Best mobile antenna for Baofeng scanning

Gsquared

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Sep 4, 2008
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Hello. I just bought a Baofeng uv-5r radio solely to monitor my local fire department. Since it's all static inside of my suv, I am looking for the correct mobile mount antenna for 150-160 range as well as a few channels in the 460mhz range. If that means I have to choose between one or the other to get the best range, I'll be on the 150-160 range much more.

I live in the East Tennessee valley that stretches 50 miles across with 6000 foot mountains on both sides. The valley is fairly flat but has hills all over that probably block most lines of sight. Just looking for a decent priced mobile mount antenna to monitor my son's fire department action. Ty.
 

mmckenna

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ko6jw_2

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Looking at the RR database it looks like there is a transition underway moving from VHF frequencies to a statewide trunked system. A lot of the talk groups say future use so I think they are in the planning stages. As that transition happens the Baofeng will become useless. It doesn't receive digital and it can't monitor trunked systems.

With regard to the outside antenna, does the radio receive well outside the vehicle? If it does then an outside antenna would be the way to go.
 

Gsquared

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Sep 4, 2008
Messages
17
Looking at the RR database it looks like there is a transition underway moving from VHF frequencies to a statewide trunked system. A lot of the talk groups say future use so I think they are in the planning stages. As that transition happens the Baofeng will become useless. It doesn't receive digital and it can't monitor trunked systems.

With regard to the outside antenna, does the radio receive well outside the vehicle? If it does then an outside antenna would be the way to go.
Yes, outside, the radio with a longer Nagoya NA-771 antenna performs well but as soon as I get in the vehicle, it scans a lot more and has a lot of static when it hits a channel.

As far as why I went with Baofeng. The local police went trunked years ago but recently went uppercase E. I went Baofeng to save a bunch of money on a trunked scanner that will be useless to me once Fire goes trunked--->encrypted. For many years, police, fire, and the Great Smoky Mountains National Park rangers were the only ones I ever listened to but now, all but one have gone E. I just want to hang on as long as possible but will not follow them over to digital. Baofeng is awesome to have for HAM if I ever want to get my license and is good for an emergency.
 
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Gsquared

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Sep 4, 2008
Messages
17
I wi
A VHF quarter wave antenna will act as a 3/4 wave on UHF. That'll be about 17 to 18" tall.

You can also get dual/tri band antennas that will work: https://www.theantennafarm.com/cata...band-451/quarter-wave-dual-band-antennas-220/

If you want this to work well, do a proper permanent NMO mount dead center in the vehicle roof. That provides the proper ground plane for the antenna to work well.
I wish I could go NMO but unfortunately I'm going to have to get a magnet mount that I annoyingly take on and off as I leave and enter the garage. The roof of my Tahoe has about 5-7 inches of clearance before it hits the garage door.
 
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