Coax upgrade

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ChrisABQ

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I'm currently using RG-58 at 50 ft (feedline air choke) to feed my BCT15X of analog traffic in the burbs around Albuquerque. I'm getting about 80 to 100 miles in coverage but I'm wondering if going to RG-6 would be a good upgrade?

As my antenna, I'm using a home made 1/2 wave dipole at approx 39 inch length (aluminum tube) which does a pretty good job of getting air and the VHF I mainly target.

Would it be a good move to go to RG-6 or do I really need something like RG-213? Does the ohm level matter for just receiving? LMR is out of the question.

Thanks
 

jonwienke

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@200MHz:
2.795 RG-58
2.018 RG-6
1.559 RG-213

For VHF the difference is probably not worth upgrading. If you were monitoring 800 MHz, it would be worthwhile:

@800MHz:
7.105 RG-58
4.354 RG-6
3.550 RG-213
 

cmdrwill

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If your antenna is not hard to get to try the RG6 cable or even RG6 quad shield. First make some 'bench marks' for some of the signal strengths for reference. The dipole may be closer to the 75 ohms that RG6 is.
 

movinon

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80 to 100 miles seems pretty good.
Any gain from changes might not be that large.

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ChrisABQ

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I sit atop a small hill and because of HOA restrictions my antenna sits at the top of my patio fence. But being on the hill, I'm about 40 feet above a large area. I routinely receive traffic (2 bars) from Crownpoint tower 98 miles aways (5 bars if hearing from the LaMosca mountain repeater 70 miles away).

A definite bonus to scanning in New Mexico is that many agencies have towers on mountains. I receive up to 80 miles south to Socorro as well.

But like everyone else, always looking for ways to improve reception.
Thanks all.
 

movinon

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I bet reception would be good in your mobile at Sandia Peak....lol

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Rred

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I'd expect most of the agencies that you listen to are using vertical antennas. You are using a horizontal dipole? By changing your antenna to match the orientation (polarity) of theirs, you may see as much as a 20db signal gain, at next to no cost. The most cost-effective thing to look into, even if it takes some figuring to find a way that keeps the HOA happy.
 

ChrisABQ

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It is vertically polarized as it's only about 39 inches in length total.

Another question though, it' currently made of aluminum tubing, would there be an increase in reception/range if I re-built it out of copper tubing?
 

Rred

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As long as the connections from the aluminum to the copper antenna wire are clean and tight, any difference in using copper versus alu tubing should be negligible for a receiving dipole like that. Going to fatter tubing (up to a point) can make an antenna more broadband, if that's an issue. But again, unlikely to be a big deal for you.
 

lmrtek

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rg6 is definitely the way to go for scanners since its low loss, flexible, and 75 ohm preamps are MUCH cheaper than the 50 ohm types
 
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