hand, even a paperclip jammed in the end of the antenna jack on your scanner is going to pick up something, if the signal is strong enough.

2 antennas for $17.00 + free delivery should also be a red flag. That's $8.50 per antenna. Figuring the cost of shipping from China to the US then to your home, plus profits for everyone that touches it along the way would suggest that it's a very cheap antenna with poor coax and a crappy connector. Probably a $1 worth of materials once you figure in all the overhead and profits along the way.

I know what they claim, and can read the *one* review for the antenna. That one review is meaningless "Surprised at ability to now receive signals the stock rubber duck would not come close to. Definite dB gain, clear audio." Putting anything outside the vehicle will improve reception, even the previously mentioned paper clip. "Definite dB gain" means nothing.

Beware of cheap Chinese antennas. Yes, you'll see some improvement over the stock antenna used inside the vehicle. If your budget is tight enough that an $8.50 antenna is all you can afford, then by all means, go for it, you'll see a slight improvement. But, if your budget allows for more, you can very easily do better with a known good performer from a reliable American company that will stand behind their product.
 

mmckenna

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If you don't mind, here's my suggestion:

Start with a known good brand of magnetic mount NMO base with a preinstalled SMA connector. Here's 3 from well established brands that make professional antennas. These are not Chinese made junk, they have properly installed connectors, and will not fall apart if you accidentally hit a low branch/parking garage:
I'm a big fan of Larsen because I've been using them for 30 years now and I've never had a Larsen product fail me. I've talked to their people at trade shows and they know what they are doing. They stand behind their products. I ~usually~ use Larsen products at work where my reputation depends on it.
Laird and PCTel are also good companies and make a good product:

For the antenna, here's a couple of options from good companies:
Same antenna as above, but with a spring base. Good option if you have a tall vehicle: https://www.theantennafarm.com/catalog/laird-technologies-abscancs-5587
Similar antenna to above with a spring:

I tend to spec out Larsen antennas since I've had such a positive experience with them. I've also used Laird antennas and had excellent results with them also.

On the flip side, I've seen some crappy antennas from the hobby/amateur radio oriented companies that have failed me in the past. I avoid, at all costs, the Chinese companies that generally make low priced junk. I've had my hands on Tram/Browning products even installed a few (reluctantly). Their antennas were almost exact knock-offs of the known name brand stuff. I've dissected one of the Tram antenna mounts and found that their coaxial connectors are very low quality and poorly installed. While they are using name brands that used to be American CB radio manufacturers and have an address in the USA, they are cheap Chinese products. Fine for hobby use, but I'd not rely on them for any installation where you'd want reliable equipment, and I'd never install any of their products as part of my job where my reputation would rely on it.

I do know that as a hobby, cost is often a concern. I understand that, and have been there when I was younger. However, over time I quickly learned that you can spend a lot of money on "cheap" antennas. They will fail and you'll end up replacing them often. You'll quickly get to the point that you will have saved money if you'd just purchased the better stuff initially. But, again, for hobby use and for fitting inside your budget, you do the best you can.
 

abbysdad2006

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Thank you for all the great suggestions, I saw this one also and was wondering if anyone has has any experience with it?

 
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