Looking for recomendations

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Apr 9, 2018
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Edmonton , Alberta , Canada
hey guys ,

Ive got a cheap mobile amateur radio 40" whip antenna on my truck that i use for scanning amateur repeaters , and trucking channels mostly , works alright but i feel it could be better . its generic , no name on it or anything , I dislike that it hits my garage . Ive got it mounted on the bed rail of my truck about a foot back from the cab , not sure if this is hurting my ability to receive signals. Ill provide a link to the guy selling these antennas , maybe someone can ID this antenna .
Vhf antenna for Twoway Radios | General Electronics | Edmonton | Kijiji


Ive been looking at the TRAM 1181 or 1185 , the price appeals to me and the size (19") . but not sure where to mount the antenna , definitely not drilling a hole in my roof , might do a fender mount L bracket mount , I thought about a mag mount on the roof but dont want to have to take the antenna off every time I enter my garage .

looking for the best bang for the buck option for scanning . any suggestions guys ?


thanks
 

Firekite

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Apr 2, 2019
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You’re generally going to get a chorus of people saying to drill the hole and use an NMO mount, and you can swap on an extremely large variety of NMO antennas as you like, whether it’s the cheap Tram you linked or a more established known good brand and model. They’re right. There’s no downside. Do it once, the right way, and be done with it. Everything else is a compromise, some of them very expensive to boot.

A mag mount works as a temporary solution only, and both the base grinding particles into the paint and the coax rubbing constantly in the wind will absolutely screw up your paint anywhere you mount it.

If you simply refuse to do it right, then figure out what antenna you want to use (not an NMO base), then go through the expense of buying a stake mount or fender mount or whatever and just live with whatever the results are.
 

lu81fitter

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Mar 26, 2014
Messages
667
Location
Marshall County, Illinois
The top of my truck is about 76-77 inches. My garage door opening is about 84 inches. I have an NMO mount with an 18 inch whip drilled in the roof of a 2007 Silverado. I do not take the antenna off when I drive into the garage. It bends over and whips back just fine and I've never had any problems with leaks. As Firekite said, you can use whatever mount you prefer. You just have to live with the performance.

I am actually looking in to buying a new truck in the next year or so. When I get it home, I'll be drilling holes in it to mount antennas. It's just the best way.
 

devicelab

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Jul 18, 2016
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Nowhere in WA
Mounting on the fender would be OK but you implied that you want performance. You'll have to choose between mounting location and performance -- not both. You can get a 1/4 whip NMO antenna and place it in the center of your roof. You'll be amazed at its performance. You can get similar performance using a 52" whip antenna on the fender. You will NOT get that performance with a 18/19" whip on the fender. If you can live with the static then by all means go for it.

IMHO, suck it up and have a NMO installed in your truck. It's not as bad as you think and there are radio shops that will do it for a respectable price.
 
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