Mounting an HF antenna on a SUV

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woebbers

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Trying to come up with ideas on how to mount an antenna for HF 80-10 meters on my Chevy Trailblazer. I looked into trailer hitch mounts and bumper mounts but my bumper is plastic. I cant be the only one with this issue. Any ideas would be helpful

Sal
 
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LtDoc

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Sal,
I'm in the same boat, no 'good' place to mount an HF antenna. Not an SUV, but close, an HHR and a screwdriver antenna. Looks like a trailer hitch is my best bet. Not the 'best' place in the world but the most 'possible' one. Thought about mounting a bar/bracket to the frame but ground clearance is sort of lacking. There are NO adequate support options with the body, so that's out. Oh well, at least the gas milage is good.
- 'Doc
 

n8zcc

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We are all in the same boat, I'm trying to find a mounting method for my Tahoe.

Doc, I was at a hamfest yesterday and parked next to an HHR that had one of those motorized HF antennas lip mounted inside the rear hatch.

I'm looking for solutions and antenna suggestions. Right now, I'm thinking ham sticks and a magnetic mount. I would like to find a way that will allow me to get into the garage without having to do a take down.
 

jhooten

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Tried the hitch mount on the Suburban. Blocks the cargo doors. I am considering putting on a front receiver and using a hitch mount in the front. Just wonder how distracting it would be.
 
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LtDoc

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Distracting? You can get used to almost anything if you want to bad enough. It should work. No idea how well it'd work but it's got to be better than nothing, right?

ZCC - Without major structural modification, I just don't see any way of supporting 20 - 30 pounds of antenna on an HHR. Sitting still is one thing, but add wind resistance into it and things change drastically. I thimk I'll wait a while...
- 'Doc
 

n8zcc

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ZCC - Without major structural modification, I just don't see any way of supporting 20 - 30 pounds of antenna on an HHR. Sitting still is one thing, but add wind resistance into it and things change drastically. I thimk I'll wait a while...
- 'Doc
I was looking at the mounting closely but couldn't see the actual mounting since was hidden by the lift gate. The attachment point was about even with the upper tail light on the drivers side.

If I new this conversation was going to happen I would have taken pictures.
 

W3DMV

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Trail Blazer HF Mount

I have a 2008 Chevy Trail Blazer and thought I would post a few pics of how I mounted my
antenna.
The antenna is a Little Tar Heel Screwdriver (80-6 meters) and is mounted on the roof. The antenna
is about 6 feet long depending on the band it is tuned for. The top of the antenna whip is appx 11 feet
off the ground, and clears most trees and all bridges in this area. Can not make it past the drive in
window at the bank...
I also have a big screwdriver antenna, and like most people, had to mount it low, first using a trailer
mount bracket, and later a home made bracket sticking out along the rear hatch about half way up.
The little antenna on the roof works much better than the big antenna mounted lower on my car. I
used both for over a two year period and now use the roof mount.
The antenna is mounted on a piece of 1.5 inch square aluminum square purchased from a
local hardware store. (Also available from Texas Towers and other suppliers). The square is bolted
to the roof rack channels using home made square nuts that fit in the slots. Final touch by using some
black spray paint to make the aluminum match the roof rack.
After two years of heavy use, the mount remains rigid and has caused no problems..
 

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salty

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W3DMV,

That is a great setup you configured. Thank you for sharing the photos and descriptions with us!
 

KB7MIB

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I've seen 3 and 4 magnet mag-mounts meant for large antennas that could hold a Ham Stick or an Outbacker on your roof at highway speeds. Yes, some people are very anti-mag mount, but some people may not have much of a choice and have to go with that.
 

KB7MIB

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Another option which I'd like to look into if I ever have the money, is the SGC QMS system strapped to the roof, rear doors, or side of the custom Chevy Suburban dream vehicle I've had in my head for years now.
 

LtDoc

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'MIB',
I guess it just depends on how you 'rate' an antenna. If you are only talking about 'working' on multiple bands, then that 'SGC QMS system' should certainly work just dandy. If you are talking about performance, I'm afraid it'll be a different story. As with any "one size fit's all" thingy, they very seldom ever 'fit' well, it's always a compromise. Shortening any antenna from it's "full size" Means a loss in performance. Lot's of shortening means lot's of performance loss. Somewhere in that 'compromise' it stops being worth the effort. That 'point' is up to the user.
Have fun.
- 'Doc
 

KB7MIB

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All mobile HF antennas are a compromise. Some more than others. You can opt for single band whips that are less of a compromise than the QMS, or you can opt for the convienence of automatic tuning of the QMS or a screw-driver type. It's your choice.
 

KB7MIB

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I was just throwing another option out there for the OP. He'll ultimately make his own choice.
 

n8zcc

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SUV and HF

I made a decision and went with the Yaesu ATAS-120A and a Diamond K400S mount. I found pictures of this set up on a Yahoo group and decided to go with it.

The antenna will mount on the rear hatch, drivers side, just above the tail light. I am going to try and modify the mount so a can screw it in to the inside track but if that fails, then I will use the lip mount and make sure the tail gate (made of aluminum) is well bonded.

It may not be the best solution but this mounting position will allow me to get in to the garage with out having to remove the antenna.

If any one is interested I can post pictures once the parts arrive and I get it installed.

Bob
 

woebbers

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I made a decision and went with the Yaesu ATAS-120A and a Diamond K400S mount. I found pictures of this set up on a Yahoo group and decided to go with it.

The antenna will mount on the rear hatch, drivers side, just above the tail light. I am going to try and modify the mount so a can screw it in to the inside track but if that fails, then I will use the lip mount and make sure the tail gate (made of aluminum) is well bonded.

It may not be the best solution but this mounting position will allow me to get in to the garage with out having to remove the antenna.

If any one is interested I can post pictures once the parts arrive and I get it installed.

Bob
Pics are always helpful. I think im using the K400 as well on the rear hatch...hope it works out for you/me

Sal
 

n8zcc

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Pics are always helpful. I think im using the K400 as well on the rear hatch...hope it works out for you/me

Sal
Mounted the ATAS-120A on the rear hatch using the Diamond K400S mount. I bonded the tailgate to the body using a braided grounding strap.

It all appears to be working nicely, on the drive into work (metro Detroit) I chatted with stations is New Hampshire, Louisiana, and Florida on 40 meters.

Time will tell.
 
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